Miss Robin Crusoe (1953)

74-75 mins | Adventure | November 1953

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HISTORY

The working title of this film was Miss Robinson Crusoe. The name of art director F. Paul Sylos, who was sometimes known as Frank or Paul Sylos, was misspelled "Frank E. Sylos" in the onscreen credits. According to a 2 Jul 1953 HR news item, producer Eugene Frenke encountered difficulty registering the title with the Motion Picture Registration Bureau, because both M-G-M and Óscar Danciger protested. Danciger had recently completed a picture entitled Robinson Crusoe, which was filmed in Mexico, and M-G-M was contemplating producing a feature based on the novel starring Spencer Tracy. In Sep 1953, the bureau granted Frenke the right to use the title. The decision allowed Frenke the rights to that title, as well as Miss Robinson Crusoe. Accordingly, Danciger was forced to change the title of his film to Adventures of Robinson Crusoe (see above).
       Although the film was not viewed, the above credits and summary were taken from a dialogue continuity and contemporary sources. According to a 2 Oct 1952 HR news item, E. A. Dupont was originally scheduled to direct the picture. According to studio press materials, some scenes were shot on location in Palos Verdes, CA. In Sep 1953, Frenke was sued for $210,000 by Mid-City Properties, Inc., which alleged that in Aug 1952, Frenke borrowed $41,000 for production of Miss Robin Crusoe, then failed to supply the company with required contracts. In addition, Mid-City Properties alleged that Frenke accepted another $185,000 from a different company without informing them. The disposition of the suit has not been determined.
       Numerous films have been based on the Daniel ...

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The working title of this film was Miss Robinson Crusoe. The name of art director F. Paul Sylos, who was sometimes known as Frank or Paul Sylos, was misspelled "Frank E. Sylos" in the onscreen credits. According to a 2 Jul 1953 HR news item, producer Eugene Frenke encountered difficulty registering the title with the Motion Picture Registration Bureau, because both M-G-M and Óscar Danciger protested. Danciger had recently completed a picture entitled Robinson Crusoe, which was filmed in Mexico, and M-G-M was contemplating producing a feature based on the novel starring Spencer Tracy. In Sep 1953, the bureau granted Frenke the right to use the title. The decision allowed Frenke the rights to that title, as well as Miss Robinson Crusoe. Accordingly, Danciger was forced to change the title of his film to Adventures of Robinson Crusoe (see above).
       Although the film was not viewed, the above credits and summary were taken from a dialogue continuity and contemporary sources. According to a 2 Oct 1952 HR news item, E. A. Dupont was originally scheduled to direct the picture. According to studio press materials, some scenes were shot on location in Palos Verdes, CA. In Sep 1953, Frenke was sued for $210,000 by Mid-City Properties, Inc., which alleged that in Aug 1952, Frenke borrowed $41,000 for production of Miss Robin Crusoe, then failed to supply the company with required contracts. In addition, Mid-City Properties alleged that Frenke accepted another $185,000 from a different company without informing them. The disposition of the suit has not been determined.
       Numerous films have been based on the Daniel Defoe classic, including the 1916 Warner Bros. release Robinson Crusoe, starring Robert Patton Gibbs (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1911-21); United Artists’ 1932 release Mr. Robinson Crusoe, which was directed by Edward Sutherland and starred Douglas Fairbanks (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40); the 1964 Paramount film Robinson Crusoe on Mars, directed by Byron Haskin (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1961-70); and the 1989 Island Pictures production Crusoe, directed by Caleb Deschanel and starring Aidan Quinn. Miss Robin Crusoe is not related to either the 1917 Metro Pictures Corp. release Miss Robinson Crusoe or the 1919 World Film Corp. production Miss Crusoe (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1911-20).

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
PERSONAL & COMPANY INDEX CREDITS
HISTORY CREDITS
CREDIT TYPE
CREDIT
General (mod):
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
31 Oct 1953
---
Film Daily
30 Oct 1953
p. 6
Harrison's Reports
31 Oct 1953
p. 174
Hollywood Reporter
2 Oct 1952
p. 1
Hollywood Reporter
3 Oct 1952
p. 23
Hollywood Reporter
10 Oct 1952
p. 11
Hollywood Reporter
14 Oct 1952
p. 2
Hollywood Reporter
8 Jun 1953
p. 6
Hollywood Reporter
2 Jul 1953
p. 4
Hollywood Reporter
2 Sep 1953
p. 11
Hollywood Reporter
6 Sep 1953
p. 3
Hollywood Reporter
15 Sep 1953
p. 4
Hollywood Reporter
19 Oct 1953
p. 5
Variety
9 Sep 1953
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Eugene Frenke
Dir
Asst dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Eugene Frenke
Prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig story idea
PHOTOGRAPHY
Virgil Miller
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Merrill White
Supv ed
MUSIC
Mus comp and cond
VISUAL EFFECTS
Charles R. Duncan
Spec eff
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod adv
SOURCES
LITERARY
Adapted from the novel Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Dafoe (London, 1719).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHOR
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Miss Robinson Crusoe
Release Date:
November 1953
Production Date:
ended 14 Oct 1952 at Samuel Goldwyn Studios
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
1 December 1953
LP3395
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Pathécolor
Duration(in mins):
74-75
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

On 30 September 1659, a fierce storm wrecks the ship captained by Miss Robin Crusoe's cruel father, and only Robin and a sailor named Sykes survive. They are washed ashore on a deserted island, and Robin records in the ship's logbook her horrible experiences as a "cabin boy" aboard her father's ship, on which she continually had to evade the advances of the crew. The lecherous Sykes attempts to force himself on Robin, and during the ensuing struggle, falls to his death off a cliff. Robin then begins exploring the island and building a treehouse. One Friday in March 1660, Robin is alerted to impending danger by a chattering monkey. From a hiding place, she watches as a group of natives try to sacrifice a young woman. Using her gun, Robin frightens away the men and saves the woman, whom she names "Friday." The two women quickly become friends, and Robin teaches Friday basic English. Their efforts to grow crops are successful and all seems to be going well until September, when a storm hits the island, prompting Robin to worry that the longboat in which she came to the island will be destroyed. The boat barely survives, and after the storm subsides, Robin is shocked to discover that Jonathan, a British Naval officer, has been shipwrecked on the island. Jonathan is at first delighted to find Robin and Friday, but Robin levels her weapon at him and repulses any attempts at friendship. Forced to fend for himself, Jonathan builds his own shelter. Jonathan is thrilled to discover Robin's boat, which was damaged during the storm, and offers to help her rebuild it. Robin adamantly refuses, as the boat ...

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On 30 September 1659, a fierce storm wrecks the ship captained by Miss Robin Crusoe's cruel father, and only Robin and a sailor named Sykes survive. They are washed ashore on a deserted island, and Robin records in the ship's logbook her horrible experiences as a "cabin boy" aboard her father's ship, on which she continually had to evade the advances of the crew. The lecherous Sykes attempts to force himself on Robin, and during the ensuing struggle, falls to his death off a cliff. Robin then begins exploring the island and building a treehouse. One Friday in March 1660, Robin is alerted to impending danger by a chattering monkey. From a hiding place, she watches as a group of natives try to sacrifice a young woman. Using her gun, Robin frightens away the men and saves the woman, whom she names "Friday." The two women quickly become friends, and Robin teaches Friday basic English. Their efforts to grow crops are successful and all seems to be going well until September, when a storm hits the island, prompting Robin to worry that the longboat in which she came to the island will be destroyed. The boat barely survives, and after the storm subsides, Robin is shocked to discover that Jonathan, a British Naval officer, has been shipwrecked on the island. Jonathan is at first delighted to find Robin and Friday, but Robin levels her weapon at him and repulses any attempts at friendship. Forced to fend for himself, Jonathan builds his own shelter. Jonathan is thrilled to discover Robin's boat, which was damaged during the storm, and offers to help her rebuild it. Robin adamantly refuses, as the boat can carry only two people, and she worries that he intends to maroon either herself or Friday. Jonathan insists that because he is vaguely familiar with the area, he can reach the shipping lanes and find help, but Robin still does not trust him. One night, Robin and Friday catch Jonathan attempting to moor the boat more securely against the encroaching tides, but do not accept his explanation and mistakenly believe that he was trying to steal the boat. In a struggle, the angered Friday stabs Jonathan, and Robin, unable to let him die, takes him to the treehouse to nurse him back to health. Jonathan is bemused by her actions, and as he regains his health, asks her why she always insists on being the captain, which is a "man's place." Jonathan urges Robin to act more feminine, as Friday does, but Robin tells him of her difficult life trying to cope with her father's drunken and violent lifestyle, which prevented her from fulfilling any dreams of romance or courtship. Jonathan gently tells her that not all men are bad, and as the couple spends more time together, their friendship blossoms into a tentative romance. By the time spring comes, both women have grown to trust Jonathan, but one night, he kisses Robin and she furiously rejects him. Heartbroken, Jonathan slips away and steals the longboat, in which he sets out for the shipping lanes. Believing that Jonathan has betrayed her, Robin writes in her diary that she should have killed him. Unknown to Robin, when Jonathan reaches the shipping lane, his concern for her prompts him to turn back to the island. Upon his return, Jonathan discovers that the natives who attempted to sacrifice Friday have returned, and Friday and Robin are under attack. Jonathan joins in the fray, and Friday bravely sacrifices herself to save them. Just then, a ship appears on the horizon, and Jonathan and Robin, who have decided to marry, are rescued. Robin's last entry in her logbook, dated 22 June 1661, states that she is about to embark on "life's greatest adventure."

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

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