Temple Drake

Typed mimeographed screenplay. "The Story of Temple Drake: Censorship Dialogue Script." 17 March 1933.

William Faulkner claimed that he wrote Sanctuary as a potboiler with the intention of making money. The prurient themes appealed to many readers, and it wasn't long before Hollywood became interested in depicting the story on film. The movie's title, changed for the 1933 film version, became The Story of Temple Drake; (it was remade in 1961 under its original title and advertised with the poster shown here). When the movie was first released in 1933, viewers objected to the story of a young, innocent girl, preyed upon by unsavory men, and the film was banned in many cities. The reaction against The Story of Temple Drake provided much of the impetus in bringing about the Hays Code, a self-censoring code of conduct for the film industry, effective from 1930 until 1966. With this agreement, one man, Will Hays, president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, instituted a thirty-year reign over the content of Hollywood films in an attempt to sanitize the industry.

Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp. "Darryl F. Zanuck Presents William Faulkner's Sanctuary..." 1961.

Purchased with the Massey-Faulkner Fund

Warner Bros. Pictures Distributing Corporation. "Warner Bros. Present Howard Hawks' Land of the Pharaohs..." 1955.

Purchased with the Massey-Faulkner Fund

VA State Board of Censors

Virginia State Board of Censors (Motion Pictures). Report for the two weeks ending April 28th, 1923.

How detailed is the censor's work? This report from the Virginia State Board of Censors for Motion Pictures lists specific sections of films to be removed from nine 1923 motion pictures.