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This period piece, set in 1844 New England and redolent of Nathaniel Hawthorne (but based on a 1943 novel serialized in Ladies’ Home Journal), was originally assigned to Ernst Lubitsch. When Lubitsch became too ill to direct, he stepped down to produce what would be Mankiewicz’s directorial debut (Mankiewicz found Lubitsch so intrusive that, his love and respect for him aside, he had him barred from the set, which resulted in Lubitsch removing his name from the production). Vincent Price (in a role originally slated for Gregory Peck) is the aristocratic Nicholas Van Ryn, who lures his cousin Miranda (Gene Tierney) to his estate, Dragonwyck, where her infatuation with him is gradually tempered by the disturbing events that unfold. The film, predictable on a dramatic level but visually beautiful in the best Fox manner, was shot by one of the great cameramen, Arthur C. Miller, who would work with Mankiewicz again on A Letter to Three Wives.