Valley of the Sun (1942)

78-79 or 84 mins | Western | 6 February 1942

Director:

George Marshall

Writer:

Horace McCoy

Producer:

Graham Baker

Cinematographer:

Harry Wild

Production Designers:

Albert D'Agostino, Walter E. Keller

Production Company:

RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

According to a 1940 news item in HR , Robert Sisk was originally slated to produce this film, Bartlett Cormack was to have written the screenplay and Joel McCrea was to play the male lead. A Jul 1941 news item in HR notes that Dorothy Comingore was slated as the female lead, but illness forced her replacement by Lucille Ball. Another pre-production news item in HR adds that soundman Bailey Fesler was transferred from this film to The Magnificent Ambersons at the request of Orson Welles. According to the HR review, the film was shot on location in Arizona and in Santa Fe and Taos, NM, and employed Indians from the Taos, Santa Clara, Jemes, San Juan and Tesuque pueblos in New Mexico. Another news item in HR adds that actor Tom Tyler was borrowed from Republic to appear in this ... More Less

According to a 1940 news item in HR , Robert Sisk was originally slated to produce this film, Bartlett Cormack was to have written the screenplay and Joel McCrea was to play the male lead. A Jul 1941 news item in HR notes that Dorothy Comingore was slated as the female lead, but illness forced her replacement by Lucille Ball. Another pre-production news item in HR adds that soundman Bailey Fesler was transferred from this film to The Magnificent Ambersons at the request of Orson Welles. According to the HR review, the film was shot on location in Arizona and in Santa Fe and Taos, NM, and employed Indians from the Taos, Santa Clara, Jemes, San Juan and Tesuque pueblos in New Mexico. Another news item in HR adds that actor Tom Tyler was borrowed from Republic to appear in this film. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
10 Jan 1942.
---
Daily Variety
8 Jan 42
p. 3.
Film Daily
8 Apr 42
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Apr 40
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Jul 41
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Sep 41
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Sep 41
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Oct 41
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Nov 41
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Jan 42
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
17 Jan 42
p. 463.
New York Times
19 Mar 42
p. 29.
Variety
14 Jan 42
p. 8.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus dir
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the serial story "Valley of the Sun" by Clarence Budington Kelland in The Saturday Evening Post (16 Dec 1939--3 Feb 1940).
DETAILS
Release Date:
6 February 1942
Production Date:
22 September--mid November 1941
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
30 January 1942
Copyright Number:
LP11056
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
78-79 or 84
Length(in feet):
7,131
Country:
United States
PCA No:
7764
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

In 1868, in Arizona, frontier scout Jonathan Ware is court-martialed for allowing three innocent Indians to escape from an Army jail. After Jonathan is sentenced to a five-year prison term, a friendly sergeant who understands the scout's concern for the injustices suffered by the Indians allows him to escape. Jonathan then hitches a ride on a stagecoach carrying Indian agent Jim Sawyer and a justice of the peace, who is accompanying the agent to the town of Desert Center to marry Sawyer and Christine Larson, the proprietor of the Busy Bee Café. When Sawyer discovers his non-paying passenger, he throws Jonathan off the stage, and the scout hitches a ride to town with an Indian. At the Busy Bee Café, Chris is awaiting the arrival of the coach when Willie, her simple-minded but kindhearted friend, warns her that Sawyer doesn't love her. Willie's instincts are correct, for in reality, Sawyer is a dishonorable man who has been cheating the Indians of their cattle. After the stage arrives, Sawyer and Chris dress for the wedding ceremony. Attired in his wedding finery, Sawyer goes to the café, and when he finds Jonathan there, a fistfight erupts in which the bridegroom is soundly beaten. Warrick, an English settler who detests the corrupt Sawyer, offers Jonathan refuge at his house, but when Sawyer's men track the scout there, they beat him up and throw him out of town. Finding Jonathan unconscious in the desert, Willie takes him to Chris for medical aid. Jonathan is attracted to Chris, and upon recovering, he joins forces with Willie and Warrick to stop the wedding. Crawling into the ... +


In 1868, in Arizona, frontier scout Jonathan Ware is court-martialed for allowing three innocent Indians to escape from an Army jail. After Jonathan is sentenced to a five-year prison term, a friendly sergeant who understands the scout's concern for the injustices suffered by the Indians allows him to escape. Jonathan then hitches a ride on a stagecoach carrying Indian agent Jim Sawyer and a justice of the peace, who is accompanying the agent to the town of Desert Center to marry Sawyer and Christine Larson, the proprietor of the Busy Bee Café. When Sawyer discovers his non-paying passenger, he throws Jonathan off the stage, and the scout hitches a ride to town with an Indian. At the Busy Bee Café, Chris is awaiting the arrival of the coach when Willie, her simple-minded but kindhearted friend, warns her that Sawyer doesn't love her. Willie's instincts are correct, for in reality, Sawyer is a dishonorable man who has been cheating the Indians of their cattle. After the stage arrives, Sawyer and Chris dress for the wedding ceremony. Attired in his wedding finery, Sawyer goes to the café, and when he finds Jonathan there, a fistfight erupts in which the bridegroom is soundly beaten. Warrick, an English settler who detests the corrupt Sawyer, offers Jonathan refuge at his house, but when Sawyer's men track the scout there, they beat him up and throw him out of town. Finding Jonathan unconscious in the desert, Willie takes him to Chris for medical aid. Jonathan is attracted to Chris, and upon recovering, he joins forces with Willie and Warrick to stop the wedding. Crawling into the attic above the chapel, the three drop red ants on the bridegroom until he runs, scratching, out of the chapel. When Willie abducts the judge to prevent the wedding, Chris and Sawyer take the stage to Tucson, where they plan to marry. Along the trail, Jonathan, who has decided to travel to Washington to plead the case of the Indian, and the judge board the stage. With the judge on board, Chris and Sawyer decide to marry in the coach, but their nuptials are interrupted by an Indian attack. Recognizing his friend Jonathan, Chief Cochise takes the four passengers to his camp, where a meeting of the tribes is being held. To protect Chris, Jonathan tells the Indians that she is his wife. When Geronimo recognizes Sawyer as the man who has been stealing cattle from the Indians, he demands his life. After promising to return the cattle, Jonathan challenges Geronimo to a contest for Sawyer's life. When Jonathan wins the contest, the Indians set their four prisoners free, and while riding along a mountain trail, they see several cavalry officers riding the trail below. Sawyer calls to the men, but by the time the soldiers arrive, Jonathan has disappeared and Lieutenant Burke informs them that there is a bounty on the scout. Back in town, Chris, who has fallen in love with Jonathan, calls off her wedding. When a jealous Sawyer discovers Jonathan visiting Chris at the café, he calls the soldiers to arrest the scout. Soon after, Cochise visits Sawyer to demand the return of the cattle, but the agent reneges on his promise and takes Cochise prisoner instead. That night, Jonathan and his captors are camped along the trail when Chris, Willie, the judge and Warrick surprise his guards and free him. Determined to make Sawyer keep his word, Jonathan threatens to turn him over to the Indians unless he returns the cattle. As they are driving the herd toward the Indian camp, Jonathan sees war smoke signals and Sawyer admits to holding Cochise prisoner. The Indian war party is converging on the town just as Jonathan and Sawyer gallop in and free Cochise, halting the attack. After witnessing Jonathan's good deeds, the lieutenant lets him go free. Jonathan and Chris then marry and are bound for their honeymoon via stagecoach when Sawyer, in a hurry to leave the state, boards the coach. After knocking the intruder unconscious, Jonathan kisses his bride. +

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

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