The life of 1920s actress Jeanne Eagels.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Nellie Neilson
Charles Drake ...
John Donahue
Larry Gates ...
Al Brooks
Virginia Grey ...
Elsie Desmond
...
Equity Board President
Joe De Santis ...
Frank Satori (as Joe de Santis)
...
Chick O'Hara
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Storyline

A largely fictionalized account of the career of actress Jeanne Eagels, whose fame was both on stage and on the screen in the 1910s and 1920s, is presented. After losing in a rigged carnival beauty pageant, winning which she believed would be her first step to becoming a serious actress, Jeanne joins the traveling carnival itself under the guidance of the pageant organizer, Sal Satori, who features her in a variety of carnival stage shows. But it's when the carnival approaches New York City that Jeanne demonstrates how she truly mapped out her road to acting fame even before meeting Sal. Under the tutelage of renowned acting coach Nellie Neilson, Jeanne, who does possess true acting talent, is given her big acting break and does achieve fame on the Broadway stage, and ultimately also in Hollywood films. Jeanne is not averse to doing whatever is required to advance her career, even at the expense of others. Achieving fame so quickly takes its toll on Jeanne, who turns to alcohol and ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

carnival | actress | fame | stage | career | See All (55) »

Taglines:

TOO MANY SINS TO FORGET! (original print ad - all caps)


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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

2 August 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

George Sidney's Jeanne Eagels  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As with most film biographies, this film is more screenwriter's fancy than fact. Among other things, Jeanne Eagels was never a carnival dancer and was never known to have been the cause of another performer's suicide. Further, the character of Sal Satori was a fictional compilation character based upon several men in her life. See more »

Goofs

During a carnival scene at Coney Island, the music in the background is The Victory Polka which was written by Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn during World War II and not yet written for a film set in the Roaring Twenties. See more »

Quotes

Elsie Desmond: I was a Golden Girl too, once...
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Soundtracks

I'll Take Romance
Music by Ben Oakland
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
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User Reviews

 
Can't say I wasn't warned
2 September 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I remember my acting teacher years ago talking about this movie and saying, boy, Kim Novak really thought she was ACTING.

"Jeanne Eagels" is a highly fictionalized biography of the great stage star who also acquitted herself well in films before her death at the age of 39. Directed by George Sidney, the movie also stars Jeff Chandler as Satori. His character existed, under another name, and unlike in the film, Eagels was married to him for a time. Virginia Grey has a small but showy role as a has-been who gives Eagels a script she wants to do, Rain, which turns out to be Eagels' signature play. That entire incident never happened (exceot of course that Eagles did play Sadie Thompson), but it provides some good drama in the film.

The main problem with this film is the atrocious acting of Kim Novak and Jeff Chandler. Novak was just getting started in her career, and she was the whole package - incredibly beautiful, a body to die for, a sultry speaking voice, and star quality. This type of scenery chewing dramatic role just wasn't her thing. She has such a lovely quality in Picnic; later on, she would do well in comedies and lighter films. Why Harry Cohn thought she could do this is beyond me. Chandler is way, way over the top - he did better in straightforward leading man roles.

A disappointing directing job from George Sidney. Novak deserved better. It's to her credit that she gave it a go. Thankfully, it didn't hurt what turned out to be a fine career.


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