Inside Daisy Clover

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Inside Daisy Clover
Inside Daisy Clover poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRobert Mulligan
Screenplay byGavin Lambert
Based onInside Daisy Clover
1963 novel
by Gavin Lambert
Produced byAlan J. Pakula
CinematographyCharles Lang
Edited byAaron Stell
Music byAndré Previn
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release date
  • December 22, 1965 (1965-12-22)
Running time
128 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1.5 million (est. US/ Canada rentals)[1]

Inside Daisy Clover is a 1965 American drama film based on Gavin Lambert's 1963 novel of the same name, directed by Robert Mulligan and starring Natalie Wood. It follows a tomboy becoming a Hollywood actress and singer.


In 1936 Santa Monica, Daisy Clover is a tomboy, living with her eccentric mother in a ramshackle trailer. Wishing to become an actress, Daisy submits a recorded song to studio owner Raymond Swan.

Swan puts her under contract for five years and makes arrangements to hide her mother away in a mental institution. Daisy meets and spends time with fellow actor Wade Lewis. Raymond fears that the romance will interrupt Daisy's job. Wade asks Daisy to marry him. She agrees and the ceremony is held at Raymond's house. During the honeymoon, Wade drives off and leaves Daisy in Arizona. When Daisy returns to California, an extremely intoxicated Melora Swan (Raymond's wife) reveals to her that she had an affair with the closet homosexual Wade. Raymond tells Daisy about Wade's orientation, as he'd informed Melora. Raymond and Daisy begin an affair.

Daisy takes her mother out of the care home and spirits her away to a house on the beach. When her mother unexpectedly dies, Daisy suffers a nervous breakdown. Unable to work, she spends her days at home under the care of a private nurse. Becoming impatient with Daisy's long recovery, Raymond tells her she must finish her contract and pending film. After Raymond and the nurse leave the house, Daisy attempts suicide, only to be foiled by constant interruptions. She ultimately decides to live and leave everything behind. Before leaving, she turns on the oven's gas which causes the house to catch fire and explode. As she walks away on the beach, a passing fisherman asks her what has happened. Daisy replies, “Someone declared war.”



Upon its release, the film was a box office and critical failure.[2][3][4] However, the film later gained a cult following when it was shown on television and released on home video.[5]

The New York World-Telegram and The Sun found much to criticize: "[The film] conducts a spectacular travesty of some of Hollywood's preposterously lush nooks without stirring any notable amount of mirth. And it follows Hollywood's predatory smothering of an impulsive, endearing Cinderella without stirring much sentiment or sympathy... Oh! This pathetic innocent is hurt, hurt, hurt but no one cares, cares, cares so long as her picture is finished and rolls in dough, dough, dough... The makers of the picture do not care to make themselves altogether clear but there are hints of the depravity of its Hollywood in fleeting insinuations of dope and homosexuality. The orgies of sex and liquor are much more explicitly presented... [Natalie Wood] seems about to become the movie's biggest dubbing job since Rita Hayworth made her long series of musicals, coming equipped with a different voice for nearly every picture."[6]

At the time of the film's release, homosexuality was a highly taboo subject in American society and, prior to the 1960s, one of the topics the Hollywood Hays Code expressly prohibited. Redford reportedly insisted that his character, gay in the original novel, have some interest in women. Likewise the studio, fearful of the potential controversy, insisted that the film only acknowledge the character's bisexuality through a few bits of dialogue.[7] Despite these limitations, the film is generally recognized for one of the early depictions of a gay or bisexual character in American cinema who is not ashamed of his sexuality and does not commit suicide.[7]


Wood's singing voice was dubbed by session singer Jackie Ward with the exception of the introduction to the song You're Gonna Hear from Me (by Dory Previn and André Previn, who composed the score).[8] The song was later recorded by Connie Francis in English for the album Movie Greats Of the 60s (1966) and one year later in Spanish as Ya te hablarán de mi for the Spanish version of the album, Grandes Éxitos del Cine de los Años 60; by Dionne Warwick for the album The Windows of the World (1967); by Scott Walker on his début solo album Scott (1967); and by Barbra Streisand on The Movie Album (2003). Wood's vocal recordings, completed for other songs, were unused and unheard on commercial recordings until the Film Score Monthly was released in April 2009.


Award Category Nominee(s) Result Ref.
Academy Awards Best Supporting Actress Ruth Gordon Nominated [9]
Best Art Direction – Color Robert Clatworthy and George James Hopkins Nominated
Best Costume Design – Color Edith Head and Bill Thomas Nominated
Golden Globe Awards Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy Natalie Wood Nominated [10]
Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture Ruth Gordon Won
Most Promising Newcomer – Male Robert Redford Won

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Big Rental Pictures of 1966", Variety, 4 January 1967 p 8
  2. ^ "Inside Daisy Clover : Review". Variety. December 31, 1964.
  3. ^ "'Inside Daisy Clover' Opens at Radio City". The New York Times. February 18, 1966.
  4. ^ Lambert, Gavin (2004). Natalie Wood: A Life. Alfred A. Knopf. pp. 394. ISBN 0-375-41074-0.
  5. ^ Lambert, Gavin (2004). Natalie Wood: A Life. Alfred A. Knopf. pp. 589. ISBN 0-375-41074-0.
  6. ^ Cook, Alton. "Gamin Grows Up, Hollywood-Style." New York World-Telegram and The Sun, 18 February 1966.
  7. ^ a b Kregloe, Karman (April 16, 2007). "Ten Actors Who Played Gay". Evolve Media. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  8. ^ Lambert, Gavin (2004). Natalie Wood: A Life. Alfred A. Knopf. pp. 383. ISBN 0-375-41074-0.
  9. ^ "The 38th Academy Awards (1966) Nominees and Winners". Archived from the original on 2015-01-11. Retrieved 2011-08-24.
  10. ^ "Inside Daisy Clover – Golden Globes". HFPA. Retrieved July 5, 2021.

External links[edit]