Saratoga Trunk (1946)

135 mins | Romance | 30 March 1946

Director:

Sam Wood

Writer:

Casey Robinson

Cinematographer:

Ernest Haller

Editor:

Ralph Dawson

Production Designer:

Joseph St. Armand

Production Company:

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

According to a 25 Mar 1941 HR news item, Warner Bros paid $175,000 for the rights to the novel. A 1941 press release states that the film was to be made in Technicolor. Saratoga Trunk was completed in 1943 but not released until 1946. It was exhibited to the armed forces overseas, but held back in the United States in deference to more timely war-themed and patriotic films. The film ends with a plea to buy war bonds. News items in HR note that Richard Travis tested for the role of "Clint Maroon," and Errol Flynn was also considered for the part. Ann Sheridan and Olivia De Havilland tested for the role of "Clio Dulaine." According to information in the file on the film at the USC Cinema-Television Library Eleanor Parker and Tamara Toumanova also tested for the part of Clio. An early 1941 press release states that Vivien Leigh was also considered for the role. An undated press release reports that Nina Foch was to make her film debut, but she does not appear in the picture. Flora Robson, who portrays "Angelique," was a white, British actress who wore darkened makeup to appear black in the film.
       HR news items add the following information about the production: Some background footage was shot at the actual location of the Saratoga trunk line. Saratoga Trunk was one of the last productions to film at Busch Gardens in Pasadena, CA before it was auctioned off in early Apr 1943. Over 150 stunt men were used in the scenes of the battle for ... More Less

According to a 25 Mar 1941 HR news item, Warner Bros paid $175,000 for the rights to the novel. A 1941 press release states that the film was to be made in Technicolor. Saratoga Trunk was completed in 1943 but not released until 1946. It was exhibited to the armed forces overseas, but held back in the United States in deference to more timely war-themed and patriotic films. The film ends with a plea to buy war bonds. News items in HR note that Richard Travis tested for the role of "Clint Maroon," and Errol Flynn was also considered for the part. Ann Sheridan and Olivia De Havilland tested for the role of "Clio Dulaine." According to information in the file on the film at the USC Cinema-Television Library Eleanor Parker and Tamara Toumanova also tested for the part of Clio. An early 1941 press release states that Vivien Leigh was also considered for the role. An undated press release reports that Nina Foch was to make her film debut, but she does not appear in the picture. Flora Robson, who portrays "Angelique," was a white, British actress who wore darkened makeup to appear black in the film.
       HR news items add the following information about the production: Some background footage was shot at the actual location of the Saratoga trunk line. Saratoga Trunk was one of the last productions to film at Busch Gardens in Pasadena, CA before it was auctioned off in early Apr 1943. Over 150 stunt men were used in the scenes of the battle for possession of the railroad trunk line. Warner Bros. purchased the complete wardrobe of Susan Dreer Volkmar, which comprised thirty dresses dating from 1880-1910, some made in Paris, including a complete mourning outfit; a cream colored wedding gown of princess lace; a hostess gown of black satin; a white broadcloth suit; a navy blue suit; and a Chantilly lace parasol. It is not known if these costumes appeared in the film. The filmmakers studied actual footage of the 1909 arrival of the Mississippi steamer Bald Eagle for technical information. Ingrid Bergman's singing coach was technical advisor Dalton S. Reymond, former dean of the College of Music at Louisiana State University. Sophie Huxley, who played the role of "Charlotte Dulaine," was the niece of writer Aldous Huxley. Memos at the USC Cinema-Television Library, indicate that montage director Don Siegel shot the fight scenes after the two trains collided. Because of differences between director Sam Wood and producer Hal B. Wallis, Siegel's unit continued to shoot for 19 days. Only one day had been budgeted for the entire scene. Cinematographer Bert Glennon filled in for Ernest Haller while the latter was ill. Flora Robson was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar but lost to Anne Baxter. Ida Lupino and Zachary Scott starred in a 24 Nov 1947 Lux Radio Theatre broadcast of the story. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
24 Nov 1945.
---
Daily Variety
21 Nov 45
p. 3.
Film Daily
23 Nov 1945.
---
Hollywood Reporter
25 Mar 41
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Jan 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Mar 42
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Nov 42
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Feb 43
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Feb 43
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Feb 43
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Feb 43
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Mar 43
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Mar 43
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Mar 43
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
13 May 43
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Nov 45
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
26 Nov 45
p. 6.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
24 Nov 45
p. 2725.
New York Times
22 Nov 45
p. 39.
Variety
21 Nov 45
p. 10.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Jacqueline Dewitt
J. Lewis Johnson
Theodor Von Eltz
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Hal B. Wallis Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dir
Asst dir
PRODUCER
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Fill-in photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATOR
Set dec
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Orch arr
SOUND
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Mont
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit mgr
STAND INS
Stand-in for Ingrid Bergman
Stand-in for Gary Cooper
Stand-in for Flora Robson
Stand-in for Jerry Austin
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Saratoga Trunk by Edna Ferber (New York, 1941).
AUTHOR
SONGS
"Dansez Codaine," composers undetermined.
DETAILS
Release Date:
30 March 1946
Production Date:
23 February--25 June 1943
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
30 March 1946
Copyright Number:
LP188
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
135
Country:
United States
PCA No:
9279
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In 1875, Clio Dulaine, the illegitimate daughter of an aristocratic New Orleans Creole man and a French woman, returns from Paris to her birthplace in Rampart Street to avenge her mother's mistreatment at the hands of her father's family, the Dulaines. Years ago Clio's mother accidentally killed Dulaine when he tried to prevent her from committing suicide, and the scandalized Dulaines then exiled Clio and her mother to Paris. Clio is accompanied by her mulatto maid, Angelique, and her dwarf manservant, Cupidon. After fixing up the rundown house in Rampart Street, Clio ventures out, hoping to encounter the Dulaines. At the French marketplace, Clio stops for a bowl of jambalaya and is immediately attracted to Clint Maroon, a tall Texan in a white hat, who is eating at the counter. The attraction is mutual, and Clint offers to drive Clio to the cathedral in his carriage, but a disapproving Angelique interferes, and Clio leaves without him. After the service, Clio, Angelique and Cupidon breakfast at the restaurant patronized by the Dulaines every Sunday. Announcing to the maitre d' that she is a relative, Clio sits at the table reserved for the Dulaines, but when the Dulaines arrive, they recognize her by her resemblance to her mother and leave without a confrontation. Clint and Clio meet again at the restaurant, and afterward, he drives her home. Eventually, Clint moves into Clio's house. Although Clio and Clint are in love with each other, Clio, who is obsessed with her plans for revenge, intends to marry a rich and powerful man to prove that she is as good as her father's family. Clint, a ... +


In 1875, Clio Dulaine, the illegitimate daughter of an aristocratic New Orleans Creole man and a French woman, returns from Paris to her birthplace in Rampart Street to avenge her mother's mistreatment at the hands of her father's family, the Dulaines. Years ago Clio's mother accidentally killed Dulaine when he tried to prevent her from committing suicide, and the scandalized Dulaines then exiled Clio and her mother to Paris. Clio is accompanied by her mulatto maid, Angelique, and her dwarf manservant, Cupidon. After fixing up the rundown house in Rampart Street, Clio ventures out, hoping to encounter the Dulaines. At the French marketplace, Clio stops for a bowl of jambalaya and is immediately attracted to Clint Maroon, a tall Texan in a white hat, who is eating at the counter. The attraction is mutual, and Clint offers to drive Clio to the cathedral in his carriage, but a disapproving Angelique interferes, and Clio leaves without him. After the service, Clio, Angelique and Cupidon breakfast at the restaurant patronized by the Dulaines every Sunday. Announcing to the maitre d' that she is a relative, Clio sits at the table reserved for the Dulaines, but when the Dulaines arrive, they recognize her by her resemblance to her mother and leave without a confrontation. Clint and Clio meet again at the restaurant, and afterward, he drives her home. Eventually, Clint moves into Clio's house. Although Clio and Clint are in love with each other, Clio, who is obsessed with her plans for revenge, intends to marry a rich and powerful man to prove that she is as good as her father's family. Clint, a gambler, who never intends to marry, is out for revenge on the railroaders who ruined his father in Texas. While Clio continues to embarrass the Dulaines at every opportunity, planning, if necessary, to interrupt the debut of her half-sister Charlotte, Clint, exasperated by Clio's unrelenting machinations, leaves for Saratoga. As the result of Clio's scheming, the Dulaines pay her $10,000, agree to destroy the Rampart Street house and bury her mother in a New Orleans cemetery. Later, Clio joins Clint in Saratoga, where she plots to marry wealthy railroad heir Bartholomew Van Steed. Clio's arrival with Angelique and Cupidon causes quite a stir, and because the hotel is completely booked, Clint, who is now calling himself Colonel Maroon, offers Clio two of the rooms in his suite. Privately, he explains that Bart owns a railroad, the Saratoga Trunk, which is suddenly worth millions of dollars because it connects the coal country with New York. Railroader Raymond Soule, the same man who ruined Clint's father, is trying to steal the railroad from Bart. Clio poses as the widow of a French count, a claim that many doubt until she is unexpectedly backed up by socialite Mrs. Coventry Bellop, who intensely dislikes Van Steed's mother. Clio's beauty and melodramatic posturing quickly capture Bart's attentions. In the meantime, Clint offers to save the Saratoga Trunk from Soule in exchange for shares in the railroad. When Clio learns that Bart is paying Clint to do his dirty work, she hysterically accuses him of cowardice and sends him away. This excites Bart, who explains that he knows about her background, but wants to marry her anyway. The costume ball that evening is interrupted by the arrival of Clint and Cupidon, who were seriously wounded during a pitched battle with Soule's men. Clio realizes that she loves Clint too much to marry another man and nurses him back to health. Clint then tells Clio that, having saved the Saratoga Trunk from Soule, his railroad shares have made him a very rich man. +

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

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