Errol’s Adventures of Robin Hood — 80th Anniversary —— May Day, 1937 —— The Stories Begin

03 May

An EFB Four Score Anniversary Production

The Adventures of Robin Hood – The Stories Begin

Published on May 1, 1937 – Perfect because of the May Day connections to the legend of Robin Hood.
Movie Released in May of 1938.


How do you like the idea of the dashing young Errol Flynn as the adventurous Robin Hood?
We hope you do because you’re going to see him in one of his next pictures in the role,
of the legendary hero who stole from the rich that the poor might live. Interesting that
young Flynn, who has so often been called Douglas Fairbanks’ successor, should inherit one
of the most popular of the Fairbanks’ roles.

According to Jack Warner, who definitely settled on the Robin Hood idea just before he left
for New York, this will be an outdoor Technicolor special with an effective background for
Robin Hood’s romantic adventures. Since it is not a musical Reginald de Koven’s tuneful
operetta will not be included although Warners own the libretto by Harry Smith. Olivia
de Havilland, who has made her most successful pictures with Flynn, will be his starring
partner with Patric Knowles in a featured role.

— Tim


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  1. shangheinz

    May 5, 2017 at 7:57 pm


    Personally, the greatest picture ever, Bullseye Tim. Interesting that Knowles is already in and Niv not mentioned.

    • Gentleman Tim

      May 6, 2017 at 12:12 pm

      Interesting indeed, robinheinz. I wonder if MC or JW put the nix on Niv, as Errol and he used to so much enjoy getting hammered together.


    • shangheinz

      May 7, 2017 at 4:26 pm


      The table for Robin Hood clearly was set in Hearst Castle, where Jack Warner was a regular.

  2. Paula

    May 5, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    It’s always weird to me to think that there was a time before this movie existed! It’s one of the first Golden Era films I ever saw and it’s just always been there. Also imagine if they used the operetta and this was a musical. Whoa. Thank you for sharing.

    • Gentleman Tim

      May 6, 2017 at 11:53 am

      Whoa is right, Paula! Thank the cinematic gods that Errol and Baz weren’t required to danxe and sing to each other during their duels, and that Busby Berkeley didn’t stage the feast in the woods or archery competition.

      Here is some info on how MGM and Warners went their different ways on “Robin Hood”, which Warners had to call “The Adventures of Robin Hood”:

      “A news item in Hollywood Reporter reports that in 1935, M-G-M paid $62,500 to the estate of Reginald de Koven for film rights to the music he composed for the operetta Robin Hood. It was the largest sum ever paid by a studio for music rights. M-G-M had previously purchased the book and lyrics of the operetta from Warner Bros., which had owned the rights since the silent days. Despite plans to star Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy, the operetta was never filmed by M-G-M. In 1936 Republic announced a Robin Hood film which was to be filmed in Magnacolor. Wells Root was scheduled to write and direct it.”

      “When Warner moved to adapt the operetta Robin Hood, written by Reginald de Koven and Harry B. Smith, they found MGM had the same idea, only their plan was to make a musical. Warner wanted an adventure picture, so the two studios determined that Warner would be given the operetta’s story rights while MGM received rights to the music and to the title “Robin Hood”. This meant Warner needed another name for their picture. Hence, The Adventures of Robin Hood was born. (Incidentally, MGM never produced their musical.)”

      Nelson & Jeanette:


      • Paula

        May 7, 2017 at 2:25 am

        Thanks for the behind-the-scenes info, Gentleman Tim. I think it all worked out for the best ;)