Innocents in Paris

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Innocents in Paris
Directed by Gordon Parry
Produced by Anatole de Grunwald
John Woolf
Screenplay by Anatole de Grunwald
Starring Alastair Sim
Ronald Shiner
Claire Bloom
Margaret Rutherford
Claude Dauphin
Jimmy Edwards
Music by Joseph Kosma
Cinematography Gordon Lang
Edited by Geoffrey Foot
Release date
Running time
102 min
Country United Kingdom
Language English

Innocents in Paris is a 1953 British-French international co-production comedy film produced by Romulus Films, directed by Gordon Parry and starring Alastair Sim, Ronald Shiner, Claire Bloom, Margaret Rutherford, Claude Dauphin, and Jimmy Edwards, and also featuring James Copeland.[1] Popular French comedy actor Louis de Funès appears as a taxi driver, and there are uncredited appearances by Christopher Lee, Laurence Harvey and Kenneth Williams. The writer and producer was Anatole de Grunwald, born in Russia in 1910, who fled to Britain with his parents in 1917. He had a long career there as a writer and producer, including the films The Way to the Stars, The Winslow Boy, Doctor's Dilemma, Libel, and The Yellow Rolls Royce.[2]


The film is a romantic comedy about a group of Britons flying out from "The London Airport" for a weekend in Paris in 1953 in a British European Airways Airspeed Ambassador. An English diplomat (Sim) is on a working trip to obtain an agreement with his Russian counterpart (Illing); a Royal Marine bandsman (Shiner) has a night out on the tiles after winning a pool of the French currency held by all the Marines in his band; a young woman (Bloom) finds romance with an older Frenchman (Dauphin) who gives her a tour of Paris; an amateur artist (Rutherford) searches out fellow painters on the Left Bank and in the Louvre; a hearty Englishman (Edwards) spends the entire weekend in an English-style pub; and a Battle of Normandy veteran (Copeland) is an archetypal Scotsman in kilt and Tam o' Shanter who finds love with a young French woman (Gérard).

The film displays the mores and manners of the British, and, to a lesser extent, the French, in the early nineteen-fifties. At this time, Britons were allowed to take only £25 out of the country[3], as £5 British cash and travellers cheques, and there are several scenes showing how the travellers dealt with this. The film also features a Russian nightclub (of which there were several in Paris at the time), with Ludmila Lopato, a Russian tzigane chanteuse, singing the original Russian version of the song that became "Those were the Days", which became a hit record for Mary Hopkin.