My Forbidden Past (1951)

70-71 or 74 mins | Melodrama | 21 April 1951

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HISTORY

The working title of this film was Carriage Entrance . According to Apr 1949 HR news items, when Howard Hughes, who had recently become the head of RKO, learned that the studio had purchased Polan Banks's novel and screenplay and had entered into a three-picture independent producing contract with him, he abrogated the deal. While contemporary sources state that Hughes objected to the deal because the story was a potentially expensive period piece, modern sources contend that Hughes did not like Ann Sheridan, who was contractually attached to Banks. As part of its renegotiated contract with Banks, RKO agreed to take over his commitment to Sheridan, who had recently left Warner Bros., but made Banks a one-time studio producer. In addition to earning a $150,000 salary, plus ten percent of the picture's profits, Sheridan's contract stipulated that she was to have approval on script, director and male lead. Robert Young was hired as her co-star, but dropped out in Jul 1949, causing the production to be delayed. According to a Nov 1949 HR news item, Sheridan provided RKO with a list of five actors she would consider as Young's replacement, including Franchot Tone, John Lund, Charles Boyer, Richard Conte and Robert Mitchum. Although Mitchum was ultimately cast, Sheridan was replaced by Ava Gardner, borrowed from M-G-M, in Aug 1949.
       In Jul 1949, HR announced that Nicholas Ray was taking over direction from Robert Stevenson because of Stevenson's prior commitment to RKO's Jet Pilot , but after the delay in production, Ray was replaced by Stevenson because of his own scheduling conflicts with In a Lonely ... More Less

The working title of this film was Carriage Entrance . According to Apr 1949 HR news items, when Howard Hughes, who had recently become the head of RKO, learned that the studio had purchased Polan Banks's novel and screenplay and had entered into a three-picture independent producing contract with him, he abrogated the deal. While contemporary sources state that Hughes objected to the deal because the story was a potentially expensive period piece, modern sources contend that Hughes did not like Ann Sheridan, who was contractually attached to Banks. As part of its renegotiated contract with Banks, RKO agreed to take over his commitment to Sheridan, who had recently left Warner Bros., but made Banks a one-time studio producer. In addition to earning a $150,000 salary, plus ten percent of the picture's profits, Sheridan's contract stipulated that she was to have approval on script, director and male lead. Robert Young was hired as her co-star, but dropped out in Jul 1949, causing the production to be delayed. According to a Nov 1949 HR news item, Sheridan provided RKO with a list of five actors she would consider as Young's replacement, including Franchot Tone, John Lund, Charles Boyer, Richard Conte and Robert Mitchum. Although Mitchum was ultimately cast, Sheridan was replaced by Ava Gardner, borrowed from M-G-M, in Aug 1949.
       In Jul 1949, HR announced that Nicholas Ray was taking over direction from Robert Stevenson because of Stevenson's prior commitment to RKO's Jet Pilot , but after the delay in production, Ray was replaced by Stevenson because of his own scheduling conflicts with In a Lonely Place . The role of "Corinne" was first assigned to Gloria Grahame, but Janis Carter took over the part after Grahame was cast in In a Lonely Place . RKO borrowed Carter from Columbia for the production. On 22 Nov 1949, a week after the end of principal photography, HR announced that Sheridan was suing RKO for $350,000 for breach of contract, claiming that the studio had "arbitrarily, wrongfully and unreasonably" violated its deal with her. According to modern sources, Sheridan won her suit, which also guaranteed her a role in a later RKO film, Appointment in Honduras (see above entry). My Forbidden Past lost $700,000 at the box office, according to modern sources. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
31 Mar 1951.
---
Daily Variety
21 Mar 51
p. 3.
Film Daily
23 Mar 51
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
26 Apr 49
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Jul 49
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Jul 49
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Jul 49
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Jul 49
p. 1, 4
Hollywood Reporter
11 Aug 49
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Aug 49
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Sep 49
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Sep 49
p. 15.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Sep 49
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
4 Oct 49
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Nov 49
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Nov 49
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Nov 49
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Mar 51
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
31 Mar 51
pp. 786-87.
New York Times
26 Apr 51
p. 34.
Variety
28 Mar 51
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Robert Sparks-Polan Banks Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Carriage Entrance by Polan Banks (New York, 1947).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Carriage Entrance
Release Date:
21 April 1951
Production Date:
3 October--16 November 1949
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
31 December 1950
Copyright Number:
LP1056
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
70-71 or 74
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
14149
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In turn-of-the-century New Orleans, beautiful but impoverished aristocrat Barbara Beaurevelle vows to join her lover, medical researcher Dr. Mark Lucas, that night on a South American-bound ship and marry him. When her scheming cousin Paul finds out her plans, however, he reminds her about her aunt Eula's heart condition and the pain that such an elopement would cause her. Paul persuades Barbara to write Mark a letter asking him to wait for her and promises to deliver it, but never does. Two months later, on Halloween, Barbara eagerly awaits Mark's return at the docks and is stunned to discover that he has married a woman he met during his travels. Confused and angry, Barbara defies her aunt and goes to see Luther Toplady, a lawyer who has been trying to locate her about an inheritance. Luther informs Barbara that her grandmother Carrie Crandall's brother has died and left his fortune to her. Because Carrie led an infamous life, Barbara's relation to her has been kept secret, and Barbara asks that Luther transfer the money to her without mention of Carrie's name. Barbara then breaks an engagement with Clay Duchesne, her wealthy suitor, and goes alone to a cemetery, which is filled with Halloween revelers. There, Barbara spies Mark as he and his mentor from Tulane University, Dean Cazzley, give Mark's bride Corinne a tour. Still unaware that he never received her letter, Barbara pulls Mark aside and tries to rekindle his passion for her. Mark gives in momentarily, kissing her, but refuses to betray Corinne any further. Barbara then shocks a young candle seller by lighting a candle at her notorious grandmother's ... +


In turn-of-the-century New Orleans, beautiful but impoverished aristocrat Barbara Beaurevelle vows to join her lover, medical researcher Dr. Mark Lucas, that night on a South American-bound ship and marry him. When her scheming cousin Paul finds out her plans, however, he reminds her about her aunt Eula's heart condition and the pain that such an elopement would cause her. Paul persuades Barbara to write Mark a letter asking him to wait for her and promises to deliver it, but never does. Two months later, on Halloween, Barbara eagerly awaits Mark's return at the docks and is stunned to discover that he has married a woman he met during his travels. Confused and angry, Barbara defies her aunt and goes to see Luther Toplady, a lawyer who has been trying to locate her about an inheritance. Luther informs Barbara that her grandmother Carrie Crandall's brother has died and left his fortune to her. Because Carrie led an infamous life, Barbara's relation to her has been kept secret, and Barbara asks that Luther transfer the money to her without mention of Carrie's name. Barbara then breaks an engagement with Clay Duchesne, her wealthy suitor, and goes alone to a cemetery, which is filled with Halloween revelers. There, Barbara spies Mark as he and his mentor from Tulane University, Dean Cazzley, give Mark's bride Corinne a tour. Still unaware that he never received her letter, Barbara pulls Mark aside and tries to rekindle his passion for her. Mark gives in momentarily, kissing her, but refuses to betray Corinne any further. Barbara then shocks a young candle seller by lighting a candle at her notorious grandmother's grave. The next day, Barbara informs her aunt and Paul about her million-dollar windfall. Aunt Eula, who dreads scandal, is distressed by the news but Paul is ecstatic. Sometime later, the now-rich Barbara visits Corinne at home to invite her to a ball. Barbara and Corinne exchange coy barbs, and Corinne reveals herself as a calculating social climber. When Mark learns about the ball, he goes to see Barbara to turn down the invitation, but instead is insulted by the snobbish Paul. Irked, Mark attends the ball with Corinne, who is immediately attracted to Paul. Once alone with Mark, Barbara finally learns the truth about her letter and asks Mark to divorce Corinne and marry her. Although Mark kisses Barbara again, he disdains her casual attitude toward marriage and storms off. Thus scorned, Barbara plots to humiliate Mark by paying Paul to seduce Corinne. Paul easily charms Corinne and arranges a boathouse tryst. When Barbara informs Mark about Corinne's planned rendezvous with Paul, he quietly condemns her vengeful ways. Suddenly filled with remorse and self-loathing, Barbara heads for the boathouse. There, Corinne tries to convince Paul to marry her, and when he laughingly rejects her, she slaps him. Angered, Paul pushes Corinne, causing her to fall and suffer a fatal head injury. Barbara sees Paul run off and goes inside the boathouse to find Corinne. Moments later, Mark arrives and, deducing what has happened, instructs Barbara to leave. Mark immediately falls under suspicion, and the influential Clay, who has long been jealous of him, demands his dismissal from Tulane. During the ensuing inquisition, Mark does not mention either Barbara or Paul and faces indictment for murder. Unable to stay silent, as Paul and Eula have instructed her, Barbara reveals all to a stunned courtroom, including her connection to Carrie. Although Eula disowns her, Mark applauds Barbara's courage, noting that she could turn out to be "quite a woman." +

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

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