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The Woman on the Beach

The Woman on the Beach(1947)

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The working titles of this film were None So Blind and Desirable Woman. Hollywood Reporter news items add the following information about the production: George Brent was announced in August 1945 as the film's star, and in January 1946, Hollywood Reporter announced that Virginia Huston, who is listed in the CBCS in the role of "Eve," would be making her screen debut in the film. Nan Leslie, however, who is credited in the CBCS as playing "Alice," appeared as Eve. Exteriors were shot at Sequit Point in Southern California. Added scenes were filmed at RKO's Culver City lot. According to files in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, PCA director Joseph I. Breen deemed the film's story to be "unacceptable under the provisions of the Production Code, in that it is a story of adultery without any compensating moral values." Despite Breen's repeated objections concerning the story's love triangle and his admonitions that "Scott" not be shown kissing married "Peggy," the film was eventually approved with little alteration.
       In his autobiography, director Jean Renoir recalls that he was supposed to co-write the screenplay with executive producer Jack J. Gross, but that Gross died before the script's completion. Gross, however, did not die until 1964. The producer to whom Renoir was referring could have been Charles Koerner, the head of production at RKO, who died on February 2, 1946 after a bout with leukemia, or to producer Val Lewton, who did not die but, according to Hollywood Reporter, was fired from the picture during pre-production. Renoir notes that the film was "the sort of avant-garde film which would have found its niche a quarter of a century earlier...but it had no success with American audiences. Worse still, it thoroughly displeased the RKO bosses. I was under contract to make two films for that company. A few days after the premiere I had a visit from my agent...who reported that they were ready to buy me out for a fixed sum....I never made another film in an American studio." Modern sources note that Joan Bennett requested that Renoir direct the picture, and that, following a disastrous preview in Santa Barbara, RKO executives brought in another screenwriter and demanded that Renoir reshoot half of the film. According to Hollywood Reporter, additional shooting was done in December 1946.