Charro! (1969)

98 mins | Western | March 1969

Cinematographer:

Ellsworth Fredricks

Editor:

Al Clark

Production Designer:

James Sullivan

Production Company:

Cinema Center Films
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HISTORY

Although press materials and the Var review credit Alan and Marilyn Bergman with the lyrics to "Charro," the film's soundtrack album and the music copyright credit Billy Strange and Scott Davis.
       According to the 17 Jul 1968 DV, Elvis Presley was set to star in the forthcoming National General Pictures Corporation release, referred to (without punctuation) as Charro. Filming was scheduled to begin in Arizona in five days time, on 22 Jul 1968. Producer-writer-director Charles Marquis Warren and company were currently headed to Arizona to confirm fifteen locations, including Superstition Mountain and Apache Junction, where exteriors were planned. Interior shooting would follow at the Samuel Goldwyn Studios in Hollywood, CA.
       Various DV items published between Aug and Sep 1968 listed additional cast members as follows: April Tatro, Linda Young, Darlene Stuart, Marliana Teppell, Karen Lemone, Kathleen Darc, Marilyn White, Maria Schroeder, Virginia Cruzon, and Barbara Teuber. The 12 Mar 1969 Var added Jacqui Brandt and Megan Timothy to the lineup.
       According to the 22 Aug 1968 DV, Elvis Presley accidentally fired a gun he thought was empty into the face of director Warren. The gun was loaded with only a quarter of the blank charge, so Warren was fortunate to suffer only minor powder burns. The director resumed production minutes after receiving first aid on set, while Elvis was reportedly left shaken by the accident.
       The 20 Nov 1968 Var stated that the film would soon be scored by Hugo Montenegro, indicating that filming had completed.
       An advertisement in the 11 Feb 1969 DV announced that Charro! would hold a ... More Less

Although press materials and the Var review credit Alan and Marilyn Bergman with the lyrics to "Charro," the film's soundtrack album and the music copyright credit Billy Strange and Scott Davis.
       According to the 17 Jul 1968 DV, Elvis Presley was set to star in the forthcoming National General Pictures Corporation release, referred to (without punctuation) as Charro. Filming was scheduled to begin in Arizona in five days time, on 22 Jul 1968. Producer-writer-director Charles Marquis Warren and company were currently headed to Arizona to confirm fifteen locations, including Superstition Mountain and Apache Junction, where exteriors were planned. Interior shooting would follow at the Samuel Goldwyn Studios in Hollywood, CA.
       Various DV items published between Aug and Sep 1968 listed additional cast members as follows: April Tatro, Linda Young, Darlene Stuart, Marliana Teppell, Karen Lemone, Kathleen Darc, Marilyn White, Maria Schroeder, Virginia Cruzon, and Barbara Teuber. The 12 Mar 1969 Var added Jacqui Brandt and Megan Timothy to the lineup.
       According to the 22 Aug 1968 DV, Elvis Presley accidentally fired a gun he thought was empty into the face of director Warren. The gun was loaded with only a quarter of the blank charge, so Warren was fortunate to suffer only minor powder burns. The director resumed production minutes after receiving first aid on set, while Elvis was reportedly left shaken by the accident.
       The 20 Nov 1968 Var stated that the film would soon be scored by Hugo Montenegro, indicating that filming had completed.
       An advertisement in the 11 Feb 1969 DV announced that Charro! would hold a special pre-screening in the Southwest on 12 Mar 1969. The 12 Mar 1969 Var noted that the pre-release would screen in 300 theaters in Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana.
       The film opened citywide in Los Angeles, CA, on 26 Mar 1969, as reported in that day’s LAT. Charro! opened in New York City on 3 Sep 1969, on a double-bill with A Fine Pair (1968, see entry), according to the 4 Sep 1969 NYT.
       The NYT and DV review from 12 Mar 1969 noted that Charro! marked Elvis Presley’s first dramatic feature, and that he only sang during the film’s titles. Critical reception was lukewarm.
More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
17 Jul 1968
p. 4.
Daily Variety
19 Jul 1968
pp. 8-9.
Daily Variety
16 Aug 1968
p. 11.
Daily Variety
22 Aug 1968
p. 2.
Daily Variety
23 Aug 1968
p. 4.
Daily Variety
27 Sep 1968
p. 10.
Daily Variety
11 Feb 1969
pp. 10-11.
Daily Variety
12 Mar 1969
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
7 Aug 1968
Section G, p. 11.
Los Angeles Times
26 Mar 1969
Section H, p. 13, 19.
New York Times
4 Sep 1969
p. 51.
Variety
20 Nov 1968
p. 72.
Variety
12 Mar 1969
p. 19.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
1st & 2nd asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Post prod ed supervisor
SET DECORATOR
MUSIC
Mus comp & cond
SOUND
Sd mix
Music ed
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Spec eff
MAKEUP
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit prod mgr
Dial dir
SOURCES
SONGS
"Charro!" music by Hugo Montenegro, lyrics by Billy Strange and Scott Davis, performed by Elvis Presley.
PERFORMER
DETAILS
Release Date:
March 1969
Premiere Information:
Southwest screening: 12 March 1969
Los Angeles opening
26 March 1969
New York City opening: 3 September 1969
Production Date:
began 22 July 1968
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Technicolor
Widescreen/ratio
Panavision
Duration(in mins):
98
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In 1870, reformed outlaw Jess Wade is tricked into believing that his former girl friend Tracy urgently wants to see him. Riding into a small Mexican border town, Jess is captured by the band of outlaws, led by Vince and his deranged brother Billy Roy, that he had abandoned a year before in order to lead an honest life. Jess is taken to the gang's mountain hideout and shown the legendary Victory Gun--the cannon that fired the last shot against Maximilian and won freedom for Mexico--as well as a counterfeit poster proclaiming that he is wanted dead or alive by both Mexico and the United States for the theft of the cannon. Jess manages to get away, and he seeks safety in the village of Rio Seco, where Tracy operates the local saloon and Sheriff Ramsey is a trusted friend. Billy Roy appears on the scene and seriously wounds the sheriff in a gunfight. After subduing Billy Roy and dragging him off to jail, Jess arms the townspeople for a possible attack by Vince's gang. But Vince eliminates outside reinforcements by ambushing a platoon of Mexican cavalry, and he threatens to turn the Victory Gun on Rio Seco unless Billy Roy is freed. To back up his warning, Vince fires several shots which topple the church steeple and kill Sheriff Ramsey. Jess takes Billy Roy up to the mountain hideout when the panic-stricken citizens insist that the prisoner be released. During the fighting that ensues, several gang members are slain, and Billy Roy is killed when the wagon holding the cannon breaks loose and crushes him. Jess takes the defeated prisoner and drives the cannon wagon back into Rio ... +


In 1870, reformed outlaw Jess Wade is tricked into believing that his former girl friend Tracy urgently wants to see him. Riding into a small Mexican border town, Jess is captured by the band of outlaws, led by Vince and his deranged brother Billy Roy, that he had abandoned a year before in order to lead an honest life. Jess is taken to the gang's mountain hideout and shown the legendary Victory Gun--the cannon that fired the last shot against Maximilian and won freedom for Mexico--as well as a counterfeit poster proclaiming that he is wanted dead or alive by both Mexico and the United States for the theft of the cannon. Jess manages to get away, and he seeks safety in the village of Rio Seco, where Tracy operates the local saloon and Sheriff Ramsey is a trusted friend. Billy Roy appears on the scene and seriously wounds the sheriff in a gunfight. After subduing Billy Roy and dragging him off to jail, Jess arms the townspeople for a possible attack by Vince's gang. But Vince eliminates outside reinforcements by ambushing a platoon of Mexican cavalry, and he threatens to turn the Victory Gun on Rio Seco unless Billy Roy is freed. To back up his warning, Vince fires several shots which topple the church steeple and kill Sheriff Ramsey. Jess takes Billy Roy up to the mountain hideout when the panic-stricken citizens insist that the prisoner be released. During the fighting that ensues, several gang members are slain, and Billy Roy is killed when the wagon holding the cannon breaks loose and crushes him. Jess takes the defeated prisoner and drives the cannon wagon back into Rio Seco. Although the grateful townspeople ask Jess to remain on as sheriff, he declines, stating that he must take the cannon and Vince back to Mexico. Before riding out of town, however, Jess promises Tracy that he will send for her. +

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

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