Hallmark takes us back to the ‘Mines’

The story has been told on film three times before, a tale of adventure, intrigue and action that is more than a century old.

But the new movie “King Solomon’s Mines,” airing at 5 and 9 p.m. June 12 on the Hallmark Channel, has a few features that make it distinct, executive producer Nick Lombardo says.

“The biggest difference is we had Patrick Swayze,” Lombardo said. “He has always portrayed characters of passion. … That is what shows on camera.”

Swayze called the film “a dramatic telling of the adventure, but with a sense of fun. I read this (story) when I was a little kid, and every kid has dreamed about being this kind of man. And out of that was born that whole genre of Indiana Jones.”

Thrice-told tale

The story of Allan Quatermain and the search for King Solomon’s mines has been the inspiration for three other movies. Each film has different plot quirks, but all were titled “King Solomon’s Mines”:

1937: Cedric Hardwicke plays Quatermain, who goes in search of a missing fortune hunter named Patrick O’Brien at the request of O’Brien’s daughter Kathy.

1950: Stewart Granger is Quatermain. This time the missing man is the husband of a woman played by Deborah Kerr.

1985: Richard Chamberlain is Quatermain. He is hired to find the missing jungle explorer-father of Jesse Huston, played by Sharon Stone.

The Washington Post

The tale is of explorer Allan Quatermain (Swayze), who goes in search of a kidnapped archeologist in the heart of Africa.

The captive’s daughter, Elizabeth Maitland (Alison Doody), insists on accompanying Quatermain on the rescue mission. Her father, being held by a native king, possesses a map that is the key to untold treasures, the legendary King Solomon’s mines.

Some of the subplots set this version apart from the others: Quatermain’s grief over his wife’s death, his vow never to return to Africa and his fight to gain custody of his young son in London.

“In the original, they were going back to Africa after treasure,” Swayze said. “But treasure doesn’t make an audience care. …

“So it has to be about something, and the something is, he needs the money for his son, because he wants to keep him.”

The basis for the story is an 1885 novel by H. Rider Haggard. The book introduced Quatermain, a hunter hired to find an Englishman’s brother and a diamond mine.

“Adventure, scope, betrayals, that is what attracted us to retell it,” Lombardo said. “… But we gave the Allan Quatermain character a sense of conservation.”

Not unlike his portrayer. Swayze, a self-described conservationist, said working with the film’s wildlife was a treat.

“There were two main elephants I worked with, Harry and Sally,” Swayze said. “I fell in love with Harry. When we were … getting ready to leave, I wanted to see if this elephant really knew who I was.

“I yelled at him, and …he ran to my vehicle and wrapped his trunk around my head. He didn’t want me to go.”

Hallmark Channel

Patrick Swayze stars as Allan Quatermain in Hallmark’s “King Solomon’s Mines.”

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Life

Carrie Compton clips leaves from the plants for sale at Houseplants Galore on Friday, Jan. 12, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
The great indoors: Houseplants to bring in a touch of spring

At Houseplants Galore in Everett, discover rare and beautiful plant specimens grown with care.

Cameron Hewitt
Switzerland's Lauterbrunnen Valley looks pastoral but it hides a powerful dose of natural wonder.
Rick Steves’ Europe: In the Swiss Alps, the laws of nature rule

The travel guru learned to respect the power of nature in the shadow of Switzerland’s towering Jungfrau.

Inside Elle Marie Hair Studio in Smokey Point. (Provided by Acacia Delzer)
The best hair salon in Snohomish County

You voted, we tallied. Here are the results.

For more than a thousand years, Czech leaders – from kings and emperors to Nazis, communists, and presidents – have ruled from Prague Castle, regally perched on a hill above the Vltava River. Dominic Arizona Bonuccelli
Rick Steves’ Europe: History lives in Prague and its hilltop castle

It’s one of Europe’s best-preserved cities, having been spared from last century’s bombs.

Alarm clock in the middle of the night insomnia or dreaming
Trouble sleeping? Try these tips for getting a good night’s rest

Many adults turn to sleep aids, including alcohol, to help them rest, without realizing that their hectic lifestyles may be contributing to their sleeplessness.

The Stumbling Fiddler Band is scheduled to perform March 3 in Everett. (Photo provided by Port Gardner Bay Music Society)
Music, theater and more: What’s happening in Snohomish County

Get ready for St. Patrick’s Day with music by the Stumbling Fiddler Band in Everett.

I was charged an extra $250 for a mistaken car rental upgrade

When Leah Page picks up her rental car from Thrifty, it charges her a $250 upgrade fee. Can it do this without her permission, and how can she get a refund?

Naomi Jacobson as Dr. Ruth K. Westheimer in "Becoming Dr. Ruth" at Village Theatre in Everett. (Auston James)
Music, theater and more: What’s happening in Snohomish County

“Becoming Dr. Ruth,” which tells the sex therapist’s amazing back story, is now showing at Village Theatre in Everett.

Over 200 years, the magic lantern transformed into an educational peacock

Regarded as magic in the 1650s, this device was refined into the more scientific sounding sciopticon by the mid-1800s.

Market for sale plants. Many plants in pots
Snohomish Garden Club plans annual plant sale

The event is scheduled for April 27 at Swan’s Trail Farms. Proceeds will go to scholarships.

Start planting now so you can stop to smell your own roses all summer long

Late winter to early spring is perfect for planting roses. And with so many varieties to consider, there’s no time to waste.

The 2024 Mazda3 hatchback. (Mazda)
2024 Mazda3 adds a Carbon Turbo trim and more safety features

The charismatic compact is available as a four-door sedan or five-door hatchback.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.