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Captive Wild Woman

Captive Wild Woman(1943)

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The opening credits include the following written statement: "We hereby make grateful acknowledgement to Mr. Clyde Beatty for his cooperation and inimitable talent in staging the thrilling animal sequences in this picture." Although Acquanetta's credit reads "and introducing Acquanetta," the actress had previously appeared in two Universal films: Arabian Nights (see entry above) and Rhythm of the Islands . Hollywood Reporter news items state that George Waggner was originally set both to produce and direct this film in August 1941, with Maria Montez in the starring role. According to New York Times, this film used circus footage from the 1933 Universal film The Big Cage, starring Clyde Beatty and Anita Page and directed by Kurt Neumann (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3.0312). Universal borrowed director Edward Dmytryk from RKO for this production.
       Modern sources state that Maurice Pivar co-wrote the original story with credited writers Ted Fithian and Neil Varnick, that Jack P. Pierce was the film's makeup artist, that Ray "Crash" Corrigan played "Cheela, the ape" and that actor Turhan Bey provided the voice of the film's closing narration. Universal made two sequels to Captive Wild Woman, Jungle Woman in 1944 and Jungle Captive in 1945 (see entries below). In Jungle Woman, Evelyn Ankers, Milburn Stone and Acquanetta reprised their roles from Captive Wild Woman, and that film made extensive use of footage from the previous film, including scenes with actor John Carradine in the role of "Dr. Sigmund Walters" and the aforementioned circus footage from The Big Cage. Although here the ape woman's name is "Cheena," in the subsequent films she is referred to as "Cheela." For more information about this series, please consult the Series Index.