Dancing Pirate


1h 25m 1936

Film Details

Release Date
May 22, 1936
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Pioneer Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "Glorious Buccaneer" by Emma Lindsay Squier in Collier's (27 Dec 1930).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 25m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Color
Color (Technicolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Synopsis

One evening in 1820, dancing master Jonathan Pride, who specializes in teaching the waltz, is ambushed by pirates on the streets of Boston. Forced into hard labor, Jonathan sails around South America with the pirates and ends up on the coast of California, where he eventually tricks his way to freedom. Possessing only his aunt's umbrella and music box, Jonathan wanders into a Spanish village, whose alerted inhabitants greet him with cannon fire and gunshots. Caught hiding in the bedroom of Serafina, the alcalde's beautiful daughter, Jonathan is arrested and sentenced to hang without a trial. Despite Jonathan's protestations of innocence, the buffoonish alcalde, Don Emilio, and the jailer, Pamfilo, insist on the execution until Serafina hears that Jonathan is a dancing teacher who knows the waltz. With the other women behind her, Serafina forces a stay of execution for Jonathan, who gratefully offers to teach her the waltz. After overcoming an initial misunderstanding concerning the placement of hands, Jonathan mesmerizes Serafina, herself an accomplished dancer, with his waltz lessons. Before Jonathan can win permanent freedom, however, Don Baltazar and his men, renegade soldiers from Monterey, arrive and make him their prisoner. Don Emilio, who believes that Baltazar is still a respected military leader, treats him as an honored guest, and Serafina encourages his amorous affections in order to delay Jonathan's departure. Eventually, Baltazar strikes a lucrative marriage deal with Don Emilio and is about to wed Serafina when Jonathan, who has escaped his captors, shows up with a band of rope-wielding Indians. Once Baltazar and his men are tied up and revealed, Serafina continues her wedding, with Jonathan as her groom.

Film Details

Release Date
May 22, 1936
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Pioneer Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "Glorious Buccaneer" by Emma Lindsay Squier in Collier's (27 Dec 1930).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 25m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Color
Color (Technicolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Award Nominations

Best Dance Direction

1937

Quotes

Trivia

The first "dancing musical" in Technicolor.

Notes

Onscreen credits state that this film was the first color "dancing musical," and was "filmed 100% in new Technicolor." It was Pioneer Pictures' second and last three-strip Technicolor feature to be distributed by RKO. According to Hollywood Reporter, Robert Benchley, on loan from M-G-M, teletyped dialogue for the film from New York, but was later replaced by credited writers Francis Edwards Faragoh and Ray Harris. The extent of Benchley's contribution to the final film, if any, has not been determined. A Hollywood Reporter news item described color director Robert Edmond Jones's aesthetic approach as "imaginative" rather than "realistic," as he was attempting to "synchronize color, music and dancing" throughout the picture. Charles Collins, a veteran New York and London stage performer, made his screen debut in this production. Hollywood Reporter production charts add Sherman Sanders and Cy Kendall to the cast, but their participation in the final film has not been confirmed.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States 1936

Released in United States 1936