The Madwoman of Chaillot (film)

The Madwoman of Chaillot is a 1969 American satirical film made by Commonwealth United Entertainment and distributed by Warner Bros.-Seven Arts.[1] It was directed by Bryan Forbes and produced by Ely A. Landau with Anthony B. Unger as associate producer.[2] The screenplay was by Edward Anhalt, adapted by Maurice Valency from the celebrated play La Folle de Chaillot by Jean Giraudoux via the English adaptation The Madwoman of Chaillot.[1] The music score was by Michael J. Lewis and the cinematography by Burnett Guffey and Claude Renoir.[3]

The Madwoman of Chaillot
Directed byBryan Forbes
Produced byEly Landau
Anthony B. Unger
Written byEdward Anhalt
Maurice Valency
Based onLa Folle de Chaillot
by Jean Giraudoux
StarringKatharine Hepburn
Paul Henreid
Oskar Homolka
Yul Brynner
Richard Chamberlain
Edith Evans
Music byMichael J. Lewis
CinematographyBurnett Guffey
Claude Renoir
Edited byRoger Dwyre
Commonwealth United Entertainment
Distributed byWarner Brothers/Seven Arts
Release date
  • October 12, 1969 (1969-10-12)
Running time
132 minutes
CountryUnited States

The film stars Katharine Hepburn with Paul Henreid, Oskar Homolka, Yul Brynner, Richard Chamberlain, Edith Evans and Donald Pleasence.[4]

A musical version of the play titled Dear World with music and lyrics by Jerry Herman, and starring Angela Lansbury, opened with little success on Broadway in 1969.[5][6]


The story is of a modern society endangered by power and greed and the rebellion of the "little people" against corrupt and soulless authority.

A group of four prominent men The General (Paul Henreid), The Commissar (Oskar Homolka), The Chairman (Yul Brynner) and The Prospector (Donald Pleasence) discuss how they can increase their fortunes. The Prospector tells them that there is oil in the middle of Paris and they resolve to acquire the rights with or without the consent of the people of Paris. Countess Aurelia (Katharine Hepburn), the "madwoman" of the title, learns of this plan to drill for oil under the very streets of her district from Roderick (Richard Chamberlain) - an activist - and The Ragpicker (Danny Kaye). She enlists the help of her friends, a motley crew of "little people" who include, Constance (Margaret Leighton) and Gabrielle (Giulietta Masina). A trial takes place in the Countess's cellar presided over by Aurelia's friend Josephine (Edith Evans) as judge and the Ragpicker as the lawyer for the defense.[7]


Critical reception

In The New York Times, Vincent Canby wrote "Forbes, who persists in making conventional films of unconventional properties ("Whistle Down The Wind," "The Wrong Box") moves his cameras around quite a lot, but there is really little he can do to hide the fact that "The Madwoman of Chaillot" is—as it was 20 years ago—an incredibly precious theatrical conceit, just the sort of thing somebody might think would make a great Broadway musical comedy. As we all know, it didn't."[8]

See also


  1. "The Madwoman of Chaillot (1969)". BFI.
  2. "The Madwoman Of Chaillot - TV Guide".
  3. "The Madwoman of Chaillot (1969) - Bryan Forbes - Cast and Crew". AllMovie.
  4. Gifford, Denis (April 1, 2016). "British Film Catalogue: Two Volume Set - The Fiction Film/The Non-Fiction Film". Routledge via Google Books.
  5. "Dear World – Broadway Musical – Original - IBDB".
  6. Billington, Michael (February 14, 2013). "Dear World – review" via
  7. Hepburn: 'The World Has Gone Cuckoo', By ISRAEL SHENKERNICE, France.. New York Times (1923–Current file) [New York, N.Y] 28 Apr 1968: D15.
  8. Canby, Vincent (October 13, 1969). "' Madwoman of Chaillot,' Fidelity for a Fantasy" via
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.