Eye of the Devil (1967)

UK, 1965
90m, 8113 feet, 2473 metres
35mm film, black and white, 1.66:1
mono, English

A British horror film directed by J. Lee Thompson. Filming began in 1965 with Kim Novak in the leading role and Michael Anderson as the director. Novak left after a riding accident (though co-star David Hemmings claimed that he saw her involved in an argument with producer Martin Ransohoff shortly before her departure and suggested that she’d been sacked 1Blow Up… and Other Exaggerations: The Autobiography of David Hemmings by David Hemmings p.125) and directors Sidney J. Furie and Arthur Hiller were also involved at various stages of the film’s production after Anderson was forced to give up the film on doctor’s orders.

Premise

Vineyard owner Philippe de Montfaucon returns to his ancestral castle in BellenacFrance, when a dry season causes the crop to fail. His wife Catherine is horrified to learn that his staff are about to enact an ancient pagan ritual that requires the marquis to sacrifice himself to save the crops.

Credits

* = uncredited
Crew
Directed by: J. Lee Thompson
© MCMLXVI [1966] by Metro Goldwyn Mayer British Studios Ltd.
Metro Goldwyn Mayer presents. Martin Ransofoff’s production. A Filmways picture
Produced by: Martin Ransohoff and John Calley
Supervising Production Executive: Ben Kadish
Production Manager: Sydney Streeter
Screenplay by: Robin Estridge and Dennis Murphy
Original Screenplay: Terry Southern *
From the novel ‘Day of the Arrow’ by: Philip Loraine
Original Directors: Michael Anderson *, Sidney J. Furie *
Direction Completed by: Arthur Hiller *
Assistant Director: Basil Rayburn
Director of Photography: Erwin Hillier
Camera Operator: John Winbolt
Film Editor: Ernest Walter
Music by: Gary McFarland
Recording Supervisor: A.W. Watkins
Sound Recordist: Gerry Turner
Dubbing Mixer: J.B. Smith
Sound Editor: Allan Sones
Westrex Recording System
Deborah Kerr’s Gowns by: Julie Harris
Other Costumes by: John Furness
Main Titles Designed by: Maurice Binder
Art Director: Elliot Scott
Locations: Chateau d’HautefordFrance,
Made at: MGM British Studios
Casting: Irene Howard *

Cast
Deborah Kerr (Catherine)
David Niven (Philippe de Montfaucon)
Donald Pleasence (Père Dominic)
Edward Mulhare (Jean-Claude Ibert)
Flora Robson (Countess Estelle)
Emlyn Williams (Alain de Montfaucon)
Sharon Tate (Odile de Caray)
David Hemmings (Christian de Caray)
John Le Mesurier (Dr Monnet)
Michael Miller (Grandec)
Donald Bisset (Rennard)
Pauline Letts
Robert Duncan (Jacques)
Suky Appleby (Antoinette)
Ernest Clark [police inspector] *

Alternative Titles

13
Cerimonia per un delitto – Italy
Det djävulska ögat – Sweden
El ojo del diablo
– Spain
Pahan silmä – Finland
Die Schwarze 13
– Germany
Die Schwarze Dreizehn
– Germany

Extracts included in
All Eyes on Sharon Tate (1967)

References

Books

  • English Gothic by Jonathan Rigby p.139 – illustrated review
  • Hoffman’s Guide to SF, Horror and Fantasy Movies 1991-1992 p.128 – credits, review
  • Reference Guide to Fantastic Films by Walt Lee p.128 – credits