A Royal Scandal (film)

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A Royal Scandal
A Royal Scandal.jpg
theatrical poster
Directed by Ernst Lubitsch
Otto Preminger
Produced by Ernst Lubitsch
Written by Edwin Justus Mayer
Bruno Frank (adaptation)
Based on a play
by Lajos Bíró and Melchior Lengyel
Starring Tallulah Bankhead
Charles Coburn
Anne Baxter
William Eythe
Music by Alfred Newman
Cinematography Arthur Miller
Edited by Dorothy Spencer
Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox
Release dates
  • April 11, 1945 (1945-04-11)
Running time
94 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $1,500,000[1]

A Royal Scandal, also known as Czarina, is a 1945 film about the love life of Russian Empress (Czarina) Catherine the Great. It stars Tallulah Bankhead, Charles Coburn, Anne Baxter, and William Eythe. The film was based on the play Die Zarin (The Czarina) by Lajos Bíró and Melchior Lengyel.


Catherine discards her latest lover, Variatinsky, the commander of the palace guard. General Ronsky schemes to have his oafish nephew Boris (an uncredited Grady Sutton) be his replacement, so he and his cabal can stage an uprising and dethrone the Czarina. Catherine's chancellor, Nicolai Ilyitch, is determined to see to it that nothing disturbs his delicate negotiations for a treaty with France, so he tells his underling Malakoff he does not want anybody new to see her majesty. However, a determined young officer, Alexei Chernoff, insists on an audience with her for the sake of Russia.



Ernst Lubitsch was the initial director, but fell ill and had to be replaced by Otto Preminger.[2] However, Lubitsch directed the rehearsals, and he worked with Edwin Justus Mayer in the scripting process. A Royal Scandal is a remake of Lubitsch's silent film Forbidden Paradise. All of the scenes were developed under Lubitsch. So it is considered a "Lubitsch film".[citation needed]


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