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Princess O'Rourke
1943 Jump to Synopsis and Details
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Princess O'Rourke is a 1943 romantic comedy film directed and written by Norman Krasna and starring Olivia de Havilland, Robert Cummings and Charles Coburn. Krasna won the Academy Award for Writing Original Screenplay.


Poor Princess Maria is visiting New York, but she's not having any fun. So her uncle suggests she spend a few days in San Francisco. Unfortunately she's nervous about going by plane. To calm her jitters, she takes a sleeping pill before the plane takes off. Sensing her nervousness, the pilot, navigator and stewardess all secretly give her pills. When bad weather forces the plane to head back to New York, the sleepy princess is left in the care of pilot Edward O'Rourke who takes her to his apartment to spend the night. When she comes to the next day, she finds a note left by O'Rourke asking her to meet him after work. The princess decides to find out what she's been missing and sneaks off to him. To keep her identity a secret, she tells O'Rourke that she's a poor waif sent from Europe to work as a maid in San Francisco. What she doesn't count on is that before the day is through O'Rourke will ask her to marry him. Written by Daniel Bubbeo

Plot Summary

Princess Maria (Olivia De Havilland) and her uncle Holman (Charles Coburn) are forced into exile in New York City when their country is invaded by the Nazis in World War II. Holman is anxious to have his niece get married and produce a male heir as soon as possible, but she is not interested in his choice, Count Peter de Candome (Curt Bois).

On an airplane flight, the princess takes too many sleeping pills. When the plane is forced to return to New York, Maria is fast asleep. The pilot, Eddie O'Rourke (Robert Cummings), takes charge of her while under the impression that she is just another European refugee. They become acquainted and fall in love.

At first, Holman is aghast that Maria wants to marry a commoner, but then he learns that O'Rourke's family runs to large numbers of sons: Eddie is one of nine brothers and his father is one of eleven. He also realizes that it would help cement American support if she married a citizen, and gives his approval.


Olivia de Havilland as Princess Maria - aka Mary Williams

Robert Cummings as Eddie O'Rourke

Charles Coburn as Holman - Maria's Uncle

Jack Carson as Dave Campbell

Jane Wyman as Jean Campbell

Harry Davenport as Supreme Court Judge

Gladys Cooper as Miss Haskell

Minor Watson as Mr. Washburn

Nan Wynn as Nightclub Singer

Curt Bois as Count Peter de Candome

Ray Walker as G-Man

Ernest Anderson as Messenger

Julie Bishop as Stewardess

Ferike Boros as Mrs. Anna Pulaski

Harry C. Bradley as Matilda's Husband

Nana Bryant as Mrs. Mulvaney

Chester Clute as Mr. Mookle - Apartment Manager

David Clyde as Gray - Butler

Edgar Dearing as Policeman at White House

John Dilson as Elevator Operator

Roland Drew as First Airline Dispatcher

Bill Edwards as Switchboard Operator

Mary Field as Clara Stilwell

Ruth Ford as Clare Stillwell

Rosina Galli as Greek's Wife

Edward Gargan as Slugged Pedestrian

Jody Gilbert as Woman Truck Driver

Marjorie Hoshelle as Miss Jeffries - Assistant

Bill Kennedy as Second Airline Dispatcher

Vera Lewis as Matilda

Frank Mayo as Airline Passenger

Jack Mower as Third Airline Dispatcher

Catherine Price as White House Housekeeper - Witness

Frank Puglia as Greek Cafe Proprietor

Christian Rub as Janitor

Douglas Spencer as Pilot

Emmett Vogan as G-Man

Nydia Westman as Mrs. Bowers - First Aid Instructor

Whiskers as Fala - White House Dog

Lottie Williams as Pedestrian

Dave Willock as Delivery Boy


Directed by
Norman Krasna

Writing credits
Norman Krasna

Produced by
Hal B. Wallis - producer

Original Music by
Friedrich Hollaender

Cinematography by
Ernest Haller - director of photography

Film Editing by
Warren Low

Art Direction by
Max Parker

Set Decoration by
George James Hopkins

Costume Design by
Orry-Kelly (gowns)

Makeup Department
Perc Westmore - makeup artist

Production Management
Eric Stacey - unit manager

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Frank Heath - assistant director

Sound Department
Stanley Jones - sound

Music Department
Leo F. Forbstein - musical director


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