Archive for the ‘Films’ Category

Case of the Curious Corpse

12 Feb…

— Gentleman Tim


“In the wake of the bounty” 1933

13 Jan

From TROVE Digitised Newspapers, National Library of Australia

Brisbane Courier Mail        23/03/1932


Mr Charles Chauvel who produced “The Moth of Moonbi” and “Greenhide,” in Queensland some year ago, is to produce a series of films for Expeditionary Films Ltd., a Sydney company. Mr Chauvel, accompanied by his wife Elsa, and a camera staff, will travel far from the beaten track in search of cinema material. Adventure and romance are to predominate in the films, to be produced by this company.

Besides a feature film, Mr. Chauvel will make a series of historical and travel films.  These will be recorded with German and French dialogue as well, as English.   Mr Chauvel will commence production next month at the studio of Australasian Films, Bondi, Sydney.



Sydney Morning Herald        23/08/1932


MUTINY OF THE BOUNTY –  Reconstructed for Films.   Mr. Charles Chauvel returned to Sydney on

Saturday, after travelling 15,000 miles in little known parts of the Pacific Ocean, to make a film depicting the mutiny of the Bounty for Expeditionary Films, Ltd., an Australian company.  Every effort has been made to produce the film historically, and present a faithful picture of the wanderings of the mutineers, before they reached Pitcairn Island, where they burned the Bounty,


And Lieutenant Bligh’s epic voyage of 4000 miles, in an open boat to Batavia, after he had been cast adrift with l8 loyal members of his crew.  Mr. Chauvel followed the route of the Bounty and saw the remains of the ship lying in the clear water at Pitcairn Island.  Native dances were filmed at Tahiti, where the mutineers stayed. Natives had to be specially chosen, as knowledge of primitive dances Is rapidly dying out.

Members of the party had an unpleasant experience at Pitcairn Island. They were Inspecting the coast in an open boat, when the engine failed, and they were blown out to sea.  They managed to make repairs just before sunset, and made a dangerous return to the Island through the surf, which is always heavy.

Mr. Chauvel said that his company believed that Australian history was too much neglected, and attempts would be made to fill in the gaps.  Arrangements have been made for copies of the film to be prepared with Spanish and German comment.


Sydney Morning Herald     15/03/1933



To-day, at the Prince Edward Theatre, the film, “In the Wake of the Bounty,”  which Mr. Charles Chauvel produced recently, with Tahiti and Pitcairn Islands as the principal backgrounds, will be given its first public screenings.

At the Australia Hotel yesterday, the directors of Expeditionary Films Ltd., under whose auspices Mr. Chauvel has made the film, entertained members of the Press and the motion picture Industry at luncheon.

Mr. S. Utz (Chairman of Expeditionary Films, Ltd.) presided.  COL. M. P. Bruxner, who is a member of the company, outlined some of the difficulties which Mr. Chauvel had had to face In making the film;  difficulties of transport; difficulties of organisation; and, finally, difficulties of censorship. The members of the company, being amateurs in the film business, had been amazed, and then appalled, at the amount of obstinacy and pugnacity which had to be displayed, before a film finally reached its public.


Mr. C. Brunsdon Fletcher spoke of the essential soundness and solidarity of the British Empire, in a world where every other nation was reeling beneath the shock of disaster (the depression).  After all, it was human character, as expressed in national outlook, which remained the predominating factor.  The producers of this film had done something decisive and valuable to make their country known elsewhere.

Mr. Hec C. MacIntyre (Managing Director of Universal Films – Aust) said that his Company considered it was only doing Its duty in trying to establish Australian films abroad. The launching of the Australian product In England, was no easy matter, either.  The English exhibitor was conservative. He preferred to concentrate on English and American productions.  Some of the earlier Australian films had been extraordinarily difficult to market. In Mr. Chauvel’s picture, however, he was confident that he had something to appeal to the tastes of the whole world.

Mr. H. Saxton (Secretary of Expeditionary Films) also spoke.


The West Australian        1 December, 1933


IN THE WAKE OFfHE BOUNTY              New Australian Production.


Travelogues and dramas have drenched the screen- with the- spray of South Sea beaches until the film-goer imagines that he knows every angle from which a palm can be photographed. Then an Australian, Mr. Charles Chauvel,. makes ‘In the Wake of the Bounty,’ and presents the Pacific under a strange and cloudy beauty, such as has not been filmed.  Mr. Chauvel, however, is more concerned with the savage languor of the tropics; he masses the brilliance of wild dances and flowers to show the pathetic contrast between the islands, which link that famous mutiny, Tahiti and Pitcairn, writes the Film Editor of the Sydney ‘Sun.’

Thus that first part of the. film is a glamorous reconstruction of history, with young Errol Flynn playing the part of Fletcher Christian – Mayne Lynton that of Bligh, and Victor Gouriet that of the blind fiddler, who tells the tale.  The scenes aboard ship are effectively done; then, by filming the journey made down the

Pacific by the Chauvels themselves, Pitcairn comes into view and the title of the picture falls into its proper pace.


The latter sequences of the film admirably bear out the intention of the producers (Expeditionary Films, Ltd.) to chart the unknown tracts of the world.  Pitcairn, of which the serious and religious people, appalling surf and precipices, prim houses and vegetable patches, are shown in absorbing detail, is one of those places which, as the steamer route moves farther out, will be less frequently visited.

Drama as well as travel has been caught by the film; human romances, swift tragedies, interludes as exciting as any fiction, all enthral the audience.

‘In the Wake of. the Bounty’ will be shown at the Theatre Royal in December, with ‘Leave it to Me’ (Gene Gerrard).


“In the wake of the Bounty” 1933 (24)


Australian Screen Site

Errol Flynn

Photo of Errol Flynn 1933

As a cast member:   Errol Flynn as Fletcher Christian 1933

In the Wake of the Bounty (1933)

This list shows all the titles currently on australianscreen , that include Errol Flynn in a principal role.  It is not a comprehensive screen-o-graphy.

Singleton Argus           30/01/1933











The South Seas film “In the Wake of the Bounty,”  which the Commonwealth Censor  (Mr Creswell O’Reilly) insists must be submitted for certain cuts, will be placed before the Censorship Appeal Board by the’ producer, Mr Charles Chauvel who said that the dance scenes to which Mr. O;Reilly had objected, had been supervised in the making, by a Methodist clergyman.


Sydney Morning Herald       11/02/1933


Top of Form

THE “BOUNTY” FILM.                         Appeal to Minister for Customs.


Mr. Charles Chauvel, who directed “In the Wake of the Bounty,” staled last night that the Censorship Appeal Board had considered the film, and announced its decision.  When the sections of the picture photographed in Tahiti came before the Commonwealth Film Censor (Mr. O’Reilly) recently. ? he ordered three excisions before the film could be publicly screened within Australia.  He also ordered that a cut should be made In the section photographed within the Commonwealth, before the completed film could be exported lo other countries.  The Appeal Board passed every part of the production except

one set of incidents which relate to a native dance.

Mr. Chauvel declares that he and his Board ol Directors intend to carry their case from the Appeal Board to the Minister for Customs.  They feel, he says, that their film has been unfairly chosen  for attack, while foreign productions embodying the same type of incident, have been allowed admission to this country, without comment.

If the Minister fails to reverse the decision of the Appeal Board”, he goes on, “In the Wake of the Bounty” will not be screened in Australia.  Its’ owners will simply send it abroad, and concentrate on the oversea market  The scenes of the native dance are the pivot of the whole production.  If they are deleted, the film will be spoilt.”


National Screen Archives


Title No: 496
Title: IN THE WAKE OF THE BOUNTY : ORIGINAL RELEASE.    Country of Origin:  Australia
Production Date: 1932    Media: Film
Release Date: 15 March 1933    Duration:   01:04:00
Produced as: Feature Film    Category: DramaCast:    Marie Rosenfeld, Errol Flynn, Mayne Linton
Cinematographer/Director:  Tasman Higgins

Director:    Charles Chauvel

Company:  Expeditionary Films

Summary:  Retells the story of the mutiny led by Fletcher Christian in 1789 against William Bligh, depicting the fate of the mutineers on Tahiti and Pitcairn. — General notes: Shot on location and in Sydney. The wreckage in the film portrayed as that of ‘The Bounty’ is in fact that of ‘The Cornwallis’, which was wrecked in 1875. — Source:   Queensland Maritime Museum.

In 1935, M.G.M. bought American rights to the film and re-edited it to form two short travelogues, ‘Pitcairn Island Today’ (1935) and ‘Primitive Pitcairn’ (1936). These were used as promotional aids for the studio’s own production of ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’.

Source: Australian Film 1900-1977, Andrew Pike and Ross Cooper.



— Isabel Australis


In a Galaxy Far, Far Away

29 Dec

Tammy, Tammy, Tammy is gone.

How terribly, terribly sad. One of the last true greats from Hollywood’s Golden Age has died, only a day after her daughter, also a film legend.

Around the time of her playing Tammy, there was discussion of Debbie Reynolds costarring with Errol, following his own great success in The Sun Also Rises. This was all circa the time Liz ran off with the Louse, leaving the unsinkable Debbie with two Fisher toddlers, Todd and Carrie. Carrie, of course, achieved immortality of her own starring in Star Wars with spacebuckler Hans Solo, a character inspired by Errol himself. Except for Harrison, they are all now in a galaxy far, far away. Godspeed to all of them.

— Gentleman Tim


Flynn, Kennedy & Miss Congo???

15 Dec

Was there a connection???

As Flynn in Florida research continues I quite unexpectedly came across this reported connection between Errol and one of Joe Kennedy’s early films. … leading one to wonder what happened to the rest of Errol’s reportedly “huge collection of silent films”? Any or all also at MoMA?……



— Gentleman Tim


Mailbag! The Making of Objective Burma!

01 Dec

Jan Vandervliet writes us with a recording site link to Objective Berma! And a detailed description of the recording and how the film was made. Click the image for the description!

Thanks, Jan!


— David DeWitt


In should`ve been Flynn 11

07 Oct

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

here is a Errol Flynn would be hit and narrowly missed movie with a tailormade theme to his torrid temperament.

The circumstances courtesy of…:

Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall’s novel was serialized in The Saturday Evening Post (28 December 1935-1 February 1936). A December 5, 1935 Hollywood Reporter news item reported that producer Samuel Goldwyn purchased the film rights to their novel for $60,000, and various news items in the spring of 1936 noted that he originally intended to produce the film in Technicolor, but was prevented from doing so because of the cost involved. The film’s pressbook stated that Goldwyn had hoped to shoot the entire picture on location in the South Seas, but the expense and difficulty of transporting the equipment, combined with the possible adverse weather conditions, necessitated that the picture be shot in Hollywood. A great deal of background footage was shot in the village of Pago Pago, on the Tutuila Island in American Samoa, however, where the camera crew received the cooperation of the U.S. Navy. A November 22, 1937 Life article reported that the location crew shot “140,000 feet of scenic shots in Samoa, enough to make 14 movies.” Among those who went to the South Seas for location scouting in the winter of 1936 and filming during the following spring were: director John Ford, associate director Stuart Heisler, unit location manager Percy Ikerd, art director Richard Day, photographers Archie Stout and Paul Eagler and an eighteen-member technical crew. Although a November 1, 1936 New York Times news item stated that Gregg Toland would be leaving in a week to film exteriors in Samoa, his participation in the completed film has not been confirmed.
Among the actresses listed by contemporary sources as being considered for the role of “Marama” were Merle Oberon and Movita Castenada, the latter of whom appeared in the picture as “Arai.” According to Hollywood Reporter news items, Goldwyn first signed Margo for the part of Marama, then borrowed Dorothy Lamour from Paramount after Margo asked to be relieved of the role. “Moon of Manakoora” became Lamour’s signature song, and the role of Marama helped establish her career identification with a sarong, which was begun with the 1936 film Jungle Princess. A Hollywood Reporter news item reported that Charita Alden was being tested for an uspecified role, and a Hollywood Reporter production chart includes Barbara O’Neil in the cast, but their participation in the completed film has not been confirmed. Basil Rathbone was originally considered for the part of “Eugene DeLaage,” which, according to a September 25, 1938 New York Times article, he turned down. Photographer Bert Glennon and actor C. Aubrey Smith were borrowed from Selznick International for this production.
A November 19, 1936 Hollywood Reporter news item reported that Goldwyn would star Mala as “Terangi” if Errol Flynn were unavailable for the part, while a November 21, 1936 Film Daily news item stated that Goldwyn contract players John Payne and Frank Shields were being tested for the role. In early February 1937, Goldwyn announced that Joel McCrea would be playing “Terangi,” although by late Mar, he was removed from the cast and placed into another Goldwyn film, Dead End. After much publicity announcing that he was looking for and casting an “unknown” as “Terangi,” Goldwyn finally revealed that he had placed Jon Hall in the role. Although Goldwyn’s publicity, contemporary news items and reviews variously asserted that Hall was an “unknown,” a “newcomer,” or that he had “never appeared in a picture” before, Hall had made numerous films in the mid-1930s under the names Charles Locher and Lloyd Crane. Contemporary and modern sources variously state that Hall was the cousin, second cousin or nephew of author James Norman Hall, and that he was a next-door neighbor of Ford, all of which contributed to his being cast as “Terangi.” Hall, who was born in Fresno, CA, was reared in Tahiti, although some sources incorrectly state that he was born in Tahiti as well.
According to Hollywood Reporter news items, William Wyler directed tests of the actors while Ford was finishing direction on Wee Willie Winkie at Fox, and location shooting was also done on Santa Catalina Island, CA. A March 24, 1937 Hollywood Reporter news item announced that Goldwyn was going to produce a 1,000 foot short about the filming of The Hurricane in Samoa. The news item stated: “The short titled ‘Samoa for the Samoans’ will be released to theatres in advance of the feature’s distribution and will show the manner in which a picture company works on location.” No other information about the short has been found. Although Frank Loesser and Alfred Newman’s song is entitled “Moon of Manakoora,” contemporary sources refer to the island on which the film’s action takes place as “Manukura.”
The widely praised hurricane sequence was created by special effects expert James Basevi and his assistant, Robert Layton. Basevi and Layton, who had been with M-G-M for fourteen years, left the studio in September 1936 after creating the earthquake special effects for San Francisco (see below). According to Life, Goldwyn gave Basevi a budget of $400,000 to achieve his effects, and “of this amount, $150,000 was spent to build a native village, fronted by a lagoon 200 yards long. The other $250,000 was spent in destroying it.” A pressbook for the film notes that the native village set occupied two-and-a-half acres of the United Artists studio backlot. With the aid of numerous twelve-cylinder Liberty motor wind machines, large wave machines, firehoses and an elaborate system of pipes, chutes and holding tanks, thousands of gallons of water were sent crashing down onto the sets to create the winds of the hurricane and the subsequent tidal waves. Contemporary sources note that doubles were not used for the actors during the storm sequences, and as an article in New York Times related: “Dorothy Lamour and Mary Astor were really lashed to that tree and buffeted about like chips.” According to another New York Times article, the rigors of shooting resulted in Hall losing thirty pounds by the time the picture was completed. In her autobiography, Astor describes the shooting: “Huge propellers kept us fighting for every step, with sand and water whipping our faces, sometimes leaving little pinpricks of blood on our cheeks from the stinging sand.”
According to a remark by Goldwyn printed in a New York Times article, the film cost $2,000,00 to produce. The article relates that Goldwyn spent another $35,000 on the picture’s premiere at the Carthay Circle Theatre in Los Angeles. The film was named one of ten best pictures of 1938 by the Film Daily annual critics poll, and a modern source notes that it was “one of United Artists’ most successful releases in years.” Thomas Mitchell was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, and Alfred Newman was nominated for Best Score. The Hurricane won an Academy Award for Best Sound Recording. Information in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library reveals that the picture was the object of much criticism by the French government. French officials in Washington, D.C. demanded cuts of the scenes in which prisoners were flogged and tortured by French guards. The eliminations were made, but the film still encountered difficulty in Paris, where censors refused to pass a dubbed version. According to a letter from Harold L. Smith, who apparently was a PCA foreign staff member, “there was a unanimous decision of the censors not to pass the film for two reasons: first, the original version was considered anti-French in accord with reports received from the French Embassy in Washington and second, the local office of United Artists presented to the censors a revised version of the film whereas the regulations require that the original version be presented.” Correspondence in the file indicates that the French representative of United Artists was fearful that the original verison would not pass and so instead submitted a revised version. The correspondence does not specifically state which version was exhibited in Paris, but apparently the censors did agree to review both the original and dubbed versions.
According to modern sources, Goldwyn originally wanted Howard Hawks to direct the picture, for which Ben Hecht was hired to do an uncredited rewrite just before going into production. A 1974 New York Times news item noted that Paul Stader was Hall’s stuntman for a jump off a cliff. The picture was remade in 1979 as Hurricane, which was produced by Dino De Laurentiis, directed by January Troell and starred Jason Robards, Mia Farrow and Dayton Ka’ne. According to a 1978 New York Times article, De Laurentiis “reportedly paid $500,000 for the rights to the original film.” The remake, which was filmed on location in Bora Bora, cost eleven times more to produce than the original. The Variety review of the later film incorrectly states that Glen Robinson created the hurricane special effects for the 1937 picture.

Here`s a torn sails` snippet:


— shangheinz


A Premier Date! The Sea Hawk!

04 Oct

I am sure many of us use several sources to confirm the movie premiere dates for Flynn’s films. One of the largest, and generally reliable, is is IMDb. But it is always good to double check.

As an example I checked the date for The Sea Hawk with IMDb and it is listed as July 1, 1940 with a second listing of August 10 in New York City. Wellll, that’s not quite right.

After filming was completed on April 19, 1940 there was no release date set. On July 4th there was a special sneak preview of the film in Pomona, Cal. and still no release date set. On July 17 there is an all day preview of the film at Warner’s Hollywood theatre with guests anD reporters and a tentative premiere date was announced to be the Labor day wekend, but not printed. Read the rest of this entry »

— Ada Klock


And Don’t Forget About That Jack Sparrow Bugger Who Stole All Our Rum!

22 Sep

— twinarchers


I Ordered My Steak Medium You Dog!

22 Sep

I seem to get into these moods when drinking local ale.

— twinarchers


In should`ve been Flynn 10

19 Sep

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

here is another monumental movie that Errol didn`t get his armour on for.

Based loosely on the novel “The Talisman” by Sir Walter Scott, Warner Bros. clearly wanted to jump on the Ivanhoe bandwagon with this vehicle. The tableround was decked, but Flynn was kept in check. He played “The dark Avenger” in England instead and narrowly missed appearing in one of “The fifty worst films of all time”:…

His probaly was the role of Sir Kenneth of Huntington, a noble scotsman, siding with King Richard the Lionheart in the 3rd Crusade against the Saracens. The chivalric love interest would`ve been Virginia Mayo, while the musical score was composed by flynntimate Max Steiner and errolpal Otto (von) Reichow makes an uncredited appearance as Austrian soldier.

Brush up your Germlish, Laddies and Gentlewomen, for here it is in its entire cinemascopic splendor:


— shangheinz