More fictional than factual biography of Stephen Foster. Songwriter from Pittsburgh falls in love with the South, marries a Southern gal (Leeds), then is accused of sympathizing when the ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Bones
...
Andrew McDowell
George Reed ...
Old Joe, McDowell's Coachman
Richard Clarke ...
Tom Harper
Diane Fisher ...
Marion Foster
George P. Breakston ...
Ambrose
Al Herman ...
Tambo
...
Mr. Foster
...
Henry Foster
Leona Roberts ...
Mrs. Foster
...
Morrison Foster
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Storyline

More fictional than factual biography of Stephen Foster. Songwriter from Pittsburgh falls in love with the South, marries a Southern gal (Leeds), then is accused of sympathizing when the Civil War breaks out. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Story of Stephen C. Foster - The Great American Troubadour See more »

Genres:

Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

5 January 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Life of Stephen Foster  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on April 2, 1945 with Al Jolson reprising his film role. See more »

Goofs

The film's final scene is wholly inaccurate; there was no performance by E.P. Christy on the day that Foster died. In reality, Christy actually died nearly two years before Foster; he committed suicide by throwing himself from a window at his home in New York City in May 1862; Foster himself died in January 1864. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Love Letter to Edie (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

Gwine to Rune All Night
aka "De Camptown Races"
Written by Stephen Foster
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Eye & Ear Candy
17 November 2001 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

This is hardly an accurate biography of songwriter Stephen Foster, but it's an awfully good movie thanks to its beautiful score, breathtaking photography, and scenic design. Its pictorialization of antebellum America and the South in particular rival the same year's Gone With the Wind. Producer Darryl Zanuck was especially gifted at producing these Techniciolor extravaganzas, and this one's as good as it gets. Even if one can't stand the story,--and it's a sad one--the movie is worth seeing and hearing for the remarkable skill with which it was made. Don Ameche is a pleasing Foster, and Al Jolson is on hand as Christy (of the OLD Christy Minstrels fame), and sings the songs with a gleefully vaudevillean relish which at times seems a bit over the top for the historical period. On the other hand the movie seems quite accurate in other respects and feels, to me, more like nineteenth century America than 1939.


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