IMDb > Portrait of Jennie (1948)
Portrait of Jennie
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Portrait of Jennie (1948) More at IMDbPro »

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Up 5% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Robert Nathan (novel)
Leonardo Bercovici (adaptation)
View company contact information for Portrait of Jennie on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 April 1949 (USA) See more »
A mysterious girl inspires a struggling artist. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Won Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
1940's Classic See more (112 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Jennifer Jones ... Jennie Appleton

Joseph Cotten ... Eben Adams

Ethel Barrymore ... Miss Spinney

Lillian Gish ... Mother Mary of Mercy

Cecil Kellaway ... Matthews

David Wayne ... Gus O'Toole
Albert Sharpe ... Moore

Henry Hull ... Eke
Florence Bates ... Mrs. Jekes (landlady)
Felix Bressart ... Pete
Clem Bevans ... Capt. Cobb
Maude Simmons ... Clara Morgan
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Robert Dudley ... Another Old Mariner (uncredited)
John Farrell ... Policeman (uncredited)

Anne Francis ... Teenager in Art Gallery (uncredited)

Brian Keith ... Ice-Skating Extra (uncredited)

Nancy Olson ... Teenager in Art Gallery (uncredited)

Nancy Reagan ... Teenager in Art Gallery (uncredited)
Esther Somers ... Mrs. Bunce (uncredited)
Amzie Strickland ... Ice-Skating Extra (uncredited)

Directed by
William Dieterle 
Writing credits
Robert Nathan (novel)

Leonardo Bercovici (adaptation)

Paul Osborn (screenplay) and
Peter Berneis (screenplay)

Ben Hecht  uncredited
David O. Selznick  uncredited

Produced by
David Hempstead .... associate producer
David O. Selznick .... producer
Cecil Barker .... executive producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Dimitri Tiomkin 
Cinematography by
Joseph H. August (photographed by) (as Joseph August)
Lee Garmes (uncredited)
Film Editing by
William Morgan 
Production Design by
J. McMillan Johnson 
Set Decoration by
Claude E. Carpenter  (as Claude Carpenter)
Costume Design by
Lucinda Ballard 
Production Management
Argyle Nelson .... production manager (uncredited)
Dewey Starkey .... production manager (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Arthur Fellows .... assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Joseph B. Platt .... associate production designer
Robert Brackman .... portrait painter (uncredited)
Sound Department
Charles L. Freeman .... sound effects editor (uncredited)
Don McKay .... sound (uncredited)
James G. Stewart .... sound (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Clarence Slifer .... special effects
Daniel Hays .... special effects (uncredited)
Russell Shearman .... special effects (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Paul Eagler .... process and miniature photography (uncredited)
Robert Hansard .... effects projectionist (uncredited)
Harry L. Wolf .... special effects camera operator (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Curt Fetters .... camera operator (uncredited)
Don Malkames .... cinematographer: Central Park ice skating sequence, second unit (uncredited)
John Miehle .... still photographer (uncredited)
Morris Rosen .... grip (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Anna Hill Johnstone .... assistant costume designer
Music Department
Dimitri Tiomkin .... conductor
Harold Byrns .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Maurice De Packh .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Joseph Dubin .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Manuel Emanuel .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Aubrey C. Lind .... music editor (uncredited)
Paul Marquardt .... orchestrator (uncredited)
George Parrish .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Dimitri Tiomkin .... music adaptor (uncredited)
Other crew
Clem Beauchamp .... staff executive
Mel Berns .... staff executive
Arthur Fellows .... staff executive
Larry Germain .... staff executive
Don McKay .... staff executive
William Morgan .... staff executive
Argyle Nelson .... staff executive
Lydia Schiller .... staff executive
David O. Selznick .... presenter
James G. Stewart .... staff executive
Gerard Wilson .... staff executive
Charlsie Bryant .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Paul Eagler .... staff executive (uncredited)
Paul MacNamara .... publicity director (uncredited)
Robert Brackman .... grateful acknowledgment
Bernard Herrmann .... grateful acknowledgment
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
86 min
Black and White (green and sepia tints for final reel, excluding last shot) | Color (Technicolor) (final shot)
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
3 Channel Stereo (1956) (5.0) (L-R)

Did You Know?

"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on October 31, 1949 with Joseph Cotten reprising his film role.See more »
Audio/visual unsynchronized: As Eben clings to Jennie on the rocks at the Land's End lighthouse, they speak to one another, but their lips either aren't moving or aren't in sync with what they're saying.See more »
Eben Adams:The world of my art shall remain an empty box.See more »
Movie Connections:
Features The Whoopee Party (1932)See more »
Prelude to Afternoon of a FaunSee more »


What is 'Portrait of Jennie' about?
In what year is the movie set?
Is Land's End Light a real lighthouse?
See more »
53 out of 60 people found the following review useful.
1940's Classic, 2 November 2003
Author: Tom Fowler ( from Overland Park, KS

Although it is a story that no doubt stands on its own as a cinema classic, this film for sure reminded me of Somewhere In Time, which came along a generation later. Both stories dealt with men of artistic temperament with perhaps too vivid imagination, (Was it imagination, or something more?), that met extraordinary women out of their respective places and time. But, Portrait of Jennie is unique for several reasons. Joseph Cotten has never been given his due as one of the excellent actors of his generation and it is truly a pity that he and female lead Jennifer Jones as Jennie are not well known as one of screendoms great male/female screen teams. As always, it is not only the enchanting story that makes this film a classic, but just as important are the presence of the capable players. Players such as Ethel Barrymore, Cecil Kellaway and Lillian Gish are only a few of the many who appeared and made this a very unique and excellent film. In 1934 New York City, starving artist Eben Adams (Cotten) is having trouble selling his paintings. It seems there just isn't enough emotion in them. However, all of this changes when befriended by a pair of sympathetic art dealers (Kellaway and Barrymore), but more importantly, when he meets Jennie for the first time. Jennie appears to him first as a young girl, but promises to `grow up quickly.' Each succeeding time that Adams encounters her, she is older and the relationship deepens. Adams is disturbed by her comments and realizess that, if statements concerning her past and family are true, she should be perhaps 20 years older. In the meantime, Adams is inspired to begin a portrait of her, the `Portrait of Jennie.'

By film's end we have the final encounter between Adams, who has gone to great lengths to determine if Jennie's past is as she says it is, and Jennie on a rocky seashore during a violent storm. I will not divulge the ending. I'll say Adams survives the storm and, with new found emotion and compassion, becomes a highly successful artist. The very last scene shows the portrait, classified a masterpeiece, hanging in a museum. There are excellent location shots of 1940's New York City and it's various areas of interest. The Portait of Jennie, which we see in all it's glory at film's end, could well be a masterpiece in itself as a painting of the beautiful Jennifer Jones. As the saying goes, they don't make ‘em like this anymore but, in this case, `they' don't have to. We have our Portrait of Jennie, a film which transcends time and has withstood the test of time very, very well.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Portrait of Jennie (1948)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
THREE (not two) Broadway stars from "Finian's" appear in this film. lrrap
Miss Spinney = Jennie? AndiB1986
Reminds me of Vertigo Hayes230
eeeeewwwww! stevezodiacxl5
A question for Americans. walkinginrain
I can't stop watching this movie... fsilva
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