43 user 19 critic

Three Coins in the Fountain (1954)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | May 1954 (USA)
3:37 | Trailer

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Three American women working in Rome, Italy, share a spacious apartment and the desire to find love and marriage, each experiencing a few bumps in their journeys to romance.


Jean Negulesco


John Patrick (screen play), John H. Secondari (from a novel by)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Clifton Webb ... John Frederick Shadwell
Dorothy McGuire ... Miss Frances
Jean Peters ... Anita Hutchins
Louis Jourdan ... Prince Dino di Cessi
Maggie McNamara ... Maria Williams
Rossano Brazzi ... Giorgio Bianchi
Howard St. John ... Mr. Burgoyne
Kathryn Givney ... Mrs. Burgoyne
Cathleen Nesbitt ... Principessa


Three American women, rooming together while working abroad in Rome, Italy, hope for romance and marriage. Frances, oldest of the three, has been fifteen years a secretary to novelist John Frederick Shadwell, a man whom she loves but whose reclusive nature prompts most people to believe him long since dead. Anita, one week away from returning to America (under the claim of getting married), finally bucks company rules (and gets caught) by finally accepting an invitation from an Italian co-worker to visit his family's farm for his sister's wedding. Newly arrived Maria soon sets her generally innocent eyes on Dino di Cessi, an actual prince with a reputation for womanizing, and makes a play for him by making herself his perfect match. Written by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


You've Never Lived Until You've Loved in Rome!


Drama | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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English | Italian

Release Date:

May 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Drei Münzen im Brunnen See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording) (magnetic prints)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Served as basis for unsold TV pilot starring Cynthia Pepper, Yvonne Craig and Joanna Moore. See more »


At the beginning of the final scene at the Trevi fountain, the fountain is dry and being cleaned. While the actors are there, the fountain begins flowing again; when the actors leave, the fountain is completely full -- not a possibility given the size of the fountain and the period of time over which the scene occurs. See more »


John Frederick Shadwell: Unless I miss my guess, sending that girl into get me was a feminine intrigue of yours. Am I right?
Miss Frances: What ever makes you think that?
John Frederick Shadwell: Don't be evasive.
See more »


Referenced in Pan Am: One Coin in a Fountain (2011) See more »


Anima e Core
(1950) (uncredited)
Music by Salvatore Esposito
(This song was sung at the hillside picnic near the home of Giorgio when he took Anita to meet his parents.)
I have corrected the spelling of the title of this song, and I have corrected the composer's name and the Songwriter's name. Your automatic system would not allow me to correct the songwriter's name which should be: Domenico Titomanlio.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Used to be fairly popular.
2 March 2012 | by BlueghostSee all my reviews

This film used to be a big ratings draw when it aired on TV. I would hear about discussed among the female members of the households, and eventually the film would get seen. It was in fact the subject of a few news' reports, and several hit songs.

Me, I never got it. What? No phasers? No Captain Kirk or Mister Spock? No lasers or guns ablazing? What the heck? Oh... it's a romance.

Okay, after the initial boyish knee jerk reaction, I would try to take in the film, get bored, and go watch something else on the small portable black and white. Well, eventually I would watch the whole thing (under protest) but found a fondness for it after a while.

It's one of the great old fashioned romances of all time. Not being Italian, nor European of any sort, I see an old fashioned romanticism with the old world, and in a healthy way. We see a kind of sanitized rendition of the young Italian males aggressively going after the female travelers in search of fortune of love. They eventually overcome fears and apprehensions about social class and ideals of what they want and think they want.

It's part of what good romances are all about and do. It is of course a fantasy, and like all good fantasies we see the twists and renditions of hearts' dreams fulfilled.

In films like this we're presented with characters who have lofty ideals and expectations of what they want and think they want. The story unfolds and shows us and them that what it was they were searching for may not be what they thought they wanted. In real life this is often the case, but not always.

Technically; shot using the three stripe process, the colors are marginally muted (a bit of a surprise) but also gives pretty clear imagery. The film, because it is from the 50s, uses primarily master shots to get the story across, and the one action sequence in the film uses maybe two dozen cutaways at most (and like a lot of action sequences, defies some common logic, but hey, it's Hollywood). The composite shots are actually well blended together, but like a lot of composites from the time, the master and background plates don't mesh because of the different lighting schemes. Spectacular interiors, some scenic exteriors, a good slow watch for a Sunday afternoon.

An event film that created a splash among the romantically inclined. I can't find any real flaws in it, but again, it's not really my cup of tea. Give it a chance. You might like it.

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