To the Shores of Tripoli (1942)

82 or 86-87 mins | Drama | 10 April 1942

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HISTORY

The working titles of this film were The Shores of Tripoli and Tripoli . After the opening credits, narrator Lowell Thomas announces that the picture was photographed on location at the Marine Base in San Diego, CA, and that it is dedicated to Marines "everywhere, past and present" and especially to those who fought on Wake Island. According to studio publicity, "The Marine's Hymn" and "Semper fidelis" were performed for the film by the San Diego Marine Band.
       A 22 Jul 1941 HR news item noted that the studio was negotiating with George Raft for the picture's "top male role," while in Sep 1941, HR announced that Pat O'Brien would be in the cast. Although studio publicity and HR news items include Marissa Flores, Barry Norton and O. Z. Whitehead in the cast, their appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. The picture marked the screen debut of actor Henry Morgan, also known as Henry "Harry" Morgan and later known as Harry Morgan. Morgan is best known for his portrayal of "Col. Potter" in the long-running television series M*A*S*H .
       Dec 1941 HR news items reported that after the attack on Pearl Harbor, second unit director James Havens and his crew became trapped in Honolulu, HI, where they had gone to photograph background footage for this film. For several days, the studio did not know if the men were safe, but on 12 Dec 1941, HR announced that none of the crew had been injured. Several days later, HR noted that two thousand feet of film ... More Less

The working titles of this film were The Shores of Tripoli and Tripoli . After the opening credits, narrator Lowell Thomas announces that the picture was photographed on location at the Marine Base in San Diego, CA, and that it is dedicated to Marines "everywhere, past and present" and especially to those who fought on Wake Island. According to studio publicity, "The Marine's Hymn" and "Semper fidelis" were performed for the film by the San Diego Marine Band.
       A 22 Jul 1941 HR news item noted that the studio was negotiating with George Raft for the picture's "top male role," while in Sep 1941, HR announced that Pat O'Brien would be in the cast. Although studio publicity and HR news items include Marissa Flores, Barry Norton and O. Z. Whitehead in the cast, their appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. The picture marked the screen debut of actor Henry Morgan, also known as Henry "Harry" Morgan and later known as Harry Morgan. Morgan is best known for his portrayal of "Col. Potter" in the long-running television series M*A*S*H .
       Dec 1941 HR news items reported that after the attack on Pearl Harbor, second unit director James Havens and his crew became trapped in Honolulu, HI, where they had gone to photograph background footage for this film. For several days, the studio did not know if the men were safe, but on 12 Dec 1941, HR announced that none of the crew had been injured. Several days later, HR noted that two thousand feet of film shot by Havens' crew had been seized by the Navy, but on 21 Jan 1942, a HR news item declared that the film had been reviewed by Navy officials and returned to the studio. Edward Cronjager and William V. Skall received Academy Award nominations for Cinematography (Color) for their work on To the Shores of Tripoli .
       According to a 1 Apr 1942 HR news item, the studio intended to make a Technicolor recruiting short for the Marine Corps with unused footage from To the Shores of Tripoli . The short was to be narrated by Tyrone Power and written by Lamar Trotti. Apr and Jun 1942 HR news items noted that the film was helping to increase the number of new recruits entering the Marines. A 24 Aug 1942 HR news item stated that writer Jack Andrews and producer Milton Sperling were working on a story entitled "Battle Stations," which was to tell the story of the Marine Corps between the two World Wars and be a "follow-up" to To the Shores of Tripoli . That film was not produced, however. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
14 Mar 1942.
---
Daily Variety
10 Mar 42
p. 3.
Film Daily
11 Mar 42
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Jun 41
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Jul 41
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Jul 41
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Sep 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Oct 41
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Oct 41
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Oct 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Nov 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Nov 41
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Nov 41
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Nov 41
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Dec 41
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Dec 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Dec 41
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Dec 41
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
15 Dec 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
26 Dec 41
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Jan 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jan 42
p. 7, 9
Hollywood Reporter
13 Jan 42
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Jan 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Feb 42
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Feb 42
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Mar 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Mar 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Apr 42
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Apr 42
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Apr 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Jun 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Aug 42
pp. 1-2.
Motion Picture Daily
11 Mar 1942.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
14 Mar 42
p. 549.
New York Times
26 Mar 42
p. 27.
New York Times
29 Mar 1942.
---
New York Times
14 Jun 1942.
---
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
12 Apr 1942.
---
Variety
11 Mar 42
p. 8.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
2d unit dir
2d unit asst dir
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Dir of photog
Dir of photog
2d unit photog
2d unit photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATOR
Set dec
COSTUMES
MUSIC
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
2d unit grip
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor dir
SOURCES
MUSIC
"Semper fidelis" by John Philip Sousa.
SONGS
"The Marine's Hymn," words anonymous, music based on a theme from the opera Geneviève de Brabant by Jacques Offenbach.
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Tripoli
The Shores of Tripoli
Release Date:
10 April 1942
Premiere Information:
World premiere in San Diego, CA: 24 March 1942
New York opening: week of 25 March 1942
Production Date:
3 November 1941--early January 1942
Copyright Claimant:
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Copyright Date:
10 April 1942
Copyright Number:
LP11289
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
82 or 86-87
Length(in feet):
7,716
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
PCA No:
7976
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Arrogant Chris Winters is ordered by his father, Capt. Christopher Winters, to join the Marines after he is expelled from Culver Military Academy for misbehavior. Disregarding his father's plans for his future, Chris intends to take a cushy desk job provided by the influential father of his girl friend, Helene Hunt, after he finishes basic training. Capt. Winters has written to his old friend, Sgt. Dixie Smith, asking him to toughen up Chris, and Dixie, who will be Chris's drill sergeant, takes an immediate dislike to the sarcastic recruit. The night Chris arrives at the Marine Base in San Diego, he meets Mary Carter. Chris, unaware that Mary is a Navy nurse, is impressed by her beauty and spirit and tries, half-successfully, to romance her. Mary is frightened by her attraction to Chris, however, and cuts short their evening. The next day, Chris begins training, along with fellow recruits Johnny Dent, Okay Jones, Mouthy and Butch. Chris easily masters the tasks assigned by Dixie, then helps the earnest but clumsy Johnny. Chris attempts to pursue a relationship with Mary, but she reveals that, as a nurse, she holds rank equivalent to a lieutenant and cannot fraternize with enlisted men. Mary is troubled by Chris's lack of devotion to the military, but is still jealous when Helene appears on the base one day and gets Chris to take her out. Later that evening, when Chris returns, he assures Mary that he cares only for her, and that if he takes the office job in Washington, they can conduct their romance openly. Mary turns Chris down, and soon after, Chris has more problems when ... +


Arrogant Chris Winters is ordered by his father, Capt. Christopher Winters, to join the Marines after he is expelled from Culver Military Academy for misbehavior. Disregarding his father's plans for his future, Chris intends to take a cushy desk job provided by the influential father of his girl friend, Helene Hunt, after he finishes basic training. Capt. Winters has written to his old friend, Sgt. Dixie Smith, asking him to toughen up Chris, and Dixie, who will be Chris's drill sergeant, takes an immediate dislike to the sarcastic recruit. The night Chris arrives at the Marine Base in San Diego, he meets Mary Carter. Chris, unaware that Mary is a Navy nurse, is impressed by her beauty and spirit and tries, half-successfully, to romance her. Mary is frightened by her attraction to Chris, however, and cuts short their evening. The next day, Chris begins training, along with fellow recruits Johnny Dent, Okay Jones, Mouthy and Butch. Chris easily masters the tasks assigned by Dixie, then helps the earnest but clumsy Johnny. Chris attempts to pursue a relationship with Mary, but she reveals that, as a nurse, she holds rank equivalent to a lieutenant and cannot fraternize with enlisted men. Mary is troubled by Chris's lack of devotion to the military, but is still jealous when Helene appears on the base one day and gets Chris to take her out. Later that evening, when Chris returns, he assures Mary that he cares only for her, and that if he takes the office job in Washington, they can conduct their romance openly. Mary turns Chris down, and soon after, Chris has more problems when he starts a fight with Dixie, whom he accuses of bullying Johnny. Chris and Dixie are arrested for the fistfight, and despite the damage it causes his career, Dixie states that he started the fight so that Chris will not get into trouble. Chris's barracks mates, angry that he caused Dixie's demotion, snub him, and Chris decides to leave with Helene. Before they can leave the camp, however, emergency maneuvers are called and Chris goes with the others to practice night maritime shelling. As Dixie leads the men in cleaning up the floating targets, he is knocked unconscious, and no one notices his disappearance until they return to the main ship. Despite the shelling, Chris finds Dixie and rescues him just before the target he is on is destroyed. Once Dixie recovers, Chris reveals that he risked his life only to erase the debt he owed Dixie for lying about the fight, and that he still intends to leave. Chris then asks Mary to accompany him, but she again replies that she belongs in the service. Chris departs with Helene, but while in the taxi, they hear a radio report about Pearl Harbor. Helene declares that the report is a fabrication concocted by Orson Welles, but when Chris sees Dixie leading his regiment through the crowd, he realizes that he truly is a Marine and must join the fight. Chris dons his uniform as he marches with the men, who are glad to see his change of heart. As they board the ship bound for overseas duty, Chris notices that Mary is already aboard, then waves goodbye to his father. +

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.