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The Loves of Joanna Godden

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Loves of Joanna Godden
UK release poster by John Minton[1]
Directed byCharles Frend
Written by
Based onthe novel Joanna Godden by Sheila Kaye-Smith
Produced byMichael Balcon
CinematographyDouglas Slocombe
Edited byMichael Truman
Music byRalph Vaughan Williams
Distributed byEaling Studios
Release date
  • 9 June 1947 (1947-06-09)
Running time
89 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
Box office£82,908 (UK)[2]

The Loves of Joanna Godden is a 1947 British historical drama film directed by Charles Frend and produced by Michael Balcon.[3] The screenplay was written by H. E. Bates and Angus MacPhail from the novel Joanna Godden (1921) by Sheila Kaye-Smith.

It stars Googie Withers, Jean Kent, John McCallum, Derek Bond, Chips Rafferty and Sonia Holm.[4] Some scenes were shot by director Robert Hamer when Frend was ill, though he was uncredited. The music was composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams.[5]

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In Edwardian Britain, a young woman has three suitors who seek her hand in marriage.

When Joanna Godden's father died, he bequeathed her a farm in Romney Marsh in Kent. Joanna is determined to run the farm herself. Her neighbour Arthur Alce (John McCallum), laughs at her ambitions, but loves her. Choosing a new shepherd, she allows physical attraction to a man to overcome her judgment as a farmer, and her scheme for cross-breeding sheep is unsuccessful. Her wealth gone, she turns to Arthur Alce for help - but not love. That she accepts from Martin Trevor (Derek Bond), a visitor from the world beyond the Marsh. But on the eve of their marriage, Martin dies.[5][6]


and the people of Romney Marsh.


The film was based on Joanna Godden, a novel by Sheila Kaye-Smith originally published in 1921.[7][8] The book was popular enough for Kaye-Smith to write a sequel, Joanna Godden Married, published in 1926.[9]

After World War Two, Ealing Studios decided to film the novel, with a screenplay written by H. E. Bates and Angus MacPhail. The film had an ending different from the novel.

The studio cast Googie Withers to star; she had been a hit in Pink String and Sealing Wax. Lead roles were given to Australians John McCallum, who had been put under long-term contract to Rank, and Chips Rafferty, who had just starred in The Overlanders for Ealing.[10]

The casting of Withers and Kent was announced in July 1946.[11] Filming took place in August and September 1946, with location filming in Kent.[12]

Withers and McCallum fell in love during filming and later married. They named their first child "Joanna" in honour of the film.[13]


The film earned distributor's gross receipts of £82,908 in the UK of which £159,642 went to the producer.[2]


  1. ^ "Instant Shop".
  2. ^ a b c Chapman, J. (2022). The Money Behind the Screen: A History of British Film Finance, 1945-1985. Edinburgh University Press p 355. Gross is distributor's gross receipts.
  3. ^ "The Loves of Joanna Godden (1947)". Archived from the original on 12 July 2012.
  4. ^ "The Loves of Joanna Godden (1947)". IMDb.
  5. ^ a b 1948 Daily Mail Film Award Annual
  6. ^ "The Loves of Joanna Godden". The Australian Women's Weekly. Vol. 15, no. 14. Australia. 13 September 1947. p. 38. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  7. ^ "JOANNA GODDEN". The Daily Telegraph. No. 13257. New South Wales, Australia. 5 November 1921. p. 7. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  8. ^ "FICTION OF THE DAY". The Argus (Melbourne). No. 23, 486. Victoria, Australia. 11 November 1921. p. 5. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  9. ^ "LITERARY JOTTINGS". The Labor Daily. No. 910. New South Wales, Australia. 1 January 1927. p. 10. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  10. ^ ""Chips" Rafferty to work with Australian". The Australian Women's Weekly. Vol. 14, no. 4. Australia. 6 July 1946. p. 28. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  11. ^ DISNEY DROPS 459 OF 1,073 EMPLOYES: New York Times 30 July 1946: 31.
  12. ^ "BRITAIN'S FILM NEWS". The Daily Telegraph. Vol. VII, no. 45. New South Wales, Australia. 22 September 1946. p. 41. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  13. ^ "JOHN McCALLUM AND GOOGIE WITHERS". The Grenfell Record and Lachlan District Advertiser. Vol. 84, no. 121. New South Wales, Australia. 21 June 1951. p. 6. Retrieved 17 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia.

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This page was last edited on 11 April 2023, at 08:54
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