SACF South Asian Cinema in UK


The Thief of Bagdad (1940)

The Thief of Bagdad

A classic fantasy film inspired by The Arabian Nights. Its producer was UK’s pioneering British Hungarian film-maker, Alexander Korda. It is a spectacular film with amazing special effects that have continued to inspire film-makers to this day. Though begun in the UK, its completion had to be shifted to Hollywood due to the outbreak of World War II. It directors were Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, Tim Whelan, Ludwig Berger, the Korda brothers and William C Menzies. It starred Sabu who stands out in the film as the quick-witted boy thief (Abu). It tells the story of how he befriends and helps Prince Ahmad (played by John Justin) against his evil minister (Jaffar played by Conrad Veidt) and also helps him win his lady love (The Arabian Princess, played by June Duprez).


A scene of The Thief of Bagdad Special effects in 'The Thief of Bagdad' Sabu with June Duprez and John Justin Poster June Duprez John Justin as the Prince and Conrad Veidt as Jaffar Conrad Veidt as Jaffar

The above findings are part of the research which ensued in the project - A Hidden Heritage: Indo-British Film Collaboration (1930-1951)