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Four Frightened People

Four Frightened People(1934)

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Due to nitrate deterioration, the last reel of this film was unviewable. The release dialogue script in the Paramount script files at the AMPAS Library provided the conclusion for the plot synopsis. A news item in Hollywood Reporter notes that Paramount sought to replace Claudette Colbert when she fell ill with appendicitis and negotiated with Gloria Swanson for the role. Swanson's salary demands forced Paramount to wait for Colbert's recovery from an appendectomy. Film Daily reported that Colbert had only one week to recover before she joined the cast on location in Hawaii. Modern sources indicate that Cecil B. DeMille considered casting Elissa Landi when Colbert fell ill, but she was unavailable. Colbert reportedly fell ill after being immersed in a swamp-like pond not long after her arrival on location. The film's opening credits note that "all exterior scenes...were actually photographed in the strange jungles on the slopes of Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea in the South Pacific." The volcanic mountains here noted are part of the Hawaiian Islands. Modern sources also include the following credits: Assistant Director, James Dugan; Production Manager, Roy Burns; Music, Karl Hajos, Milan Roder, Heinz Roemheld and John Leipold. A 1956 article in New York Times reports that DeMille counted this film as one of his notable failures. Although it only cost $280,000 to make, the film did not even make up its cost at the box office.