Lady Godiva Rides Again

Lady Godiva Rides Again, is a 1951 British comedy film starring Pauline Stroud, George Cole and Bernadette O'Farrell, with a variety of British "name" performers in supporting roles and cameo appearances, about a small-town English girl who wins a local beauty contest by appearing as Lady Godiva, then decides to pursue greater fame in a national beauty pageant and as an actress.

Lady Godiva Rides Again
retitled reissue pressbook cover
Directed byFrank Launder
Produced bySidney Gilliat
Written byJohn Dighton
Val Valentine
StarringPauline Stroud
Dennis Price
Diana Dors
Music byWilliam Alwyn
CinematographyWilkie Cooper
Edited byThelma Connell
Production
company
Distributed byRank Organisation
Release date
25 October 1951
Running time
90 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
LanguageEnglish
Box office£117,891 (UK)[1]

The film was released in the United States under its original title in 1953 by Carroll Pictures, then was re-released in the United States as Bikini Baby, to capitalize on the fame of supporting player Diana Dors, who was given star billing with the new title.

Production

The film is most notable for the presence of actresses who were later to become famous. Diana Dors, who appears as a beauty queen, was later marketed as the film's star. It also features Joan Collins in her film debut as an uncredited beauty contestant. Ruth Ellis, the last woman to be executed in England, also appears as an uncredited beauty queen. Ruth, who was four months pregnant at the time, had dyed her hair black and had styled it into a bob.

Other young starlets in the film included Diana Russell, Dana Wynter (billed as Dagmar Wynter), Anne Heywood (billed as Violet Pretty), Yvonne Brooks, Simone Silva, Jean Marsh and Pat Marlowe. It also featured Sid James in one of his first film roles. Audrey Hepburn tested for the title role but was judged too thin.[2]

The film was inspired by the Miss Kent 1950 beauty competition held at Leas Cliff Hall in Kent. Frank Launder, joint producer of the film with Leslie Gilliatt, was one of the judges in the competition. Trevor Howard has an uncredited cameo as a cinema patron.

Cast

Locations

The production filmed on location in Folkestone, Kent. The Leas Cliff Hall was used as the location for the beauty competition, and The Metropole was the setting for the seaside hotel hosting the Fascination Soap Pageant. Folkestone West station features in the film for the railway scenes where Marjorie Clark (Pauline Stroud) arrives and meets Dolores August (Diana Dors) and her consorts, Larry and Vic. The now closed Rotunda Amusement Park was also used for the scenes where Larry (John McCallum) and Marjorie visit and go on rides.[3]

References

  1. Vincent Porter, 'The Robert Clark Account', Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, Vol 20 No 4, 2000 p495
  2. Paris, Barry (1 September 2001). Audrey Hepburn. Penguin. ISBN 978-0425182123.
  3. Kent Film Office. "Kent Film Office Lady Godiva Rides Again Article".


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