Zoltán Korda

The Drum

The Drum

Zoltán Korda’s charged adaptation of a novel by The Four Feathers author A. E. W. Mason features Sabu in his second film role, as the teenage Prince Azim, forced into hiding when his father, the ruler of a peaceful kingdom in northwest India, is assassinated by his own ruthless brother. Protected by a friendly British officer (Roger Livesey) and his wife (Valerie Hobson), and befriended by the regiment’s drummer boy, Prince Azim ends up fighting with the colonialists against his dastardly uncle. This rousing adventure includes an exuberant performance by Sabu and spectacular Technicolor cinematography by Georges Périnal and Osmond Borradaile.

Film Info

  • United Kingdom
  • 1938
  • 98 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.33:1
  • English

Available In

Collector's Set

Eclipse Series 30: Sabu!

Eclipse 30: Sabu!

DVD Box Set

3 Discs


The Drum
Prince Azim
Raymond Massey
Prince Ghul
Roger Livesey
Captain Carruthers
Valerie Hobson
Mrs. Carruthers
David Tree
Lieutenant Escot
Desmond Tester
Bill Holder
Amid Taftazani
Mohammed Khan
Lawrence Baskcomb
Zoltán Korda
Alexander Korda
Based on the novel by
A. E .W. Mason
Screenplay adaptation
Lajos Biro
Arthur Wimperis
Patrick Kirwin
Hugh Gray
Georges Périnal
Osmond Borradaile
Henry Cornelius
Music composed by
John Greenwood
Musical director
Muir Matheson


Eclipse Series 30: Sabu!
Eclipse Series 30: Sabu!
Elephant Boy: Child’s Play It’s hard to imagine a movie role more perfectly suited to the actor playing it than Toomai in Elephant Boy (1937), the part that made Selar Shaik—known as Sabu—one of the least likely superstars in Western cinema h…

By Michael Koresky


The Kordas

Director, Producer, Production Designer

The Kordas
The Kordas

During sound cinema’s first full decade, the Hungarian-born Korda brothers—Alexander, Zoltán, and Vincent—built a British empire. The mastermind behind their legendary company, London Films Productions, was producer, director, writer, and eventual mega-mogul Alex; born Sándor Kellner, he became interested in the art of silent cinema as a teenager in his home country, writing criticism and even founding a movie magazine before finding success making his own films all over Europe. In the late twenties, following a short stint in Hollywood, Alex was sent to England to head up Paramount’s British Production Unit; in 1932, he established London Films and brought aboard his younger siblings, Zoltán as a writer/director and Vincent as a production designer. Their first big hit was The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933), which earned Charles Laughton an Oscar and the Kordas international attention. The rest of the thirties held highs (The Rise of Catherine the Great, Elephant Boy) and lows (The Private Life of Don Juan) for the company. But its films—often about historical personalities (Rembrandt) or the exploits of the British Empire abroad (Sanders of the River, The Four Feathers)—remain exemplars of a grand period of British cinema. In the forties, the Kordas only grew in stature—due not only to such immensely popular titles as The Thief of Bagdad and That Hamilton Woman but also to the selection of Alexander, the first film director to be so honored, for knighthood.