Tam-Lin (film)

Tam-Lin, also known as The Ballad of Tam-Lin, The Devil's Widow and The Devil's Woman, is a 1970 British film made by Commonwealth United Entertainment, Winkast Film Productions Ltd. and distributed by American International Pictures (AIP). It was directed by Roddy McDowall and produced by Alan Ladd, Jr. and Stanley Mann, from a screenplay by William Spier based on the traditional Scottish poem The Ballad of Tam Lin. The film had original music by Stanley Myers and a musical version of the original poem recorded by the British folk rock band Pentangle, and was photographed by Billy Williams. It was the only film directed by McDowall.

Tam-Lin or
The Devil's Widow
Original film poster
Directed byRoddy McDowall
Produced byAlan Ladd Jr.
Stanley Mann
Anthony B. Unger
Henry T. Weinstein
Written byWilliam Spier
Robert Burns (poem)
StarringAva Gardner
Ian McShane
Richard Wattis
Cyril Cusack
Stephanie Beacham
Music byStanley Myers
CinematographyBilly Williams
Edited byJohn Victor-Smith
Distributed byAmerican International Pictures
Release date
  • December 1970 (1970-12) (UK)
  • September 1972 (1972-09) (US)
Running time
106 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

The film stars Ava Gardner and Ian McShane with Richard Wattis, Cyril Cusack, Stephanie Beacham, Sinéad Cusack and Joanna Lumley.

A newer release of this film (1998) (Republic Pictures Home Video) re-cut the film to be closer to Roddy McDowall's intention.

McDowall's direction of this film precluded him from reprising his role as Cornelius in Beneath the Planet of the Apes, the only one of the original five Planet of the Apes films from which he is absent.

Filming took place in the Summer of 1968 at Traquair House and other locations in Peeblesshire, Scotland. The cast stayed at the Peebles Hydro Hotel.

The film was shelved until 1971 when the rights were acquired by AIP and it was recut as The Devil's Widow.[1]


Costumes designed by Beatrice Dawson and Ava Gardner's gowns executed by Balmain


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