Captain Blood (1935) B
Warner (Cosmopolitan-First National)
Encouraged by the success of swashbuckling and costume dramas released in 1934, “Treasure Island” and “The Count of Monte Cristo,” Warner produced “Captain Blood,” directed by the versatile studio contract helmer Michael Curtiz.
In 1923, Vitograph made a silent film out of Rafael Sabatini's 1922 popular novel, featuring J. Warren Kerrigan as Peter Blood, the Renaissance man, who was a skilled physician, humanist and buccaneer.
Initially, Blood's role in the remake was going to Robert Donat, but after he dropped, it was assigned to then newcomer Errol Flynn, right after his appearance in “The Case of the Curious Bride.” The young Olivia De Havilland assumed the romantic interest (originally, it was cast with Jean Muir), and a new on screen couple emerged, making half a dozen movies together.
As usual, Curtiz balances nicely the spectacle elements with the human drama, and Flynn proves that he is perfectly cast in costume dramas that call for bravura stunts, as became three years later in the superior saga, “The Adventures of Robin Hood,” also opposite Olivia De Havilland.
Oscar Nominations: 2
Picture (produced by Hal Wallis, with Harry Joe Brown and Gordon Hollingshead)
Sound Recording: Nathan Levinson
Oscar Awards: None
Captain Blood competed for the Best Picture Oscar with eleven other films: Alice Adams, Broadway Melody of 1936, David Copperfield, The Informer, Les Miserables, Lives of a Bengal Lancer, A Midsummer Nights Dream, Mutiny on the Bounty, which won, Naughty Marietta, Ruggles of Red Gap, and Top Hat.
Mutiny of the Bounty won Best Picture, and the Sound Oscar went to Douglas Shearer (Normas brother) for Naughty Marietta.
related article 1: Adventures of Robin Hood, The (1938).
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