The film is based on a 1946 historical novel by Kate O'Brien, which was published in North America under the title For One Sweet Grape. It is the story of Ana de Mendoza, a swashbuckling, sword-toting princess. She lost an eye in a duel defending the honor of her king Philip II of Spain, (played by Paul Scofield in his film debut, who earned a BAFTA award for best newcomer). Philip later jilted Ana to marry Mary I, the Queen of England, marrying her off to an aging noble, who died, leaving her a widow. Subsequently, he asks Ana de Mendoza to assist him in tutoring commoner Antonio Perez (Gilbert Roland) as his first secretary, but when they fall in love his popularity starts to drop, helped along by Philip II's jealous minister Mateo Vasquez (Dennis Price).
Shot in England and on location in Spain, the film features Cinemascope footage of the Spanish countryside and renaissance castles. That Lady was an early directorial effort by Terence Young, who went on to direct three James Bond films: Dr. No, From Russia With Love, and Thunderball. Christopher Lee appears in a minor role as the Captain of the Guard.
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