Dir: Daniel Mann | Cast: Brock Peters · Melba Moore · Raymond St. Jacques · Clifton Davis · Paul Rogers.
The best known version of Alan Paton’s acclaimed novel is Alexander Korda’s sombre 1952 version starring Canada Lee. Under the aegis of the American Film Theatre Ely Landau however took it upon himself to preserve for posterity the ill-fated 1972 revival of Maxwell Anderson and Kurt Weill’s 1949 Broadway musical adaptation which actually preceded the earlier film version.
Unusually for an American Film Theatre production it’s set on the Dark Continent (with Jamaica standing in for South Africa) rather than in America, it’s concession to American sensibilities coming in the casting of Brock Williams in a role that would been perfect for Paul Robeson had it been made in the 1930s, but who here gets to display the warm baritone he’d briefly employed in ‘The L-Shaped Room’. @RichardChatten