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These Three (1936) Poster

(1936)

Trivia

The play was partly inspired by an actual case in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1810, "Miss Pirie and Miss Woods vs. Dame Cumming Gordon." Two school teachers, Jane Pirie and Marianne Woods, were falsely accused of having a lesbian affair by a pupil, Jane Gordon. Under the influence of Jane's grandmother, Dame Cumming Gordon, the school's students were removed by their parents and the school was shut down. Pirie and Woods filed a libel suit against Dame Cumming Gordon, and won the case, but given the destruction of their lives and standing in the community, it was considered a hollow victory.
Lillian Hellman was satisfied with changes she had to make in the play for the film, since she felt the central issue of the play was the malicious result of the gossip rather than the gossip itself.
The play opened on Broadway, New York City, New York, USA on 20 November 1934 and had 691 performances. In the cast was Anne Revere as Martha Dobie, Katherine Emery as Karen Wright and Robert Keith as Dr. Joseph Cardin.
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Because of the lesbian theme of the play, the Hays office refused to allow the original title to be used, nor any mention of it onscreen or in publicity materials. Hence, Lillian Hellman is credited only for original story and screenplay. The movie was briefly titled "The Lie", before it was changed to "These Three."
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Despite the changes made for the film because of censorship, nearly all of the dialogue is identical to that in the 1934 play "The Children's Hour", on which this film was based.
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In 1961, director William Wyler remade the film as The Children's Hour (1961), with the lesbian theme intact, starring Audrey Hepburn and Shirley MacLaine. Miriam Hopkins, who plays Martha Dobie in this film, plays her aunt, Lily Mortar, in the 1961 film.
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"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on December 6, 1937 with Alma Kruger and Marcia Mae Jones reprising their film roles.
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Naturally blonde Bonita Granville had her hair dyed brown to make her seem darker and more evil.
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In the original Broadway production of "The Children's Hour" in 1934 starred Katherine Emery and Anne Revere. Before Willam Wyler remade his 1936 "These Three" with its original theme restored in 1962, there was a 1952 Broadway revival with Kim Hunter and Patricia Neal. Prior to rehearsals playwright Lillian Hellman hosted a formal dress party where Neal first met future husband Roald Dahl. They were married nine months later.
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