Director H Bruce Humberstone
Presented by Sol Lesser
Producer John Croydon
Executive Producer N Peter Rathvon
Screenplay Montgomery Pittman &
Lillie Hayward

Tarzan Gordon Scott
Tusker Hawkins Robert Beatty
Diana Penrod Betta St John
Gamage Dean Yolande Dolan
Doodles" Fletcher Wilfrid Hyde-White
Carl Kraski George Coulouris
Dick Penrod Peter Arne
Oparian Chief Ogonooro Orlando Martins

• RKO-Radio Pictures had distributed twelve Tarzan films for Sol Lesser Productions between 1943 and 1955 and had maintained the policy of producing one a year.  Early in 1956 mounting financial difficulties forced RKO to sell the company to Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, who converted it into Desilu Studios.  Lesser approached MGM with a distribution deal and nostalgic memories of the Weissmuller days helped them arrive at a settlement.  Hoping that this was a "new era" of the ape-man Lesser laid elaborate plans for the most ambitious Tarzan project ever.  MGM leant some assistance and it was decided to use colour for the first time (Lesser had unsuccessfully attempted colour photography on Tarzan's Peril in 1951), widescreen, and to film some of the film on location in Africa (also done for Tarzan's Peril).  Gordon Scott accompanied a small film crew led by Miki Carter to East Africa to film some wild animal and location footage.  Miki also provided animal footage for the Irish McCalla TV show, Sheena, Queen of the Jungle.  The African exploits of Miki Carter and his wife are captured in two episodes of the adventure documentary series Bold Journey. (Essoe)

• Click on the image at right to hear the ape cry used in this film

PLOT - Note: Spoiler warning
• Tarzan rescues five passengers when their light plane crashes in the jungle.  He reluctantly agrees to lead the spoiled socialiites, who have no bush skills, to the coast.  The party consists of Dick Penrod, a selfish playboy; Diana, his disaffected wife; Gamage Dean, a wisecracking blonde; "Doodles" Fletcher, a writer for society columns; and Karl Kraski, an old friend.  They meet a sly white hunter named "Tusker" Hawkins, who offers to help lead them to the coast, but he has his eye on Diana (above).  Hawkins' conniving leads the party through the country of the savage Opar tribe so that he can betray the group to Chief Ogonooro to use as human sacrifice in the primitive rituals of Opar.  His payment is possession of Diana and the sacred Tusks of Opar, a fortune in ivory.  Cheta, who has learned to use Doodles' lighter, creates a distraction by setting fire to Opar while Tarzan frees the prisoners.  Ogonooro spears Hawkins as the party escape across a burning suspension bridge (right).  Tarzan bids farewell to the party as the five survivors embark for the coast.

Click on the image below to see the trailer for this film:

Tarzan of the Movies by Gabe Essoe, 1968, The Citadel Press
• The poster for this film was pilfered from an eBay auction item
• Both photos are screenshots taken from my DVD of this film
• The video clip of the trailer for this film was uploaded to Youtube by me specifically to embed in this web page
• Read a review and rating of this film at At-A-Glance Film Reviews
• This film has never been released commercially but collectors sometimes offer it on DVD on

TARZAN® is the property of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc., Tarzana CA.
This independent, fan-based analysis of the Tarzan material is copyright © 2002-2008 Paul Wickham
This page was updated January 2008