The World in His Arms

The World in His Arms is a 1952 seafaring adventure film directed by Raoul Walsh and starring Gregory Peck, Ann Blyth and Anthony Quinn, with John McIntire, Carl Esmond, Andrea King, Eugenie Leontovich, Hans Conried, and Sig Ruman. Made by Universal-International, it was produced by Aaron Rosenberg from a screenplay by Borden Chase and Horace McCoy. It is based on the novel by Rex Beach. The music score was by Frank Skinner and the cinematography by Russell Metty.

The World in His Arms
Original film poster by Reynold Brown
Directed byRaoul Walsh
Produced byAaron Rosenberg
Written byRex Beach (novel)
Borden Chase
Horace McCoy (additional dialog)
StarringGregory Peck
Ann Blyth
Anthony Quinn
Music byFrank Skinner
CinematographyRussell Metty
Edited byFrank Gross
Distributed byUniversal-International
Release date
  • October 9, 1952 (1952-10-09)
Running time
104 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$3 million (US rentals)[1]


In 1850 San Francisco, Russian Countess Marina Selanova (Blyth) flees from an arranged marriage to Prince Semyon (Esmond). She books passage with "Portugee" (Quinn) to Sitka, where her uncle Governor Ivan Vorashilov (Sig Ruman) can protect her.

When Portugee's bitter rival, Captain Jonathan Clark, "the Boston-man" (Peck), frees his shanghaied crew, she sends a man to negotiate with him instead. However, Jonathan hates all Russians and turns down the offer. In desperation, Marina goes to the party he is throwing and, pretending to be the Countess's companion, gets him to change his mind. As he shows her the sights of the city in one whirlwind night, they fall in love. Jonathan proposes marriage and she gladly accepts.

However, Prince Semyon finds Marina and takes her to Sitka. Believing Marina has tricked him, Jonathan races Portugee to Alaska, recklessly wagering his ship on who gets there first. Jonathan wins, but that doesn't stop Portugee from trying to steal his ship anyway. Unluckily, while both crews are brawling, a Russian gunboat appears and takes them all captive to Sitka.

Once there, Prince Semyon forces Marina to agree to marry him in return for Jonathan's freedom. Jonathan and his men double back, rescue Marina, and sail away.


Reception and home video

The film was the eighth most popular movie at the British box office in 1952.[2]

Versions of the film have been released as a VHS videotape[3] and as a region 1 DVD.[4]


  1. 'Top Box-Office Hits of 1952', Variety, January 7, 1953
  2. "COMEDIAN TOPS FILM POLL". The Sunday Herald. Sydney. 28 December 1952. p. 4. Retrieved 9 July 2012 via National Library of Australia.
  3. The World in His Arms (videotape). Universal Studios. September 17, 1996.
  4. The World in His Arms (DVD). Universal Studios. April 5, 2011. Region 1 (US and Canada).
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