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HISTORY

The 4 May 1927 FD announced that a film adaptation of Zane Grey’s short story, “Open Range,” would be included in Paramount Pictures 1927-1928 releases.
       The 5 Jul 1927 FD reported that Thelma Todd would co-star in the picture with Lane Chandler. However, the 24 Jul 1927 FD noted that Betty Bronson was cast in the role. Although Clifford S. Smith was credited for directing Open Range, various contemporary sources, including the 6 Jul 1927 Var, reported that Arthur Rosson was the director throughout production. According to the 31 Jul 1927 FD, Rosson and location manager Joseph Murray planned to film exteriors in Utah’s Zion National Park. Principal photography was announced to begin the following week.
       On 24 Aug 1927, Var noted that comedy writer J. Walter Ruben was hired to contribute to the script, marking the “first instance” that “such an appointment has been made for a western.”
       The 26 Aug 1927 FD announced that a unit of fifty-four people were currently on location at Zion National Park filming exteriors. The 2 Sep 1927 Motion Picture News listed Christian Frank as a cast member, and the 11 Sep 1927 FD indicated that comedic acrobat Al St. John was also added to the cast.
       According to the 15 Sep 1927 FD, exterior filming had completed, and the crew was currently resuming work at Lasky Ranch on the Paramount Studio’s lot in Hollywood, CA. Three days later, the 18 Sep 1927 FD indicated that principal photography had completed.
       The 4 Nov 1927 Motion Picture ... More Less

The 4 May 1927 FD announced that a film adaptation of Zane Grey’s short story, “Open Range,” would be included in Paramount Pictures 1927-1928 releases.
       The 5 Jul 1927 FD reported that Thelma Todd would co-star in the picture with Lane Chandler. However, the 24 Jul 1927 FD noted that Betty Bronson was cast in the role. Although Clifford S. Smith was credited for directing Open Range, various contemporary sources, including the 6 Jul 1927 Var, reported that Arthur Rosson was the director throughout production. According to the 31 Jul 1927 FD, Rosson and location manager Joseph Murray planned to film exteriors in Utah’s Zion National Park. Principal photography was announced to begin the following week.
       On 24 Aug 1927, Var noted that comedy writer J. Walter Ruben was hired to contribute to the script, marking the “first instance” that “such an appointment has been made for a western.”
       The 26 Aug 1927 FD announced that a unit of fifty-four people were currently on location at Zion National Park filming exteriors. The 2 Sep 1927 Motion Picture News listed Christian Frank as a cast member, and the 11 Sep 1927 FD indicated that comedic acrobat Al St. John was also added to the cast.
       According to the 15 Sep 1927 FD, exterior filming had completed, and the crew was currently resuming work at Lasky Ranch on the Paramount Studio’s lot in Hollywood, CA. Three days later, the 18 Sep 1927 FD indicated that principal photography had completed.
       The 4 Nov 1927 Motion Picture News announced that Open Range would open the following day, on 5 Nov 1927.
       The 21 Mar 1928 Var review applauded the picture’s “continuous and exciting action,” and credited Betty Bronson for elevating the “usually crude” love scenes that occur in westerns. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
4 May 1927
p. 4.
Film Daily
5 Jul 1927
p. 7.
Film Daily
24 Jul 1927
p. 6.
Film Daily
31 Jul 1927
p. 6.
Film Daily
26 Aug 1927
p. 14.
Film Daily
11 Sep 1927
p. 8.
Film Daily
15 Sep 1927
p. 6.
Film Daily
18 Sep 1927
p. 6.
Kinematograph Weekly
9 Feb 1928
p. 63.
Motion Picture News
2 Sep 1927
p. 716.
Motion Picture News
4 Nov 1927
p. 1436-C.
Variety
6 Jul 1927
p. 13.
Variety
24 Aug 1927
p. 8.
Variety
21 Mar 1928
p. 26.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
PRODUCERS
WRITERS
Titles
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the short story "Open Range" by Zane Grey in Country Gentleman (Feb 1927).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
5 November 1927
Production Date:
late August--18 September 1927
Copyright Claimant:
Paramount Famous Lasky Corp.
Copyright Date:
5 November 1927
Copyright Number:
LP24630
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
5,599
Length(in reels):
6
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Cowpuncher Tex Smith is intrigued by a poster portrait of Lucy Blake, who lives in the cattle settlement of Marco. Meanwhile, Brave Bear, an Indian chief, bitter at the encroachments of whites, conspires with Sam Hardman to steal the town's cattle during a rodeo, and Tex is mistakenly identified as one of the rustlers. At the rodeo, he tries to impress Lucy by riding a bronco; when she loses control of her team in the buggy race, he rescues her, but he evades the sheriff's men. Red and Hardman plan to get Tex before the sheriff gets him, but Lucy, convinced of his innocence, hides him at her ranch. Tex discovers the gang's hideout and forces a confession from Hardman, who warns Brave Bear. When the Indians attack the town, Tex and his men stampede the cattle ahead of them, and Tex saves Lucy and her father from their burning shelter. Hardman falls on his own knife and ... +


Cowpuncher Tex Smith is intrigued by a poster portrait of Lucy Blake, who lives in the cattle settlement of Marco. Meanwhile, Brave Bear, an Indian chief, bitter at the encroachments of whites, conspires with Sam Hardman to steal the town's cattle during a rodeo, and Tex is mistakenly identified as one of the rustlers. At the rodeo, he tries to impress Lucy by riding a bronco; when she loses control of her team in the buggy race, he rescues her, but he evades the sheriff's men. Red and Hardman plan to get Tex before the sheriff gets him, but Lucy, convinced of his innocence, hides him at her ranch. Tex discovers the gang's hideout and forces a confession from Hardman, who warns Brave Bear. When the Indians attack the town, Tex and his men stampede the cattle ahead of them, and Tex saves Lucy and her father from their burning shelter. Hardman falls on his own knife and dies. +

GENRE
Genre:


Subject

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.