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The Pearls of the Crown (1937)

Les perles de la couronne (original title)
Three narrators (French writer Jean Martin, an English royal equerry, and a papal chamberlain) tell the story of seven matched pearls, four of them now in the British Crown. Episodes whirl ... See full summary »

Director:

Sacha Guitry

Writers:

Sacha Guitry (screenplay) (as L'Auteur), Christian-Jaque (screenplay)
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jacqueline Delubac ... Françoise Martin / Marie Stuart / Joséphine de Beauharnais
Sacha Guitry ... Jean Martin / François Ier / Barras / Napoléon III
Lyn Harding ... L'officier du roi (English narrator) / Le roi Henry VIII
Renée Saint-Cyr Renée Saint-Cyr ... Madeleine de la Tour d'Auvergne
Enrico Glori Enrico Glori ... La camérier du pape (Italian narrator)
Ermete Zacconi ... Le pape Clement VII
Barbara Shaw Barbara Shaw ... Anne de Boleyn
Marguerite Moreno ... Catherine de Medicis (1860) / L'impératrice Eugénie âgée (1914)
Arletty ... La reine d'Abyssinie
Marcel Dalio ... Le ministre d'Abyssinie (as Dalio)
Claude Dauphin ... Le prisonnier italien en Abyssinie
Robert Seller Robert Seller ... Le prisonnier français en Abyssinie
Ponzio Ponzio ... Un ouvrier chantant
Andrews Engelmann ... James - le voleur (as Engelman)
Yvette Pienne Yvette Pienne ... La reine Marie Tudor / La reine Elizabeth I / La reine Victoria âgée
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Storyline

Three narrators (French writer Jean Martin, an English royal equerry, and a papal chamberlain) tell the story of seven matched pearls, four of them now in the British Crown. Episodes whirl us from Pope Clement VII to Mary Queen of Scots, from whom the pearls are stolen while she's occupied with the headsman. Historic events are seasoned with sly, satiric humor, and famous beauties are portrayed by stunning actresses. Then the narrators meet, and decide to try tracing the three unrecovered pearls from 1587 to the present... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | History

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French | English | Italian

Release Date:

11 April 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sacha Guitry's The Pearls of the Crown (Les perles de la couronne) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Cinéas See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was first telecast on New York City's pioneer television station W2XBS Friday 2 August 1939. It is one of over 200 titles in the list of independent feature films made available for television presentation by Advance Television Pictures announced in Motion Picture Herald 4 April 1942. At this time, television broadcasting was in its infancy, almost totally curtailed by the advent of World War II, and would not continue to develop until 1945-1946. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cinéastes de notre temps: Sacha Guitry (1965) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Exceptional
20 November 2011 | by zetesSee all my reviews

A delight! This is kind of the film I was hoping to see last year when I watched Guitry's Story of a Cheat, which I had heard about for years prior to its becoming available. I liked that film quite a bit, but there was a tinge of disappointment in that it didn't live up to my expectations. The Pearls of the Crown, though, was just brilliant. Guitry and his wife Jacqueline Delubac play multiple roles throughout a 400 year timespan. In the present they play a historian and his wife. Guitry is telling Delubac the story of the pearls in the crown of England. These pearls came from Mary Queen of Scots' necklace, which in turn came from a wedding gift to Catherine de Medici from the Pope. Guitry tells the story of the pearls' origin, and also of their theft the night Mary Stuart was executed. The four pearls that were recovered from the thieves went into the crown, and the three others were never found. Soon Guitry teams up with British and Italian counterparts and the three of them set out on a mission to find the remaining three pearls. This film moves back and forth through time with the grace of a ballerina. Arletty appears in one of the more outrageous bits of the film, as an Abyssinian queen (and, yes, she plays it in blackface).


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