Virginia City (1940)

115 or 121 mins | Western | 23 March 1940

Director:

Michael Curtiz

Writer:

Robert Buckner

Cinematographer:

Sol Polito

Editor:

George Amy

Production Designers:

Ted Smith, Robert Haas

Production Company:

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

According to news items in HR , this picture was filmed on location at Sherwood Lake, CA and near Victorville, CA. Modern sources state that scenes also were shot at Painted Desert in Arizona. Photographer Sol Polito, editor George Amy, screenwriter Robert Buckner, director Michael Curtiz and star Errol Flynn also worked on 1939's Dodge City together (see above). Errol Flynn and Martha Scott starred in a Lux Radio Theatre version of this story on 26 May ... More Less

According to news items in HR , this picture was filmed on location at Sherwood Lake, CA and near Victorville, CA. Modern sources state that scenes also were shot at Painted Desert in Arizona. Photographer Sol Polito, editor George Amy, screenwriter Robert Buckner, director Michael Curtiz and star Errol Flynn also worked on 1939's Dodge City together (see above). Errol Flynn and Martha Scott starred in a Lux Radio Theatre version of this story on 26 May 1941. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
16 Mar 40
p. 3.
Film Daily
18 Mar 40
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Nov 39
p. 27.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Dec 39
p. 3
Hollywood Reporter
13 Dec 39
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Jan 40
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Mar 40
p. 3.
Motion Picture Daily
20 Mar 40
p. 4.
Motion Picture Herald
20 Jan 40
p. 51.
Motion Picture Herald
23 Mar 40
p. 42.
New York Times
23 Mar 40
p. 16.
Variety
20 Mar 40
p. 16.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Warner Bros.--First National Picture; Jack L. Warner in charge of production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Assoc prod
WRITER
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
MUSIC
Mus score
Orch arr
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit mgr
DETAILS
Release Date:
23 March 1940
Premiere Information:
Virginia City, NV premiere: 16 March 1940
Production Date:
began late October 1939
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
23 March 1940
Copyright Number:
LP9495
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
sepia
Duration(in mins):
115 or 121
Length(in reels):
12
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
5857
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Toward the end of the Civil War, a nearly defeated South is in desperate need of gold to continue the fight. Hoping to help the Confederacy, Julia Hayne travels from Virginia City to Libby prison, called the "black hole of the Confederacy," with a proposal to make to the prison's commander, Vance Irby. Julia tells Vance that a group of sympathizers has raised $5,000,000 for the Confederacy, and asks his help to bring it out of Virginia City. With the consent of Jefferson Davis, Vance agrees, but before Vance can leave for Nevada, Kerry Bradford, a Union intelligence officer and prisoner at Libby, escapes and hears rumors of the shipment. With his friends, Marblehead and Olaf "Moose" Swenson, Kerry is dispatched to stop the shipment, and on the stagecoach bound for Virginia City, he meets Julia. The two fall in love, but once they reach Virginia City, Julia avoids Kerry, while Vance readies the gold shipment under the guise of an immigrant wagon train headed for California. When the two antagonists meet again, Kerry realizes that Vance has been sent to escort the bullion South. As Kerry closes in on the gold, Vance asks Julia to lure him into a trap, forcing her to choose between her love and her country. Julia chooses her country, and the gold train leaves town with Kerry as their prisoner. Along the trail, Kerry escapes and, left for dead after a fall from a cliff, he wires the Union forces for help. Meanwhile, plagued by a lack of water, the train continues on until the bandit John Murrell and his men attack, just when things look ... +


Toward the end of the Civil War, a nearly defeated South is in desperate need of gold to continue the fight. Hoping to help the Confederacy, Julia Hayne travels from Virginia City to Libby prison, called the "black hole of the Confederacy," with a proposal to make to the prison's commander, Vance Irby. Julia tells Vance that a group of sympathizers has raised $5,000,000 for the Confederacy, and asks his help to bring it out of Virginia City. With the consent of Jefferson Davis, Vance agrees, but before Vance can leave for Nevada, Kerry Bradford, a Union intelligence officer and prisoner at Libby, escapes and hears rumors of the shipment. With his friends, Marblehead and Olaf "Moose" Swenson, Kerry is dispatched to stop the shipment, and on the stagecoach bound for Virginia City, he meets Julia. The two fall in love, but once they reach Virginia City, Julia avoids Kerry, while Vance readies the gold shipment under the guise of an immigrant wagon train headed for California. When the two antagonists meet again, Kerry realizes that Vance has been sent to escort the bullion South. As Kerry closes in on the gold, Vance asks Julia to lure him into a trap, forcing her to choose between her love and her country. Julia chooses her country, and the gold train leaves town with Kerry as their prisoner. Along the trail, Kerry escapes and, left for dead after a fall from a cliff, he wires the Union forces for help. Meanwhile, plagued by a lack of water, the train continues on until the bandit John Murrell and his men attack, just when things look their bleakest. Kerry and his men ride to the rescue, but they are no match for Murrell's band, and Vance, mortally wounded, asks Kerry to see that the gold is used to rebuild the South. Kerry promises to do so and buries the gold in an explosion. In the morning, Murrell's men move in for the slaughter, however, Union reinforcements arrive just in time to save the train. When Kerry refuses to turn over the gold, he is court martialled and sentenced to die, but at the last moment Julia wins a pardon from President Abraham Lincoln and the lovers, like the country, are reunited. +

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

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