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Forbidden Fruit (1921)

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Mary Maddock becomes a seamstress after her husband Steve wastes their money on booze. Her employer provides her as an escort to accompany millionaire Mallory. Her husband tries ... See full summary »



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Title: Forbidden Fruit (1921)

Forbidden Fruit (1921) on IMDb 7.5/10

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Complete credited cast:
Agnes Ayres ...
Mary Maddock
Clarence Burton ...
Steve Maddock
Theodore Roberts ...
James Harrington Mallory
Kathlyn Williams ...
Mrs. Mallory
Forrest Stanley ...
Nelson Rogers
Theodore Kosloff ...
Pietro Giuseppe
Shannon Day ...
Nadia Craig
Bertram Johns ...
John Craig
Julia Faye ...
Mrs. Mallory's First Maid


Mary Maddock becomes a seamstress after her husband Steve wastes their money on booze. Her employer provides her as an escort to accompany millionaire Mallory. Her husband tries blackmailing Mallory and is later killed by the police, leaving Mary free to wed the millionaire. Written by Ed Stephan <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

society | remake | melodrama




Release Date:

23 January 1921 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Forbidden Fruit  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


King Baggot and Ann Forrest were originally cast as Steve and Mary Maddock, but they were replaced by Clarence Burton and Agnes Ayres. See more »


Remake of The Golden Chance (1915) See more »

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User Reviews

Sumptuous DeMille Film
2 October 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Cecil B. DeMille is in good form in this drama centering on a poor seamstress (Agnes Ayres) who gets caught up in a web of deceit and murder when she accepts an invitation by a social climber (Kathlyn Williams) to fill out her dinner table by posing as Natalie Webb. The scheme is to fill the table with pretty young women to stall a potential business partner (Forrest Stanley) from leaving town before he can invest in the husband's (Theodore Roberts) oil venture.

But Ayres is married to a shiftless lout (Clarence Burton) and is therefore "forbidden fruit," as she tells Stanley when he becomes infatuated with her. In a subplot, the butler (Theodore Kosloff) has hidden is jail record and is planning to rob the family jewels.

After a domestic squabble, Ayres decides to accept an invitation for the weekend to see Stanley. Meanwhile, Kosloff and Burton team up to rob the jewels, but they get caught in the act and Ayres is exposed as a fraud.

Good story and all the actors are good. But the sets and costumes almost overwhelm the actors, especially with the beautiful gold tint. DeMille was famous for his attention to interior design and fashion, and here is an eye-popping example. Not only do we see the little seamstress transformed into a gowned and bejeweled beauty, but we also see her in a few "Cinderella" fantasies that are even more over the top in fashion design.

Ayres is quite good as the seamstress but she lacks the hauteur Gloria Swanson brought to these DeMille heroines. All the other actors are solid. Co-stars include Julia Faye and Lillian Leighton as house maids and Margaret Loomis and Conrad Nagel as the actors in the play called "Forbidden Fruit."

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