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Although Dudley Nichols is listed as the sole writer in onscreen credits, a Hollywood Reporter news item adds that the film was based on an idea by director Jean Renoir. In a modern interview, Renoir stated that he wrote the script with Nichols. Renoir said that he made the film in response to boasts of French exiles, who were safely ensconced in Los Angeles, that if they were living in France, resistance would come naturally to them. Renoir and Nichols had previously worked together on the 1941 Twentieth Century-Fox film Swamp Water (see entry above). Renoir brought his longtime collaborator, production designer Eugene Louri, from France to design sets for this film. According to a news item in Hollywood Reporter, Leo Bulgakov, who worked as dialogue director and appeared as "Little fat man" in the film, was a former member of the Moscow Art Theater. The film opened in seventy-two theaters in fifty key cities on May 7, 1943. Opening day events were broadcast over radio station WLW in Cincinnati, OH. A news item in Hollywood Reporter notes that the simultaneous showings set an industry record for gross receipts collected on an opening day. The picture won an Academy Award for Best Sound Recording. Charles Laughton reprised his role in a Lux Radio Theatre broadcast on April 24, 1944, co-starring Maureen O'Sullivan.