Adventures of Casanova


1h 23m 1948

Film Details

Release Date
Feb 1948
Premiere Information
World premiere in Los Angeles: 17 Feb 1948
Production Company
Eagle-Lion Films, Inc.
Distribution Company
Eagle-Lion Films, Inc.
Country
Mexico and United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 23m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
7,496ft (9 reels)

Synopsis

In Palermo, Sicily, in 1793, the powerful armies of the Emperor of Austria have virtually crushed a local rebellion. Bernardo D'Anneci, patriarchal leader of the insurgents, admits that a younger man is needed to carry on the fight and sends his aide, Lorenzo, to find Jacques Casanova, the great warrior and lover. Casanova is in Malta, preoccupied with his romances, but after Lorenzo tells him that the allied armies of Austria and Spain have confiscated his estate and hanged his father, he agrees to become their new leader. Meanwhile, Governor D'Albernasi informs his daughter, Lady Bianca, that she is to marry Count Julien De Brissac, emissary of the Austrian emperor, but she refuses and is confined to her quarters. Upon Casanova's return, the patriots rally to his side and stage daring guerrilla attacks against D'Albernasi's forces. When the governor increases the price of bread, Casanova kidnaps the prefect of police, the Marquis De Gaetano, along with the governor's brother and a cavalry troop. Then, under a flag of truce, he goes to the governor's palace with D'Anneci and Lorenzo and negotiates the release of a month's supply of food to the people in exchange for the hostages. With the help of her servant, Zanetta, who expects to marry Lorenzo, Bianca plans to escape to the patriots' stronghold and dons a page boy's outfit to disguise herself. Lady Adria, the governor's favorite, is impressed by Casanova's bravado, and De Brissac decides to use her to trap him when she invites him to visit her boudoir. However, under the spell of Casanova's ardent love-making, she reveals the plot and helps him to escape. Bianca and Zanetta then join Casanova and Lorenzo as they return to the stronghold. When forced to reveal her identity, Zanetta states that she is Bianca D'Albernasi and that the page boy is her servant. Although she is the "governor's daughter," the rebels accept Zanetta. As Bianca is still posing as the page boy, she is chosen to be Casanova's servant and complications ensue. She nonetheless arranges to dine with him in the guise of a local lady named Zanetta, and appears before him in women's clothes. After dinner, Casanova reveals to his guest that he has known all along that his servant was actually a woman. After De Brissac suspects that Bianca has been captured by the patriots, he orders the governor's arrest and takes his place. Later, hoping to trap Casanova, De Brissac challenges him to a duel, but Lorenzo, unwilling to have Casanova's life endangered, races ahead of him and takes his place, but is fatally wounded, dying just as Casanova arrives. While the real Zanetta mourns Lorenzo's death, she reveals her identity to D'Anneci and tells him that the woman they know as Zanetta is actually Bianca. Casanova, unaware of "Zanetta's" true identity, falls in love with her, but both are taken prisoner by De Brissac and charged with treason, which carries the death penalty. In order to save Casanova's life, Bianca denounces him and agrees to marry De Brissac, but tricks him into delaying Casanova's execution until after their marriage. Jacopo, a patriot disguised as a priest, visits Casanova in his jail cell and tells him that Bianca is trying to help him. After the oft-delayed marriage ceremony takes place, Casanova faces immediate execution. However, on the wedding night, Jacopo and Zanetta, posing as Casanova's wife, are permitted to visit Casanova in jail. She takes bottles of drugged wine with her, knowing that they will be confiscated and drunk by the guards on duty. After the wine has taken effect, Casanova escapes and races to Bianca's boudoir, where he finds De Brissac about to consumate the marriage. After a sword duel, Casanova kills De Brissac. The governor, whom De Brissac has had imprisoned, is released and, no longer under the evil influence of De Brissac, proves to be a benevolent leader. He informs the citizens that the king has granted them representation, and that Casanova, who plans to marry Bianca, will be their new ambassador to Naples.

Film Details

Release Date
Feb 1948
Premiere Information
World premiere in Los Angeles: 17 Feb 1948
Production Company
Eagle-Lion Films, Inc.
Distribution Company
Eagle-Lion Films, Inc.
Country
Mexico and United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 23m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
7,496ft (9 reels)

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

Makeup artist Elda Loza's name is misspelled "Loiza" in the onscreen credits. Director of photography John Greenhalgh was usually credited as "Jack." According to a contemporary press release, this U.S. production was shot entirely in Mexico. Daily Variety news items of February and March 1947 reported that Ann Dvorak originally was to co-star in the picture. The same items speculated that Adventures of Casanova marked the first time that a foreign director had been hired to direct an American company in a foreign land. An initial Hollywood Reporter production chart lists Alex Phillips and Fred Allen as photographer and editor respectively, but their contribution to the completed film has not been confirmed. A modern Mexican source lists José Alcalde Gámiz as a production executive and adds Rita Macedo and Fanny Schiller to the cast, but their appearance in the film has not been confirmed. Certain scenes were filmed at Chapultepec Castle in Mexico City. Adventures of Casanova marked the American film debut for Mexican actor Jorge Martínez de Hoyos.