Rumba


1h 11m 1935

Film Details

Release Date
Feb 8, 1935
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Paramount Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Paramount Productions, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 11m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
8 reels

Synopsis

In Havana, Cuba, both Joe Martin, an American dancer, and wealthy socialite Diana Harrison, have a winning lottery ticket with the same number. Joe's ticket, however, is counterfeit, and he misses out on the $5,000 prize. After she sees him perform a dance, Diana tries to give Joe the money, as she has no real use for it, but he refuses out of a sense of pride. She then offers to back him in his own nightclub, but when he tries to seduce her, she slaps him and leaves angrily. Joe returns to his home town where the beautiful Carmelita takes him to the fiesta. There Joe discovers the native dance, the rumba, and realizes its potential as a moneymaker. Joe's manager, Flash, a former reporter, convinces a Texan to back a new nightclub run by Joe. On opening night, Joe and Carmelita perform the rumba, and the club is a big success. Diana, her boyfriend, Hobart Fletcher, and their friends attend the show, and later Diana dances with Joe. They fall in love with each other and spend all their spare time together, while Joe teaches Diana the rumba. One day, Diana receives a telegram from her parents ordering her to return to New York and become engaged to Hobart. Finally ready to leave the safety of her wealthy lifestyle, Diana decides to stay with Joe forever and sends a telegram of refusal to her parents. She sends a note to Joe asking to meet him late that night. Believing Diana is going to break up with him because of their different social status, Joe arranges to have Carmelita meet him at almost the same time. That night, Joe apologizes after he realizes that Diana intended to stay with him. However, Carmelita comes in and tells Diana that Joe had been planning to make a fool of her for treating him lightly, and Diana furiously leaves him for good. At her parents' home in New York, Diana finds out that Joe had left New York because he had evidence that would send a gang member to prison and was in fear for his life. Diana defiantly breaks her engagement to Hobart. When Joe reads about this, he signs up with a Broadway producer and returns to New York with Flash and Carmelita, but once there, Diana refuses to see him. Joe ignores a warning to return to Cuba or be killed during his opening night performance. During the opening night performance, Carmelita faints out of fear, and Diana rushes on stage, joining Joe in the rumba. They are reunited, only to discover that the death threat was a publicity stunt planned by Flash.

Film Details

Release Date
Feb 8, 1935
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Paramount Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Paramount Productions, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 11m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
8 reels

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

In the opening credits, the title of the film is written in lower-case letters. According to news items in Daily Variety, Paramount rejected a novel that they had purchased as a basis for this film, and hired novelist Edgcumb Pinchon to author an original story for the title "Rhumba." Daily Variety also reports in May 1934 that Guy Endore was to write a screen adaptation of the story, however, by November 1934, the screenplay was rewritten while the film was already in its second week of production. Story difficulties became so severe that in early Dec, production was temporarily halted. Endore's contribution to the final film is undetermined. According to copyright records, dancers Olga and Luis Barrancos, Ambrosio Sardinias and Carmita Curbelo, also known as the Pimiento Twins, were from Cuba, Lara Puente, Chile, and Margo, Mexico. According to a Daily Variety news item, Cuban rumba expert Don Alfredo Brita was in charge of the Cuban dance numbers. A Los Angeles bandleader, Pedro Vinas, brought together the band that appeared in the film. Travis Banton designed only Lombard's gowns. Costumes for the rest of the cast were designed by Señorita Lily Del Barrio, a Cuban artist.