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A rural melodrama with a dash of high seas adventure on the Waitemata Harbour and a race up Queen Street, Auckland to the finish.

The film opens with a prologue in which a soldier farewells his fiancée, Margaret, before departing for the Boer War. She falls pregnant and, for her sins, is cast out by her stern Scottish uncle. After finding refuge with a poor rural family Margaret dies soon after her baby girl, Mary, is born. She leaves a pair of booties and an address to be used "if ever the child is in need."

Mary grows up among the Codlin family. Her uncle dies leaving a will in which Mary is the sole benefactor, provided she reaches the lawyer by a specified time. In an attempt to claim the money for himself the uncle’s grasping secretary, Murgatroyd, kidnaps Mary. She is rescued by her naval officer suitor and the pair race down Queen Street to the lawyer’s office, arriving in the nick of time. The film ends happily when the pair marry.

THE BUSH CINDERELLA premiered at the Strand Theatre, Auckland on Friday 24 August 1928. The heroine was played by Dale Austen, winner of the 1927 Miss New Zealand contest. Part of Austen’s prize was a stint as a stock player at the M-G-M Studios in Hollywood. The Bush Cinderella was filmed soon after Austen’s return from Hollywood and freely cashed in on the fame of New Zealand’s beauty queen who "combines Hollywood experience and technique with a faultless photographic face." — The Sun, 27 August 1928.

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Year 1928

Reference number F10028

Collection Film and Video Collection

Media type Moving Image

Place of Production NEW ZEALAND/AOTEAROA

Genre Feature

Duration 1:24:40

Production company RUDALL HAYWARD

Credits Margaret Cameron: Dale Austen
Mary Cameron: Dale Austen
Andrew Cameron: Walter Gray
Sergeant Bennett: Tony Firth
The Doctor: Allan Cornish
Michael Myrgadroyd: Ernest Yandall
Sam Codlin: Thomas McDermott
Mrs Codlin: May Bain
Lieut Neil Harrison: Cecil Scott
Sammy: Al MacK
Jane Codlin: Freda Crosher
Dr Stanway: Frank Willoughby
The Lawyer: J Scott
The Detective: Fred Chatwin
Two Crooks: Jack De Rose
Two Crooks: Arthur Lord
Captain Of “The Rio Maid”: Jack Elmsworth
First Mate: Tano Fama
The Pilot: Kennington Johnstone
The Codlin Kids: Willie Kyle
The Codlin Kids: A Vaughn
The Codlin Kids: K Davies
The Codlin Kids: M Pearson
The Codlin Kids: Maurice Quinn
Director: Rudall Hayward
Photography: Rudall Hayward
Adaptation For The Screen: Rudall Hayward
Writer: Henry Hayward
General Assistant: Lee M. Hill
Art Titles: A D Crafts
Properties: Thomas McDermott

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