IMDb > Sanders of the River (1935)
Sanders of the River
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Sanders of the River (1935) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 6% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Lajos Biró (adaptation)
Jeffrey Dell (adaptation)
View company contact information for Sanders of the River on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
26 June 1935 (USA) See more »
British District Officer in Nigeria in the 1930's rules his area strictly but justly, and struggles... See more » | Add synopsis »
1 win & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
"Sandi the Brave, Sandi the Wise, Righter of Wrongs, Hater of Lies!" See more (14 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Paul Robeson ... Bosambo

Leslie Banks ... Commissioner R.G. Sanders

Nina Mae McKinney ... Lilongo
Robert Cochran ... Lieutenant Tibbets (as Robert Cochrane)
Martin Walker ... J. Ferguson
Richard Grey ... Captain Hamilton
Tony Wane ... King Mofolaba
Marqués De Portago ... Farini (as Marquis De Portago)
Eric Maturin ... Smith
Allan Jeayes ... Father O'Leary
Charles Carson ... Governor of the Territory
Luao ... Chief of the Wagenia [Congo] Tribe
Kilongalonga ... Chief of the Wagenia [Congo] Tribe
Oboja ... Chief of the Acholi Tribe
Members of Acholi Tribe ... Themselves (as Members of the Acholi Tribe)
Members of the Sesi Tribe ... Themselves
Members of the Tefik Tribe ... Themselves
Members of the Juruba Tribe ... Themselves
Members of the Mendi Tribe ... Themselves
Members of the Kroo Tribe ... Themselves
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Robert Adams ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Joe Cozier ... (uncredited)
Bertrand Frazer ... Makara (uncredited)
Beresford Gale ... Topolaka (uncredited)
Jomo Kenyatta ... Tribal Chief (uncredited)
Orlando Martins ... K'Lova (uncredited)
Anthony Papafio ... Bosambo's Son (uncredited)
James Solomon ... Kaluba (uncredited)
John Thomas ... Obiboo (uncredited)
Deara Williams ... Daughter of Bosambo and Lilongo (uncredited)

Directed by
Zoltan Korda 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Lajos Biró  adaptation
Jeffrey Dell  adaptation
Edgar Wallace  story
Arthur Wimperis  additional dialogue

Produced by
Alexander Korda .... producer
Original Music by
Mischa Spoliansky  (as Michael Spolianski)
Cinematography by
Osmond Borradaile 
Louis Page 
Georges Périnal 
Film Editing by
Charles Crichton 
Casting by
Dorothy Holloway (uncredited)
Production Management
G.E.T. Grossmith .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Stanley Irving .... assistant director
Sound Department
D. Field .... sound
L. Fisher .... sound
J. Paddon .... sound
A.W. Watkins .... recording director
Visual Effects by
W. Percy Day .... matte painter
Camera and Electrical Department
Bernard Browne .... camera operator
Editorial Department
William Hornbeck .... supervising editor
Music Department
Muir Mathieson .... musical director
Other crew
Cecil Grosse .... technical advisor
C.O. 'Squash' Lemon .... technical advisor
C. Wallace .... technical advisor (as Major C. Wallace)
Alfred Hitchcock .... director of the first stages (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
98 min | 92 min (re-release) | USA:85 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Paul Robeson disowned this picture, telling journalists that it was the only one of his films to have been screened in Italy and Germany. However, his claim to have walked out of the premiere in disgust was a re-invention of history.See more »
Errors in geography: Although the film is nominally set in Nigeria (as shown on the map in Sanders' office), the aerial wildlife shots seem to have been taken in East Africa (e.g. Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika). Given the presence of Jomo Kenyatta as an extra in the cast, it is likely that the African scenes were shot on the eastern coast of Africa rather than in Nigeria.See more »
Movie Connections:
Version of Sanders (1963)See more »
My Little Black DoveSee more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
9 out of 11 people found the following review useful.
"Sandi the Brave, Sandi the Wise, Righter of Wrongs, Hater of Lies!", 28 May 2007
Author: TrevorAclea from London, England

Although a source of much embarrassment (and biographical revisionism) to Paul Robeson in later years, by the standards of its day Sanders of the River isn't quite as obnoxiously racist as you might think. Unlike American films of the period, it's more patronising than openly defamatory and while he's hardly a role model, Robeson's convict-turned-king plays a more central role in the plot than Leslie Banks condescendingly paternalistic British commissioner ("Sandi the Brave, Sandi the Wise/Righter of Wrongs, Hater of Lies!"). But then, you don't expect subtlety from a story by Edgar Wallace, who many blamed for the collapse of peace talks during the Boer War because of his salacious invented newspaper stories of Boer atrocities.

As a film it holds together fairly well, with the extensive and often spectacular location footage of Africa and Shepperton riverside (all too obviously shot with stand-ins for the two stars) compensating for the Victor Herbert operetta style songs given to Robeson ("Let the rivers rattle/Onwards into battle/Make them flee like cattle").

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