More Production Memorabilia from Robin Hood

Various costumes

This is my second post about a collection of production memorabilia, recently auctioned, from Walt Disney’s live action motion picture the Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men. It was the last big-budget film to be made at Denham Studios in Buckinghamshire, England, in 1951. We have seen on this website, the amount of research into the making of this movie and this is yet another example of the Disney production crew's huge attention to detail.

Various props

If you click on the labels Behind the Camera and Film Production you will find many pages dedicated to the research and making of this Technicolor masterpiece. Down the years, I have posted about the discovery of the original script, also the unique short film The Riddle of Robin Hood, (which showed the creative process during the making of the movie) and even Disney’s memo about the choice of Maid Marian’s costume. There is so much on this website about this almost forgotten film.

The design of Nottingham Castle

Regular readers of this blog will have also seen my many articles about Carmen Dillon. She was the award winning head of Walt Disney’s Art and Design Department and these documents (above) would have definitely passed through her hands. So many thanks to John Nelson for making me aware of this fascinating collection. More soon.

Production Memorabilia of Robin Hood

Research Material for Robin Hood

I missed the auction! Although I could never have afforded the final figure of £250. It was for a collection of research material for Walt Disney’s live-action Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men, which was made in England in 1951 and released in 1952.

A huge thank you to John Nelson for making me aware of this sale. It is a fantastic piece of - not only film memorabilia -  but also a remarkable glimpse into the research and preparation of this wonderful movie.

Some of the 30 pages of notes

Unfortunately some of the images are unclear and it it is difficult to read the notes in pencil. It is very frustrating. Perhaps the new owner of this goldmine of information, will read this blog post and share some of the detail!

Designs of medieval belt pouches

I will be posting some more images of this fascinating collection soon.

French Robin Hood Poster

Above is a French poster promoting Walt Disney’s Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men. This was kindly sent in by Christian Roy. The movie was released several times, so it is difficult to date, but Joan Rice’s ranking in the list of stars could reveal it was designed in the 1950’s.

In the side panel of this blog, you will see the label ‘ Posters’. Click on this and you will find a vast and considerably varied collection of art work from around the world, advertising this wonderful Disney film.

I expect many of my readers will have their favourite poster. The one above dates from the films first release in 1952 and remains the choice of Mike Giddens, Neil Vessey and myself. Which one is yours? Please let me know. 

The Sheriff and his Bow

The Sheriff of Nottingham (Peter Finch) 

We have often discussed on this blog, our hopes that one day we might get the chance to see scenes that were edited out of our favourite movie. The image above is a good example. It was kindly sent in by an avid collector of memorabilia from Disney’s Story of Robin Hood (and a regular visitor to this blog) - Christian Roy.

The movie still shows the Sheriff of Nottingham, played by Peter Finch, about to shoot an arrow. This was probably during the scene in which Robin Hood (Richard Todd) and Friar Tuck (James Hayter) are intercepted by the sheriff and his soldiers. But Robin’s band of outlaws appear and soon begin to rain down arrows on the Sheriff’s men.

In this dramatic scene in the movie, we never see the Sheriff pick up a long bow. It was probably one of many clips that eventually found there way onto the cutting room floor. But, a similar image (below) was used later in ‘Walt Disney's Robin Hood Stamp Book’    published in New York in 1955 by Simon and Schuster. 

The image used in the stamp album

Lets hope that one day we will get a chance to see some of the edited scenes from this wonderful movie.

A Signal Arrow Arrives

I have recently posted a still from Walt Disney’s Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men (1952) showing the scene where the sheriff is led into the outlaws camp. Here is another detailed image of the camp,  created on one of the huge sound stages at Denham Studios by Disney’s art department. This time it shows the moment a whistling arrow arrives, warning Robin Hood (Richard Todd) and his men of imminent danger. 

Those of us who have seen this wonderful film, will know that Little John (James Robertson Justice) has been seen making his way through Sherwood Forest in search of Robin Hood and his men. Eventually Little John meets up with Robin and we witness their fight with quarter-staffs.

Robin Hood is pulled out the stream by Little John

In my opinion this legendry duel has never been bettered on the silver screen.

Robin and Marian

Richard Todd as Robin Hood and Joan Rice as Maid Marian

At this romantic time of year, I thought I would share one of my favourite stills from Walt Disney’s Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men (1952). It shows the young lovers Robin Hood (Richard Todd) and Maid Marian (Joan Rice) in one of the opening scenes of the film.

Several new versions of the legend are scheduled to reach the silver screen in the future, including another version by Disney called Nottingham & Hood. But I doubt it will match the sheer quality and magic of this Technicolor masterpiece.

The Sheriff in Robin’s Camp

Stills from the Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men often reveal the wonderful attention to detail by Walt Disney’s art and design department, led by Carmen Dillon. It is hard to believe this scene, like many, were filmed on one of the huge sound stages at Denham Studios in Buckinghamshire.

In this image we see a blindfolded Sheriff (Peter Finch) being led into Robin Hood’s (Richard Todd) camp in Sherwood Forest. 

Merrie Christmas and a Happy New Year!

This blog was started over a decade ago and this year I completed over 800 posts. When I began, I never dreamt that it was possible to learn so much about the making of my favourite movie. But together with my readers we have achieved that - and much more. I feel that this site is now a fitting tribute to this classic movie.

There are several new Robin Hood movies on the horizon, but I am sure they won’t come close to this classic film!

I would like to wish all my readers a very Merrie Christmas and a Happy and Peaceful New Year.

Robin and Hugh Fitzooth

Yet another rare image from our favourite movie! I am always surprised how many of these stills survive. And it is always a thrill to see them. From left to right we can see Robin’s father Hugh Fitzooth played by Reginald Tate, Richard Todd as Robin Hood (Robin Fitzooth) and Alan-a-Dale portrayed wonderfuly by Elton Hayes.

This site has hundreds of images that can be accessed via the ‘Picture Gallery’ label and across the 800 posts on this site. But, if you have any rare images from the movie that you would like to share, please get in touch.