The "Gold Skin" Mystery
Stories from Baalbeck Studios
February 7, 2020

Baalbeck Studios committed $100,000 towards an Italian co-production to be shot entirely in Lebanon during the summer of 1966. While no script has been found, one folder remains in our archive, which includes the provisional title “Pelle d’Oro” (Gold Skin) and a great deal of incisive correspondence.

Between the film’s director, Mario Russo, his male lead, Edward Purdom, an English B-grade actor who starred in many "sword and sandal" Italian hits, and the technicians, a total of 25 individuals arrived in Beirut. Surviving call sheets reveal that much of the filming took place in various parts of Beirut and also beyond. In addition to filming, the crew ran up impressive bills for transportation and at the Casino.

Having eventually squandered the budget and gotten under the skin of their partners at Baalbeck Studios, "tutti quanti" packed up and left Lebanon in July. Over a year later there were still exchanges between Baalbeck Studios and Italian production companies and laboratories trying to salvage the film but it seems that none of these were met with success.