Starring Charles Laughton as the severely misshapen bellringer Quasimodo, William Dieterle's adaptation of the familar Victor Hugo classic is set in the bustling society of 15th-century Paris, as the forces of church and state strive to maintain their sway over a populace struggling for a better life. Jean Frollo (Cedric Hardwicke), chief justice of Paris, unites secular and religious authority in one foully hypocritical personage. Spying a spectacularly beautiful Gypsy woman named Esmeralda (Maureen O'Hara) in church, he sends his factotum, Quasimodo, to abduct her. Frollo's plan is foiled by Phoebus, captain of the guard (Alan Marshall), and the hunchback is sentenced to public flogging and exposure. Despite her earlier fear of Quasimodo, only Esmeralda is willing help the bound hunchback as he begs for water in the public square. The film features one of Laughton's best performances, a superb supporting cast, a vivd script, and extraordinary production values for a type of intelligent entertainment now rarely seen.
Van Nest Polglase - Art Director
Thomas Mitchell - Oscar-winning actor, STAGECOACH, GONE WITH THE WIND
Charles Laughton - British Actor/Director
Alan Marshal - Australian Actor/In USA
Alfred Newman - Composer/Conductor/D.1970
Harry Davenport - American Actor/Director
Fritz Leiber - American character actor, THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME (1939)
Fritz Reuter Leiber - American character actor, THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME (1939)
Maureen O'Hara - Actress, MIRACLE ON 34 STREET, HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY
Maureen FitzSimmons - Actress, MIRACLE ON 34 STREET, HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY
Pandro S. Berman - Producer
Victor Hugo - Author
Edmond O'Brien - Oscar winning actor/director, THE BAREFOOT CONTESSA
Rod La Rocque - American actor, 1920s-1940s
Roderick La Rocque - American actor, 1920s-1940s
Cedric Hardwicke - British actor,THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE.../THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
Sir Cedric Hardwicke - British actor,THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE.../THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
Cedric Webster Hardwicke - British actor,THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE.../THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
William Hamilton - Editor/Director
Robert Wise - Oscar winning Director/Producer/Editor, WEST SIDE STORY
Robert Wise Jr. - Oscar winning Director/Producer/Editor, WEST SIDE STORY
William Dieterle - Director/Actor
Wilhelm Dieterle - Director/Actor
Walter Hampden - American actor
Bruno Frank - Screenwriter - 1930s
George Zucco - British Actor/"Moriarty"
Joseph H. August - American Director of Photography
Joseph August - American Director of Photography
Sonya Levien - Screenwriter
Charles Laughton stars as deformed bellringer Quasimodo in William Dieterle's adaptation of the oft-filmed Victor Hugo classic. Set in 15th-century Paris, as both church and state struggle to maintain their loosening grip on the populace, the story is driven by the beautiful Gypsy dancer Esmeralda. She attracts the attention of evil High Justice Frollo, who sends the hunchback to abduct her, but he's foiled by the captain of the guard, Phoebus. When Quasimodo is flogged sometime later, it is Esmeralda who risks exposure to bring him water, transforming the hunchback's spirit.
The film marked Edmond O'Brien's debut. The film marked actress Maureen O'Hara's first Hollywood film. The TCM Turner Classic Movies VHS release (Cat.#6377V) includes several special features: *An exclusive interview with Maureen O'Hara *A new documentary on the making of the film *The original 1939 trailer and lobby card art *A new introduction by Robert Osborne The TCM Turner Classic Movies CLV laserdisc release includes a short documentary and analog-track commentary by film historian Paul Mandell. It is the first laser release from Turner Classic Movies.