The Biscuit Eater (1940)

81-82 mins | Drama | 24 May 1940

Director:

Stuart Heisler

Cinematographer:

Leo Tover

Editor:

Everett Douglas

Production Designers:

Hans Dreier, Earl Hedrick

Production Company:

Paramount Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

According to a news item in HR, this picture, shot on location at Albany, GA, marked former film editor Stuart Heisler's first solo directoral assignment. The film was included in National Board of Review's list of the ten best films of 1940. Modern sources add that Frank Freeman was assistant to the producer. A radio adaptation of James Street's story was broadcast on the series NBC Short Story" on 2 May 1952, and in 1972, Vincent McEveety directed Earl Holliman, Johnny Whitaker and Lew Ayres in a Walt Disney Productions adaptation (see entry). ...

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According to a news item in HR, this picture, shot on location at Albany, GA, marked former film editor Stuart Heisler's first solo directoral assignment. The film was included in National Board of Review's list of the ten best films of 1940. Modern sources add that Frank Freeman was assistant to the producer. A radio adaptation of James Street's story was broadcast on the series NBC Short Story" on 2 May 1952, and in 1972, Vincent McEveety directed Earl Holliman, Johnny Whitaker and Lew Ayres in a Walt Disney Productions adaptation (see entry).

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
6 Apr 1940
p. 3
Film Daily
12 Apr 1940
p. 6
Hollywood Reporter
25 Nov 1939
pp. 6-7
Hollywood Reporter
8 Dec 1939
p. 4
Hollywood Reporter
24 Mar 1940
p. 2
Hollywood Reporter
6 Apr 1940
p. 3
Motion Picture Daily
12 Apr 1940
p. 4
Motion Picture Herald
30 Dec 1939
p. 53
Motion Picture Herald
13 Apr 1940
p. 40
New York Times
23 May 1940
p. 28
Variety
10 Apr 1940
p. 14
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
William Le Baron
Exec prod
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATOR
Int dec
MUSIC
SOUND
Sd rec
Sd rec
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the short story "The Biscuit Eater" by James Street in The Saturday Evening Post (13 May 1939).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
24 May 1940
Premiere Information:
Albany, Georgia premiere: 10 Apr 1940
Production Date:
began 16 Oct 1939
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Paramount Pictures, Inc.
24 May 1940
LP9663
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
81-82
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
PCA No:
5841
SYNOPSIS

Georgia dog trainer Harvey McNeil fears losing his job when the new owner of the ranch, Mr. Ames, shows more interest in raising horses than canines. Harvey convinces Mr. Ames to delay the auction of the dogs until he can test one of his champions, "Georgia Boy," in the field trials. Mr. Ames agrees, and gives Harvey's little son Lonnie a runt from one of the litters. Lonnie and his friend Text train the dog, whom they name "Promise," for hunting, but the mischievous Promise continues to raid the henhouse and upset Georgia Boy's training. Harvey tells Sermon, Text's father, to get rid of the dog, but the boys retrieve the animal. Lonnie decides that the only way to improve his father's opinion of his dog is to have him win the field trials. Much to everyone's surprise, Promise performs admirably and eventually is the only opponent left against Georgia Boy. When Sermon warns Text that if Georgia Boy does not win, Harvey will lose his job, Lonnie insults Promise into losing his position by calling him a "biscuit eater," a dog too sorry to hunt anything but his own food. Promise runs away, thus making Georgia Boy the winner. Lonnie is broken hearted, but the dog returns that night to his mate, only to be shot by Sermon, who believes that he is a stray. Promise dies in Lonnie's arms, but his lineage continues in his mate's puppies, and both Lonnie and his father emerge as sadder but wiser ...

More Less

Georgia dog trainer Harvey McNeil fears losing his job when the new owner of the ranch, Mr. Ames, shows more interest in raising horses than canines. Harvey convinces Mr. Ames to delay the auction of the dogs until he can test one of his champions, "Georgia Boy," in the field trials. Mr. Ames agrees, and gives Harvey's little son Lonnie a runt from one of the litters. Lonnie and his friend Text train the dog, whom they name "Promise," for hunting, but the mischievous Promise continues to raid the henhouse and upset Georgia Boy's training. Harvey tells Sermon, Text's father, to get rid of the dog, but the boys retrieve the animal. Lonnie decides that the only way to improve his father's opinion of his dog is to have him win the field trials. Much to everyone's surprise, Promise performs admirably and eventually is the only opponent left against Georgia Boy. When Sermon warns Text that if Georgia Boy does not win, Harvey will lose his job, Lonnie insults Promise into losing his position by calling him a "biscuit eater," a dog too sorry to hunt anything but his own food. Promise runs away, thus making Georgia Boy the winner. Lonnie is broken hearted, but the dog returns that night to his mate, only to be shot by Sermon, who believes that he is a stray. Promise dies in Lonnie's arms, but his lineage continues in his mate's puppies, and both Lonnie and his father emerge as sadder but wiser men.

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

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