They Dare Not Love (1941)

75 mins | Drama | 30 April 1941

Director:

James Whale

Producer:

Samuel Bischoff

Cinematographer:

Frank F. Planer

Editor:

Al Clark

Production Designer:

Lionel Banks

Production Company:

Columbia Pictures Corp.
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HISTORY

The working title of this film was We Dare Not Love . According to a Mar 1940 HR news item, Columbia purchased James Edward Grant's story for $10,000 as a vehicle for Jean Arthur. In Jun 1940, the studio assigned Charles Vidor to direct the picture, which was now to star Brian Aherne and Joan Bennett, according to a MPD news item. A Jul 1940 HR news item noted that Columbia was now negotiating with Luise Rainer to star in the picture. According to a 5 Jan 1941 HR news item, the studio was considering Louise Campbell as the second lead. Martha Scott, who was finally cast as the female lead, was borrowed from Sol Lesser to appear in the picture. According to a NYT news item, the loan was part of a deal in which Columbia, which jointly owned Melvyn Douglas' contract with M-G-M, allowed Douglas to appear in the 1941 United Artists picture That Uncertain Feeling (See Entry), in exchange for Scott's appearance in this film. George Brent was borrowed from Warner Bros. to appear in this film. Toward the end of production, Vidor took over as director from James Whale, who had fallen ill with the flu, according to a 30 Jan 1941 HR news item. They Dare Not Love was Whale's last completed film. He directed a segment of the 1952 RKO production Face to Face , entitled "Hello Out There," but that segment was not in the released film. They Dare Not Love also marked the screen debut of Richard ... More Less

The working title of this film was We Dare Not Love . According to a Mar 1940 HR news item, Columbia purchased James Edward Grant's story for $10,000 as a vehicle for Jean Arthur. In Jun 1940, the studio assigned Charles Vidor to direct the picture, which was now to star Brian Aherne and Joan Bennett, according to a MPD news item. A Jul 1940 HR news item noted that Columbia was now negotiating with Luise Rainer to star in the picture. According to a 5 Jan 1941 HR news item, the studio was considering Louise Campbell as the second lead. Martha Scott, who was finally cast as the female lead, was borrowed from Sol Lesser to appear in the picture. According to a NYT news item, the loan was part of a deal in which Columbia, which jointly owned Melvyn Douglas' contract with M-G-M, allowed Douglas to appear in the 1941 United Artists picture That Uncertain Feeling (See Entry), in exchange for Scott's appearance in this film. George Brent was borrowed from Warner Bros. to appear in this film. Toward the end of production, Vidor took over as director from James Whale, who had fallen ill with the flu, according to a 30 Jan 1941 HR news item. They Dare Not Love was Whale's last completed film. He directed a segment of the 1952 RKO production Face to Face , entitled "Hello Out There," but that segment was not in the released film. They Dare Not Love also marked the screen debut of Richard Lyon. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
10 May 1941.
---
Daily Variety
29 Apr 1941.
---
Film Daily
16 May 41
p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Mar 1940.
---
Hollywood Reporter
12 Jul 1940.
---
Hollywood Reporter
13 Dec 40
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Jan 41
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Jan 41
p. 3, 5
Hollywood Reporter
29 Apr 41
p. 3.
Motion Picture Daily
5 Jun 1940.
---
Motion Picture Herald
3 May 1941.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
5 Apr 41
p. 98.
New York Times
10 Mar 1941.
---
New York Times
16 May 41
p. 21.
Variety
30 Apr 41
p. 16.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Fill-In dir
Asst dir
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
We Dare Not Love
Release Date:
30 April 1941
Production Date:
6 January--22 February 1941
Copyright Claimant:
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Copyright Date:
30 April 1941
Copyright Number:
LP10754
Duration(in mins):
75
Length(in feet):
6,788
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

On the eve of the Anschluss, Prince Kurt von Rotenburg is preparing to leave his native Austria. While pausing for one last look at his favorite restaurant, the Café Weinergarten, Kurt encounters his old friend Professor Keller, the professor's daughter Marta and her fiancé, Wilhelm Erhardt. When Kurt and Marta fondly recall their childhood friendship, Wilhelm, a secret member of the Nazi party, becomes jealous and notifies the Gestapo that the prince is at the restaurant. After narrowly escaping the ensuing Nazi raid, the prince crosses the Czechoslovakian border and is reunited with the Kellers on a ship bound for America. Also aboard the vessel is Baron von Helsing, a covert Gestapo agent who feigns sympathy for the exiled prince while secretly working to spirit him back to Germany. As the prince and Marta begin to rekindle their childhood romance, the professor reminds his daughter of her pledge to marry Wilhelm, whom they believe has been incarcerated in a concentration camp. As the boat docks in New York, Marta, heeding her father's wishes, shuns Kurt. When the prince is besieged by a group of socialites led by the title- seeking Barbara Murdoch, Marta seizes the opportunity to depart without Kurt seeing her. Having fallen deeply in love with Marta, Kurt desperately searches for her. One day, while returning from a party with Barbara, Kurt spots Marta. After ordering his limousine to stop, Kurt jumps out and persuades Marta to allow him to drive her home. At the restaurant that Marta now runs with her father, Kurt finds a group of Austrian refugees, who criticize him for his frivolous ... +


On the eve of the Anschluss, Prince Kurt von Rotenburg is preparing to leave his native Austria. While pausing for one last look at his favorite restaurant, the Café Weinergarten, Kurt encounters his old friend Professor Keller, the professor's daughter Marta and her fiancé, Wilhelm Erhardt. When Kurt and Marta fondly recall their childhood friendship, Wilhelm, a secret member of the Nazi party, becomes jealous and notifies the Gestapo that the prince is at the restaurant. After narrowly escaping the ensuing Nazi raid, the prince crosses the Czechoslovakian border and is reunited with the Kellers on a ship bound for America. Also aboard the vessel is Baron von Helsing, a covert Gestapo agent who feigns sympathy for the exiled prince while secretly working to spirit him back to Germany. As the prince and Marta begin to rekindle their childhood romance, the professor reminds his daughter of her pledge to marry Wilhelm, whom they believe has been incarcerated in a concentration camp. As the boat docks in New York, Marta, heeding her father's wishes, shuns Kurt. When the prince is besieged by a group of socialites led by the title- seeking Barbara Murdoch, Marta seizes the opportunity to depart without Kurt seeing her. Having fallen deeply in love with Marta, Kurt desperately searches for her. One day, while returning from a party with Barbara, Kurt spots Marta. After ordering his limousine to stop, Kurt jumps out and persuades Marta to allow him to drive her home. At the restaurant that Marta now runs with her father, Kurt finds a group of Austrian refugees, who criticize him for his frivolous life and for his neglect of his country and his people. When Kurt promises to help and pledges his support, they hand him a list of prisoners whose freedom they have been trying to win. The next day, Kurt receives an invitation to meet von Helsing at the German Travel Office. There, von Helsing promises to release all the prisoners on the list, including Wilhelm, if Kurt surrenders himself to Germany. Accepting von Helsing's terms, Kurt agrees to sail that night. Von Helsing leads Kurt to believe that he is sailing on a Belgium ship headed for Antwerp, when in reality the boat has been purchased by the Nazis and is destined for Hamburg. That evening, when Marta calls Kurt's hotel and learns that he has gone to the German Travel Office, she begins to suspect that something is amiss and hurries to the office herself. Bursting into the rooms, Marta is shocked to encounter Wilhelm. When Wilhelm boasts of his part in the ruse to trick Kurt into returning to Germany, Marta dashes to the boat to warn Kurt. After phoning the ship's captain to alert him of Marta's arrival, Wilhelm reaches for a gun and kills himself. Allowed to board the ship, Marta hurries to Kurt's stateroom and brokenly tells him that he has been tricked. When they try to leave the boat, they discover that the stateroom door has been locked, and they are now both prisoners bound for Germany. Later they are married by the sympathetic Belgium captain and resign themselves to their grim fate. Soon after, a radiogram arrives, notifying the captain that England has declared war on Germany and ordering him to change his course. Resentful of his treatment by the Nazis, the captain destroys the message, sending the vessel into enemy waters. As the boat sails into British seas, shots from a British destroyer halt the boat, which is then boarded by English officers, who announce that England is at war with Germany. After seizing command of the German craft, the English crew sail Marta and Kurt to the safety of British soil. +

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.