The Happy Thieves

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The Happy Thieves
Poster of the movie The Happy Thieves.jpg
Directed by George Marshall
Written by John Gay
Based on The Oldest Confession
by Richard Condon
Starring Rita Hayworth
Rex Harrison
Joseph Wiseman
Music by Mario Nascimbene
Cinematography Paul Beeson
Edited by Oswald Hafenrichter
Distributed by United Artists
Release date
December 20, 1961 (Chicago, Illinois)[1]
January 1962 (Nationwide)
Running time
88 mins.
Country United States
Language English

The Happy Thieves is a 1961 American crime/comedy-drama film starring Rex Harrison and Rita Hayworth and directed by George Marshall. The film is based on the novel The Oldest Confession by Richard Condon. The film was poorly received, with star Harrison later describing it as 'absolute rubbish'.


A painting belonging to Duchess Blanca (Alida Valli) is stolen from a castle in Spain by the clever Jimmy Bourne (Rex Harrison) and his partner in crime, Eve Lewis (Rita Hayworth). It is stolen from the thieves, however, by Dr. Victor Muñoz (Grégoire Aslan), the cousin of the duchess.

Eve wants to go straight, but Muñoz blackmails her and Jim, demanding they steal another valuable artwork, a Goya, from the Prado museum. A duplicate is created by Jean Marie Calbert (Joseph Wiseman) and a switch is planned during the farewell bullfight of a matador (Virgilio Teixeira) whom the duchess intends to wed.

Munoz shoots the matador. During the ensuing chaos, Jim and Eve switch the paintings. They also find Munoz dead, killed in vengeance by the duchess. Jim is brought to justice and sentenced to 5 years in prison. Eve vows to wait for him.


Production notes[edit]

The film was produced by Hayworth's production company Hillworth Productions A.G., and distributed by United Artists. The film's executive producer was Hayworth's then-husband James Hill.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Munden, Kenneth White, ed. (1997). The American Film Institute Catalog: Of Motion Pictures Produced in the United States : Feature Films, 1921-1930, Part 1. University of California Press. p. 453. ISBN 0-520-20969-9. 

External links[edit]