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The working titles of this film were Cry of the Swamp and Swamp Girl. The Motion Picture Herald Prod Digest release charts list Land of the Trembling Earth as another working title. The picture begins with a voice-over narration describing the Okefenokee Swamp. Vereen Bell's novel first appeared as a serial in The Saturday Evening Post (23 November-28 December 1940). According to a September 5, 1951 Los Angeles Times news item, Debra Paget was originally set as the film's star, and in early October 1951, Hollywood Reporter announced that Robert Wise would be directing the picture. According to contemporary sources, portions of the film were shot on location in the Okefenokee Swamp and Waycross, GA.
Jean Peters and Jeffrey Hunter reprised their roles in a May 25, 1953 Lux Radio Theatre presentation of the story. Twentieth Century-Fox's earlier adaptation of Bell's novel was entitled Swamp Water (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1941-50). The 1941 version was directed by Jean Renoir and co-starred Walter Huston, Anne Baxter and Dana Andrews, with Walter Brennan playing, as he did in Lure of the Wilderness, the role of the unjustly accused man hiding in the Okefenokee Swamp.