Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Kaua'i HI, USA




 
The film MISS SADIE THOMPSON tells the story of former nightclub dancer Sadie Thompson (Rita Hayworth) who, on her way from Honolulu to New Caledonia, gets stuck on a tropical island. She stays at a local hotel and spends some time with the American marines stationed on the island, especially Sergeant Phil O'Hara (Aldo Ray). The island is named Tusitala in the film and part of American Samoa but cannot be find on any map.

Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
All exterior scenes were filmed in May 1953 in several places on the Hawaiian island Kaua’i. Sets that were built for the film included a village, a bar and a hotel, all with a Samaon look. The location where Horn’s Hotel was constructed is now the site of a real hotel, the Kaua’i Marriott Resort. Kaua’i, also known as the Garden Island, is one of the wettest places in the world. In the film it also rains, but this shower was caused on request by the local fire brigade.
 
During the opening credits Wailua Beach is shown, a relatively small beach on the eastside of the island. Towards the end of the movie the beach makes a second appearance, with the Kalalea Mountains in the background, also seen during the first scene of the film Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:01:19
Wailua Beach, Kaua'i, 20 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 1:21:26
Wailua Beach, Kaua'i, 20 June 2017

Sadie Thompson arrives on the island and is being welcomed by several marines. This location shoot was made in Hanalei Bay, situated in the north. The concrete pier dates from 1922, the canopy at the end was added in the 1940s. In 1992 the pier was heavily damaged by hurricane ’Iniki. The successful rescue program “Save the Pier” by the Hanalei Rotary Club made it possible to restore the structure in 2013. At the end of the film Sadie Thompson leaves the island from the same location.

Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:04:38
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:04:47
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:08:25
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:08:32
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:08:53
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 1:25:58
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 1:26:01
Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, 22 June 2017

Hurricane ’Iniki also caused extensive damage to the Coco Palms Resort. It had opened its doors in 1953, the same year the movie was filmed. The resort was named after the many coconut palm trees that were imported from Samoa in 1896. The chapel was built especially for the film and a few years later also appeared in the movie Blue Hawaii with Elvis Presley. Since the hotel closed in 1992 it slowly deteriorated. Apparently the chapel survived the hurricane but the grounds are not open to the public. From the street we could not see the chapel, only a lot of palm trees.

Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:14:39
Coco Palms Resort, Kaua'i, 20 June 2017

On their way to the hotel the jeep gets stuck in the mud. This scene was filmed at Kalapaki Beach, nowadays surrounded by hotels and restaurants. Although not clearly visible on the screenshots, it appears that both the coastal wall on the right and the small white lighthouse where already there in 1953.

Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:20:29
Kalapaki Beach, Kaua'i, 23 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:20:32
Kalapaki Beach, Kaua'i, 23 June 2017
Miss Sadie Thompson, 0:49:51
Kalapaki Beach, Kaua'i, 23 June 2017

Information about the filming on location comes from The New Kaua’i Movie Book: Films made on the Garden Island by Chris Cook published in 2015.

Screenshots © Columbia Pictures
 

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