|The Rains Came|
|Directed by||Clarence Brown|
|Screenplay by|| Philip Dunne |
|Based on||The Rains Came|
by Louis Bromfield
|Produced by||Darryl F. Zanuck|
|Starring|| Myrna Loy |
|Cinematography||Arthur C. Miller|
|Edited by||Barbara McLean|
|Music by||Alfred Newman|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
The Rains Came is a 1939 20th Century Fox film based on an American novel by Louis Bromfield (published in June 1937 by Harper & Brothers). The film was directed by Clarence Brown and stars Myrna Loy, Tyrone Power, George Brent, Brenda Joyce, Nigel Bruce, and Maria Ouspenskaya.
A remake of the film was released in 1955 under the name The Rains of Ranchipur .
The story centers on the redemption of its lead female character, Lady Edwina Esketh . Tom Ransome is an artist who leads a rather dissolute if socially active life in the fictional town of Ranchipur, India. His routine is shattered with the arrival of his former lover, Lady Edwina Esketh, who has since married the elderly Lord Esketh. Lady Edwina first sets out to seduce, then gradually falls in love with, Major Rama Safti who represents the "new India."
Ranchipur is devastated by an earthquake, which causes a flood, which causes a cholera epidemic. Lord Esketh dies and Lady Esketh renounces her hedonistic life in favor of helping the sick alongside Major Safti. She accidentally drinks from a glass that has just been used by a patient, becomes infected and dies, making it possible for Safti to become the ruler of a kingdom that he will presumably reform. In the course of the story, a missionary's daughter, Fern Simon, and Ransome also fall in love.
The casting apparently was a lengthy process. Loy and Brown were loaned to 20th Century Fox from MGM (as part of a deal wherein Power was loaned by Fox to MGM for Marie Antoinette ). Brent was also on loan from his home studio of Warner Bros. The only cast member who was originally chosen for the role he or she played was Ouspenskaya, who was memorable as the Maharani. She later claimed that she learned all she needed to know about impersonating Indian royalty from her acquaintance with the Russian Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Russia.
The budget was $2.5 million ($47 million in 2020).
Bruce is cast against what had become his established type.
In later years, Loy recalled that her belief in director Clarence Brown made her willing to try his suggestion for her death scene: " ‘...people don't die with their eyes closed...Why don't you try dying with your eyes open? You've just got to hold your breath.' I held my breath, staring at some fixed object until I began to see stars and everything started to blur and run together. I was turning a little blue when he finally called 'Cut!' When you trust a director, you'll do anything for him."
Loy's stylish bad girl role harks back to the vamps, villains and dramatic leads that she was known for until her success in The Thin Man established her comedic talent. After a series of romantic comedies, Loy wanted a good dramatic role, and this was it. According to Loy, Louis Bromfield told her, "I think you're giving the best performance of your career."After the Second World War and her appearance in The Best Years of Our Lives , her image changed yet again, to that of the ideal mother.
The special effects that produced the earthquakes and floods were good enough to win the first Oscar issued in that category (see below).However, Variety praised the human drama.: "The simple heroics following the quake are more effective than the earth-rending sequences themselves."
TCM.com reports some of cinematographer Arthur Miller's recollections about The Rains Came, including his "obsession" with the rain.
Original prints of the film were tinted sepia.
It was nominated for six Academy Awards,winning in the category of Special Effects and Sound Effects, for the earthquake and flood sequences. It became the first film to win an Academy Award for Best Special Effects, edging out other nominees including The Wizard of Oz and Gone with the Wind .
The Rains Came was remade in 1955 as The Rains of Ranchipur , with Richard Burton, Lana Turner and Fred MacMurray in the Power, Loy and Brent roles. The 1939 film uses the original novel's ending; the 1955 film provides different fates for Lord and Lady Esketh.
The Thin Man is a 1934 American pre-Code comedy-mystery directed by W. S. Van Dyke and based on the 1934 novel of the same name by Dashiell Hammett. The film stars William Powell and Myrna Loy as Nick and Nora Charles, a leisure-class couple who enjoy copious drinking and flirtatious banter. Nick is a retired police detective who left his very successful career when he married Nora, a wealthy heiress accustomed to high society. Their wire-haired fox terrier Asta was played by canine actor Skippy. In 1997, the film was added to the United States National Film Registry having been deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."
The Thin Man Goes Home is a 1945 mystery film directed by Richard Thorpe. It is the fifth of the six Thin Man films starring William Powell and Myrna Loy as Dashiell Hammett's dapper ex-private detective Nick Charles and his wife Nora. This entry in The Thin Man series was the first not directed by W.S. Van Dyke, who had died in 1943.
Myrna Loy was an American film, television and stage actress. Trained as a dancer, Loy devoted herself fully to an acting career following a few minor roles in silent films. She was originally typecast in exotic roles, often as a vamp or a woman of Asian descent, but her career prospects improved greatly following her portrayal of Nora Charles in The Thin Man (1934).
Catherine Rosalind Russell was an American actress, known for her role as fast-talking newspaper reporter Hildy Johnson in the Howard Hawks screwball comedy His Girl Friday (1940), as well as for her portrayals of Mame Dennis in Auntie Mame (1958) and Rose in Gypsy (1962). A noted comedian, she won all five Golden Globes for which she was nominated. Russell won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical in 1953 for her portrayal of Ruth in the Broadway show Wonderful Town. She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress four times throughout her career.
George Brent was an Irish-American stage, film, and television actor. He is best remembered for the eleven films he made with Bette Davis, which included Jezebel and Dark Victory.
Maria Alekseyevna Ouspenskaya was a Russian actress and acting teacher. She achieved success as a stage actress as a young woman in Russia, and as an elderly woman in Hollywood films.
Thirteen Women is a 1932 American pre-Code psychological thriller film, produced by David O. Selznick and directed by George Archainbaud. It stars Myrna Loy, Irene Dunne and Ricardo Cortez. The film is based on the 1930 bestselling novel of the same name by Tiffany Thayer and was adapted for the screen by Bartlett Cormack and Samuel Ornitz.
Milton R. Krasner, A.S.C. was an American cinematographer who won an Academy Award for Three Coins in the Fountain (1954).
Brenda Joyce was an American film actress.
Jessie Ralph Patton, known as Jessie Ralph, was an American stage and screen actress, best known for her matronly roles in many classic movies.
The Rains of Ranchipur is a 1955 American drama and disaster film made by 20th Century Fox. It was directed by Jean Negulesco and produced by Frank Ross from a screenplay by Merle Miller, based on the novel The Rains Came by Louis Bromfield. The music score was by Hugo Friedhofer and the cinematography by Milton Krasner.
I Love You Again is an MGM comedy released in 1940. It was directed by W.S. Van Dyke and starred William Powell and Myrna Loy, all three of whom were prominently involved in the Thin Man six film series. The first film Powell and Loy appeared in together was Manhattan Melodrama, in 1934, out of fourteen films together.
Dorothy ("Dot") Spencer was an American film editor with 75 feature film credits from a career that spanned more than 50 years. Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Film Editing on four occasions, she is remembered for editing three of director John Ford's best known movies, including Stagecoach (1939) and My Darling Clementine (1946), which film critic Roger Ebert called "Ford's greatest Western".
Wife, Husband and Friend is a 1939 comedy film directed by Gregory Ratoff and starring Loretta Young, Warner Baxter and Binnie Barnes in the three title roles, respectively. The film, based on a script by Nunnally Johnson, tells the story of a contractor and his wife, and how their musical ambitions result in marital tensions and a romantic triangle with a professional singer. The film was remade as Everybody Does It (1949), starring Paul Douglas as the contractor, Celeste Holm as his wife, and Linda Darnell as the singer.
Too Hot to Handle, also known as Let 'Em All Talk, is a 1938 comedy-drama directed by Jack Conway and starring Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, and Walter Pidgeon. The plot concerns a newsreel reporter, the female aviator he is attracted to and his fierce competitor. Many of the comedy gags were devised by an uncredited Buster Keaton.
Lucky Night (1939) is a comedy movie from MGM starring Robert Taylor and Myrna Loy, directed by Norman Taurog.
Man-Proof is a 1938 American romantic comedy film directed by Richard Thorpe. The film is based on the 1937 novel The Four Marys written by Fannie Heaslip Lea.
Whipsaw is a 1935 American crime drama film directed by Sam Wood and starring Myrna Loy and Spencer Tracy. Written by Howard Emmett Rogers, based on a story by James Edward Grant, the film is about a government agent working undercover traveling across the country with an unsuspecting woman, hoping she will lead him to her gang of jewel thieves. The film was produced by Harry Rapf for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, and was released on December 18, 1935, in the United States.
Wings in the Dark is a 1935 film directed by James Flood and starring Myrna Loy and Cary Grant and focusing on a daring woman aviator and an inventor thrust into a desperate situation. Wings in the Dark was produced by Arthur Hornblow, Jr. The film was the first that Loy and Grant made together, although Loy's biographer Emily Leider says that Wings in the Dark "wastes their talents and prompts an unintentional laugh fest." The film remains notable as a rare movie depiction of a blind protagonist during the 1930s, and is also known for its accomplished aerial photography directed by Dewey Wrigley.
Rosina Fiorini Galli was an Italian film actress in Hollywood.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to The Rains Came .|