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The Egyptian
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The Egyptian (1954) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
6.6/10   2,106 votes »
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Up 9% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Philip Dunne (screen play) and
Casey Robinson (screen play) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Egyptian on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 December 1954 (West Germany) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
To Nefer, shameless temptress of Babylon, he surrendered his parents' hope of immortality! See more »
Plot:
In eighteenth-dynasty Egypt, Sinuhe, a poor orphan, becomes a brilliant physician and with his friend... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 1 win See more »
User Reviews:
When the power of sword clashed with the power of thought... See more (64 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Jean Simmons ... Merit

Victor Mature ... Horemheb

Gene Tierney ... Baketamon

Michael Wilding ... Akhnaton
Bella Darvi ... Nefer

Peter Ustinov ... Kaptah
Edmund Purdom ... Sinuhe
Judith Evelyn ... Taia

Henry Daniell ... Mekere

John Carradine ... Grave Robber
Carl Benton Reid ... Senmut

Tommy Rettig ... Thoth
Anitra Stevens ... Queen Nefertiti
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Allan ... Student in School of Life (uncredited)
Sharon Jan Altman ... Princess (uncredited)

Michael Ansara ... Hittite Commander (uncredited)
Elizabeth Bartilet ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Don Bender ... Boy (uncredited)
Sidney Bernstein ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Alfred Berumen ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Don Blackman ... Nubian Prince (uncredited)
Geraldine Bogdonovich ... Tavern Waitress (uncredited)
Mario Bramucci ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Ralph Brooks ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Esther Brown ... Minor Role (uncredited)
George Chester ... Nubian Guard (uncredited)
Michael Cirillo ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Angela Clarke ... Kipa (uncredited)
Edmund Cobb ... Patient (uncredited)
Rus Conklin ... Minor Role (uncredited)

Henry Corden ... Hittite Officer (uncredited)
Paul Cristo ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Gabriel Curtiz ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Karl 'Killer' Davis ... Libyan Guard (uncredited)
Carmen De Lavallade ... Egyptian Dancer (uncredited)
James Dime ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Ted Doner ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Joan Douglas ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Larry Duran ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Jack Ellis ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Nestor Eristoff ... Minor Role (uncredited)

Robert Evans ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Franco Fantasia ... Hittite Officer (uncredited)
Mark Forest ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Otto Forrest ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Raoul Freeman ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Jeanne Gail ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Dede Gainor ... Princess (uncredited)
Aurello Galli ... Boy (uncredited)

Joe Garcio ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Israel García ... Minor Role (uncredited)
John George ... Man in Street (uncredited)
Mimi Gibson ... Princess (uncredited)
Charles Gonzales ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Leo Gordon ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Peggy Gordon ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Michael Granger ... Officer (uncredited)
Maia Gregory ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Diane Gump ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Yeghishe Harout ... Syrian at Nefer's (uncredited)
Marcoreta Hellman ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Barbara James ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Paul Kruger ... High Priest (uncredited)
Virginia Lee ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Ian MacDonald ... Ship's Captain (uncredited)
Tyler MacDuff ... Cadet (uncredited)
Michael Macey ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Tiger Joe Marsh ... Libyan Guard (uncredited)
Donna Martell ... Lady in Waiting (uncredited)

Mike Mazurki ... Foreman, House of Death (uncredited)
Frank McGrath ... Minor Role (uncredited)
George Melford ... Priest (uncredited)
Nico Minardos ... Minor Role (uncredited)
John Mooney ... Officer (uncredited)

Ron Nyman ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Manuel París ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Victor Paul ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Joe Ploski ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Jose Portugal ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Max Reid ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Wilma Reid ... Nefer's Maid (uncredited)
Peter Reynolds ... Sinuhe - Age 10 (uncredited)
Jack Richardson ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Michael Ross ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Lawrence Ryle ... Priest (uncredited)
Paul Salata ... Egyptian Official (uncredited)
Jack Santoro ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Cosmo Sardo ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Peter Seal ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Harry Seymour ... Minor Role (uncredited)

Harry Shearer ... Boy (uncredited)
Larry Stanton ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Murray Steckler ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Saye Sumi ... Nefer's Maid (uncredited)
Mike Tellegen ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Harry Thompson ... Nubian (uncredited)
Bruno VeSota ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Coleen Vico ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Guy Way ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Robert Wegner ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Nancy Westbrook ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Joan Winfield ... Governess (uncredited)

Directed by
Michael Curtiz 
 
Writing credits
Philip Dunne (screen play) and
Casey Robinson (screen play)

Mika Waltari (novel)

Produced by
Darryl F. Zanuck .... producer
 
Original Music by
Bernard Herrmann 
Alfred Newman 
 
Cinematography by
Leon Shamroy (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Barbara McLean 
 
Art Direction by
George W. Davis 
Lyle R. Wheeler  (as Lyle Wheeler)
 
Set Decoration by
Paul S. Fox 
Walter M. Scott 
 
Makeup Department
Ben Nye .... makeup artist
Helen Turpin .... hair stylist
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
William Eckhardt .... assistant director
Ray Kellogg .... second unit director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Alfred Bruzlin .... sound
Roger Heman Sr. .... sound (as Roger Heman)
Dick Jensen .... sound editor (uncredited)
Richard Kupper .... sound editor (uncredited)
Bert Ross .... sound editor (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Ray Kellogg .... special photographic effects
Matthew Yuricich .... visual effects artist (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Fred Carson .... stunts (uncredited)
Bill Catching .... stunts (uncredited)
George Cernak .... stunts (uncredited)
George Dockstader .... stunts (uncredited)
John Epper .... stunts (uncredited)
Sol Gorss .... stunts (uncredited)
Michael Granger .... stunts (uncredited)
Stubby Kruger .... stunts (uncredited)
Bert LeBaron .... stunts (uncredited)
Charles Regan .... stunts (uncredited)
George Robotham .... stunts (uncredited)
Jack Stoney .... stunts (uncredited)
Louis Tomei .... stunts (uncredited)
Terry Wilson .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Scotty McEwin .... assistant camera: second unit (uncredited)
Leo Tover .... director of photography: second unit (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Charles Le Maire .... wardrobe director
Sam Benson .... wardrobe supervisor (uncredited)
Joan Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Ed Wynigear .... wardrobe (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Leonard Doss .... color consultant
Lyman Hallowell .... assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Ken Darby .... vocal supervisor
Edward B. Powell .... orchestrator
Victor Bay .... musician: violin (uncredited)
Bernard Herrmann .... conductor (uncredited)
Bernard Herrmann .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Robert Mayer .... music editor (uncredited)
Alfred Newman .... conductor (uncredited)
Urban Thielmann .... musician: piano (uncredited)
Raymond Turner .... musician: piano (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Stephen Papich .... choreographer
Elizabeth Riefstahl .... technical advisor
Norman Stuart .... dialogue coach
Frank Inn .... animal trainer (uncredited)
Gertrude Kingston .... research assistant (uncredited)
Eva Monley .... script supervisor: second unit (uncredited)
Frances C. Richardson .... research director (uncredited)
Richard Talmadge .... fill-in director (uncredited)
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
139 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
2.55 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording)
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The voices of the characters played by Mike Mazurki and Leo Gordon were dubbed by other actors for a more classical - and less American-street - quality.See more »
Goofs:
Anachronisms: In the scene where Sinuhe buries his parents with the help of the grave robber, they both use a shovel with a metal blade, not wood. Later on in the movie, iron is introduced to the Egyptians.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Sinuhe:[Older Sinuhe voiceover] I, Sinuhe the Egyptian, write this. In my place of exile on the shores of the Red Sea. There is no more desolate spot on earth. Soon the jackals and the vultures will make a poor meal of what is left of me. No monument will mark my resting place. I will leave only this...
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Ten Commandments (1956)See more »

FAQ

Who wrote the book this movie is based upon?
Bella Darvi---Was She Suppose to Star With Brando in "Desiree"?
John Cassavetes---Was He Tested for "The Egyptian"?
See more »
25 out of 29 people found the following review useful.
When the power of sword clashed with the power of thought..., 13 November 2005
Author: Marcin Kukuczka from Cieszyn, Poland

Film historians have said much about ancient epics that have been the interest of many directors from the beginning of cinema. The pioneers of such epics, particularly biblical ones, were D.W Griffith with his "mother of all epics" INTOLERANCE (1916), and Cecil B DeMille with his flair for magnificent spectacles, costumes and lavish scenes. Who can forget his TEN COMMANDMENTS (1923, 1956) or THE SIGN OF THE CROSS (1932)? Nevertheless, here comes another epic, made in the 1950s, directed by Michael Curtiz, and based on the novel by Mika Waltari, "The Egyptian." Michael Curtiz, already famous for his great classic CASABLANCA (1941) wonderfully manages to adjust his film to the audiences of that time, to entail the most important ideas and facts from the thick novel, and to recreate the lifestyle of the Egyptians who lived in one of the most amazing periods, in the reign of Akhnaton.

The first and most important fact for me in this movie is the psychological development of the main character that Edmund Purdom plays. Sinuhe, having been brought up in a simple family by his step parents, becomes a physician. All his life, he never stops asking a question "why?" and searching for the answer. Alluring love that he finds in a courtesan Nefer (Bella Darvi) leads him to financial and spiritual disaster. He has to repair the mistakes by hard work in the House of Death and starting to build up his reputation from nothing. First, he thinks that the only cure is revenge. However, in the long run, he realizes that "eye for eye" is no solution. Finally, what stands before him in very strange circumstances is the temptation to be a pharaoh. Nevertheless, there is one moment he finds the answer for his questions that touched him throughout his life... The story of the main character, though based on the book, is so interesting psychologically that every open minded person should consider this aspect in the film. The main character's psychological struggle is intensified by the times he lived in, the times when, probably for the first time to that extend, the power of sword clashed with the power of thought.

Curtiz's movie also retains one rule that all films of his era kept to: great cast and lavish sets. There are mostly British actors and actresses who give very nice performances. How is it possible not to mention the mainstay of ancient epic, Victor Mature. This time, he is not Demetrius, Hannibal or Samson but Horemheb - a fighter, a lover, at last a pharaoh. Jean Simmons appears in a very delicate role of Merit, a woman who loved Sinuhe all her life but it was too late when he realized that. Peter Ustinov, probably most famous for his gorgeous performance as Nero in QUO VADIS? three years earlier, does a great job as Kaptah, Sinuhe's friend. The royalty of the film is also played by two great cast, Gene Tierney and Michael Wilding. Tierney is excellent as cold, desirous of power Baketamon, the sister of pharaoh. Wilding gives a marvelous performance as "insane" Akhnaton. When I was in Louvre in Paris and saw Akhnaton's original face carved in stone, he looked very much the same as the actor in the film. Bella Darvi, an actress born in Poland, is quite memorable as a wicked courtesan Nefer. And there is one more actress who appears only in one scene but whom it is hard to forget, Judith Evelyn as Taia, pharaoh's mother. This voice, these eyes!

The sets are magnificent. The director recreated the most probable image of the outdoor temple of Aaton, the god that the Egyptians worshiped to in the reign of Amenhotep IV. I also loved the scene of pharaoh's first entrance. What a glorious picture that forever lasts in one's memory!!! However, there is also one aspect that I would like to draw the attention of all people interested to see the film. The Egyptian is similar to other epics in many respects, but it also stands out as a unique film. There are very few films which make such a wonderful use of different curiosities as for ancient times. There is a mention of iron used first by the Hetites. It's also the only film about ancient Egypt which talks openly of Egyptians' magnificent curing abilities. It memorably shows the contrasts of lifestyles, particularly the moment of a slave's death for whom no one cares followed by the announcement and consequently the widespread mourning after the death of pharaoh. Finally, "The Egyptian" shows one historical fact: there were other nations except for Jews (before Christ) where the spirit of God shone in some human hearts. Yet, the only difference was that it did not survive that long as at Jews' because it did not have a strong fundament. The scene of Akhnaton's death supplies you with so many biblical and Christian values that you may think you watch a religious movie.

All things considered, I highly recommend Michael Curtiz' film. It is a great production at multiple levels: an entertainment for epic fans, an admiration of marvelous performances for cinema fans, a soul feast for spiritual people. Finally, it is a beautiful story of extraordinary things which happened thirteen centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ.

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Bella Darvi is perfect as Nefer dicooley
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