The Half-Breed (1952)

81 mins | Western | May 1952

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HISTORY

According to an Apr 1950 DV news item, author Robert Hardy Andrews was signed by RKO executive producer Sid Rogell to write and produce this story. Sam Bischoff later took over as executive producer. Although HR production charts and news items indicate that principal photography was directed entirely by Edward Ludwig, with Irving Starr producing, Stuart Gilmore and Herman Schlom are credited onscreen as director and producer, respectively. Twelve days of added scenes and retakes began in late Oct 1951; it is possible that Gilmore took over direction at that time. An early Feb 1951 HR news item noted that Ludwig was also set to work on the screenplay, but his contribution to the final film, if any, has not been determined.
       Location shooting took place in Sedona, AZ, and at the RKO Ranch in Encino, CA, according to news items. A pre-production news item announced that Ludwig was scouting locations near Sonora in Baja California, but it has not been determined whether any filming actually took place there. According to a 30 Mar 1951 HR news item, Robert Young was hospitalized for three days during production after collapsing on the set with a viral ... More Less

According to an Apr 1950 DV news item, author Robert Hardy Andrews was signed by RKO executive producer Sid Rogell to write and produce this story. Sam Bischoff later took over as executive producer. Although HR production charts and news items indicate that principal photography was directed entirely by Edward Ludwig, with Irving Starr producing, Stuart Gilmore and Herman Schlom are credited onscreen as director and producer, respectively. Twelve days of added scenes and retakes began in late Oct 1951; it is possible that Gilmore took over direction at that time. An early Feb 1951 HR news item noted that Ludwig was also set to work on the screenplay, but his contribution to the final film, if any, has not been determined.
       Location shooting took place in Sedona, AZ, and at the RKO Ranch in Encino, CA, according to news items. A pre-production news item announced that Ludwig was scouting locations near Sonora in Baja California, but it has not been determined whether any filming actually took place there. According to a 30 Mar 1951 HR news item, Robert Young was hospitalized for three days during production after collapsing on the set with a viral infection. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
19 Apr 1952.
---
Daily Variety
12 Apr 1950.
---
Daily Variety
16 Apr 52
p. 3.
Film Daily
29 Apr 52
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Feb 1951.
---
Hollywood Reporter
27 Feb 51
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Mar 51
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Mar 51
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Mar 51
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Mar 51
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Mar 51
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Mar 51
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Mar 51
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Mar 51
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Apr 51
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Apr 52
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
19 Apr 52
p. 1321.
New York Times
5 Jul 52
p. 7.
Variety
16 Apr 52
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
2d unit dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITERS
Addl dial
Based on a story by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus dir
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
DANCE
Dance dir
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
SONGS
"Remember the Girl You Left Behind," words and music by Harry Revel and Mort Greene
"When I'm Walking Arm in Arm with Jim," words by Harry Harris, music by Lew Pollack.
DETAILS
Release Date:
May 1952
Production Date:
early March--early April 1951
addl scenes began late October 1951
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
9 May 1952
Copyright Number:
LP1719
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
81
Length(in feet):
7,329
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
15219
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In 1867, during America's expansion into Indian territory, the small Arizona town of San Remo comes under siege by an Apache war party led by Charlie Wolf, a "half-breed," who is protesting the corrupt Indian agency in charge of administering aid to Apaches. Dan Craig, a gambler passing through San Remo, takes an interest in the dispute when he suspects that San Remo's Marshal Cassidy is in league with Kraemer, the double-dealing Indian agency head. During his stay in San Remo, Dan also becomes involved with Helen Dowling, a pretty young singer who is planning to leave San Remo for San Francisco to further her career. The siege, which has been deliberately instigated by hotel owner Crawford and his men, who are planning to use the unrest as their excuse to make a claim on the gold buried under the Indian reservation, is momentarily suspended when Wolf enters Crawford's hotel with his gun lowered, asking for the surrender of Kraemer. While the townspeople view the proceedings in disbelief, Dan and Wolf begin negotiations. The temporary truce is soon broken, however, when Crawford starts a gun battle with the Apaches. Despite the attack by Crawford, Wolf sees a trustworthy friend in Dan and knows that he is sincere in his efforts to avert further bloodshed. As smoke signals emanating from the reservation announce impending war, U.S. Cavalry troops under the command of Capt. Jackson arrive in San Remo. At the captain's request, Dan relays a message to the Apaches that the government is willing to dismiss Kraemer from the agency in exchange for peace. The Apaches accept the offer, but as Dan and ... +


In 1867, during America's expansion into Indian territory, the small Arizona town of San Remo comes under siege by an Apache war party led by Charlie Wolf, a "half-breed," who is protesting the corrupt Indian agency in charge of administering aid to Apaches. Dan Craig, a gambler passing through San Remo, takes an interest in the dispute when he suspects that San Remo's Marshal Cassidy is in league with Kraemer, the double-dealing Indian agency head. During his stay in San Remo, Dan also becomes involved with Helen Dowling, a pretty young singer who is planning to leave San Remo for San Francisco to further her career. The siege, which has been deliberately instigated by hotel owner Crawford and his men, who are planning to use the unrest as their excuse to make a claim on the gold buried under the Indian reservation, is momentarily suspended when Wolf enters Crawford's hotel with his gun lowered, asking for the surrender of Kraemer. While the townspeople view the proceedings in disbelief, Dan and Wolf begin negotiations. The temporary truce is soon broken, however, when Crawford starts a gun battle with the Apaches. Despite the attack by Crawford, Wolf sees a trustworthy friend in Dan and knows that he is sincere in his efforts to avert further bloodshed. As smoke signals emanating from the reservation announce impending war, U.S. Cavalry troops under the command of Capt. Jackson arrive in San Remo. At the captain's request, Dan relays a message to the Apaches that the government is willing to dismiss Kraemer from the agency in exchange for peace. The Apaches accept the offer, but as Dan and Wolf ride back to San Remo, Dan is wounded in an ambush. Soon after Dan and Wolf arrive in San Remo, Wolf meets Helen for the first time and falls instantly in love with her. Kraemer is later replaced by Dan as the local agency representative, and Wolf is made his assistant. The first attempt by the Apaches to get supplies in San Remo with Dan as head of the agency ends in tragedy, however, when Crawford's men ambush the caravan, steal their goods and kill many Indians. Later, when Dan finds Wolf forcing his attentions on Helen, the two men quarrel, and Wolf leaves San Remo. Hoping to prevent the Apaches from retaliating for the ambush, Dan promises to return their stolen goods and bring the culprit to justice. The fragile truce is further strained when Wolf's sister Nah-Lin is found murdered. One of Crawford's men, Russell, is arrested for the Nah-Lin's murder, but, faced with certain death at the hands of the Apaches, he names Crawford as the real culprit. Shortly after the admission, Crawford kills Russell. Dan chases after Crawford, kills him and delivers his body to the Apaches. Satisfied with the death of Nah-Lin's killer and the source of corruption in San Remo, the Apaches call off the war party and Wolf and Dan patch up their differences. Wolf decides to return to the reservation to help enlighten his people about the white man's ways. +

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.