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HISTORY

Although a Nov 1955 HR article lists Harold Jack Bloom as the screenwriter for Istanbul , only Seton I. Miller, Barbara Gray and Richard Allan Simmons receive onscreen credit, and Bloom’s contribution to the final film is undetermined. According to a Feb 1956 “Rambling Reporter” item in HR , Universal considered Jeff Chandler to play “Jim Brennan” and Robert Middleton to play “Mr. Darius.” Some scenes were shot on location in Istanbul, Turkey. Although studio production materials state that Nat “King” Cole's character sings “I Waited So Long”in the film, the song not included in the viewed print. The DV review erroneously lists the film’s running time as 95 minutes.
       In Feb 1957, Kim, Inc. sued Universal, Warners Theatres, Inc., Pacific Drive-In Theatres and others for $450,000 over the use of the title Istanbul , claiming that Universal infringed on their copyright privileges to the name. After a federal judge dismissed the case, a Mar 1957 HR article reported that Kim, Inc. filed the same suit in the Los Angeles Superior Court. The disposition of that suit is unknown. Istanbul is a remake of the 1947 Universal film Singapore , which was directed by Jerry Bresler and starred Fred MacMurray and Ava Gardner (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1941-50 ). Seton I. Miller, who receives onscreen credit in Istanbul as screenwriter, wrote the story for the 1947 film but was not involved in the ... More Less

Although a Nov 1955 HR article lists Harold Jack Bloom as the screenwriter for Istanbul , only Seton I. Miller, Barbara Gray and Richard Allan Simmons receive onscreen credit, and Bloom’s contribution to the final film is undetermined. According to a Feb 1956 “Rambling Reporter” item in HR , Universal considered Jeff Chandler to play “Jim Brennan” and Robert Middleton to play “Mr. Darius.” Some scenes were shot on location in Istanbul, Turkey. Although studio production materials state that Nat “King” Cole's character sings “I Waited So Long”in the film, the song not included in the viewed print. The DV review erroneously lists the film’s running time as 95 minutes.
       In Feb 1957, Kim, Inc. sued Universal, Warners Theatres, Inc., Pacific Drive-In Theatres and others for $450,000 over the use of the title Istanbul , claiming that Universal infringed on their copyright privileges to the name. After a federal judge dismissed the case, a Mar 1957 HR article reported that Kim, Inc. filed the same suit in the Los Angeles Superior Court. The disposition of that suit is unknown. Istanbul is a remake of the 1947 Universal film Singapore , which was directed by Jerry Bresler and starred Fred MacMurray and Ava Gardner (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1941-50 ). Seton I. Miller, who receives onscreen credit in Istanbul as screenwriter, wrote the story for the 1947 film but was not involved in the remake. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
LOCATION
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
19 Jan 1957.
---
Daily Variety
10 Jan 57
p. 3.
Daily Variety
26 Feb 1957.
---
Film Daily
22 Jan 57
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Nov 1955
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Feb 1956
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Feb 1956
p. 16.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Mar 1956
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Mar 1956
p. 17.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Jul 1956
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Jan 57
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Mar 1957.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
19 Jan 57
p. 225.
New York Times
24 Jan 57
p. 34.
Variety
16 Jan 57
p. 18.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
2d unit dir
Dial dir
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
Asst cam
Stills
Gaffer
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
MUSIC
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
Hairstylist
Makeup
Makeup
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit prod mgr
Tech adv
Scr supv
Coordinator
Best boy
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
SONGS
"I Was a Little Too Lonely," music and lyrics by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans, sung by Nat "King" Cole
"When I Fall in Love," music by Victor Young, lyrics by Edward Heyman, sung by Nat "King" Cole.
PERFORMER
DETAILS
Release Date:
February 1957
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 23 January 1957
Production Date:
late February--early April 1956
Copyright Claimant:
Universal Pictures Co., inc.
Copyright Date:
18 December 1956
Copyright Number:
LP7372
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Color
Technicolor
Widescreen/ratio
CinemaScope
Duration(in mins):
84
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
18056
SYNOPSIS

Pilot Jim Brennan flies to Istanbul, Turkey, for the first time in five years and is immediately summoned to the office of customs Inspector R. P. Nural. Although Jim, now a private pilot, was a decorated American Air Force officer, Nural suspects him of involvement in a diamond-smuggling operation that took place when Jim lived in the city years earlier. After Nural warns him he will be watched, Jim returns to the hotel in which he stayed previously, where he is told that, because visiting Americans Charlie and Marge Boyle are occupying his old room, he must take the room next door. Jim goes to the café, where he sits at his regular table and reminisces about the events that occurred there five years ago: Jim shares a drink with beautiful German tourist Stephanie Bauer, with whom he has recently met and fallen in love. When she learns that he is jeopardizing his work to spend time with her, she insists that he be practical and accept a quick job flying businessmen to Cairo. Upon his return, his friend, merchant Aziz Rakim, nervously offers Jim a lovely bracelet to give to Stephanie. Soon after, Jim discovers a hidden compartment in the bracelet that contains diamonds, and stashes the jewels in his ceiling fan. That night, he presents the bracelet to Stephanie along with a marriage proposal, and she accepts. When they return to his room, however, they find a prowler who introduces himself as Paul Renkov and asks for the diamonds. Jim throws him out, but the next night, Paul follows Jim through the streets of the city, and with the help of several henchmen, beats him up. Their ... +


Pilot Jim Brennan flies to Istanbul, Turkey, for the first time in five years and is immediately summoned to the office of customs Inspector R. P. Nural. Although Jim, now a private pilot, was a decorated American Air Force officer, Nural suspects him of involvement in a diamond-smuggling operation that took place when Jim lived in the city years earlier. After Nural warns him he will be watched, Jim returns to the hotel in which he stayed previously, where he is told that, because visiting Americans Charlie and Marge Boyle are occupying his old room, he must take the room next door. Jim goes to the café, where he sits at his regular table and reminisces about the events that occurred there five years ago: Jim shares a drink with beautiful German tourist Stephanie Bauer, with whom he has recently met and fallen in love. When she learns that he is jeopardizing his work to spend time with her, she insists that he be practical and accept a quick job flying businessmen to Cairo. Upon his return, his friend, merchant Aziz Rakim, nervously offers Jim a lovely bracelet to give to Stephanie. Soon after, Jim discovers a hidden compartment in the bracelet that contains diamonds, and stashes the jewels in his ceiling fan. That night, he presents the bracelet to Stephanie along with a marriage proposal, and she accepts. When they return to his room, however, they find a prowler who introduces himself as Paul Renkov and asks for the diamonds. Jim throws him out, but the next night, Paul follows Jim through the streets of the city, and with the help of several henchmen, beats him up. Their leader, Mr. Darius, then steps into the light and demands the diamonds, but when Jim refuses to cooperate, Darius orders his men to knock him out. The police find Jim and take him to their headquarters, where Nural informs him that Aziz has been murdered. After Nural states that Aziz may have been connected to a shipment of stolen diamonds that were smuggled into the country in a bracelet, Jim denies any knowledge of the theft, and later convinces Stephanie to leave with him that night for Paris. When she stops at her hotel room, however, Darius’ men knock her out and steal the bracelet. At the same time, Jim finds Nural in his room, and the two banter amicably until the inspector reveals that he has impounded Jim’s plane and plans to hold him in custody until Jim leaves the country. Realizing he now cannot retrieve the diamonds, Jim goes along with Nural to Stephanie’s hotel, where they find the building is in flames. Jim runs into the fire to save her, but the blaze forces him to retreat. Back in the present, Renkov interrupts Jim’s reverie by informing him that Darius wants to meet. At Darius’ office, after the importer tells Jim that he smuggled in the diamonds and will not rest until he recovers the gems, Jim punches him. That night, Jim encourages the Boyles to leave the hotel, then walks toward their room, but stops short when he sees Stephanie on the stairs. Although he rushes to embrace her, she informs him her name is Karen Fielding and she has no remembrance of him. She leaves with her husband, wealthy Englishman Douglas Fielding, who found her five years earlier wandering out of the hotel fire, dazed, her memory gone. Jim visits Stephanie’s hotel in the morning, but she insists that any knowledge of her past will only threaten her new life, and sends him away. Douglas stops Jim on the way out and asks him to leave them in peace, but Jim states that Stephanie must decide for herself which part of her life she wants to hold on to. Later, Stephanie, clutching the bracelet Jim gave her, secretly visits him at the café, where they sit in their old table. She asks him to tell her about her past, but when he does, she gets flustered and leaves. Hours later, Jim sneaks into the Boyles’s room to retrieve the diamonds, but hearing Nural in the hallway, stashes them in Charlie’s suitcase. Before leaving, Nural informs a worried Jim that Stephanie never returned home that night. Fearing that Stephanie has been kidnapped, Jim spots Renkov outside his room and allows the inept criminal to capture him. Jim is brought to an abandoned warehouse, where he surreptitiously drops a lit cigarette, causing a fire. Darius enters and, failing to notice the fire, brings him to the room where Stephanie is being held. To divert Renkov, Jim pretends that Stephanie was the real diamond thief, but before Renkov can hurt her, Jim knocks him out and shoots Darius. He runs with Stephanie through the fire to safety, but when the flames send her into shock, Jim brings her to Douglas, promising to let her go. In the morning, as Jim leaves for the airport, Stephanie awakens, calling Jim’s name, then informs Douglas that she now remembers everything and chooses to stay with him. They head to the airport, where Nural is searching the Boyles’s luggage, forcing Jim to turn over the diamonds and admit his part in the crime. Nural decides to let Jim leave the country, and as his plane lifts off, Stephanie reaches the airport and gazes longingly at the aircraft. Douglas sees and realizes that she still loves Jim, and Nural, who has also been watching, orders the plane to turn around and return to Istanbul. +

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.