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Trader Horn (1931) More at IMDbPro »


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Down 5% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Ethelreda Lewis (based on the book by)
Dale Van Every (adaptation) ...
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Release Date:
23 May 1931 (USA) See more »
Two white traders in the darkest Africa of the 1870s find a missionary's daughter, who was captured as a child by a savage tribe and now worshiped as a goddess. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for Oscar. See more »
User Reviews:
Classic Film Of High Adventure See more (24 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Harry Carey ... Aloysius 'Trader' Horn
Edwina Booth ... Nina Trent - the White Godess
Duncan Renaldo ... Peru
Mutia Omoolu ... Rencharo - Horn's Gun Bearer
Olive Carey ... Edith Trent (as Olive Golden)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bob Kortman ... (scenes deleted)
Marjorie Rambeau ... Edith Trent (scenes deleted)

C. Aubrey Smith ... St. Clair - a Trader (uncredited)
Riano Tindama ... Witch Doctor (uncredited)
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Directed by
W.S. Van Dyke 
Writing credits
Ethelreda Lewis (based on the book by)

Dale Van Every (adaptation) and
John T. Neville (adaptation) (as John Thomas Neville)

Richard Schayer (screen play)

Cyril Hume (dialogue)

Alfred Aloysius Horn  book (uncredited)

Produced by
Irving Thalberg .... producer (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Clyde De Vinna (photographed by)
Film Editing by
Ben Lewis (film editor)
Makeup Department
Miss Gordon .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Robert A. Golden .... assistant director (uncredited)
Sound Department
Douglas Shearer .... recording director
Andrew Anderson .... sound (uncredited)
Bill Edmondson .... sound (uncredited)
Anstruther MacDonald .... sound (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
George Gordon Nogle .... associate photographer (as George Nogle)
Bob Roberts .... associate photographer (as Robert Roberts)
Clarence Sinclair Bull .... still photographer (uncredited)
Ruth Harriet Louise .... still photographer (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Music Department
William Axt .... composer: end title music (uncredited)
William Axt .... musical arrangements (uncredited)
Other crew
James C. McKay .... production assistant (as James McKay)
Josephine Chippo .... script clerk (uncredited)
John McClain .... press agent (uncredited)
J.H. Barnes .... special thanks: White Hunter (as J.H. Barnes Esq.)
W.V.D. Dickinson .... special thanks: White Hunter (as Maj. W.V.D. Dickinson)
H.R. Stanton .... special thanks: White Hunter (as H.R. Stanton Esq.)
A.S. Waller .... special thanks: White Hunter (as A.S. Waller Esq.)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributors
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
122 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Finland:K-16 | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #1987-R, 23 January 1936 for re-release)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

According to Alfred Hitchcock, audiences at the first screening of this film laughed when C. Aubrey Smith suddenly appeared in the story.See more »
Aloysius 'Trader' Horn:They have a telegraph, though - drums. There's a sound that'll crawl up your spine and down to your gizzard. Maybe you'll hear it one of these days.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Red-Headed Woman (1932)See more »
Cannibal CarnivalSee more »


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48 out of 51 people found the following review useful.
Classic Film Of High Adventure, 27 May 2002
Author: Ron Oliver ( from Forest Ranch, CA

TRADER HORN, the Great White Hunter, treks into Darkest Africa in search of the long-missing daughter of a lady Missionary.

MGM produced one of the seminal adventure classics with this film, a benchmark against which all others would be measured for years to come. Although beset with production difficulties & traumas, including the near death of the leading actress, the film was an eventual triumph. Rarely seen today, it still packs a punch, if for no other reason than its splendid performances and the undeniable impact of its on-location filming.

Harry Carey, giving one of the first great performances of the sound era, is perfect in the title role. So well does he inhabit the character like a second skin that it is nearly impossible to imagine anyone else playing the part. Having already starred in innumerable silent Westerns, he brings enormous physicality to a movie which made great demands on its actors. Carey looks & sounds like someone who's spent years in the veldt. The slouch of his hat, the grim set of his eyes, the rough growl of his voice are all just right.

Handsome Duncan Renaldo, as Horn's earnest young Spanish companion, and exquisite Edwina Booth, as a white tribal queen, are both admirably suited to their roles. The sparks of their budding, hesitant romance lightens the end of the film.

Olive Golden Carey, the star's wife, is radiant in her very small role as a tough, determined but saintly missionary; the image of her seated in a sedan chair, being carried through the jungle on her endless quest, remains in the mind. Special mention should also be made of Mutia Omoolu, as Horn's gun bearer & friend, adding dignity and strength to his role; he was rewarded with rare recognition alongside the other performers during the opening credits.

Movie mavens will recognize wonderful old Sir C. Aubrey Smith, appearing uncredited for a few moments at the end of the film, in the role of an Irish trader.

Director Woody Van Dyke liked working on location, if possible, and so MGM went to the greatly added expense of sending the entire company to Africa. (Filming would take place in the Territory of Tanganyika, the Protectorate of Uganda, the Colony of Kenya, the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan & the Belgian Congo.) This proved a great boon to the picture, giving it an authenticity not replicable in any studio back lot. The scenes of the actors beside a tremendous waterfall, floating down a swollen river infested with hippos, or interacting with native Africans are still sensational today.

However, the cast and crew were forced to live and work under appalling conditions for many weeks. Miss Booth, one of the most beautiful actresses of the day, caught a ‘jungle fever' which left her deathly ill for years and effectively ended her film career.

The attempts of the Studio to shut down the film after the company returned from Africa, and lawsuits & demands for more money on the part of ill-used performers, only added to the acrimony at the time. However, from a vantage point of more than seventy years distance, TRADER HORN has emerged as one of the great adventure movies and a prime example of the sort of film ‘they just don't make anymore.'

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Rifles carried by both actors/hunters. swojtak
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