Wednesday, January 22, 2014


THE BOHEMIAN GIRL was Thelma Todd's last movie.

The Bohemian Girl

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Bohemian Girl
L&H Bohemian Girl 1936.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byJames W. Horne
Charley Rogers
Produced byStan Laurel
Hal Roach
Written byMichael William Balfe
Alfred Bunn (libretto)
Frank Butler (screenplay)
StarringStan Laurel
Oliver Hardy
Thelma Todd
Mae Busch
Antonio Moreno
Darla Hood
Jacqueline Wells
Jimmy Finlayson
Music byMichael William Balfe (original operetta)
Robert Shayon
Nathaniel Shilkret
CinematographyFrancis Corby
Art Lloyd
Editing byBert Jordan
Louis McManus
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release datesFebruary 14, 1936 (1936-02-14)
Running time70' 52"
CountryUnited States
The Bohemian Girl is a 1936 feature film version of the opera The Bohemian Girl by Michael William Balfe. It was produced at the Hal Roach Studios, and stars Laurel and Hardy and Thelma Todd in her last role before her death.


Laurel and Hardy are a hen-pecked pair of Gypsies in 18th- century Austria. When Oliver is out pickpocketing, fortune-telling or attending his zither lessons, his wife (Mae Busch), has an affair with Devilshoof (Antonio Moreno). A cruel nobleman, Count Arnheim, persecutes the Gypsies, who are forced to flee, but Devilshoof, in revenge for having been lashed by the count, kidnaps his daughter, Arline (Darla Hood), and Mrs. Hardy fools Hardy into thinking she is their daughter. She soon elopes with Devilshoof, and leaves Hardy holding the baby.
Twelve years later, the Gypsies return to Arnheim's estate. When grown up Arline (Jacqueline Wells) trespasses in Arnheim's garden, she recognises the place, but is arrested by a constable (Jimmy Finlayson) and sentenced to a lashing. Stan and Oliver try to save her, but Stan is too drunk and both are arrested. Just as Arline is stripped in order to be lashed, she is rescued in time by Arnheim, who recognises a medallion she wears and a family birthmark, and both try to rescue Stan and Oliver. It is too late though: Laurel and Hardy had already been worked over in the torture chamber, resulting in one of the team's best sight gags.

Thelma Todd's role

Thelma Todd had starred in four Laurel and Hardy films, including their first talkie, Unaccustomed As We Are.
Todd died on 16 December 1935 at age 29. She had been found in the garage of her home, poisoned by the fumes of her own car. Stan Laurel received a Christmas present from her soon afterwards. The jury brought out a verdict of accidental death because there was little or no evidence for suicide.
Three films starring Todd were released after her death. In The Bohemian Girl, Todd had played the Gypsy Queen, a very substantial role. All of her scenes were re-shot and her character was renamed as the Gypsy Queen's Daughter, and Zeffie Tilbury playing the Queen, and with a vampish Mae Busch character replacing her in the narrative. One scene of Todd's was kept in as a tribute to her: a musical number where she sings "Heart of a Gypsy".


Meta-reference: James Finlayson, well- known for his comical squinting, gets poked in the eye at one point and cries: "Oh! My good eye!"

Casting and production details

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer wanted to cast a talented newcomer as Arline. Hal Roach cast Darla Hood, who had just begun appearing in Roach's Our Gang comedies, as young Arline and Julie Bishop as adult Arline.
Rosina Lawrence dubs Jacqueline Wells's singing.
Paulette Goddard has a small uncredited role as a Gypsy.
Stan Laurel's pet myna, Yogi, appears in the film.
The Count was played by W.P. Carleton, who had played the role on stage over a number of decades and who was a distant cousin of the British actor Sir Guy Standing.


External links

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Jimmy Finlayson, who was frequently shown squinting in the movies, is shown squinting in this publicity photo. This business was the reason for the line in this movie about his "good eye".

After the death of Thelma Todd, Stan Laurel had all but one of her scenes cut from the finished film. It is said that this was done because he was afraid that association with her might hurt the movie at the box office. 



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