Victor Saville

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Victor Saville
Victor Saville 1936.jpg
Victor Saville in 1936
Born(1895-09-25)25 September 1895
Birmingham, England
Died 8 May 1979(1979-05-08) (aged 83)
London, England
Occupation Film director, producer, screenwriter
Years active 1923–1962

Victor Saville (25 September 1895 8 May 1979) was an English film director, producer, and screenwriter. He directed 39 films between 1927 and 1954. He also produced 36 films between 1923 and 1962.

Film director Person who controls the artistic and dramatic aspects of a film production

A film director is a person who directs the making of a film. A film director controls a film's artistic and dramatic aspects and visualizes the screenplay while guiding the technical crew and actors in the fulfilment of that vision. The director has a key role in choosing the cast members, production design, and the creative aspects of filmmaking. Under European Union law, the director is viewed as the author of the film.

A film producer is a person who oversees film production. Either employed by a production company or working independently, producers plan and coordinate various aspects of film production, such as selecting the script; coordinating writing, directing, and editing; and arranging financing.

Screenwriter writer who writes for TV, films, comics and games

A screenplay writer, scriptwriter or scenarist, is a writer who practices the craft of screenwriting, writing screenplays on which mass media, such as films, television programs and video games, are based.



He produced his first film, Woman to Woman , with Michael Balcon in 1923, and on the back of its success produced pictures for the veteran director Maurice Elvey, including the classic British silent Hindle Wakes (1927). His first picture as director was The Arcadians (1927). In 1929 he and Balcon worked together again on a talkie remake of Woman to Woman for Balcon's company, Gainsborough Pictures. This time Saville directed it.

<i>Woman to Woman</i> (1923 film) 1923 British silent drama film

Woman to Woman is a 1923 British silent drama film directed by Graham Cutts, with Alfred Hitchcock as the uncredited assistant director and co-screenwriter. The film was adapted from the 1921 play Woman to Woman by Michael Morton.

Michael Balcon English Film producer

Sir Michael Elias Balcon was an English film producer, known for his leadership of Ealing Studios from 1938 to 1955. He left after ownership had changed for a second time. Under his direction, it became the most notable British film studio.

Maurice Elvey was the most prolific film director in British history. He directed nearly 200 films between 1913 and 1957. During the silent film era he directed as many as twenty films per year. He also produced more than fifty films - his own as well as films directed by others.

From 1931, as Gainsborough Pictures and the Gaumont British Picture Corporation joined forces, Saville produced a string of comedies, musicals and dramas for Gainsborough and Gaumont-British, including the popular Jessie Matthews pictures. In 1937, he left to set up his own production company, Victor Saville Productions, and made three pictures for Alexander Korda's London Films at Denham studios.

Jessie Matthews English actress, singer and dancer

Jessie Matthews was an English actress, dancer and singer of the 1920s and 1930s, whose career continued into the post-war period.

Alexander Korda Hungarian-born British film producer and director

Sir Alexander Korda was a British film producer and director and screenwriter, who founded his own film production studios and film distribution company.

London Films

London Films Productions is a British film and television production company founded in 1932 by Alexander Korda and from 1936 based at Denham Film Studios in Buckinghamshire, near London. The company's productions included The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933), Things to Come (1936), Rembrandt (1936), and The Four Feathers (1939). The facility at Denham was taken over in 1939 by Rank and merged with Pinewood to form D & P Studios. The outbreak of war necessitated that The Thief of Bagdad (1940) was completed in California, although Korda's handful of American-made films still had Big Ben for their opening corporate logo.

As an independent producer he had purchased the film rights to A. J. Cronin's novel The Citadel . He was persuaded to sell them to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in return for the chance to produce the film and another big-budget adaptation, Goodbye Mr Chips (1939). Both films starred Robert Donat and were a great success in the USA as well as in Britain, providing Saville with a passport to Hollywood.

A. J. Cronin Scottish novelist and physician

Archibald Joseph Cronin was a Scottish novelist and physician.

<i>The Citadel</i> (novel) 1937 novel by A.J. Cronin

The Citadel is a novel by A. J. Cronin, first published in 1937, which was groundbreaking in its treatment of the contentious theme of medical ethics. It has been credited with laying the foundation in Great Britain for the introduction of the NHS a decade later. In the United States, it won the National Book Award for 1937 novels, voted by members of the American Booksellers Association.

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer American media company

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. is an American media company, involved primarily in the production and distribution of feature films and television programs. One of the world's oldest film studios, MGM's headquarters are located at 245 North Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills, California.

When the war broke out in 1939, Saville was in America and was advised to remain there. He produced pictures in support of the war effort, such as The Mortal Storm and Forever and a Day (1943) (in which he worked for the last time with his former star Jessie Matthews), and in 1945 Tonight and Every Night, based on the history of the Windmill Theatre in London.

<i>Forever and a Day</i> (1943 film) 1943 drama film

Forever and a Day is a 1943 American drama film, a collaborative effort employing seven directors/producers and 22 writers, including an uncredited Alfred Hitchcock, with an enormous cast of well-known stars.

Windmill Theatre Theatre and cinema in Londons Soho

The Windmill Theatre — now The Windmill International — in Great Windmill Street, London was for many years both a variety and revue theatre. The Windmill remains best known for its nude tableaux vivants, which began in 1932 and lasted until its reversion to a cinema in 1964. Many prominent British comedians of the post-war years started their careers working at this theatre.

After the war Saville continued directing films for MGM but eventually returned to Britain. Saville acquired production rights for Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer mysteries and produced a few features, though Spillane thought he was interested in doing so only to acquire the money to produce The Silver Chalice . [1] He produced two final films in the 1960s, The Greengage Summer (1961), adapted from the novel of the same name, and Mix Me a Person (1962).

Mickey Spillane American writer

Frank Morrison Spillane, better known as Mickey Spillane, was an American crime novelist, whose stories often feature his signature detective character, Mike Hammer. More than 225 million copies of his books have sold internationally. Spillane was also an occasional actor, once even playing Hammer himself.

Michael Hammer is a fictional character created by the American author Mickey Spillane in the 1947 book I, the Jury. Hammer is a no-holds-barred private investigator who carries a .45 Colt M1911A1 in a shoulder harness under his left arm. His love for his secretary Velda is outweighed only by his willingness to kill a killer. Hammer's best friend is Pat Chambers, Captain of Homicide NYPD. Hammer was a World War II army veteran who spent two years fighting jungle warfare in the Pacific theatre against Japan.

<i>The Silver Chalice</i> (film) 1954 film by Victor Saville

The Silver Chalice is a 1954 American historical epic film directed and produced by Victor Saville, based on Thomas B. Costain's 1952 novel of the same name. It was Saville's last film and marked the acting debut of Paul Newman; despite being nominated for a Golden Globe Award for his performance, Newman later called it "the worst motion picture produced during the 1950s".

Selected filmography

1927 A Woman in Pawn Yes
1927 The Glad Eye Yes
1927 Roses of Picardy Yes
1927 The Arcadians YesYes
1927 The Flight Commander Yes
1928 Tesha YesYes
1929 Kitty Yes
1929 Woman to Woman YesYes
1930 The W Plan YesYes
1930 A Warm Corner Yes
1931 The Sport of Kings YesYes
1931 Sunshine Susie Yes
1931 Michael and Mary Yes
1931 Hindle Wakes Yes
1932 Love on Wheels Yes
1932 The Faithful Heart Yes
1933 The Good Companions Yes
1933 I Was a Spy Yes
1933 Friday the Thirteenth Yes
1934 Evergreen Yes
1934 Evensong Yes
1934 The Iron Duke Yes
1935 First a Girl (1935)Yes
1935 The Dictator Yes
1937 Dark Journey YesYes
1937 Storm in a Teacup YesYes
1938 The Citadel Yes
1938 South Riding YesYes
1939 Goodbye, Mr. Chips Yes
1940 Bitter Sweet Yes
1941 A Woman's Face Yes
1943 Above Suspicion Yes
1943 Forever and a Day YesYes
1945 Tonight and Every Night YesYes
1946 The Green Years Yes
1947 Green Dolphin Street Yes
1949 Conspirator Yes
1950 Kim Yes
1951 Calling Bulldog Drummond Yes
1952 24 Hours of a Woman's Life Yes
1953 I, the Jury Yes
1954 The Long Wait Yes
1954 The Silver Chalice YesYes


  1. "Mickey Spillane Interview Page". Archived from the original on 16 April 2009. Retrieved 29 June 2017.

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