The Bandit of Sherwood Forest
Directed byHenry Levin
George Sherman
Written byWilfred H. Petitt
Melvin Levy
Story byPaul A. Castleton
& Wilfred H. Petitt
Based onNovel Son of Robin Hood by Paul A. Castleton
Produced byLeonard S. Picker
Clifford Sanforth
StarringCornel Wilde
Anita Louise
Jill Esmond
Edgar Buchanan
CinematographyTony Gaudio
William Snyder
George B. Meehan
Edited byRichard Fantl
Music byHugo Friedhofer
Columbia Pictures
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • February 21, 1946 (1946-02-21)
Running time
86 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget>$1 million[1]
Box office$3 million (US rentals)[2]
3,410,235 admissions (France)[3]

The Bandit of Sherwood Forest is a 1946 American Technicolor adventure film directed by Henry Levin & George Sherman and starring Cornel Wilde, Anita Louise, Jill Esmond and Edgar Buchanan.


Robin Hood's son (Cornel Wilde) returns to save Magna Carta, flirt with Lady Catherine (Anita Louise) and protect a boy king.




The film is based on a 1941 novel, Son of Robin Hood by Paul Castleton.[4] In 1941, Don "Red" Barry was attached to star in a serial called The Son of Robin Hood but it was not made.[5]

Producer Clifford Sanforth said he got the idea to make the film when his little son saw The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) asked his father whether Robin Hood had a son. Sanforth tracked down and bought the film rights to the novel.[6] In April 1944 Sanforth had intention to make a series of films about the son of Robin Hood for Republic Pictures starring archer Howard Hill.[7]

In early 1945 the project moved to Columbia Pictures where Sanforth was to produce with Leonard Picker.[8] MGM objected to the title The Son of Robin Hood claiming they had the rights to use the words "Robin Hood" as they had bought screen rights to an operetta of that name by Reginald de Koven. This resulted in Columbia deciding to use the title The Bandit of Sherwood Forest.[9]

The casting of Cornel Wilde and Anita Louise was announced in March 1945 and filming began in April.[10]

Production notes

The film featured the first cinema use of helicopter mounted cameras used during the scene of the storming of the castle.[11]


Critical reception

Variety wrote: "There is considerable ineptness in writing, production and direction but it still stands up as okay escapist film fare for the not-too-critical. There is a concentration of chases and 'they-went-thata-way' flavor about the doings that hints at the western feature training of producers and directors. Wilde is properly swashbuckling as the hero, and probably had himself a time enacting the dare-and-do".[12] The New York Times wrote: "Cornel Wilde is dashing and flashes a toothsome smile as the virtuous "bandit" of Sherwood and Anita Louise is beautiful, though perhaps a bit more coquettish than a maiden fair should be. All the rest, including Russel Hicks as the elder Robert, pitch into their roles with picturesque extravagance. The Bandit of Sherwood Forest is the kind of entertainment that makes one wish one could be a boy again—if only for an hour and a half".[13]

Box office

The film was a sizable box office hit. It earned over $3 million in the US and was the 14th most popular film of the year in France in 1948.[3][2]


The sets built for the film were reused in the Three Stooges shorts Squareheads of the Round Table, Fiddlers Three, and The Hot Scots, and again for the 1948 film The Prince of Thieves.


  1. ^ "Picker Exits MG Prod", Variety 25 September 1946 p.29
  2. ^ a b "60 Top Grossers of 1946", Variety 8 January 1947 p8
  3. ^ a b "French Box Office in 1948". Box Office Story.
  4. ^ "Latest books received" (1941, Jul 06). New York Times
  5. ^ Schallert, E. (1941, Oct 23). "20th signs Laughtons to play married pair" Los Angeles Times
  6. ^ By Frank Daugherty (1945, Jun 01). "'Bandit of Sherwood Forest' to tell of Robin Hood, Jr." The Christian Science Monitor
  7. ^ Schallert, E. (1944, Apr 29). "Mother Cabrini deal centering on Rainer" Los Angeles Times
  8. ^ (1945, Mar 09). "SCREEN NEWS" New York Times
  9. ^ By FRED, S. H. (1945, Apr 15). "HOLLYWOOD ON THE CLEFS" New York Times
  10. ^ (1945, Mar 19). "SCREEN NEWS" New York Times
  11. ^ "Cameras in the Sky by Richard Wirth - ProVideo Coalition".
  12. ^ "The Bandit of Sherwood Forest". Variety. 1 January 1946.
  13. ^ "MOVIE REVIEW THE SCREEN; 'Ziegfeld Follies', an Elaborate Revue, Opens at Capitol-- 'Sherwood Forest Bandit', 'Spider Woman' Film Here -". The New York Times. 14 October 2021.