DIRECTED BY FRED ZIMMERMAN
PRODUCED BY CARL FOREMAN/ STANLEY KRAMER (both uncredited)
STANLEY KRAMER PRODUCTIONS/ UNITED ARTISTS
Information From IMDb
Will Kane on his wedding day, just as he's hanging up his Marsalls badge,
is told that the man Frank Miller,
that he sent to prison, some years ago,
is arriving on the noon train, to exact is revenge.
He attempts to leave town, but decides to stay, and confront the problem.
However, when he asks the townspeople for the help,
they back off, including his own wife,
leaving Will to face the Frank Miller gang all alone!
Written by ethanedwards
Gary Cooper ... Marshal Will Kane
Thomas Mitchell ... Mayor Jonas Henderson
Lloyd Bridges ... Deputy Marshal Harvey Pell
Katy Jurado ... Helen Ramírez
Grace Kelly ... Amy Fowler Kane
Otto Kruger ... Judge Percy Mettrick
Lon Chaney Jr. ... Martin Howe (as Lon Chaney)
Harry Morgan ... Sam Fuller (as Henry Morgan)
Ian MacDonald ... Frank Miller
Eve McVeagh ... Mildred Fuller
Morgan Farley ... Dr. Mahin, minister
Harry Shannon ... Cooper
Lee Van Cleef ... Jack Colby
Robert J. Wilke ... Jim Pierce (as Robert Wilke)
Sheb Wooley ... Ben Miller
Tom London ... Sam
Ted Stanhope ... Station Master
Larry J. Blake ... Gillis, saloon owner
William 'Bill' Phillips ... Barber
Jeanne Blackford ... Mrs. Henderson
James Millican ... Deputy Sheriff Herb Baker
Cliff Clark ... Ed Weaver
Ralph Reed ... Johnny, town boy
William Newell ... Jimmy, drunk with eye patch
Lucien Prival ... Joe, Ramirez Saloon bartender
Guy Beach ... Fred, coffinmaker
Howland Chamberlain ... Hotel clerk
Virginia Christine ... Mrs. Simpson
Jack Elam ... Charlie, drunk in jail
Paul Dubov ... Scott
Harry Harvey ... Coy
Tim Graham ... Sawyer
Nolan Leary ... Lewis
Tom Greenway ... Ezra
Dick Elliott ... Kibbee
John Doucette ... Trumbull
Lee Aaker ... Boy (uncredited)
Roy Bucko ... Barfly (uncredited)
Bob Carson ... Barfly (uncredited)
Ben Corbett ... Townsman (uncredited)
Virginia Farmer ... Mrs. Fletcher (uncredited)
Chuck Hayward ... Townsman (uncredited)
Chubby Johnson ... First old timer on hotel porch (uncredited)
Merrill McCormick ... Fletcher (uncredited)
Syd Saylor ... Second old timer on hotel porch (uncredited)
John W. Cunningham (story)
Carl Foreman (screenplay)
Original Music by
* Director Fred Zinnemann said that the black smoke billowing from the train is a sign that the brakes were failing. He and the cameraman didn't know it at the time, and barely got out of the way. The camera tripod snagged itself on the track and fell over, smashing the camera, but the film survived and is in the movie.
* This film was intended as an allegory in Hollywood for the failure of Hollywood people to stand up to the House Un-American Activities Committee during the McCarthy era.
* Lee Van Cleef does not have a word of dialogue.
* The pained expression on Kane's (Gary Cooper's) face throughout the film was not acting; Cooper had a bleeding ulcer at the time.
* Bill Clinton's all-time favorite film. He watched it seventeen times during his two terms as President of the United States.
* This movie is rumored to be able to be viewed in real time. Several shots of clocks are interspersed throughout the film and they correspond with actual minutes ticking by.
* Lee Van Cleef's first film.
* Although the picture takes place between 10:35 a.m. and 12:15 p.m.. slightly longer than the 84-minute running time, this was due to the reediting ordered by both Stanley Kramer and Fred Zinnemann, both of whom were unhappy over the first assemblage. Editor Elmo Williams experimented by using the final portion of the material shot and condensed it to exactly 60 minutes of footage timed to real-time in the film. Thus the film we see is Williams' experimental version, which met with both Kramer's and Zinnemann's approval.
* Although John Wayne often complained that the film was "un-American", when he collected Gary Cooper's Best Actor Oscar on his behalf at the The 25th Annual Academy Awards (1953) (TV) he complained that he wasn't offered the part himself, so he could have made it more like one of his own westerns. He later teamed up with director Howard Hawks to make Rio Bravo (1959) as a right-wing response.
* Gary Cooper, B movie producer Robert L. Lippert and screenwriter Carl Foreman were set to go into a production company together, after the success of this film. John Wayne and Ward Bond ordered Cooper to back out of the deal, as HUAC was preparing to "blacklist" Foreman. Shortly afterward, Lippert was made persona non grata by the Screen Actors Guild, which destroyed his independent production company.
* Until his death, director Fred Zinnemann fought not to have this film colorized, saying that he designed the film in black and white and that it should be shown that way. He was unsuccessful, however. A colorized version was made by Ted Turner's television production company and was broadcast several times over his several cable outlets.
* Producer Stanley Kramer first offered the leading role of Will Kane to Gregory Peck, who turned it down because he felt it was too similar to The Gunfighter (1950). Other actors who turned down the role of Will Kane included Charlton Heston, Marlon Brando and Montgomery Clift.
* Writer 'Carl Foreman' was blacklisted by the House Un-American Activities Committee shortly after the film came out. Indeed Foreman had fled to England by the time the film was finished.
* As 'Carl Foreman' 's script bore certain similarities to John Cunningham's story "The Tin Star", producer Stanley Kramer bought the rights to Cunningham's novel to protect the production against accusations of plagiarism.
* Grace Kelly was cast after Stanley Kramer saw her in an off-Broadway play. He arranged a meeting with her and signed her on the spot.
* Gary Cooper was reluctant to do his big fight scene with Lloyd Bridgesm as he was suffering from back pain at the time.
* A comic relief scene involving town drunk Jack Elam and an entire subplot with James Brown playing another marshal didn't make it into the final cut.
* Hadleyville is the name of the town. It is never spoken but is clearly visible on the train station wall. Hadleyville was also the name of the town in Gung Ho (1986) but was placed in the northeast U.S. In the west, there is a real Hadleyville, in Oregon.
* In the fight scene involving Gary Cooper and Lloyd Bridges, Lloyd's son 'Beau Bridges' , then a youngster, was in the hayloft watching the filming. When water was thrown on his father after the fight, Beau could not help laughing, requiring the scene to be shot a second time. Cooper was not well and in pain but was gracious and understanding, according to Lloyd.
* Gary Cooper didn't use a stunt double in the fight with Lloyd Bridges.
* Gary Cooper was responsible for getting soon-to-be-graylisted actor Lloyd Bridges the role of Harvey Pell.
* Katy Jurado says, "One year without seeing you" in Spanish, to which Cooper replies, "Yes, I know."
* The wife of Sam, 'Harry Morgan' 's character, was named Mildred. In "M*A*S*H" (1972), Morgan's character, Col. Sherman Potter, also had a wife named Mildred.
* Fred Zinnemann wanted a hot, stark look to the film. Cinematographer Floyd Crosby achieved this by not filtering the sky and having the prints made a few points lighter than normal.
* Stanley Kramer removed 'Carl Foreman' 's credit as producer. They never spoke to each other again.
* They used little to no makeup on the face of Gary Cooper, to show his lines and show how worried he was.
* Took 28 days to shoot the film.
* There were 10 days of rehearsal.
* Fred Zinnemann's meticulous planning enabled him to make 400 shots in only four weeks.
* The film is set in Hadleyville, population 650, in the New Mexico Territory, on a hot summer Sunday. The 37-star flag the judge removes as he prepares to flee shows that the time frame is sometime between Nebraska's admission as the 37th state on March 1, 1867 and Colorado's admission as the 38th state on August 1, 1876.
* The picture takes place between 10:35 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. slightly longer than the 84 minute running time.
* They only took between 1-3 takes per scene.
* Between takes Gary Cooper would chat with the crew or snooze underneath a tree.
* The character played by Gary Cooper was originally named Will Doane. The name was changed to Will Kane because co-star Katy Jurado had difficulty pronouncing the name Will Doane.
* "Do Not Forsake Me, Oh, My Darlin'" was the first Oscar-winning song from a non-musical film.
* Much of the film was filmed in the gold rush town of Columbia, CA. Today it is a state park right by Sonora on Highway 49.
* Henry Fonda was prevented from accepting the role of Will Kane because he had been graylisted from Hollywood due to his political activism, forcing him to act exclusively on the stage from 1947 to 1955.
* In 2007, the American Film Institute ranked this as the #27 Greatest Movie of All Time.
* John Wayne strongly disliked this movie because he knew it was an allegory for blacklisting, which he and his friend Ward Bond had actively supported. Twenty years later he was still criticizing it in his controversial interview with Playboy magazine in May 1971. Inventing a scene that was never in the movie, he claimed Cooper had thrown his marshal's badge to the ground and stepped on it. He also stated he would never regret having driven the blacklisted screenwriter Carl Foreman out of Hollywood.
* Continuity: In the church scene a young girl is still in the church next to her mother after all the children have been "dismissed"; in the very next shot she is not there.
* Continuity: When Kane is in his office and puts his head down on his desk, he did not have a badge on when his head went down, but he has a badge when his head comes up.
* Continuity: While walking around in the city looking for help, Will Kane's vest alternately opens and closes between cuts.
* Continuity: Amy's luggage has been loaded on to the train, which we see pull off without any unloading, but it reappears on the cart in the final scene.
* Continuity: When Will Kane goes to visit Martin Howe, the house door has a different arrangement of panels on the outside from the inside.
* Anachronisms: In the climactic crane shot when Kane is alone in the town square, modern day Los Angeles is clearly visible in the skyline.
* Continuity: Due to weather problems, the climactic crane shot at "high noon" was actually taken at 3pm, thus the shadows are all wrong.
* Continuity: When Kane enters Ramirez's hotel room, he drops his hat on a chair to his left. Next shot he holds his hat in both hands.
* Continuity: When Kane throws his badge on the ground at the end of the movie, a star from a previous take can be clearly seen immediately behind his left boot.
* Continuity: When the mayor makes his speech in church there are children sitting in the pews with the adults. Then the children disappear, but they're back in the next shot.
* Factual errors: Once the showdown began, the first time Kane is fired upon by an off screen gunman, the bullet strikes the side of a barn about a foot over his left shoulder. At the same time Kane grabs his upper left arm as if he was wounded. His shirt from that point on is torn as if damaged by a bullet. The ballistics involved for that scenario just doesn't work, the bullet would have had to bounce off Kane's arm in an impossible trajectory.
* Continuity: SPOILER: After Amy shoots one of the bad guys in the back there is a shot of Will Kane looking out a window holding his gun in his left hand. There is an immediate cut to a shot of him holding the gun in his right hand. The left-handed shot appears to have been done to make the composition of the shot more dramatic.
* Anachronisms: SPOILER: In the climactic gunfight, after Marshal Kane has shot Ben Miller, we see Kane running between buildings into a back alley area off the main street of town. He stops by a tree and looks back to see if he is being pursued. As he sets off again, we see the back of a brick building with an air conditioning unit mounted on the outside of a second storey window.
Burbank, California, USA
Columbia State Historic Park - 22708 Broadway, Columbia, California, USA
Columbia, California, USA
Columbia/Warner Bros. Ranch - 411 N. Hollywood Way, Burbank, California, USA
Iverson Ranch, Chatsworth, Los Angeles, California, USA
Main Street, Columbia State Historic Park - 22708 Broadway, Columbia, California, USA
Melody Ranch - 24715 Oak Creek Avenue, Newhall, California, USA
Modesto, California, USA
Newhall, California, USA
Railtown 1897 State Historical Park, Jamestown, California, USA
Railtown, California, USA
Sierra Railroad, California, USA (rail scenes)
St Joseph's Catholic Church, Gardner Avenue, Tuolumne City, California, USA (church)
Tuolumne City, California, USA
Warnerville, California, USA (rail station)
Western Street, Warner Brothers Burbank Studios - 4000 Warner Boulevard, Burbank, California, USA
Wilson House, Main Street, Columbia State Historic Park - 22708 Broadway, Columbia, California, USA
(Wilson / McConnell House)