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According to a pre-production news item in Hollywood Reporter, RKO bought the Eric Hatch novel as a vehicle for Ginger Rogers and Charles Laughton. Although a December 1940 news item noted that the studio wanted Robert Stevenson to direct, by March 1941, news items listed Tay Garnett as director and Erich Pommer as producer. By Apr, however, Pommer had become ill and the studio notified Garnett that he would have to produce. According to other news items in Hollywood Reporter, RKO was also considering John Barrymore for the lead. A May 1941 news item in Hollywood Reporter notes that cameraman Paul Eagler and assistant cameraman John Eckert were filming backgrounds in Palm Beach, FL. It is not known if any of this footage was included in the film. The first Hollywood Reporter production chart credits Russell Metty as cameraman and lists Richard Carle in the cast, but their participation in the final film has not been confirmed. Another news item in Hollywood Reporter notes that the studio utilized a new process screen for this production, which allowed the filming of twenty-five people against the screen rather than the usual two.