Sergei M. Eisenstein was originally in talks to direct this film. He even wrote an early script, several hundred pages long. Eisenstein hoped to make his English-speaking directorial debut with this film, and Paramount wanted him to as well, but nothing came of it. See more »
This film, based on the great Theodore Dreiser novel, is not really available in many video stores or libraries most likely due to its age and lack of popularity. However, the film does parallel the book somewhat in that the characters all have the same names, but it is difficult to comprise an over 800 page book into a film. "An American Tragedy" was also later adapted into "A Place in the Sun," which has become more recognized because it stars Elizabeth Taylor. However, though this film takes its basis from Dreiser's novel, its character names have all been altered. If you really want to learn about this great story (which is actually based on a 1906 murder case), then read Dreiser's book because his writing and plot are amazing and no film is capable of adapting it.
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