Stunning Photos of Carroll Baker during the filming of Baby Doll (1956)

Baby Doll is a dramatic black comedy film released in 1956. In the story, two cotton gin owners argue about the guilt of their husbands after one sets fire to his gin. In retaliation, one of the owners seduces the arsonist’s virgin wife in hopes of convincing her of her husband’s guilt. Carroll Baker, Karl Malden and Eli Wallach starred in the film.

The movie provoked significant controversy, primarily due to its implied sexual themes. The film is a testament to how to make an erotic feature without having the actors run naked all over the place. As the Baby Doll, Carroll Baker creates a lot of heat every time we see her in the opening scenes through the peeping tom eyes of Archie Lee, the husband still awaiting to fulfil his duty as a husband. Karl Malden portrays Archie Lee as a dumb hick in matters of the bedroom, which isn’t too worldly. The Roman Catholic advocacy group, National Legion of Decency, sought to ban the film. However, reactions to the group’s condemnation of the film varied among the Catholic laity and other religious institutions.

Despite moral and cultural criticism, the film was largely well-received by critics and won numerous accolades; Kazan won the Golden Globe for Best Director, and the film was nominated for four other Golden Globe awards, as well as four Academy Awards and four BAFTA Awards, with Wallach winning the BAFTA for Most Promising Newcomer. Additionally, it has been named one of the most notorious films of the 1950s by film scholars, and The New York Times has included it in its list of the 1,000 greatest movies ever made. As a cultural phenomenon, the film is often credited with the invention of the babydoll nightgown name and popularity, which comes from the costume worn by Baker in the movie.

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Written by Alicia Linn

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