Johnny Belinda (1948)

101 mins | Drama | 23 October 1948

Director:

Jean Negulesco

Producer:

Jerry Wald

Cinematographer:

Ted McCord

Editor:

David Weisbart

Production Designer:

Robert Haas

Production Company:

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

News items in HR add the following information about the production: Warner Bros. paid between $50,000 and $65,000 for film rights to Elmer Harris' play. Delmer Daves was initially scheduled to direct the film. Some scenes were filmed on location at Fort Bragg, CA and at the Mendocino Presbyterian Church. The film marked the motion picture debut of actress Jan Sterling. Stephen McNally, using the name Horace McNally, acted the role of "Dr. Richardson" in the stage production of the play. Jane Wyman won an Academy Award for Best Actress. Lew Ayers was nominated for Best Actor, and Charles Bickford and Agnes Moorehead were nominated for Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress, respectively. Jean Negulesco was nominated for Best Director. The film also received nominations for Best Picture, Screenplay, Art Direction, Cinematography, Film Editing, Music and Sound ... More Less

News items in HR add the following information about the production: Warner Bros. paid between $50,000 and $65,000 for film rights to Elmer Harris' play. Delmer Daves was initially scheduled to direct the film. Some scenes were filmed on location at Fort Bragg, CA and at the Mendocino Presbyterian Church. The film marked the motion picture debut of actress Jan Sterling. Stephen McNally, using the name Horace McNally, acted the role of "Dr. Richardson" in the stage production of the play. Jane Wyman won an Academy Award for Best Actress. Lew Ayers was nominated for Best Actor, and Charles Bickford and Agnes Moorehead were nominated for Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress, respectively. Jean Negulesco was nominated for Best Director. The film also received nominations for Best Picture, Screenplay, Art Direction, Cinematography, Film Editing, Music and Sound Recording. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
American Cinematographer
Oct 48
p. 338-39, 357.
Box Office
18 Sep 1948.
---
Daily Variety
8 Sep 48
p. 3, 8
Film Daily
14 Sep 48
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Oct 1946.
---
Hollywood Reporter
5 Dec 1946.
---
Hollywood Reporter
3 Sep 47
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Sep 48
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Oct 48
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Oct 48
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
11 Sep 48
p. 4310.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
18 Sep 48
p. 4317.
New York Times
2 Oct 48
p. 11.
Variety
15 Sep 48
p. 15.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Warner Bros.--First National Picture
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
PRODUCER
Prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Asst cam
Gaffer
Stills
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Asst art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Asst ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Props
MUSIC
Orch arr
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff dir
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Tech adv
Tech adv
Unit mgr
Scr spv
Best boy
Locations
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play Johnny Belinda by Elmer Harris, as produced by Harry Wagstaff Gribble (New York, 18 Sep 1940).
DETAILS
Release Date:
23 October 1948
Premiere Information:
World premiere in Hollywood: 14 October 1948
Production Date:
3 September--20 November 1947
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
27 October 1948
Copyright Number:
LP1886
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
101
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

Soon after Dr. Robert Richardson arrives in the farming and fishing community on the small island of Cape Breton near Nova Scotia, Aggie McDonald begs him to assist in the birth of a calf. Aggie lives with her brother Black, a poor, proud farmer, and his deaf and mute daughter, Belinda. Although the McDonalds and the villagers consider Belinda mentally retarded, Robert teaches her sign language and lip reading. When Black learns that he can communicate with his daughter, a bond grows between them. One evening, a group of young people, including belligerent Locky McCormick and his girl friend, Stella Maguire, Robert's assistant, come by the farm to pick up some flour. An impromptu dance breaks out, and Robert places Belinda's hand on the violin so that she can feel the vibrations. Her tentative attempts to dance briefly attract Locky's attention. Later, having been rejected by Stella, who secretly loves Robert, a drunken Locky rapes Belinda. Belinda becomes withdrawn afterward, and Black begs Robert to find out what is wrong with her. Robert convinces Black to allow him to take Belinda to town for diversion. While there, Robert brings Belinda to an ear specialist for an examination and learns that she is pregnant. Back at Cape Breton, he reveals her secret to Aggie, but does not tell Black, fearing his anger. Black has become very proud of his transformed daughter and, accompanied by Robert, brings her to church for the first time. Locky and Stella attend the service as well, to hear their wedding banns read, and Belinda's reaction to Locky gives Robert cause to think that he may ... +


Soon after Dr. Robert Richardson arrives in the farming and fishing community on the small island of Cape Breton near Nova Scotia, Aggie McDonald begs him to assist in the birth of a calf. Aggie lives with her brother Black, a poor, proud farmer, and his deaf and mute daughter, Belinda. Although the McDonalds and the villagers consider Belinda mentally retarded, Robert teaches her sign language and lip reading. When Black learns that he can communicate with his daughter, a bond grows between them. One evening, a group of young people, including belligerent Locky McCormick and his girl friend, Stella Maguire, Robert's assistant, come by the farm to pick up some flour. An impromptu dance breaks out, and Robert places Belinda's hand on the violin so that she can feel the vibrations. Her tentative attempts to dance briefly attract Locky's attention. Later, having been rejected by Stella, who secretly loves Robert, a drunken Locky rapes Belinda. Belinda becomes withdrawn afterward, and Black begs Robert to find out what is wrong with her. Robert convinces Black to allow him to take Belinda to town for diversion. While there, Robert brings Belinda to an ear specialist for an examination and learns that she is pregnant. Back at Cape Breton, he reveals her secret to Aggie, but does not tell Black, fearing his anger. Black has become very proud of his transformed daughter and, accompanied by Robert, brings her to church for the first time. Locky and Stella attend the service as well, to hear their wedding banns read, and Belinda's reaction to Locky gives Robert cause to think that he may be the father of the child. He says nothing, however, and after the baby, whom Belinda names Johnny, is born, the townspeople, believing that Robert is the child's father, ostracize him and the McDonalds. Robert offers to marry Belinda, but Black dissuades him, stating that Belinda will understand that he does not love her. When Locky appears during a storm, Black suddenly realizes the identity of Johnny's father, and assaults Locky, who pushes Black off a cliff to his death. When a lack of patients forces Robert to leave town, he promises to send for Aggie and Belinda as soon as he is established. Meanwhile, certain that Belinda is incapable of caring for her child, the townspeople decide to take the baby from her and give him to Stella and Locky, who have since married. Stella changes her mind, however, when she sees how much Belinda loves Johnny. Locky then tells Stella that he is determined to take the child because he is the baby's father. When he comes after the baby, Belinda shoots and kills him. At Belinda's murder trial, Stella initially refuses to disclose the reason why Locky was killed, but finally tells the truth, and Belinda is acquitted. +

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

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