IMDb > Pinky (1949)
Pinky
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Pinky (1949) More at IMDbPro »

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Pinky -- Trailer for this drama about a light skinned black woman who passes as a white woman

Overview

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7.3/10   1,600 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Cid Ricketts Sumner (novel)
Philip Dunne (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Pinky on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
November 1949 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The love story of a girl who passed for white! See more »
Plot:
A light-skinned African American woman falls in love with a white doctor, though he is unaware of her true race. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
The Racism in Your Face See more (37 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Jeanne Crain ... Patricia 'Pinky' Johnson

Ethel Barrymore ... Miss Em

Ethel Waters ... Pinky's Granny
William Lundigan ... Dr. Thomas Adams
Basil Ruysdael ... Judge Walker
Kenny Washington ... Dr. Canady

Nina Mae McKinney ... Rozelia
Griff Barnett ... Dr. Joe McGill
Frederick O'Neal ... Jake Walters
Evelyn Varden ... Melba Wooley
Raymond Greenleaf ... Judge Shoreham
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shelby Bacon ... Boy (uncredited)
Betty Beard ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Rene Beard ... Teejore (uncredited)
Patsy Boniface ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Mildred Boyd ... Nurse (uncredited)
Preston Braxton ... Boy (uncredited)
Margaret Brayton ... Nurse (uncredited)

Paul Brinegar ... Western Union Clerk (uncredited)
Noble 'Kid' Chissel ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Eve Conrad ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Bert Conway ... Loafer (uncredited)
Josette Deegan ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Dick Dickinson ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Bobby Dugan ... Nurse (uncredited)
Everett Glass ... Mr. Jeffers Wooley (uncredited)
William Hansen ... Mr. Goolby (uncredited)
Jimmie Horan ... Townsman (uncredited)
Arthur Hunnicutt ... Police Chief (uncredited)
Jean Inness ... Viola, Saleslady (uncredited)
Wilfred Jackson ... Boy (uncredited)
Frank Jaquet ... Bailiff (uncredited)
Michael Jeffers ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Beverly Ruth Jordan ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Geraldine Jordan ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Pat Kane ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Philip Kieffer ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Read Killgore ... Loafer (uncredited)
Warren Mace ... Intern (uncredited)
Tiger Joe Marsh ... George, Wooleys' Chauffeur (uncredited)

Juanita Moore ... Nurse (uncredited)
Robert Osterloh ... Police Officer (uncredited)
Tonya Overstreet ... Nurse (uncredited)
Ruth Rickaby ... Matron (uncredited)
Dan Riss ... Mr. Stanley, Wooleys' Attorney (uncredited)
Katherine Sparks ... Minor Role (uncredited)
George Spaulding ... Medical Director (uncredited)
Harry Tenbrook ... Townsman (uncredited)
Jim Toney ... Baggage Man (uncredited)
Bess Wade ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Pat Walshe ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Blue Washington ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Jasper Weldon ... Minor Role (uncredited)

Directed by
Elia Kazan 
John Ford (uncredited)
 
Writing credits
Cid Ricketts Sumner (novel)

Philip Dunne (screenplay) and
Dudley Nichols (screenplay)

Elia Kazan  contributor to screenplay (uncredited)
Jane White  contributor to screenplay (uncredited)

Produced by
Darryl F. Zanuck .... producer
 
Original Music by
Alfred Newman 
 
Cinematography by
Joseph MacDonald (director of photography) (as Joe MacDonald)
 
Film Editing by
Harmon Jones 
 
Art Direction by
J. Russell Spencer 
Lyle R. Wheeler  (as Lyle Wheeler)
 
Set Decoration by
Thomas Little 
Walter M. Scott 
 
Makeup Department
Ben Nye .... makeup artist
Addie Baker .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Frank Prehoda .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Lillian Ugrin .... hair stylist (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Joseph C. Behm .... production manager (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Wingate Smith .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Eugene Grossman .... sound
Roger Heman Sr. .... sound (as Roger Heman)
 
Visual Effects by
Fred Sersen .... special photographic effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Frank Corey .... grip (uncredited)
Les Everson .... gaffer (uncredited)
Til Gabani .... camera operator (uncredited)
Anthony Ugrin .... still photographer (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Charles Le Maire .... wardrobe director (as Charles LeMaire)
Sam Benson .... wardrobe supervisor (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Lyman Hallowell .... apprentice editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Edward B. Powell .... orchestrator (as Edward Powell)
Alfred Newman .... conductor (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Darryl F. Zanuck .... presenter
Rose Steinberg .... script supervisor (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
102 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Certification:
Argentina:Atp | Finland:S | Sweden:Btl | USA:Approved (certificate #13731)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Linda Darnell showed interest in the lead role, but Darryl F. Zanuck noticed that her character resembled her character in Forever Amber (1947) too much. Fearing comparison, he rejected her for the lead.See more »
Goofs:
Errors made by characters (possibly deliberate errors by the filmmakers): When actress Nina May Mckinney's character gets slapped on the left side of her face by the white officer, Nina mistakenly rubs the right side of her face.See more »
Quotes:
Melba Wooley:Cousin Em, what do you mean, gettin' sick like this?
Miss Em:When you're eighty years old, you expect to be sick. Sit down.
Melba Wooley:Now, now. Naughty, naughty. Eighty years *young* is what we say.
Miss Em:I don't. It's old, and I won't have it minimized. Takes a lot of livin' to get there, and pure, cursed endurance. Eighty years young indeed!
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
9 out of 9 people found the following review useful.
The Racism in Your Face, 26 November 2008
Author: wes-connors from Earth

Well-mannered nurse Jeanne Crain (as Patricia "Pinky" Johnson) returns to her poor "Black" neighborhood, in Mississippi. There, she is welcomed by washerwoman grandmother Ethel Waters (as Granny). The pair are confronted by racism both outside and inside their home. Most importantly, it is revealed that Ms. Crain has been "passing" as "White". Moreover, Crain has become engaged to Caucasian doctor William Lundigan (as Thomas Adams). While working at home, to support Crain's nursing education, Ms. Waters has grown close to ailing Ethel Barrymore (as Miss Em). At first, Crain does not understand or accept the friendship between Waters, a former slave, and Ms. Barrymore, a former plantation owner. But, for her grandmother, Crain agrees to become Barrymore's nurse.

"Pinky" is a nerve-rattling classic.

Probably, the most obvious "debate" point was the casting of Crain in the title role. Crain was definitely "pink" enough (or, white-looking); but, her general "movie star" persona makes the casting decision seem risky. Yet, Crain, under Elia Kazan's direction, triumphs. There are so many ways Crain could have fallen into acting traps - she could have used mannerisms, make-up, and/or other stereotypical devices to "camp" up the "Black" - but, she avoids each trap. Crain performs the role with a great amount of dignity. She was deservedly honored with an "Academy Award" nomination.

Barrymore and Waters also perform well (as you might expect).

We are never, in the film, given a clear statement of facts regarding the heritage of Crain's "Pinky". My guess is that she is related, by blood, to both Waters and Barrymore. An attempted rape of Crain's character accounts, arguably, for her pink appearance; this might have occurred in more than one generation. It's also possible that a loving "mixed race" relationship was part of either Ethel's past. Making the "Black/White" history more clear would have only gotten the film into more trouble.

"Pinky" was quickly censored, and headed for the US Supreme Court.

One of the Board of Censors' objections was, "a white man retaining his love for a woman after learning that she is a Negro." However, Mr. Lundigan's "Thomas" is only willing to retain his love under certain conditions; and, this leads to a sharp, less "Hollywood"-styled ending. The Supreme Court was correct. Some of the film's best scenes show the way Crain is treated after other characters learn she is not white.

********* Pinky (9/29/49) Elia Kazan ~ Jeanne Crain, Ethel Barrymore, Ethel Waters, William Lundigan

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Pinky (1949)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Who Could Play Pinky Today? screenscreams
The boyfriend ran out much too quickly at the end... jwillis5
Will air on TCM on 9/7/2012 michaelhelwick
Am I the only person who found this to be way too niave? IngmarTheBergman
If Pinky was played by a black actress..... speilbrick-1
Miss Em's house blueeyedbear
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