Passed | | Drama, Romance
In 15th-century France, a gypsy girl is framed for murder by the infatuated Chief Justice, and only the deformed bellringer of Notre Dame Cathedral can save her.
The scene in which Quasimodo rings the cathedral bells for Esmeralda was shot the day World War II began in Europe. The director and star were so overwhelmed, the scene took on a new meaning, with Charles Laughton ringing the bells frantically and William Dieterle forgetting to yell "cut." Finally, the actor just stopped ringing when he became too tired to continue. Later, Laughton said, "I couldn't think of Esmeralda in that scene at all. I could only think of the poor people out there, going in to fight that bloody, bloody war! To arouse the world, to stop that terrible butchery! Awake! Awake! That's what I felt when I was ringing the bells!"
Quasimodo, the bell-ringer:
The actor George Tobias is credited as being one of the beggars. However, he is also seen as one of the workmen laboring in Notre Dame Cathedral. He thus has two diametrically opposed roles (beggar and workman), but is only credited for one.
Also available in a computer colorized version.