The origin for The Trouble With Girls can be traced back to June 1959. At that time it was announced that Don Mankiewicz was going to write a screenplay based on an unpublished story by Mauri Grashin, Day Keene and Dwight Babcock. The film was titled Chautauqua. A year and a half later, in December 1960, MGM announced that Glenn Ford was to star and Edmund Grainger was going to produce Chautauqua. The Hollywood trade papers stated that Elvis was slated to co-star with Glenn Ford, Hope Lange and Arthur O'Connell in February 1961. Three months later it was reported that Valentine Davis was writing the screenplay for the film, which was due to begin production in the fall of 1961.
In July 1961, it was announced that Elvis was to star in and Edward Gerainger was to produce a film titled Chautauqua.
In August 1964, Dick Van Dyke was scheduled to star in Chautauqua. Blanche Harris was writing the Screenplay based on the book, Merrily We Roll Along, by Gay MacLauren. Three months later it was reported that Richard Morris was writing the screenplay.
MGM sold the property to Columbia Pictures in May 1965. Dick Van Dyke was still the star, but Elliot Arnold was now scripting the film ( retitled Big America ) and Sol C. Siegel was producing .
Finally MGM got the rights back in April 1968. Chautauqua was now an Elvis vehicle. It was later renamed, The Trouble With Girls.