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One Wild Oat is a 1951 British comedy film directed by Charles Saunders and starring Stanley Holloway, Robertson Hare and Sam Costa with a notable appearance by a pre-stardom Audrey Hepburn as an extra.

One Wild Oat
One wild oat DVD.jpg
DVD cover, featuring (Left to right): Robertson Hare, Irene Handl and Stanley Holloway
Directed byCharles Saunders
Produced byJohn Croydon
Written byLawrence Huntington
Screenplay byVernon Sylvaine
Based onOne Wild Oat
by Vernon Sylvaine
StarringStanley Holloway
Robertson Hare
Sam Costa
Music byStanley Black
CinematographyRobert Navarro
Edited byMargery Saunders
Coronet Films
Distributed byEros Films
Release date
  • 16 May 1951 (1951-05-16)
Running time
77 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom



A barrister (Robertson Hare) attempts to discourage his daughter's infatuation for a philanderer by revealing his past. The plan backfires when the daughter's would-be father-in-law (Stanley Holloway) threatens to reveal the barrister's shady background.



It was made at the Riverside Studios in Hammersmith with sets designed by the art director Ivan King. The film was adapted by Vernon Sylvaine from his 1948 play One Wild Oat. The stage production debuted at the Garrick Theatre in London and was directed by Jack Buchanan.

The stage version starred Robertson Hare, who reprised his role for the film, and Arthur Riscoe (who replaced Alfred Drayton following his death in 1949), the part being played by Stanley Holloway in the screen version. The stage cast were (in order of appearance): Julie Mortimer, Constance Lorne, Robertson Hare, George Bradford/Robert Moreton, June Sylvaine, Arthur Riscoe, John Stone, Ruth Maitland, Tom Squire, Charles Groves, Anne Stapledon, Horace Sequeira and Helene Burls.

Theatre Programme from the original West End production.


In addition to the film featuring early appearances from future stars Audrey Hepburn and Roger Moore, the role of Cherrie (June Sylvaine) was played, in the stage and film version, by the wife of the author (Vernon Sylvaine). Audrey has a thirty-second scene as a hotel receptionist. Interesting to note that thirteen years later, she would be the star and Holloway the support in My Fair Lady.

During the play's West End run, the Garrick Theatre and two cast members were featured in a humorous cameo scene, reading The Stage newspaper (probably looking for new jobs due to London's anticipated destruction), in the 1950 film Seven Days to Noon (see still).

Scene from the 1950 film Seven Days to Noon, illustrating that the stage version of "One Wild Oat" predates the film. (see notes)

There was a television version of the play shown by the BBC in 1972 starring Brian Rix.

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