A Face in the Crowd (1957)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  June 1957 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 9,298 users  
Reviews: 134 user | 46 critic

An Arkansas hobo becomes an overnight media sensation. But as he becomes drunk with fame and power, will he ever be exposed as the fraud he has become?



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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Percy Waram ...
Gen. Haynesworth
Paul McGrath ...
Rod Brasfield ...
Marshall Neilan ...
Sen. Worthington Fuller
Alexander Kirkland ...
Jim Collier
Charles Irving ...
Mr. Luffler
Howard Smith ...
J.B. Jeffries
Kay Medford ...
Big Jeff Bess ...
Sheriff Big Jeff Bess
Henry Sharp ...
Abe Steiner


"A Face in the Crowd" charts the rise of a raucous hayseed named Lonesome Rhodes from itinerant Ozark guitar picker to local media rabble-rouser to TV superstar and political king-maker. Marcia Jeffries is the innocent Sarah Lawrence girl who discovers the great man in a back-country jail and is the first to fall under his spell. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


POWER! He loved it! He took it raw in big gulpfuls...he liked the taste, the way it mixed with the bourbon and the sin in his blood!




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

June 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Budd Schulberg's A Face in the Crowd  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Film debut of Charles Irving. See more »


In the protest scene outside of the mattress store, protesters set fire in a trash barrel that has the letters D.S.N.Y., presumably for "Department of Sanitation of New York". However, this scene is set in Memphis. See more »


Lonesome Rhodes: Can't keep anything alive up here. Dust in this city kills everything.
See more »


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #19.105 (2011) See more »


Old Fashioned Marriage
(1957) (uncredited)
Music by Tom Glazer
Lyrics by Budd Schulberg
Sung by Andy Griffith
See more »

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User Reviews

Just Some Historical Perspective....
1 November 2004 | by (Hudson Valley NY) – See all my reviews

A timeless story,as evidenced by all the allegories to recent personalities here ( Howard Stern, Clinton, etc...)...HOWEVER..the film is based (loosely) on a personality of the mid-50s: one Arthur Godfrey..yes, the IL' Redhead himself. Skillfully wrapped in the cliché of 'country boy makes good' story, the Godfrey story was hot news in 1957,and there weren't too many people back then who missed its allusions For those who do not know: Arthur Godfrey was one of THE hottest things in the country in the early to mid 1950's: he literally had about two or three different TV shows on the schedule, plus a radio show that was among the most popular in the day. Godfrey was JUST like this movie in this respect: on the air, he was America's home-spun hero..telling folksy stories....crooning in an off tone baritone, and presenting pure, CLEAN entertainment. OFF the air,however the legend that is Arthur Godfrey to this day is one of THE biggest control freaks in show biz history..to the point of controlling the lives of all of his 'family'..unfortunately that turned out to be downfall...One Julius LaRosa had been a singer that Godfrey had 'discovered' in the US Navy Band...after he was discharged LaRosa became a singer on Godfrey's nighttime TV show "Arthur Godfrey and Friends",where he became an instant star among the bobby sox set. In time, LaRosa started a recording career,and started to have VERY successful records..then suddenly, in 1953, Godfrey suddenly fired LaRosa from his show for the mysterious reason of him having 'no humilty' ...it has been assumed since then that Godfrey was extremely jealous of Larosa's success...Anyways, this exposed the 'real' Godfrey to the public.,and while it didn't happen as quickly or as totally as Lonesome Rhodes' career,Godfrey's career as a superstar was effectively over after that..he eventually was reduced to hosting game shows and such. Writer Schulberg obviously also puts in his 2 cents on fame...politics..the show business...and early television here, but as I said,there wasn't NO ONE in those days who didn't know it was about Godfrey....

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