Bob Hope recalled that during the scene where he and Bing Crosby were bedding down beside their cabin in the Klondike, they were to be joined by a bear. They were told that the bear was tame and its trainer would always be nearby. Against their better judgment they went along with it. However, when the cameras started filming, the bear ambled over to Hope and, instead of lying down next to him like it was supposed to, the animal sniffed him and started growling. Hope and Crosby immediately stopped the scene and refused to work with the bear any longer, despite the trainer's protestations that it was tame and harmless. The next day the bear attacked its trainer and tore his arm off.
Writers Norman Panama and Melvin Frank were having trouble getting the script approved by the three main stars, all of whom were prestigious in their own right and wanted the most screen presence. When these group script negotiations broke down, Panama and Frank held individual conferences with each of the stars, explaining how the script would highlight that star (the one being met with at the time) more than the others. This approach worked, and the script was finally approved.
Of the seven "Road" pictures, this is the only one whose title does not refer to an actual location. In this case, "Utopia" is the happiness that comes from striking gold in the Yukon Territories, where much of the action takes place.
At one point Bob Hope remarks that Bing Crosby's voice is "just right for selling cheese". Crosby at the time was singing on the radio on the "Kraft Radio Show", whose sponsor was a company that made cheese.
Filmed between December 3, 1943 and late January 1944, the movie premiered on February 27, 1946 at the Paramount Theatre in Manhattan. It is not known why the movie's release was delayed for over a year, although Dorothy Lamour later speculated that Paramount Pictures didn't want this screwball comedy to hurt Bing Crosby's chances of winning an Oscar for Going My Way (1944).
The big hit of the Johnny Burke-Jimmy Van Heusen score was the comically saucy "Personality." Put over in the film by worldly-wise Dorothy Lamour, the tune was transformed by Decca Records into easy jazz, courtesy of Bing Crosby and Eddie Condon's Orchestra featuring the cornet of Wild Bill Davidson. This interpretation showed up on two Decca releases: a 78 which rose to #9 on the "Billboard" singles listing, and as part of the boxed album of selections from the movie. Capitol's waxing by singer-songwriter Johnny Mercer and The Pied Pipers captured first place on the "Billboard" singles chart during the week of March 9, 1946.
One of over 700 Paramount productions, filmed between 1929-49, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. its earliest documented telecast took place in Asheville Monday 23 March 1959 on WLOS (Channel 13), followed by Milwaukee 27 April 1959 on WITI (Channel 6), by San Francisco 19 September 1959 on KPIX (Channel 5), by St. Louis 10 October 1959 on KMOX (Channel 4), by Omaha 29 October 1959 on KETV (Channel 7), by Grand Rapids 9 November 1959 on WOOD (Channel 8), by Chicago 6 December 1959 on WBBM (Channel 2), by Seattle 19 December 1959 on KIRO (Channel 7), and by Baltimore 26 December 1959 on WBAL (Channel 11). It was released on DVD 5 March 2002 as part of Universal's Bob Hope: The Tribute Collection, again 4 May 2004 as part of Universal's On the Road with Bob Hope and Bing Crosby Collection, and again 11 November 2014 as one of 24 titles in Universal's Bing Crosby Silver Screen Collection; since that time, has enjoyed frequent presentations on cable TV on Turner Classic Movies.
Stanley Beebe and his wife, actress, Rose Kress were the bears owners and trainers. His bears, Rosie and Minnie, can be seen on " The Milton Berle Show", " The Ken Murray Show" and twice on "The Ed Sullivan Show" Rosie and Minnie the bears are the same ones used in " The Road To Utopia."