Peter Ibbetson (1935)

83 or 88 mins | Drama, Fantasy | 8 November 1935

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HISTORY

MPH 's "In the Cutting Room" listed Bodil Rosing in the cast, although she was not credited on screen or listed in any reviews. According to an article in NYT , Paramount had a verbal option on Robert Donat to play the lead role, but he declined the picture. NYT also noted that the film cost in excess of $750,000. A DV news item noted that some scenes were filmed on location in Laguna, CA. According to modern sources, Fredric March was first considered for the title role, and Miriam Hopkins was offered the role of "Mary." In 1935, this film was nominated for Academy Awards in the category for Best Score, Paramount Studio Music Dept.: Irvin Talbot, Head. Score by Ernst Toch. Deems Taylor's opera Peter Ibbetson was based on John Nathan Raphael's play, and premiered 7 Feb 1931 at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City, NY. Oscar Levant, in his autobiographical writings, states that Ernst Toch's score was "touched up" by Hugo Friedhofer. The 1922 film Forever , directed by George Fitzmaurice with Wallace Reid and Elsie Ferguson, was based on du Maurier's 1891 novel (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; ... More Less

MPH 's "In the Cutting Room" listed Bodil Rosing in the cast, although she was not credited on screen or listed in any reviews. According to an article in NYT , Paramount had a verbal option on Robert Donat to play the lead role, but he declined the picture. NYT also noted that the film cost in excess of $750,000. A DV news item noted that some scenes were filmed on location in Laguna, CA. According to modern sources, Fredric March was first considered for the title role, and Miriam Hopkins was offered the role of "Mary." In 1935, this film was nominated for Academy Awards in the category for Best Score, Paramount Studio Music Dept.: Irvin Talbot, Head. Score by Ernst Toch. Deems Taylor's opera Peter Ibbetson was based on John Nathan Raphael's play, and premiered 7 Feb 1931 at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City, NY. Oscar Levant, in his autobiographical writings, states that Ernst Toch's score was "touched up" by Hugo Friedhofer. The 1922 film Forever , directed by George Fitzmaurice with Wallace Reid and Elsie Ferguson, was based on du Maurier's 1891 novel (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.1917). More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
2 Aug 35
p. 2.
Daily Variety
8 Aug 35
p. 6.
Film Daily
31 Oct 35
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Oct 35
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Oct 35
p. 4.
Motion Picture Daily
26 Oct 35
p. 2.
Motion Picture Herald
22 Jun 35
p. 79.
Motion Picture Herald
9 Nov 35
p. 60.
New York Times
16 Dec 1934.
---
New York Times
15 Sep 1935.
---
New York Times
8 Nov 35
p. 18.
Variety
13 Nov 35
p. 16.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
2d unit dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITERS
Contr spec seq
Add scenes
Add scenes
Contr to trmt
Contr to trmt
Contr to scr const
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
MUSIC
Mus score and dir
Mus dept head
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog eff
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Peter Ibbetson by George Du Maurier (New York, 1891) and the play of the same name by John Nathaniel Raphael (London, 23 Jul 1915).
DETAILS
Release Date:
8 November 1935
Production Date:
ended 8 August 1935
Copyright Claimant:
Paramount Productions, Inc.
Copyright Date:
14 November 1935
Copyright Number:
LP5931
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Noiseless Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
83 or 88
Length(in reels):
10
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
1172
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

Peter Ibbetson leads an idyllic life as a child on an estate in Paris that adjoins his best friend Mary's estate. He and Mary have a combative relationship, fighting over their toys, but also feel a profound love for each other. When Peter's mother dies, his stern uncle takes him to live in England, thereby separating the children, and leaving them both with broken hearts. As an adult, Peter is a successful architect, but has no interest in women, holding on to dreams of his childhood. When his employer urges him to take a vacation, he travels to Paris where he meets Agnes. Despite her charm, Peter is uninterested in Agnes and only has eyes for his old estate, which has fallen into disrepair. Upon his return to England, he is commissioned to rebuild stables for the Duke and Duchess of Towers. Peter has different ideas than the Duchess about the design and she asks him to leave, but decides to retain him when an inspired cartoon he draws sends her into peals of laughter. Peter and the Duchess constantly argue over his ideas, and he always gets his way, but they are delighted with each other's company and the time passes happily for both. At dinner one evening, the Duke accuses the pair of being lovers, and unable to deny that they love each other, however innocently, they discover that the Duchess is in fact Mary of Peter's childhood. The Duke angrily tries to kill Peter, but Peter kills him in self-defense and is imprisoned for life. During a fight with the guards, Peter breaks his back and is expected to die. As ... +


Peter Ibbetson leads an idyllic life as a child on an estate in Paris that adjoins his best friend Mary's estate. He and Mary have a combative relationship, fighting over their toys, but also feel a profound love for each other. When Peter's mother dies, his stern uncle takes him to live in England, thereby separating the children, and leaving them both with broken hearts. As an adult, Peter is a successful architect, but has no interest in women, holding on to dreams of his childhood. When his employer urges him to take a vacation, he travels to Paris where he meets Agnes. Despite her charm, Peter is uninterested in Agnes and only has eyes for his old estate, which has fallen into disrepair. Upon his return to England, he is commissioned to rebuild stables for the Duke and Duchess of Towers. Peter has different ideas than the Duchess about the design and she asks him to leave, but decides to retain him when an inspired cartoon he draws sends her into peals of laughter. Peter and the Duchess constantly argue over his ideas, and he always gets his way, but they are delighted with each other's company and the time passes happily for both. At dinner one evening, the Duke accuses the pair of being lovers, and unable to deny that they love each other, however innocently, they discover that the Duchess is in fact Mary of Peter's childhood. The Duke angrily tries to kill Peter, but Peter kills him in self-defense and is imprisoned for life. During a fight with the guards, Peter breaks his back and is expected to die. As he lays unconscious, Mary visits him in his dreams, insisting that the communication is real and that they could live together in this dream world despite the fact that they are unable to be together on Earth. She promises to send Peter a ring the next day to prove the "reality" of the dream, then fades away. The next day, Peter receives the ring, and feels a renewed will to live. For the rest of their lives, Peter and Mary live with each other in their minds, building castles of clouds and playing in the gardens of their childhoods, seeming never to age. Finally aged in life, Mary visits Peter in their dreamland and dies in his arms. Stricken by grief, Peter haunts the empty dream world and hears Mary say that they will be together in death as well. Fulfilled, Peter dies in prison. +

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

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