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Samson and Delilah (1949)

Not Rated  |   |  Adventure, Drama, History  |  January 1950 (USA)
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When strongman Samson rejects the love of the beautiful Philistine woman Delilah, she seeks vengeance that brings horrible consequences they both regret.



(screenplay) (as Jesse L. Lasky Jr.) , (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Title: Samson and Delilah (1949)

Samson and Delilah (1949) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Olive Deering ...
Fay Holden ...
Saul (as Russell Tamblyn)
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Story Teller (as Francis J. McDonald)
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Lesh Lakish


Though his people, the Israelites, are enslaved by the Philistines, Samson, strongest man of the tribe of Dan, falls in love with the Philistine Semadar, whom he wins by virtue of a contest of strength. But Semadar betrays him, and Samson engages in a fight with her real love, Ahtur, and his soldiers. Semadar is killed, and her sister Delilah, who had loved Samson in silence, now vows vengeance against him. She plans to seduce Samson into revealing the secret of his strength and then to betray him to the Philistine leader, the Saran. Written by Jim Beaver <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

January 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cecil B. DeMille's Samson and Delilah  »

Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Nancy Olson was considered for the role of Delilah. See more »


Just after Delilah rings for her servant to bring dinner, the mike boom can be seen casting a shadow on the inside wall of her tent. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: Before the dawn of history, ever since the first man discovered his soul, he has struggled against the forces that sought to enslave him. He saw the awful power of nature rage against him. The evil eye of the lightning... The terrifying voice of the thunder... The shrieking, wind-filled darkness enslaving his mind with shackles of fear. Fear bred superstition, blinding his reason. He was ridden by a host of devil gods. Human dignity perished on the altar of idolatry. And tyranny ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

As Samson and Delilah (1949) starts, the title is written on scroll, that is opened, to be read. The remaining opening credits, after the scroll and title, are normal. Closing credits are normal, also. See more »


Version of Samson and Delilah (1996) See more »


For To Win A Bride
Written by Victor Young and Jesse Lasky Jr.
See more »

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User Reviews

NOT Another run of DeMille Picture
11 August 2004 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

By the time the 1940s were rolling around, Cecil B. DeMille was doing a lot less work, but the work was getting more expensive. DeMille took off a couple of years now between films to create the opulent splendor that typifies his work.

Well Samson and Delilah abounds in opulence. The color cinematography is first rate and reason enough to see the film. Of course it has the usual stilted dialog that is common in DeMille's costume work. But one has to remember that DeMille made his show business bones with David Belasco in the Edwardian era. And that's how folks talked in those Belasco plays.

Acting honors in this go to George Sanders as the Saran of Gaza, Philistine ruler and sophisticated cad. This was the height of Sanders career, he received a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for All About Eve the same year. I think the Saran and Addison DeWitt would have understood each other very well.

Angela Lansbury is the original object of Samson's lust and she does okay, but personally if you had the choice between Jessica Fletcher and Tondelayo, who would you choose? Is that ever a no-brainer.

DeMille got a couple of loan-outs to play the leads. Hedy Lamarr could easily lay claim to be the most beautiful woman in the cinema. She never had much acting skill, but all she has to do is be seductive and that no one could do better.

And Victor Mature away from his home studio of 20th Century Fox where he was languishing, Samson and Delilah provided a whole new vista for him with roles in spectacle pictures where he could truly be that beautiful hunk of man.

Fay Holden is good as Samson's mother. In modern times I can just hear her telling him about settling down with a good Jewish girl.

44 of 58 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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