The Royal African Rifles

The Royal African Rifles is a 1953 Cinecolor First World War adventure film set in British East Africa but filmed on location in the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden.[1] Directed by Lesley Selander, it stars Louis Hayward, Veronica Hurst and Michael Pate. The film was the first production of Louis Hayward's production company Associated Film Artists, Inc (AFA, Inc), but Hayward's company made no other films. The working title was The Queen’s African Rifles.[2] In reality there was never a military unit called “The Royal African Rifles”, though the King's African Rifles served in Africa during the war. The film was retitled Storm Over Africa in the United Kingdom.[3]

The Royal African Rifles
Original film poster
Directed byLesley Selander
Written byDaniel B. Ullman
Produced byRichard V. Heermance
StarringLouis Hayward
Veronica Hurst
Michael Pate
CinematographyEllis W. Carter
Music byPaul Dunlap
Distributed byAllied Artists Pictures
Release date
  • September 27, 1953 (1953-09-27)
Running time
75 min.
CountryUnited States


In August 1914 a consignment of Vickers machine guns are stolen off a Royal Navy ship, HMS Marlin. An RN Lieutenant aboard the ship goes undercover as a white hunter through British East Africa to find the weapons before they get into the hands of the Germans and alter the balance of power in Africa.



  1. ^ Craig, Terrence L. (2017). The White Spaces of Kenyan Settler Writing: A Polemical Bibliography. BRILL. p. 114. ISBN 9789004346512. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  2. ^ "The Royal African Rifles (1953) - Notes". Retrieved 2013-10-06.
  3. ^ Edwards, Paul M. (2016). World War I on Film: English Language Releases through 2014. McFarland. p. 172. ISBN 9780786498666. Retrieved 27 June 2019.

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