The Nun's Story (film)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Nun's Story is the title of a dramatic film that was released by Warner Bros. in 1959.



Based upon the 1956 novel of the same title by Kathryn Hulme, the story tells of the life of Sister Luke (played by Audrey Hepburn), a young Belgian woman who decides to enter a convent and makes many of the sacrifices required of her, but at the outset of World War II, finds she cannot remain neutral in the face of the abject evil of Hitler's Germany. The book was based upon the life of Marie-Louise Habets, a Belgian nurse who similarly spent time as a nun.

A major portion of the film takes place in the Belgian Congo where Sister Luke assists Dr. Fortunati (Peter Finch) in helping treat the lepers of the area.

Closeness to the novel

The film version follows the book fairly closely, although there is an added level of sexual tension present in the relationship between Dr. Fortunati and Sister Luke that is absent from the novel.


Also appearing in the film were Edith Evans, Peggy Ashcroft, Dean Jagger, Mildred Dunnock, Colleen Dewhurst, and Beatrice Straight.


It was nominated for several Academy Awards including Best Actress in a Leading Role (Audrey Hepburn), Best Cinematography, Color, Best Director, Best Film Editing, Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture, Best Picture, Best Sound and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium.

The Nun's Story was a major box office success in its day and was considered, for a time, to be the most financially successful of Hepburn's films and one the actress often cited as her favorite. Hepburn met Marie-Louise Habets while preparing for the role, and Habets later helped nurse Hepburn back to health following her near-fatal horse-riding accident on the set of the 1960 film, The Unforgiven.

The Nun's Story received its first official North American DVD release on April 4, 2006. The story behind the book and film was the subject of The Belgian Nurse, a radio play by Zoe Fairbairns broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Saturday, 13 January 2007.

The Nun's Story and Batman

The movie is mentioned in Tom Mankiewicz' 1983 Batman script. This is the movie young Bruce Wayne and his parents see before their death. In the comics, the movie is shown as The Mark of Zorro.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Nun's Story (film)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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