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HISTORY

Oasis was produced in German and French-language versions only. The English-language version eventually exhibited in the U.S. and Great Britain was a shortened (by sixteen minutes) dubbed version of the French-language release. According to the 20 Apr 1955 Var review of the German version, titled Oase , Carl Raddatz portrayed "Antoine Vallin" and Pierre Brasseur, who played that role in the simultaneously shot French version, played a brief role as a doctor.
       Because no copies of any of the versions were available for viewing, the summary above is based upon a studio synopsis and reviews of the English-language version released in the U.S. The film was not registered for copyright protection in the U.S. NYT and HR news items of 10 Sep 1954 reported that Darryl F. Zanuck, Twentieth Century-Fox production chief, had finalized arrangements for Oasis to be shot in Morocco in German and French-language versions. Studio documents indicate that Twentieth Century-Fox entered into a partnership with Roxy-Film GMBH, Munich, whereby Fox supplied 75% of the film's projected $814,000 budget and the German company supplied 25%. The extent of the participation of a French company, Criterion Films, in the film's production has not been determined. Zanuck made this, and other similar deals, to persuade European producers to make more extensive use of the studio's new CinemaScope process.
       According to modern French sources, Savin Couelle and Max Schaffner were part of the art direction crew and Robert Christides contributed to set decoration. The Var review credits photography of the German version to Adolphe Charlet although he was the camera operator for Roger Hubert, who ... More Less

Oasis was produced in German and French-language versions only. The English-language version eventually exhibited in the U.S. and Great Britain was a shortened (by sixteen minutes) dubbed version of the French-language release. According to the 20 Apr 1955 Var review of the German version, titled Oase , Carl Raddatz portrayed "Antoine Vallin" and Pierre Brasseur, who played that role in the simultaneously shot French version, played a brief role as a doctor.
       Because no copies of any of the versions were available for viewing, the summary above is based upon a studio synopsis and reviews of the English-language version released in the U.S. The film was not registered for copyright protection in the U.S. NYT and HR news items of 10 Sep 1954 reported that Darryl F. Zanuck, Twentieth Century-Fox production chief, had finalized arrangements for Oasis to be shot in Morocco in German and French-language versions. Studio documents indicate that Twentieth Century-Fox entered into a partnership with Roxy-Film GMBH, Munich, whereby Fox supplied 75% of the film's projected $814,000 budget and the German company supplied 25%. The extent of the participation of a French company, Criterion Films, in the film's production has not been determined. Zanuck made this, and other similar deals, to persuade European producers to make more extensive use of the studio's new CinemaScope process.
       According to modern French sources, Savin Couelle and Max Schaffner were part of the art direction crew and Robert Christides contributed to set decoration. The Var review credits photography of the German version to Adolphe Charlet although he was the camera operator for Roger Hubert, who is credited with photography on the French and English-language versions. The review also mentions that French actress Michèle Morgan was dubbed in the German version and that her character is killed with the others in the camel stampede. A modern French source implies that she was also killed in the French version. Contemporary German sources credit Fritz Rotter with "dialogue" and add Bechara, Helmut Weiss, Herbert Weicker, Paul Montis and Hans Morhat to the cast, but the contribution of Rotter to the completed picture and the appearance of the actors in the finished film have not been confirmed. Studio records indicate that Hans Jacoby wrote an early treatment for the film.
       According to documents in the film's file in the MPAA/PCA Collection in the AMPAS Library, the PCA found the characterization of the leading man unacceptable because his smuggling activities go unpunished. The PCA believed that this could be overcome by simply dropping the two references to smuggling, thereby implying that "Antoine" is merely transporting the gold.
       The Var review indicates that Oase ran 95 minutes when it opened in Germany in Mar 1955. According to a modern French source, Oasis ran 100 minutes at its Paris premiere in Apr 1955. The English-language version, running 84 minutes, opened in London, England in Mar 1956, but was not reviewed by Hollywood trade press until Jan 1957. Oasis played in Los Angeles as second feature to The True Story of Jesse James in Mar 1957 and appears not to have opened in New York until Jul 1960 when the NYT review complained of the "inanities of the script" and noted that "Twentieth Century-Fox, which financed this early European foray into CinemaScope five years ago, would have been better advised to leave it in mothballs."

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
26 Jan 1957.
---
Daily Variety
9 Jan 1957.
---
Filmwoche
2 Apr 1955
p. 313.
Harrison's Reports
12 Jan 1957.
---
Hollywood Reporter
10 Sep 1954.
---
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jan 1957
p. 4.
Los Angeles Times
14 Mar 1957.
---
Motion Picture Daily
8 Feb 1957.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
12 Jan 1957
p. 218.
New York Times
10 Sep 1954
p. 10.
New York Times
10 Oct 1954
p. 18.
New York Times
7 Jul 1960
p. 26.
The Cinema
29 Mar 1956.
---
The Exhibitor
23 Jan 1957
p. 4278.
Variety
20 Apr 1955.
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITERS
Scr adpt
Scr adpt
Contr wrt
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op of French version and dir of photog of Germ
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
Miss Morgan's gowns
Miss Borchers' gowns
MUSIC
Mus dir
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Makeup artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
Set cont
Prod asst
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Der commandant by John Knittel (Zurich, 1933).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Oase
Release Date:
December 1956
Premiere Information:
Frankfurt and Düsseldorf, Germany openings: 18 March 1955
Paris, France opening: 20 April 1955
Production Date:
early October 1954--early January 1955 in Morocco and at Geiselgasteig Studios, Geiselgasteig, Germany
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Eastman Color
Widescreen/ratio
CinemaScope
Lenses/Prints
Lenses by Bausch & Lomb
Duration(in mins):
84
Length(in feet):
7,537
Countries:
Germany, United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
17653
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Antoine Vallin, the owner of an oasis in Africa, is involved in smuggling gold across the desert for delivery to European currency merchants. Certain merchants, alarmed that the price of gold is falling, hire a gunman, Pérez, to put an end to Antoine’s venture by hijacking the next shipment. Pérez then employs two attractive adventuresses, the hard-drinking, war widow Françoise Lignières and journalist Karine Salstroem, to spy on Antoine as they journey together on a steamer from Marseilles to Casablanca, where Antoine is to meet the camel caravan that will transport more of the gold. During the voyage, Antoine and Karine become lovers, but Juan, Antoine’s associate in Morocco, learns of the plot against him and tries to warn him. When Karine finds out about Juan’s intentions, she informs Pérez. After the trio arrives in Marrakesh, one of Pérez’ agents kills Juan before he can reach Antoine. Françoise, never having intended to become involved in murder, tells Karine that she wants to abandon their assignment. As Karine is now in love with Antoine and fears competition from the beautiful Françoise, she encourages Françoise to return to France. Later, although Antoine becomes suspicious of Karine and is beginning to fall in love with Françoise, he decides to take Karine with him to find the man in charge of a camel caravan, which is about to leave with a cargo of gold. When Françoise realizes that Pérez intends to kill Antoine, she tries to get word to him through the camel driver, but the driver is killed before he can inform Antoine. After Karine drugs Antoine, she, Pérez and his men take over the caravan and start to unload the valuable ... +


Antoine Vallin, the owner of an oasis in Africa, is involved in smuggling gold across the desert for delivery to European currency merchants. Certain merchants, alarmed that the price of gold is falling, hire a gunman, Pérez, to put an end to Antoine’s venture by hijacking the next shipment. Pérez then employs two attractive adventuresses, the hard-drinking, war widow Françoise Lignières and journalist Karine Salstroem, to spy on Antoine as they journey together on a steamer from Marseilles to Casablanca, where Antoine is to meet the camel caravan that will transport more of the gold. During the voyage, Antoine and Karine become lovers, but Juan, Antoine’s associate in Morocco, learns of the plot against him and tries to warn him. When Karine finds out about Juan’s intentions, she informs Pérez. After the trio arrives in Marrakesh, one of Pérez’ agents kills Juan before he can reach Antoine. Françoise, never having intended to become involved in murder, tells Karine that she wants to abandon their assignment. As Karine is now in love with Antoine and fears competition from the beautiful Françoise, she encourages Françoise to return to France. Later, although Antoine becomes suspicious of Karine and is beginning to fall in love with Françoise, he decides to take Karine with him to find the man in charge of a camel caravan, which is about to leave with a cargo of gold. When Françoise realizes that Pérez intends to kill Antoine, she tries to get word to him through the camel driver, but the driver is killed before he can inform Antoine. After Karine drugs Antoine, she, Pérez and his men take over the caravan and start to unload the valuable cargo. Upon recovering, Antoine, a former pilot, takes off in his old plane, flying low in order to stampede the camels. Karine and Pérez are killed in the stampede. When Antoine lands, Françoise rushes into his arms and they begin a new life together.
+

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.