Never Let Me Go (1953)
Release Date: May 1,1953
Directed by: Delmer Daves
Available on DVD through the Warner Brothers Archive Collection
DearMrGable.com’s Movie of the Month, August 2010
Gable is Philip Sutherland, an American war correspondent stationed in Moscow. He falls in love with Marya (Tierney), a Russian ballet dancer. After they wed, Philip receives orders to ship back to the United States, but they find that the Russian government will not grant Marya a passport to leave Russia. When Philip is tricked into leaving without her, he sets about forming a plan to smuggle her out of Russia.
Modern Screen magazine, July 1953
Romance, daring, intrigue–that’s Clark Gable’s meat. That’s Never Let Me Go–the adventures of an American newspaperman in Russia who falls in love with a ballerina (Gene Tierney), marries her, and is forced to leave the country alone. His English friend, Richard Haydin, has also married a Russian (Belita) and must also leave her behind. Gable lights on a fantastic idea. Why not sneak the girls right out of Russia? He decided to buy a fishing boat, sail it from England to a beach resort near the town where Gene is performing. At night the beach is crowded with bathers. No one would notice if two of those bathers swam out beyond the breakers to a rowboat, were taken by that rowboat to the fishing vesel, and freedom. Haydin’s skeptical, but what–besides his life–does he have to lose? Gable has a fiend, a radio broadcaster in Russia, whom he contacts and together they devise a code enabling Gable to make rendezvous plans with their wives. Everything works–up to a point. But there’s a run-in with a Russian patrol boat, and after that there’s Gable masquerading as a Russian Army officer, and after that there’s a chase right into the ocean. After that–well, see for yourself.
“Here’s where the story really begins. This is Moscow, victory day, just a few years ago. A lot’s happened since then. I had covered the war, now I was to cover the peace–what there was of it.” first line
“The only way to figure the Russians is to put two and two together, make nine, add seven, divide by four and give up.”
“When the time comes for me to go, you go with me or I don’t go at all.”
“I’m off to get your visa if I have to climb the Kremlin walls to do it!”
“I’m a Yankee, I don’t beg easily. I’m begging now.”
“I’d as soon drown than spend the rest of my life without Marya.”
“Joe, this is my wife.” last line
Behind the Scenes:
Adapted from the novel “Came the Dawn” by Richard Bax.
Shot entirely in London, the coast of Cornwall and at MGM’s British studios. Filmed during a near-two year period in which Gable was overseas, filming also Betrayed (in Holland) and Mogambo (in Africa).
Tierney spent weeks rehearsing her ballet steps, constantly on her tiptoes. As a result, her feet were cracked and bloody. When Clark went to Paris during a break in filming, her brought her an herbal salve for them. She was very grateful.
Tierney recalled that her and Gable had dinner together at a pub in Cornwall during filming. She was depressed about her up and down romance with Prince Aly Khan and he told her some stories about Carole Lombard.
Flopped miserably at the box office. As a result, MGM was uninterested in meeting Gable’s demands in his contract renewal. His next project, Betrayed, was to be his last at MGM.