IMDb > The Sea of Grass (1947)
The Sea of Grass
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The Sea of Grass (1947) More at IMDbPro »

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Up 23% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
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Release Date:
25 April 1947 (USA) See more »
Spencer Tracy. Cattle baron . . ruthless, rugged! Katharine Hepburn. Fiery . . . fascinating gal from St. Louis! Robert Walker. Gun-shooting and gambling fool! Melvyn Douglas. He knew women! Soft words, Soft looks! See more »
This western begins with St. Louis resident Lutie Cameron (Katharine Hepburn) marrying New Mexico cattleman Col... See more » | Add synopsis »
(12 articles)
Farewell to Hepburn Tomorrow
 (From FilmExperience. 30 December 2014, 10:47 AM, PST)

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A Year with Kate: Song Of Love (1947)
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User Reviews:
Not bad, but this could have been better See more (25 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Spencer Tracy ... Col. James B. 'Jim' Brewton

Katharine Hepburn ... Lutie Cameron Brewton

Robert Walker ... Brock Brewton

Melvyn Douglas ... Brice Chamberlain

Phyllis Thaxter ... Sara Beth Brewton

Edgar Buchanan ... Jeff, Cook on Brewton Ranch

Harry Carey ... Doc J. Reid
Ruth Nelson ... Selina Hall, Sam Hall's Wife
William 'Bill' Phillips ... Banty, Brewton Ranch Hand (as Wm. 'Bill' Phillips)

Robert Armstrong ... Floyd McCurtin (Brewton's attorney)

James Bell ... Sam Hall, Homesteader

Robert Barrat ... Judge Seth White, Salt Fork

Charles Trowbridge ... George Cameron

Russell Hicks ... Major Dell Harney

Trevor Bardette ... Andy Boggs, Homesteader

Morris Ankrum ... A.J. Crane, Attorney
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Eddie Acuff ... Cattleman (uncredited)
Henry Adams ... Gambler (uncredited)

Erville Alderson ... First Station Agent (uncredited)
Myrtle Anderson ... Townswoman (uncredited)

Stanley Andrews ... Bill the Sheriff (uncredited)
Frank Austin ... Second Station Agent (uncredited)
Polly Bailey ... Townswoman (uncredited)
Dick Baron ... Newsboy (uncredited)
Jack Baxley ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Vangie Beilby ... Old Townswoman (uncredited)
Joseph E. Bernard ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Margaret Bert ... Townswoman (uncredited)

Robert Bice ... Brewton Ranch Hand (uncredited)

Barbara Billingsley ... Bridesmaid (uncredited)

Whit Bissell ... Ted, the Clerk (uncredited)

Chet Brandenburg ... Townsman (uncredited)
Joe Brockman ... Cattleman (uncredited)

Ralph Bucko ... Townsman (uncredited)
Marietta Canty ... Rachael (uncredited)

Nora Cecil ... Mrs. Ryan, Nurse (uncredited)

William Challee ... Deputy Sheriff (uncredited)
Wheaton Chambers ... Dean (uncredited)
Ruth Cherrington ... Townswoman (uncredited)

Naomi Childers ... Townswoman (uncredited)
Gertrude Chorre ... Brewton's Indian Nurse (uncredited)
Davison Clark ... Cattleman (uncredited)

Joseph Crehan ... Colorado Senator Grew (uncredited)
Sidney D'Albrook ... Townsman (uncredited)
Frank Darien ... Minister (uncredited)
Jack Davis ... Jury Foreman (uncredited)

Vernon Dent ... Train Conductor (uncredited)
Helen Dickson ... Piano Player Spectator (uncredited)
Mike Donovan ... Nester (uncredited)
Franz Dorfler ... Townsman (uncredited)
Budd Fine ... Brakeman (uncredited)

Douglas Fowley ... Joe Horton (uncredited)

Fred Gilman ... Cattleman (uncredited)

Ann Gowland ... Sarah Beth at Age 2 (uncredited)

Fred Graham ... Poker Game Spectator (uncredited)
Jesse Graves ... Luke (uncredited)
Charles Hagen ... Party Guest (uncredited)

Frank Hagney ... Poker Game Spectator (uncredited)

John Hamilton ... Forrest Hamilton (uncredited)

Jimmy Hawkins ... Brock at Age 5 (uncredited)
June Hedin ... Sarah Beth at Age 11 (uncredited)
Pat Henry ... Brock at Age 1 (uncredited)

Earle Hodgins ... Brewton Ranch Hand (uncredited)

Stuart Holmes ... Party Guest (uncredited)
William Holmes ... Gambler (uncredited)
Bob Ingersoll ... Station Loafer (uncredited)
Dick Johnstone ... Townsman (uncredited)

Jack Kenny ... Townsman (uncredited)
Rose Langdon ... Townswoman (uncredited)

Paul Langton ... Young Doctor (uncredited)
Larry Lathrop ... Messenger (uncredited)

Nolan Leary ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Ralph Littlefield ... Homesteader (uncredited)

Leota Lorraine ... Townswoman (uncredited)

George Magrill ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Robert Malcolm ... Townsman (uncredited)
Chief Many Treaties ... Indian (uncredited)

Mickey Martin ... Newsboy (uncredited)

Kermit Maynard ... Station Loafer (uncredited)
Charles McAvoy ... Homesteader (uncredited)

Charles Middleton ... Charley, Saloon Owner (uncredited)

Howard M. Mitchell ... Railroad Conductor (voice) (uncredited)
Skeets Noyes ... Beady-Eyed Man (uncredited)
Carol Nugent ... Sarah Beth at Age 7 (uncredited)
James O'Rear ... Piano Tuner (uncredited)
Norman Ollestad ... Brock at Age 8 (uncredited)
J.L. Palmer ... Townsman (uncredited)
Frank Pharr ... Station Loafer (uncredited)
Lee Phelps ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Obed 'Dad' Pickard ... Townsman (uncredited)
Bernice Pilot ... Maid (uncredited)
George Reed ... Uncle Nat (uncredited)
John Rice ... Cowboy (uncredited)
Dick Rich ... Loud-Mouthed Salt Fork Townsman (uncredited)
Duncan Richardson ... Brock at Age 3 (uncredited)

Buddy Roosevelt ... Ike Randall, Brewton Ranch Hand (uncredited)
Gene Roth ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Dick Rush ... Cattleman (uncredited)
Sam Savitsky ... Townsman (uncredited)
Phil Schumacher ... Townsman (uncredited)
Irving Smith ... Black Servant (uncredited)
Patty Smith ... Sarah Beth at Age 4 (uncredited)

Wyndham Standing ... Gambler (uncredited)

Jack Stoney ... Poker Game Spectator (uncredited)

Glenn Strange ... Bill Roach, Brewton Ranch Hand (uncredited)
Henry Sylvester ... Townsman (uncredited)

Forrest Taylor ... Homesteader (uncredited)

Ray Teal ... Cattleman (uncredited)
Laura Treadwell ... Townswoman (uncredited)
William Van Vleck ... Nester (uncredited)
Dorothy Vaughan ... Mrs. Hodges (uncredited)

John Vosper ... Hotel Clerk (uncredited)

Eddy Waller ... Homesteader (uncredited)

Dan White ... Wake, Brewton Ranch Hand (uncredited)

Guy Wilkerson ... Brewton Ranch Hand (uncredited)
Bill Wolfe ... Homesteader (uncredited)
Rocky Woods ... Cattleman (uncredited)

Hank Worden ... Bill, Salt Fork Townsman (uncredited)

Directed by
Elia Kazan 
Writing credits
Conrad Richter (novel "The Sea of Grass")

Marguerite Roberts  and
Vincent Lawrence 

Produced by
Pandro S. Berman .... producer
Original Music by
Herbert Stothart 
Cinematography by
Harry Stradling Sr.  (as Harry Stradling)
Film Editing by
Robert Kern  (as Robert J. Kern)
Art Direction by
Cedric Gibbons 
Paul Groesse 
Set Decoration by
Edwin B. Willis 
Costume Design by
Walter Plunkett 
Valles (costumes: men)
Makeup Department
Jack Dawn .... makeup designer
Sydney Guilaroff .... hair designer
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Sid Sidman .... assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Mildred Griffiths .... associate set decorator
William H. Cunningham .... greensman (uncredited)
Clarence J. Falk .... greens supervisor (uncredited)
Frank Wesselhoff .... painter (uncredited)
Sound Department
Douglas Shearer .... recording director
Special Effects by
A. Arnold Gillespie .... special effects
Warren Newcombe .... special effects
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Irene .... costume supervisor
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Music Department
Alberto Colombo .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Hugo Frey .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Albert Sendrey .... orchestrator (uncredited)
David Snell .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Other crew
Carl 'Major' Roup .... script clerk (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
123 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Argentina:Atp | Australia:PG | Finland:S | UK:A | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #11861, Adult Audience) | USA:TV-PG (TV rating) | West Germany:16 (f)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

In his autobiography, Elia Kazan said of this film: "It's the only picture I've ever made that I'm ashamed of. Don't see it."See more »
Brice Chamberlain:Why do women insist on loving men for what they want them to be instead of what they are?See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in L.A. Noire (2011) (VG)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
10 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
Not bad, but this could have been better, 20 November 2006
Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida

This movie is tough to love. Partly this is due to the setting of the film (nothing but grasslands as far as the eyes can see), but most of it is because the two main characters are so flawed and unlikable. In some ways this unlikability is good, as too often Hollywood films of the 30s and 40s present people in a "black/white" fashion and people who fall somewhere towards the middle are seldom seen. However, such "gray" characters are tough to bond with or care about, so I can understand why the film makers generally avoided this. Katherine Hepburn seems like a good character through much of the film, but midway through it, she shows a self-centeredness that make it tough to really see the tragedy in her life. Her initially living with the cruel and lawless Tracy is unforgivable, but her having an affair and then leaving her kids (one the bastard) with Tracy and not seeing them for almost 20 years make her very, very tough to like. Tracy, on the other hand, does stay to care for his kids--but in a very self-serving fashion. He is an emotionally constricted and yet over-indulgent father. As a human being, he's a lot worse--killing or nearly killing farmers because he saw the plains as his own personal property. The central message that eventually these farmers contributed to the destruction of the plains is lost--Tracy's not fighting against the farmers due to any love of nature or a desire to preserve the land. No, he's just a greedy rancher that will do ANYTHING to keep the land without fences.

Despite the problems with the characters, the film is exquisitely filmed--with some of the more beautiful camera shots I've seen in a long time. This film is worth seeing, but not one I would recommend you rush to see.

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