Keeper of the Bees (1947)

68 mins | Drama | 10 July 1947

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HISTORY

According to a Jun 1946 HR news item, Leon Barsha and Wallace MacDonald were initially slated to produce this film. Other film adaptations of Gene Stratton Porter's novel include a 1925 version, directed by James Leo Meehan and starring Robert Frazer (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.2850) and a 1935 version by Monogram Pictures starring Neil Hamilton and Betty Furness and directed by Christy Cabanne (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; ... More Less

According to a Jun 1946 HR news item, Leon Barsha and Wallace MacDonald were initially slated to produce this film. Other film adaptations of Gene Stratton Porter's novel include a 1925 version, directed by James Leo Meehan and starring Robert Frazer (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.2850) and a 1935 version by Monogram Pictures starring Neil Hamilton and Betty Furness and directed by Christy Cabanne (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.2244). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
5 Jul 1947.
---
Harrison's Reports
16 Aug 47
p. 131.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Jun 46
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Oct 47
p. 3.
Independent Film Journal
15 Mar 47
p. 40.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
29 Nov 1947.
---
DETAILS
Release Date:
10 July 1947
Production Date:
6 March--22 March 1947
Copyright Claimant:
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Copyright Date:
20 July 1947
Copyright Number:
LP1088
Duration(in mins):
68
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Michael Worthington, known to his neighbors as "the bee master" because he owns an apiary, is driving along in his jalopy when he encounters Jamie McFarlane, an embittered young artist. The bee master attempts to make friends with the youth and suggests he give up his nomadic wanderings. Jamie rejects Worthington's advice, however, until the bee keeper suffers a heart attack and Jamie agrees to temporarily take over the running of the apiary. Little Scout, a twelve-year-old girl who lives at the nearby orphan asylum, spends much of her time at the apiary and develops a crush on Jamie. Jamie, in turn, falls in love with Alice, who works for Mrs. Ferris, the mean superintendent of the orphanage. In a burst of confidence, Jamie tells Little Scout that he has been married, but is now divorced, and asks that she keep his secret. His respect for the philosophical bee master, his fondness for Little Scout and his love for Alice dissolve Jamie's bitterness, and he begins to paint again, sending several of the canvases back to New York, where he has a reputation as an artist. In the East, Jamie's new work is greeted with acclaim. Jamie's newfound success prompts his wife, Marcia, from whom Jamie will be legally divorced in one week, to seek a reconciliation. When Marcia phones Jamie, Mrs. Ferris, on a party line, picks up the receiver and hears Marcia refer to herself as "Mrs. McFarlane." Mrs. Ferris then spreads the gossip that Alice is having a romance with a married man. Upon hearing the news, Alice becomes furious with Jamie, who thinks that Little Scout has betrayed ... +


Michael Worthington, known to his neighbors as "the bee master" because he owns an apiary, is driving along in his jalopy when he encounters Jamie McFarlane, an embittered young artist. The bee master attempts to make friends with the youth and suggests he give up his nomadic wanderings. Jamie rejects Worthington's advice, however, until the bee keeper suffers a heart attack and Jamie agrees to temporarily take over the running of the apiary. Little Scout, a twelve-year-old girl who lives at the nearby orphan asylum, spends much of her time at the apiary and develops a crush on Jamie. Jamie, in turn, falls in love with Alice, who works for Mrs. Ferris, the mean superintendent of the orphanage. In a burst of confidence, Jamie tells Little Scout that he has been married, but is now divorced, and asks that she keep his secret. His respect for the philosophical bee master, his fondness for Little Scout and his love for Alice dissolve Jamie's bitterness, and he begins to paint again, sending several of the canvases back to New York, where he has a reputation as an artist. In the East, Jamie's new work is greeted with acclaim. Jamie's newfound success prompts his wife, Marcia, from whom Jamie will be legally divorced in one week, to seek a reconciliation. When Marcia phones Jamie, Mrs. Ferris, on a party line, picks up the receiver and hears Marcia refer to herself as "Mrs. McFarlane." Mrs. Ferris then spreads the gossip that Alice is having a romance with a married man. Upon hearing the news, Alice becomes furious with Jamie, who thinks that Little Scout has betrayed his confidence through childish jealousy. To vindicate herself, Little Scout pretends to let a swarm of bees loose on Mrs. Ferris, thereby forcing her to confess how she came to learn about Marcia. After Worthington heals the rift between Alice and Jamie, he bestows his cottage and grounds on them as a wedding gift, and all ends happily as the newly engaged couple decide to adopt Little Scout. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.