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The Snake Pit Overview:

The Snake Pit (1948) was a Drama - Black-and-white Film directed by Anatole Litvak and produced by Robert Bassler, Darryl F. Zanuck and Anatole Litvak.

Academy Awards 1948 --- Ceremony Number 21 (source: AMPAS)

AwardRecipientResult
Best ActressOlivia de HavillandNominated
Best DirectorAnatole LitvakNominated
Best Music - ScoringAlfred NewmanNominated
Best Picture20th Century-FoxNominated
Best WritingFrank Partos, Millen BrandNominated
.

BlogHub Articles:

Exploring Olivia de Havilland’s Performance in ‘The Snake Pit’ (1948)

By Virginie Pronovost on Jul 1, 2018 From The Wonderful World of Cinema

Today, the legendary Olivia de Havilland is turning 102 years old! What a victory! For a third consecutive year, Crystal from In the Good Old Days of Classic Hollywood and Laura from Phyllis Loves Classic Movies are hosting the Annual Olivia de Havilland Blogathon. I’m happy to take part in th... Read full article


Screening of “The Snake Pit” at Daystar Center September 12

By Stephen Reginald on Sep 1, 2017 From Classic Movie Man

Screening of “The Snake Pit” at Daystar Center September 12 “Classic Movie Man Favorites” Series: The Snake Pit (1948) Where: Daystar Center, 1550 S. State Street When: September 12, 2017 Time: 6:30 p.m. Hosted by Stephen Reginald The Snake Pit (1948) stars two-time Bes... Read full article


The Snake Pit (1948)

By 4 Star Film Fan on Jan 24, 2017 From 4 Star Films

There is a lineage of psychological dramas most notably including the likes of Shock Corridor and One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest. But one of their primary predecessors was The Snake Pit which is a haunting, inscrutable and thought-provoking film in its own right. But rather than trying to sum it up ... Read full article


The Snake Pit (1948)

By 4 Star Film Fan on Jan 24, 2017 From 4 Star Films

There is a lineage of psychological dramas most notably including the likes of Shock Corridor and One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest. But one of their primary predecessors was The Snake Pit which is a haunting, inscrutable and thought-provoking film in its own right. But rather than trying to sum it up ... Read full article


1001 Classic Movies: The Snake Pit

By Amanda Garrett on Jul 19, 2016 From Old Hollywood Films

The Snake Pit (1948), starring Olivia de Havilland, is one of the 1001 classic movies you should see. Each Monday, I'm going to recommend a classic movie you should see (for the reasons behind the 1001 series and reviews of earlier films covered go here). Old Hollywood legend Olivia de Havilland ... Read full article


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Quotes from

Celia Sommerville: And we're so crowded already. I just don't know where it's all gonna end!
Virginia Stuart Cunningham: I'll tell you where it's gonna end, Miss Somerville... When there are more sick ones than well ones, the sick ones will lock the well ones up.


Miss Greene: You get off the rug, Virginia Cunningham! Come on! Come on! Get off of there! I've told you a dozen times we do not walk on our rug.
Virginia Stuart Cunningham: Why not?
Miss Greene: Because we don't! Understand? We're the only ward that has a rug. It's new, I mean it's clean, and we mean to keep it that way.
Virginia Stuart Cunningham: Why don't you hang it on the wall?
Miss Greene: Your wisecracks might have been appreciated in other wards, but in 12 they don't go over.
Virginia Stuart Cunningham: Is this 12?
Miss Greene: And what did you think it was? One?
Virginia Stuart Cunningham: How long have I been here?
Miss Greene: Too long.


Robert Cunningham: Tell me what have you been doing all these months?
Virginia Stuart Cunningham: Working 18 hours a day and being lonely 24.


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Facts about

Director Anatole Litvak insisted that the cast and crew spend three months visiting mental institutions and attending psychiatric lectures to prepare themselves for the film. Olivia de Havilland willingly threw herself into the research. She attended patient treatments at the institutions, and observed electric shock therapy and hydrotherapy first-hand. When permitted, she sat in on doctor-patient therapy sessions. She also attended social events for patients at the institutions. After seeing the film, a "Daily Variety" columnist questioned whether any mental institution would really allow violent inmates to dance with each other at a social event. De Havilland personally called the columnist to confirm that she had attended several such dances at institutions.
Mary Jane Ward's book, the basis for this film, was an autobiographical account of the author's experiences in psychiatric hospitals. The book caused considerable controversy upon its publication in 1946, as it was a scathing indictment of the treatment of psychiatric patients, a subject considered taboo in the 1940s. Naturally, the book was a runaway bestseller.
When Virginia and Robert go to the movies in their courtship days, the offscreen fanfare indicates that they are watching a 20th Century Fox film, the same studio that made "The Snake Pit".
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Best Picture Oscar 1948






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Also directed by Anatole Litvak




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Also produced by Robert Bassler




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Also released in 1948




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