The Little Princess is a 1939 American drama film directed by Walter Lang. The screenplay by Ethel Hill and Walter Ferris is loosely based on the novel A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett. The film was the first Shirley Temple movie to be filmed completely in Technicolor. It was also her last major success as a child star.
Although it maintained the novel’s Victorian London setting, the film introduced several new characters and storylines and used the Second Boer War and the Siege of Mafeking as a backdrop to the action. Temple and Arthur Treacher had a musical number together, performing the song “Knocked ‘Em in the Old Kent Road” Temple also appeared in an extended ballet sequence. The film’s ending was drastically different from the book.
In 1968, the film entered the public domain (in the USA) due to the claimants’ failure to renew its copyright registration in the 28th year after publication.
The Little Princess
Directed by Walter Lang
Produced by Darryl F. Zanuck, Gene Markey
Screenplay by Ethel Hill, Walter Ferris
Based on A Little Princess (1905 novel) by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Starring Shirley Temple, Richard Greene, Anita Louise, Ian Hunter, Arthur Treacher, Cesar Romero
Music by Charles Maxwell, Cyril J. Mockridge, Herbert W. Spencer, Samuel Pokrass
Cinematography Arthur C. Miller, William Skall
Edited by Louis Loeffler
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release dates March 10, 1939
Running time 93 minutes
Country United States