The photo is great for the rain-soaked streets, of course. And interesting because you can’t see the woman’s face, but there’s no missing her distinctive umbrella and overcoat with bunched-up sleeves, and the fact that she’s on the tall side. And her distinctive cab-beckoning technique — not with a general wave but two fingers. A woman of class and subtlety.
Richard Quine‘s My Sister Eileen, an allegedly misbegotten musical that I’ve never wanted to see and almost certainly never will see, opened at the Victoria on 9.22.55. Charles Laughton‘s The Night of the Hunter, a poster for which can be viewed in the distance off to the right, opened at the Mayfair one week later — 9.29.55.
Neither film was a box-office success so it can be assumed that this photo was taken soon after the Hunter opening; probably sometime in early to mid-October. Although back then even box-office stinkers would remain in first-run theatres for somewhat longer periods.
If my estimate is correct, James Dean had died only a week or two before this shot was taken — 9.30.55. Elia Kazan‘s East of Eden, Dean’s big breakout film, had opened at the Astor theatre around seven months earlier, on 3.19.55. Dean’s second film, Rebel Without a Cause, would open two or three weeks hence — 10.27.55.