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Twice Upon a Time
Theatrical release poster
Directed byEmeric Pressburger
Written byEmeric Pressburger
Wendy Orme
Based onLottie and Lisa by Erich Kästner
Produced byEmeric Pressburger
StarringHugh Williams
Elizabeth Allan
Jack Hawkins
CinematographyChristopher Challis
Edited byReginald Beck
Music byFrederick Lewis
Distributed byBritish Lion Films
Release date
6 July 1953
Running time
75 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

Twice Upon a Time is a 1953 British comedy film directed by Emeric Pressburger and starring Hugh Williams, Elizabeth Allan, Yolande Larthe, and Charmian Larthe. It is based on the 1949 novel Lisa and Lottie by Erich Kästner.[2]

Lotte and Lisa had already been adapted into the films Two Times Lotte (1950) and Hibari no komoriuta (1951). Twice Upon a Time was the first English-language film adaptation; the story was later twice adapted as The Parent Trap (1961 and 1998) and has been remade a number of times in English and many other languages. It was shot at Shepperton Studios with sets designed by the art director Arthur Lawson (designer).

The film is the only solo directing credit for Pressburger, whose other directing credits are in association with Michael Powell.


Twin sisters are separated when their parents divorce. They meet again by accident when they are sent to the same summer camp, and they hatch a plan to reunite their parents.



  1. ^ Kevin Macdonald (1994). Emeric Pressburger: The Life and Death of a Screenwriter. Faber and Faber. p. 335. ISBN 978-0-571-16853-8.
  2. ^ Goble p.252