Part 1 - The Sheena Audition:
Page 1 - The Sheena Movie Project

Tarzan of the Apes, the first jungle man novel appeared in 1912 and the big screen production starring Elmo Lincoln followed in 1918.  Other Tarzan films followed and many featured his mate, Jane, cavorting in the jungle.  The logical progression to white jungle heroines was inevitable and in Lure of the Tropix Bill Feret tells us that Clara Kimball Young wore a leopard-skin in The Savage Woman as early as 1918.

Among the first white goddesses of the sound era were Edwina Booth in Trader Horn (1931) and Rochelle Hudson in The Savage Girl (1932) (left).  The idea of a film based on the Fiction House Comics character, Sheena the jungle girl, was first considered by veteran jungle movie producer Sol Lesser in 1952, although the concept may have been in development for much longer.  Lesser had displayed considerable tenacity in launching his Tarzan films back in the early and mid-1930s (see Tarzan the Fearless [1933] and Tarzan's Revenge [1938]).  He eventually went on to make seventeen Tarzan films between 1933 and 1958 (see Tarzan Films pages).

On the Entertainment page of the 22 September 1952 issue of Quick magazine it was revealed that Lesser was seeking actresses to play Sheena, a female version of Tarzan. The short article went on to say that the chosen actress would have to "move like a leopard, swim like a fish, hug like a bear and have an eye-popping figure".  The article was accompanied by a small black-and-white photo of the shapely exotic dancer Lilly Christine, which revealed her qualifications for the role (click on the photo at right to see that photo and read the full article).  Lesser never realised his dream and it is currently unknown how the property changed hands and ended up in the possession of the Nassour Brothers (see Page 1 - The Nassour Brothers in the Filming In Mexico section), whose production house would take the project to the next stage.  That story is told on the next page (see link above)

Please don't forget to visit my pages devoted to the twenty six episodes of Sheena Queen of the Jungle, if you haven't done so already. You will find plot summaries, numerous comments about the individual episodes and video captures from all of the surviving episodes.  The whole Sheena story - comics, short stories, television and film - is available on the Sheena Intro page.

• The photo of Lilly Christine is from the front cover of of Night and Day magazine, Feb 53
• The colourised photo of Rochelle Hudson and Adolph Milar in The Savage Girl is from the DVD cover, Alpha Video


SHEENA © is the property of Sony Pictures Corporation
This independent, fan-based analysis of the Sheena material is copyright © 2006-2007 Paul Wickham
This page updated May 2007