Captain Blood (1935 film)


Captain Blood is a 1935 American swashbuckling film directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Basil Rathbone, and Ross Alexander. The film was made by First National Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures and produced by Harry Joe Brown and Gordon Hollingshead, with Hal B. Wallis as executive producer. Based on the 1922 novel Captain Blood by Rafael Sabatini, with a screenplay by Casey Robinson, the film is about an enslaved doctor and his fellow prisoners who escape and become pirates on the open seas.[1]

Warner Bros. Pictures took a serious risk in pairing two relative unknown performers in the lead roles. Flynn’s performance made him a major star and established him as the natural successor to Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. and a “symbol of an unvanquished man” during the Depression.[1][2] The film also established de Havilland, in just her fourth film appearance, as a major star. Captain Blood was the first of eight films co-starring Flynn and de Havilland, and in 1938, the two would be re-united with Rathbone in The Adventures of Robin Hood. The film also features a stirring musical score by Erich Wolfgang Korngold. Some of the impressive sea-battle footage was taken from The Sea Hawk (1924).

Captain Blood received positive reviews and was a success at the box office.[3] The film received Academy Award nominations for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Writing, and Best Sound Editing.