Johnny Concho (1956)

85 mins | Western | 1 July 1956

Director:

Don McGuire

Producer:

Frank Sinatra

Cinematographer:

William C. Mellor

Editor:

Eda Warren

Production Designer:

Nicolai Remisoff

Production Company:

Kent Productions, Inc.
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HISTORY

Johnny Concho marked Frank Sinatra's first film as a producer, the first and only film made by his own company, Kent Productions, Inc., and his first Western. The film's pressbook reports that, one week prior to production, Phyllis Kirk replaced Gloria Vanderbilt in the role of "Mary Dark." Although a 6 Dec 1955 HR news item includes Juney Ellis in the cast, her appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. In Jun 1960, DV reported that Jack Broder's Realart Productions had sold the rights to David P. Harmon's original story to Sinatra's company and was suing to obtain a share of the profits. Broder alleged that he was owed between $20,000 to $60,000 for the film, which had been theatrically re-released in 1960. The disposition of the suit has not been ... More Less

Johnny Concho marked Frank Sinatra's first film as a producer, the first and only film made by his own company, Kent Productions, Inc., and his first Western. The film's pressbook reports that, one week prior to production, Phyllis Kirk replaced Gloria Vanderbilt in the role of "Mary Dark." Although a 6 Dec 1955 HR news item includes Juney Ellis in the cast, her appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. In Jun 1960, DV reported that Jack Broder's Realart Productions had sold the rights to David P. Harmon's original story to Sinatra's company and was suing to obtain a share of the profits. Broder alleged that he was owed between $20,000 to $60,000 for the film, which had been theatrically re-released in 1960. The disposition of the suit has not been determined. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
14 Jul 1956.
---
Daily Variety
9 Jul 56
p. 3.
Daily Variety
10 Jun 1960.
---
Film Daily
9 Jul 56
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Nov 1955
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Nov 55
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Dec 1955
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Dec 1955
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jul 56
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
14 Oct 1955.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
21 Jul 56
p. 977.
New York Times
1 Jan 1956.
---
New York Times
16 Aug 56
p. 30.
Variety
11 Jul 56
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Based on a story by
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
COSTUMES
Ward master
Ward mistress
MUSIC
Mus comp and cond
Mus ed
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod supv
Casting
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the teleplay "The Man Who Owned the Town" by David P. Harmon on Studio One (CBS, 1 Nov 1954).
DETAILS
Release Date:
1 July 1956
Production Date:
began 28 November 1955 at California Studios
Copyright Claimant:
Kent Productions, Inc.
Copyright Date:
26 April 1956
Copyright Number:
LP8603
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
85
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
17825
SYNOPSIS

In the 1870s, Johnny Concho, the younger brother of notorious gunman Red Concho, has become boss of Cripple Creek, Arizona. Although Red is not a resident, the townspeople allow themselves to be bullied and robbed by the cowardly Johnny. Mary Dark, daughter of the general store owner, loves Johnny despite his arrogance and dependence on his brother's reputation, while the town's sheriff tells Johnny that one day, when Red is no longer around, things will be very different. One evening, during an obligatory poker game to which prominent citizens like Judge Tyler, Helgeson the blacksmith, and various ranchers are "invited," a bemused stagecoach passenger watches as Johnny is allowed to win without ever revealing his hand. Cowboys Tallman and Walker then enter the saloon and Tallman asks to sit in on the game, although everyone discourages his participation. When Johnny wins again without showing his cards, Tallman challenges him. Johnny asks the others to explain to Tallman who he is but Tallman is unimpressed and reveals that he killed Red two days earlier in a gunfight. Sheriff Henderson has been summoned and Johnny begs for his help. After Tallman gives Johnny the option of drawing his gun or leaving town by sundown the next day, Johnny tries to get support from the townspeople he has victimized. No one will help him, although Judge Tyler offers to assist him in preparing his will. Meanwhile, Tallman takes over Johnny's room in the saloon and makes it clear that he is the town's new boss. Henderson tells Johnny that he wears a special holster that springs open, enabling him to beat many gunmen to the draw, and while doubting that Johnny will ... +


In the 1870s, Johnny Concho, the younger brother of notorious gunman Red Concho, has become boss of Cripple Creek, Arizona. Although Red is not a resident, the townspeople allow themselves to be bullied and robbed by the cowardly Johnny. Mary Dark, daughter of the general store owner, loves Johnny despite his arrogance and dependence on his brother's reputation, while the town's sheriff tells Johnny that one day, when Red is no longer around, things will be very different. One evening, during an obligatory poker game to which prominent citizens like Judge Tyler, Helgeson the blacksmith, and various ranchers are "invited," a bemused stagecoach passenger watches as Johnny is allowed to win without ever revealing his hand. Cowboys Tallman and Walker then enter the saloon and Tallman asks to sit in on the game, although everyone discourages his participation. When Johnny wins again without showing his cards, Tallman challenges him. Johnny asks the others to explain to Tallman who he is but Tallman is unimpressed and reveals that he killed Red two days earlier in a gunfight. Sheriff Henderson has been summoned and Johnny begs for his help. After Tallman gives Johnny the option of drawing his gun or leaving town by sundown the next day, Johnny tries to get support from the townspeople he has victimized. No one will help him, although Judge Tyler offers to assist him in preparing his will. Meanwhile, Tallman takes over Johnny's room in the saloon and makes it clear that he is the town's new boss. Henderson tells Johnny that he wears a special holster that springs open, enabling him to beat many gunmen to the draw, and while doubting that Johnny will have the guts to use the holster, gives it to him. Later, Tallman appoints himself sheriff and, promising "protection" for the town, demands twenty cents of every dollar coming into it. When Johnny confronts Tallman, Tallman shoots the holster from his belt and Johnny rides off despite Mary's pleas. Subsequently, Johnny is driven out of several towns as the sheriffs sense he will bring trouble. One night Mary, who has been following him, rides into his camp, and although Johnny tells her that he is broke, has no food or money and has the "sign of a leper" upon him, she offers to stay with him. Mary has brought three hundred dollars with her and wants them to head for California to begin a new life. They decide to get married and, in a nearby town, discover preacher Barney Clark, a reformed gunman. However, two gunmen, Mason and Lem, learn that they are in the church, and as Red had killed Mason's partner, decide to wait for Johnny. After Johnny finally realizes that he is a total coward, Mary begins to doubt their relationship. When Mason and Lem enter his church, Barney reveals that he is wearing a gun and tells them to leave. Barney then tries to proceed with the marriage ceremony, but Mary can no longer bear Johnny's cowardice and refuses to marry him. After advising Johnny to go home and be honest, Barney reveals that he knew Red and that he was a coward, a sneak and a murderer. Enraged, Johnny threatens to kill Barney, who offers him his gun for the act. The confrontation gives Johnny the courage he so desperately needs, and he and Barney leave the church together. When they encounter Mason and Lem, Barney points a shotgun at them, allowing Johnny to ride off. Meanwhile, in Cripple Creek, Tallman has reinforced his position and when only rancher Sam Green will stand up against him, Tallman shoots him in the back. After Johnny follows Mary back to Cripple Creek, he meets Tallman in front of the saloon and tells the townspeople that Tallman is no different than Red was--a thief and a murderer--and urges them to fight and destroy Tallman. Although Johnny is not wearing a gun, Tallman shoots him, wounding him in the shoulder, but Johnny's act of courage provokes Mary's father to shoot Tallman while the saloon's owner shoots Walker. The judge and the sheriff then empty their guns into the two killers. Johnny thanks the townspeople and prepares to leave, but the sheriff says they would like him to stay. As he has also redeemed himself in Mary's eyes, Johnny happily agrees. +

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

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