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Ali Baba accidentally discovers the magic cave where Abdul and his band of 40 thieves hide their ill-gotten treasure. He takes enough to buy the beautiful slave girl Morgiane from his master, Cassim, so that he may take her as his wife. However, Kassim and Abdul have plans for Ali on his wedding night...
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Fernandel (1903-1971) was immersed in show business from a very young age. His father performed at 'cafe-concerts' and brought Fernandel with him to his shows. By the age of five Fernandel had his own routine. In 1930 he began acting in movies, and over the course of the next forty years he appeared in a staggering 150 films. Fernandel was France's leading comic actor from the 1940s until his death and, along with Louis de Funes and Bourvil, helped to define French comedy. His most well-known films in the US include "Regain" (aka Harvest, 1937), "Le Schpountz" (1938), "Nais" (1945), "L'Auberge Rouge" (1950), "La Vache et le Prisonnier" (1959), and the "Don Camillo" series (1952-1965).
Samia Gamal was Egypt's foremost bellydancer of the 1950s and made many films in Egypt with Farid El' Atrache. She performs the dance in its authentic form, which is often very different from how it is portrayed in most foreign films. Gamal was a major star throughout the Middle East and she was invited by the French production company to star in Ali Baba, even though she hardly spoke a word of French!From the Contributor:
Jacques Becker (1906-1960) grew up in Paris, where his parents kept company with intellectuals and artists. It was through Paul Cezanne and his wife that Becker was introduced to director Jean Renoir. He eventually became Renoir's assistant on the films "La Grande Illusion", "Boudu Saved From Drowning" and "La Marseillaise". Becker went on to make a name for himself directing classics like "Antoine and Antoinette" (1947), "Casque d'Or" (1952), "Grisbi" (1954) and "Montparnasse 19" (1958). While Becker only made thirteen films in his career, each one was so distinct that they made an unforgettable impact. The themes of fraternity and humanity were constant undercurrents of his style. Becker passed away just weeks before the release of his final film, "Le Trou" (aka The Hole, 1960). "Ali Baba and the 40 Theives" was filmed in color on location in Morroco, with thousands of extras, and is considered one of the most lavish French productions of its time.
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