Adam's Woman

Adam's Woman is a 1970 Australian-American historical drama film directed by Philip Leacock and starring Beau Bridges, Jane Merrow and John Mills.[3][4] It has been called a "convict Western".[5]

Adam's Woman
Directed byPhilip Leacock
Produced byArthur M. Broidy
Louis F. Edelman
Written byRichard Fiedler
Story byLowell Barrington
StarringBeau Bridges
Jane Merrow
Music byBob Young
CinematographyBill Butler
Edited byAnthony Buckley
SBP Films
Warner Bros-Seven Arts
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release date
19 March 1970
Running time
116 Minutes
United States
Box office$15,000 (Australia)[2]


In the 1840s, an American sailor ashore in Liverpool is wrongly convicted and sent to the penal colony in Sydney, Australia where he enters into a battle of wills with the Governor. The Governor offers him a pardon if he helps pioneer new land for the growing colony. He marries Irish woman Bess and they establish a farm despite the harassment of bushrangers.

Opponents of the governor persuade a visiting Crown commissioner, Lord Croydon, to revoke Adam's pardon. Adam tries to escape but is arrested. Bess pleads his case and Adam gets a full pardon.



The film was originally known as The Return of the Boomerang. It was announced in November 1965 as part of a four film slate by Motion Pictures International, a new company formed by Steve Broidy and Louis F. Edelman.[6] In June 1966 it was reported that Lowell Barrington, author of the novel Return of the Boomerang had been signed by Broidy to write the script for Edelman, with filming to begin in the Australian summer.[7]

In March 1967 Broidy said the film would be one of five he would make that year the others being The Fox, God's High Table, Ignatz and The Coasts of War.[8] In April Edelman said that Lewis Allen would direct from a script by T. E. B. Clarke with filming to begin in October.[9]

In February 1968 Eldeman announced that Philip Leacock would direct the film from a script by Clarke.[10] The following month it was reported Richard Fielding was writing the script for Edelman with filming to begin "this fall".[11]

By November 1968 the project was being made for Warners-Seven Arts and Beau Bridges, Jane Merrow, James Booth and John Mills were cast.[12] The film was given a three month schedule in Australia.[13] In December Chips Rafferty was listed among the cast (but he does not appear in the final film.)[14][15]

The film was titled Adam's Woman in December 1969.[16]


The film was shot entirely in Australia with finance from Hollywood. The script, director, cinematographer and star were all imported. The film was shot in late 1968 and early 1969, on location near Nowra and the Shoalhaven River, and in the studio of Ajax Films.[1][17] There were a number of movies being shot in Australia at the time including Squeeze a Flower and Ned Kelly.[18]


The film had its world premiere in Canberra in March 1970.[19] Adam's Woman took $15,000 at the box office in Australia.[20] Overseas reaction was not strong.[1]

See also


  1. Andrew Pike and Ross Cooper, Australian Film 1900–1977: A Guide to Feature Film Production, Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1998, 249
  2. 'Australian Films At the Australian Box office' Film Victoria Archived 9 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine accessed 28 September 2012
  4. ADAM'S WOMAN Monthly Film Bulletin; London Vol. 45, Iss. 528, (Jan 1, 1978): 39.
  5. Vagg, Stephen (24 July 2019). "50 Meat Pie Westerns". Filmink.
  6. Former Allied Artists Chief Forms Company Los Angeles Times 8 Nov 1965: c19.
  7. 'Grand Prix' Starters Named Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times 10 June 1966: d15.
  8. Young to Direct 'Mayerling' Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times 8 Mar 1967: e12.
  9. Senta to Play Secret Agent Betty. Los Angeles Times 22 Apr 1967: 19.
  10. MOVIE CALL SHEET: Cobb to Produce 'Ceferino' Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times 17 Feb 1968: 17.
  11. MOVIE CALL SHEET: 'Secret Ceremony' for Liz Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times 4 Mar 1968: c33.
  12. MOVIE CALL SHEET: Miss King Plans Comeback Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times (1923-1995); Los Angeles, Calif. [Los Angeles, Calif]13 Nov 1968: g18
  13. Nine Films on Warner Slate Los Angeles Times (1923-1995); Los Angeles, Calif. [Los Angeles, Calif]22 Nov 1968: f22.
  14. Martin, Betty (7 December 1968). "MOVIE CALL SHEET: Kennedy Joins 'Airport' Cast". Los Angeles Times. p. a8.
  15. From Seduced to Wily Seductress Los Angeles Times 15 Dec 1969: g33.
  16. Curt Conway to Play Judge Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times 30 Dec 1969: f8.
  17. "WORLD FILM PREMIERE A TWO-PAGE FEATURE Many original sites are used". The Canberra Times. 9 March 1970. p. 10. Retrieved 10 December 2013 via National Library of Australia.
  18. In the Picture Sight and Sound; London Vol. 39, Iss. 1, (Winter 1969): 15.
  19. "Good but not significant". The Canberra Times. 21 March 1970. p. 16. Retrieved 10 December 2013 via National Library of Australia.
  20. Film Victoria - Australian Films at the Australian Box Office Archived 18 February 2011 at the Wayback Machine.

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