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Sins of Pompeii

Sins of Pompeii

A Feature film by Marcel L'Herbier

Produced by Universalia Film, Franco-London Films

Release in France : 14/04/1950

  • Contents

Actors (12)

Production and distribution (3)

Executive Producers :

Universalia Film, Franco-London Films

French distribution :

Franco-London Films

Film exports/foreign sales :


TV Broadcasts: Cumulative total

TV broadcasts: details by country


Roman lady Hélène meets and falls in love with a young Greek man Lysias. He is betrothed to another woman who, to win him back, acquires a potion to make him love only her. The potion was prepared by the Egyptian priest, Arbax, who has a grudge against Lysias, and is not what it seems, it is intended to drive whoever takes it insane. Hélène's new slave is also in love with Lysias. She steals the potion and gives it to Lysias, who hurries away in a mad rage. When the slave girl confronts Arbax, she is killed by the evil priest, and Lysias is charged with her murder.

Source : IMDb



Principal filming took place in the summer of 1948 at the Cinecittà studios in Rome. The amphitheatre scenes were filmed at the Arena di Verona. The production was then interrupted however for nearly a year, and was completed at the GTC studios at Joinville/Saint-Maurice in 1949. The film was released in France and Italy in 1950.

The film considerably simplified the plot of Lytton's novel, and there was some alteration of the names of the principal characters: Glaucus became Lysias, and Ione became Hélène; Nidia was made the victim of Arbax rather than an agent of his defeat. There were impressive set designs and costumes (Aldo Tommasini and Veniero Colasanti), and special effects by B. de Kerblay.

Marcel L'Herbier approached the project as one of the "chroniques filmées" ("filmed histories") which his film work had favoured during the past decade, giving some emphasis to the documentary aspects of the everyday life that had been preserved at Pompeii. He initially approached Albert Camus to write the dialogue (having in mind the latter's play Caligula), but in the event the task was undertaken by Alexandre Arnoux. L'Herbier admitted some reservation about the resulting film in spite of its strong cast and opulent settings.

Source : Wikipedia

Full credits (10)

Assistant directors :

Claude Heymann, Robert-Paul Dagan, Lucio Fulci

Author of original work :

Edward George Bulwer-Lytton

Screenwriters :

Marcel L'Herbier, Paolo Moffa, Antonio Pietrangeli, Jean Laviron, Diego Fabbri, Pierre Brive

Production Manager :

Paolo Moffa

Production Designer :

Franco Lolli

Dialogue Writer :

Alexandre Arnoux

Producer :

Salvo D'Angelo

Director of Photography :

Roger Hubert

Editor :

Emilienne Nelissen

Music Composer :

Roman Vlad

Technical details

Feature film

Genres :


Sub-genre :

Historical, Drama

Production language :


Coproducer countries :

Italy, France

Original French-language productions :


Nationality :

50% French (Italy, France)

Production year :


French release :


Runtime :

1 h 50 min

Current status :


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