That Forsyte Woman (1949)

112 mins | Melodrama | 11 November 1949

Director:

Compton Bennett

Producer:

Leon Gordon

Cinematographer:

Joseph Ruttenberg

Production Designers:

Cedric Gibbons, Daniel B. Cathcart

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
Full page view
HISTORY

The working title for this film was The Forsyte Saga . According to a pre-release news item in Time magazine, M-G-M decided to change the title of the film from The Forsyte Saga to That Forsyte Woman because a survey showed that many Americans did not know the meaning of the word "saga." The film was released in Britain as The Forsyte Saga . While onscreen credits indicate that the film was "based on Book 1 of The Forsyte Saga ," the actual title of that book was The Man of Property . Galsworthy received the Nobel prize for literature in 1932, primarily for the novels of The Forsyte Saga . The author died in early 1938. A Dec 1934 HR news item noted that RKO, which had optioned the screen rights to Galsworthy's story in April 1934, decided to abandon the production because the story was "too involved." M-G-M purchased the rights to The Forsyte Saga in May 1937, at which time a HR news item noted that M-G-M was planning to adapt the saga into a series, and that Edward Chodorov was set to direct the first film. In Jun 1937, a HR news item noted that the saga would be produced as a two-hour feature.
       In Oct 1947, according to HR , M-G-M producer Robert Lord was announced as the film's producer. Contemporary sources note that Errol Flynn was loaned to M-G-M from Warner Bros. in exchange for the release of William Powell, who was cast in Warner Bros.' Life ... More Less

The working title for this film was The Forsyte Saga . According to a pre-release news item in Time magazine, M-G-M decided to change the title of the film from The Forsyte Saga to That Forsyte Woman because a survey showed that many Americans did not know the meaning of the word "saga." The film was released in Britain as The Forsyte Saga . While onscreen credits indicate that the film was "based on Book 1 of The Forsyte Saga ," the actual title of that book was The Man of Property . Galsworthy received the Nobel prize for literature in 1932, primarily for the novels of The Forsyte Saga . The author died in early 1938. A Dec 1934 HR news item noted that RKO, which had optioned the screen rights to Galsworthy's story in April 1934, decided to abandon the production because the story was "too involved." M-G-M purchased the rights to The Forsyte Saga in May 1937, at which time a HR news item noted that M-G-M was planning to adapt the saga into a series, and that Edward Chodorov was set to direct the first film. In Jun 1937, a HR news item noted that the saga would be produced as a two-hour feature.
       In Oct 1947, according to HR , M-G-M producer Robert Lord was announced as the film's producer. Contemporary sources note that Errol Flynn was loaned to M-G-M from Warner Bros. in exchange for the release of William Powell, who was cast in Warner Bros.' Life With Father (see above). According to a 1949 Cue news item, Flynn was first cast in the role of "Young Jolyon Forstye," but because he objected to the part, he was later assigned to play "Soames." Walter Plunkett and Valles' costume design received an Academy Award nomination.
       Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon recreated their roles for a Lux Radio Theatre broadcast on 5 Nov 1951. The 1925 First National release The White Monkey (see below), which was based on the Galsworthy novel of the same title, also featured the characters of Soames and Fleur Forsyte, although the original novel was not part of the The Forsyte Saga . In 1966, BBC-TV produced an internationally popular twenty-six-segment adaptation of The Forsyte Saga , directed by David Giles and James Cellan Jones, and starring Eric Porter, Kenneth More and Nyree Dawn Porter. Another British adaptation was made in 2002, produced by Granada Television in cooperation with Boston Public Televisio Station WGBH, and starring Damien Lewis, Rupert Graves and Gina McKee. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
29 Oct 1949.
---
Cue
3 Sep 1949.
---
Daily Variety
24 Oct 49
p. 3, 10
Film Daily
28 Oct 49
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Dec 1934.
---
Hollywood Reporter
27 Mar 37
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Oct 1947.
---
Hollywood Reporter
24 Dec 48
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Mar 48
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Oct 1949.
---
Hollywood Reporter
24 Oct 49
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
27 May 37
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Jun 37
p. 41.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
22 Oct 49
p. 57.
New York Times
11 Nov 49
p. 31.
Time
29 Aug 1949.
---
Variety
26 Oct 49
p. 18.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITERS
Scr
Addl dial
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
Women's cost
Men's cost
MUSIC
Mus score
SOUND
Rec supv
MAKEUP
Hair styles des by
Makeup created by
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel The Man of Property by John Galsworthy (New York, 1906).
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
The Forsyte Saga
Release Date:
11 November 1949
Production Date:
mid December 1948--mid March 1949
Copyright Claimant:
Loew's Inc.
Copyright Date:
20 October 1949
Copyright Number:
LP2596
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
112
Length(in feet):
10,115
Length(in reels):
12
Country:
United States
PCA No:
13768
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

On a foggy London night in 1887, Irene Forsyte, wife of the wealthy Soames Forsyte, rushes to a hospital to be at the side of Philip Bosinney, who has been run over by a speeding carriage. Philip dies from his injuries, and Irene tries to comfort his fiancée, June Forsyte, who angrily blames Irene for his death. June refuses to listen to Irene's explanation, but Young Jolyon Forsyte, Soames's cousin and June's father, understands her grief and recalls the time, seven years earlier, when Irene was first introduced to his snobbish family: On the night of Old Jolyon Forsyte's eightieth birthday celebration, his rigid nephew Soames announces that he intends to marry Irene, a piano teacher from a lower class. The Forsytes react with shock and displeasure at the announcement and all but shun Irene, but she later finds her sole family ally in Jolyon, an artist and the black sheep of the family. Jolyon empathizes with Irene's poor rapport with the family, as he has been ostracized from it and denied permission to visit his daughter. Irene soon realizes that her relationship with Soames is doomed, but when she tries to break off the engagement, Soames refuses to abide by her wishes and instead buys a large house for them. In time, Irene resigns herself to a loveless marriage with Soames, and the Forsyte family eventually comes to accept her. Irene also builds a friendship with June, who takes Irene with her as a chaperon on her date with her new beau, Philip Bossiney, a young, charismatic architect. By the time of Irene and Soames's second wedding anniversary, Irene and Philip have ... +


On a foggy London night in 1887, Irene Forsyte, wife of the wealthy Soames Forsyte, rushes to a hospital to be at the side of Philip Bosinney, who has been run over by a speeding carriage. Philip dies from his injuries, and Irene tries to comfort his fiancée, June Forsyte, who angrily blames Irene for his death. June refuses to listen to Irene's explanation, but Young Jolyon Forsyte, Soames's cousin and June's father, understands her grief and recalls the time, seven years earlier, when Irene was first introduced to his snobbish family: On the night of Old Jolyon Forsyte's eightieth birthday celebration, his rigid nephew Soames announces that he intends to marry Irene, a piano teacher from a lower class. The Forsytes react with shock and displeasure at the announcement and all but shun Irene, but she later finds her sole family ally in Jolyon, an artist and the black sheep of the family. Jolyon empathizes with Irene's poor rapport with the family, as he has been ostracized from it and denied permission to visit his daughter. Irene soon realizes that her relationship with Soames is doomed, but when she tries to break off the engagement, Soames refuses to abide by her wishes and instead buys a large house for them. In time, Irene resigns herself to a loveless marriage with Soames, and the Forsyte family eventually comes to accept her. Irene also builds a friendship with June, who takes Irene with her as a chaperon on her date with her new beau, Philip Bossiney, a young, charismatic architect. By the time of Irene and Soames's second wedding anniversary, Irene and Philip have fallen in love, and Soames has become increasingly tortured by his marriage. In an attempt to improve their relationship, Soames buys a country property and hires Philip to design an elaborate house for them. Always insistent upon receiving value for money spent, Soames becomes increasingly annoyed with Philip's delays and extra expenditures over the next months. Meanwhile, although Irene has thwarted Philip's attempt to steal her away from Soames by telling him that she will not leave her husband, June soon suspects that Philip is in love with someone else. When June later tells Irene that she will kill herself if Philip has been unfaithful, Irene persuades Philip not to tell June that he is no longer in love with her. Philip promises this to Irene in exchange for her promise to meet him at his studio. Just prior to Philip and Irene's planned rendezvous, though, June arrives at the empty studio and finds a sketch of Irene with a romantic inscription by Philip. Devastated, June flees before Philip and Irene arrive, and then takes vengeance by sending a note to Soames about his wife's affair. After trying once again to end her affair with Philip, Irene returns home only to be met with the wrath of her husband. During their quarrel, when Irene confesses her love for Philip, Soames vows to drive Philip out of the city and out of his profession, then strikes his wife. Soames later summons Philip to his home to present him with a lawsuit, and when Philip tries to make a hasty departure, he is run over and killed by a speeding carriage. When Irene learns of the tragedy, she rushes to the hospital to see Philip. Jolyon concludes his recollection of the events leading up to Philip's death, and then invites Irene to live in Paris with him. Time passes, and when Irene, now married to Jolyon, sees the distraught Soames trying in vain to purchase a portrait of her in a gallery, she takes pity on him and persuades Jolyon to allow it to be sold to him, saying that they are so rich, while he is so poor. +

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

TOP SEARCHES

CASABLANCA

During World War II, Casablanca, Morocco is a waiting point for throngs of desperate refugees fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe. Exit visas, which are necessary to leave the country, are at ... >>

CITIZEN KANE

Seventy-year-old newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane dies in his palatial Florida home, Xanadu, after uttering the single word “Rosebud.” While watching a newsreel summarizing the years during which Kane ... >>

REAR WINDOW

Laid up with a broken leg during the height of summer, renowned New York magazine photographer L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries enters his last week of home confinement, bored and ... >>

RAGING BULL

In 1941, at a boxing match in Cleveland, Ohio, pandemonium breaks out when Jake La Motta, an up-and-coming young boxer, loses a decision to Jimmy Reeves, suffering his first ... >>

CITY LIGHTS

At an outdoor dedication ceremony, a tramp is discovered sleeping in the arms of a statue as it is being unveiled before a crowd. He is chased into ... >>

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.