Across the Wide Missouri (1951)

78 mins | Adventure | 26 October 1951

Director:

William A. Wellman

Writer:

Talbot Jennings

Producer:

Robert Sisk

Cinematographer:

William C. Mellor

Editor:

John Dunning

Production Designers:

Cedric Gibbons, James Basevi

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
Full page view
HISTORY

Voice-over narration, spoken by Howard Keel as the adult "Chip Mitchell," is heard intermittently throughout the film. According to a 17 Dec 1947 HR news item, M-G-M originally optioned Bernard DeVoto's novel as a vehicle for Spencer Tracy. According to modern sources, the narration was added after principal photography was completed at the suggestion of M-G-M producer Sam Zimbalist. María Elena Marqués made her Hollywood screen debut in the picture.
       Modern sources note that except for a small amount of studio interiors, the film was shot entirely on location in the Rocky Mountains, mostly at altitudes between 9,000 and 14,000 feet. According to HR production charts, Durango, CO, was the main location site. To cope with fast-changing weather conditions, the crew prepared two stand-by set-ups for each scene, and were aided by a four-wheel drive camera car with a front-mounted hydrolic. Across the Wide Missouri marked the last screen appearance of well-known character actor Jack Holt (1888-1951). ... More Less

Voice-over narration, spoken by Howard Keel as the adult "Chip Mitchell," is heard intermittently throughout the film. According to a 17 Dec 1947 HR news item, M-G-M originally optioned Bernard DeVoto's novel as a vehicle for Spencer Tracy. According to modern sources, the narration was added after principal photography was completed at the suggestion of M-G-M producer Sam Zimbalist. María Elena Marqués made her Hollywood screen debut in the picture.
       Modern sources note that except for a small amount of studio interiors, the film was shot entirely on location in the Rocky Mountains, mostly at altitudes between 9,000 and 14,000 feet. According to HR production charts, Durango, CO, was the main location site. To cope with fast-changing weather conditions, the crew prepared two stand-by set-ups for each scene, and were aided by a four-wheel drive camera car with a front-mounted hydrolic. Across the Wide Missouri marked the last screen appearance of well-known character actor Jack Holt (1888-1951). More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
American Cinematographer
1 May 51
pp. 178-79, 199
Daily Variety
18 Sep 51
p. 3.
Film Daily
24 Sep 51
p. 20.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Jul 50
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
15 Sep 50
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Sep 51
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
29 Sep 51
pp. 1041-42.
New York Times
6 Aug 1950.
---
New York Times
7 Nov 51
p. 35.
Variety
19 Sep 51
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
PRODUCER
WRITERS
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
Cost des
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
Rec supv
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Hair styles des
Makeup created by
PRODUCTION MISC
Indian tech adv
Dial dir
STAND INS
Stunt double for María Elena Marqués
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Across the Wide Missouri by Bernard DeVoto (Boston, 1947).
SONGS
"Skip to My Lou" and "Alouette, Pretty Alouette," traditionals
"Indian Lullaby," words and music by Alberto Colombo, Indian lyrics by Nipo T. Strongheart.
DETAILS
Release Date:
26 October 1951
Production Date:
late July--mid September 1950
Copyright Claimant:
Loew's Inc.
Copyright Date:
17 September 1951
Copyright Number:
LP1193
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
78
Length(in feet):
7,047
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
14912
SYNOPSIS

In the rugged northern Rocky Mountains of the 1830s, mountain man and fur trapper Flint Mitchell is planning a hunting trek into the beaver-rich Blackhawk Territory, despite protests from his Indian friend, Brecan, who tells him that the land belongs to Indians. After narrowly escaping an attack by Ironshirt, a young Indian war chief, Flint finds himself imperiled by a pack of wolves. He is rescued by Pierre, a French Canadian fur trapper, and Captain Humberstone Lyon, a bumbling Scottish hunter who fought in the Battle of Waterloo. While Pierre and Humberstone decide to join Flint on the dangerous expedition into Blackfoot territory, Flint, hoping to ensure the group's safe passage, buys and marries Kamiah, the granddaughter of Blackfoot chief Bear Ghost. Though he marries Kamiah for reasons other than love, Flint eventually becomes smitten with her. Kamiah successfully guides Flint and his men on their trek through rough terrain and crippling snow drifts and finally delivers them to beaver country. As Flint and Kamiah's marriage takes an unexpected romantic turn, Flint and Bear Ghost become good friends. Bear Ghost keeps the warring Ironshirt from harming Flint and his men, but tragedy strikes when Roy DuNord, one of Flint's men, kills Bear Ghost to avenge his brother's death at the hands of Indians. Brecan then kills Roy, and Flint sinks into a grieving depression over the death of Bear Ghost. Soon after replacing Bear Ghost as chief of the tribe, Ironshirt resumes his campaign of terror against the white trappers. The attacks begin in earnest in the spring, when Kamiah, who had recently given birth to a boy, Chip, is ... +


In the rugged northern Rocky Mountains of the 1830s, mountain man and fur trapper Flint Mitchell is planning a hunting trek into the beaver-rich Blackhawk Territory, despite protests from his Indian friend, Brecan, who tells him that the land belongs to Indians. After narrowly escaping an attack by Ironshirt, a young Indian war chief, Flint finds himself imperiled by a pack of wolves. He is rescued by Pierre, a French Canadian fur trapper, and Captain Humberstone Lyon, a bumbling Scottish hunter who fought in the Battle of Waterloo. While Pierre and Humberstone decide to join Flint on the dangerous expedition into Blackfoot territory, Flint, hoping to ensure the group's safe passage, buys and marries Kamiah, the granddaughter of Blackfoot chief Bear Ghost. Though he marries Kamiah for reasons other than love, Flint eventually becomes smitten with her. Kamiah successfully guides Flint and his men on their trek through rough terrain and crippling snow drifts and finally delivers them to beaver country. As Flint and Kamiah's marriage takes an unexpected romantic turn, Flint and Bear Ghost become good friends. Bear Ghost keeps the warring Ironshirt from harming Flint and his men, but tragedy strikes when Roy DuNord, one of Flint's men, kills Bear Ghost to avenge his brother's death at the hands of Indians. Brecan then kills Roy, and Flint sinks into a grieving depression over the death of Bear Ghost. Soon after replacing Bear Ghost as chief of the tribe, Ironshirt resumes his campaign of terror against the white trappers. The attacks begin in earnest in the spring, when Kamiah, who had recently given birth to a boy, Chip, is killed in an ambush by Ironshirt and his men. With Chip strapped to its back, Kamiah's horse then bolts and heads for the Blackfoot camp. Flint manages to get his son back, however, in a counterattack, during which Ironshirt is killed. Years pass, and Flint takes Chip, who is now six years old, to live in the Blackfoot camp, where, Flint believes, Kamiah would have wanted him. With the menacing Ironshirt no longer a threat, the Blackfoot gladly take Chip and Flint into their fold. +

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

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