Love with the Proper Stranger

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Love with the Proper Stranger
Love With The Proper Stranger.jpeg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRobert Mulligan
Written byArnold Schulman
Produced byAlan J. Pakula
StarringNatalie Wood
Steve McQueen
Edie Adams
Herschel Bernardi
Tom Bosley
CinematographyMilton R. Krasner
Edited byAaron Stell
Music byElmer Bernstein
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • December 25, 1963 (1963-12-25)
Running time
102 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$8.5 million
Box office$3.6 million (rentals)[1]

Love with the Proper Stranger is a 1963 American romantic comedy-drama film made by Pakula-Mulligan Productions and Boardwalk Productions and released by Paramount Pictures. It was directed by Robert Mulligan and produced by Alan J. Pakula from a screenplay by Arnold Schulman.

The film stars Natalie Wood, Steve McQueen, Edie Adams, Herschel Bernardi and Harvey Lembeck. The film also marked the screen debut of Tom Bosley and features a brief, uncredited appearance by the director's younger brother Richard Mulligan, who later became a well-known television actor. The film received five Academy Award nominations including Best Actress (for Wood).


The film tells the story of Angie Rossini (Natalie Wood), a salesclerk at Macy's department store who finds herself pregnant after a one-night stand with musician Rocky Papasano (Steve McQueen). When she tracks him down, he doesn't remember her. She wants the name of a doctor for an abortion. Meanwhile, Angie is being pressured by her older brothers, played by Herschel Bernardi and Harvey Lembeck, to marry the unappealing restaurateur Anthony (Tom Bosley).

Rocky and Angie scrape up enough money for the crude backroom abortion. But when he and Angie meet the abortionist, who turns out not to be a doctor, Rocky refuses to let her go through with the dangerous procedure. The maturity he shows in doing this brings them closer. After meeting her brothers, Rocky decides to "take his medicine" by marrying her. Angie is insulted and turns him down. Angie wants romance, with "bells and banjos".

As an act of independence, Angie moves out of her family home. She begins dating Anthony, who offers to marry her and claim the baby as his own. By acting aloof, she attracts Rocky, whom she invites to dinner at her apartment. At dinner, he makes advances on her and is rejected. Angie says she does not want to make the same mistake again. They quarrel and she throws him out. The next day, Rocky waits for her outside Macy's, ringing bells and playing a banjo, and wins her heart.


and introducing


Award Category Nominee(s) Result
Academy Awards[2][3] Best Actress Natalie Wood Nominated
Best Story and Screenplay – Written Directly for the Screen Arnold Schulman Nominated
Best Art Direction – Black-and-White Hal Pereira, Roland Anderson, Sam Comer and Grace Gregory Nominated
Best Cinematography – Black-and-White Milton Krasner Nominated
Best Costume Design – Black-and-White Edith Head Nominated
Golden Globe Awards[4] Best Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama Steve McQueen Nominated
Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama Natalie Wood Nominated
Laurel Awards Top Drama 4th Place
Top Female Dramatic Performance Natalie Wood Nominated
Mar del Plata International Film Festival Best Film Robert Mulligan Nominated
Best Actress Natalie Wood Won
Writers Guild of America Awards[5] Best Written American Comedy Arnold Schulman Nominated

Also, the film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Big Rental Pictures of 1964". Variety. January 6, 1965. p. 39.
  2. ^ "The 36th Academy Awards (1964) Nominees and Winners". Archived from the original on May 2, 2015. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  3. ^ "NY Times: Love with the Proper Stranger". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Baseline & All Movie Guide. 2011. Archived from the original on 2011-03-16. Retrieved 2008-12-25.
  4. ^ "Love with the Proper Stranger – Golden Globes". HFPA. Retrieved July 5, 2021.
  5. ^ "Awards Winners". Writers Guild of America. Archived from the original on 2012-12-05. Retrieved 2010-06-06.
  6. ^ "AFI's 100 Years...100 Passions Nominees" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-08-19.

External links[edit]