IMDb > The Big Country (1958)
The Big Country
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The Big Country (1958) More at IMDbPro »

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The Big Country -- Dazzling photography, an intelligent script, remarkable performances, superb direction and compelling music animate this large-scale Western.  An ex-sea captain (Gregory Peck) comes West to marry Carroll Baker and settle down on the ranch of her father (Charles Bickford).  A mutual dislike develops between Peck and the ranch foreman (Charlton Heston).  Baker shares many of the "macho" sensibilities represented by Heston, which drives Peck away from her and into the arms of a schoolteacher (Jean Simmons) - who happens to own the only water for miles around.  Bickford and Burl Ives have been competing for rights to Simmons' water and are willing to use any means to get it.  The intertwining tensions between Peck & Heston and Bickford & Ives inevitably will lead to a climactic and violent confrontation.

Overview

User Rating:
7.9/10   10,402 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
James R. Webb (screenplay) &
Sy Bartlett (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Big Country on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1 October 1958 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Big they fought! Big they loved! Big their story!
Plot:
A New Englander arrives in the Old West, where he becomes embroiled in a feud between two families over a valuable patch of land. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Won Oscar. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(34 articles)
The 57 Greatest Westerns Ever, Ranked
 (From Moviefone. 26 May 2015, 2:00 AM, PDT)

100 Days 'Til Oscar. A Short Clean Sweep
 (From FilmExperience. 14 November 2014, 5:00 AM, PST)

Hal Needham obituary
 (From The Guardian - TV News. 27 October 2013, 5:06 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Perfect movie, Perfect music. See more (142 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Gregory Peck ... James McKay

Jean Simmons ... Julie Maragon

Carroll Baker ... Patricia Terrill

Charlton Heston ... Steve Leech

Burl Ives ... Rufus Hannassey

Charles Bickford ... Maj. Henry Terrill
Alfonso Bedoya ... Ramón Guiteras

Chuck Connors ... Buck Hannassey
Chuck Hayward ... Rafe Hannassey
Buff Brady ... Dude Hannassey
Jim Burk ... Blackie / Cracker Hannassey

Dorothy Adams ... Hannassey Woman
Chuck Roberson ... Terrill Cowboy
Bob Morgan ... Terrill Cowboy
John McKee ... Terrill Cowboy
Slim Talbot ... Terrill Cowboy (as Jay Slim Talbot)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Alexander ... Party Guest - Oceans (uncredited)
Harry Cheshire ... Party Guest (uncredited)
Jay W. Jensen ... Cowboy (uncredited)
Donald Kerr ... Liveryman (uncredited)

Roddy McDowall ... Hannassey Watchman (uncredited)
Carey Paul Peck ... Boy (uncredited)
Jonathan Peck ... Boy (uncredited)
Stephen Peck ... Boy (uncredited)
Ralph Sanford ... Party Guest (uncredited)

Directed by
William Wyler 
 
Writing credits
James R. Webb (screenplay) &
Sy Bartlett (screenplay) &
Robert Wilder (screenplay)

Jessamyn West (adaptation) &
Robert Wyler (adaptation)

Donald Hamilton (novel)

Produced by
Gregory Peck .... producer
Robert Wyler .... associate producer
William Wyler .... producer
 
Original Music by
Jerome Moross 
 
Cinematography by
Franz Planer (director of photography) (as Franz F. Planer)
 
Film Editing by
Robert Belcher 
John Faure 
 
Casting by
Dorothy Whitney 
 
Art Direction by
Frank Hotaling 
 
Set Decoration by
Edward G. Boyle 
 
Costume Design by
Emile Santiago 
Yvonne Wood 
 
Makeup Department
Dan Greenway .... makeup artist
Harry Maret .... makeup artist (as Harry Maret Jr.)
Joan St. Oegger .... hair stylist
Gale McGarry .... hairdresser (uncredited)
Nick Volpe .... makeup sketches (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Tom Andre .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ray Gosnell Jr. .... second assistant director (as Ray Gosnell)
Henry Hartman .... assistant director: second unit
Robert Swink .... director: second unit
Ivan Volkman .... assistant director
John Waters .... director: second unit
Robert Templeton .... second assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Saul Bass .... poster designer (uncredited)
C. Randall Berkeley .... greensman (uncredited)
Patrick Delany .... second prop man (uncredited)
Charles Gay .... leadman (uncredited)
Arnold Pine .... construction foreman (uncredited)
Tom Plews .... prop master (uncredited)
Steven Pridgeon .... draughtsman (uncredited)
Harry Spurgan .... art checker (uncredited)
Hal Waller .... draughtsman (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Del Harris .... sound effects editor
Roger Heman Sr. .... sound recording (as Roger Heman)
John K. Kean .... sound recording (as John Kean)
Harry Alphin .... sound effects editor (uncredited)
Harry Alphin .... sound recordist (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Al Gonzales .... special effects (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Bill Babcock .... stunts (uncredited)
Buff Brady .... stunts (uncredited)
Jim Burk .... stunts (uncredited)
Martha Crawford .... stunt double: Carroll Baker (uncredited)
Martha Crawford .... stunt double: Jean Simmons (uncredited)
Donna Hall .... stunts (uncredited)
Chuck Hayward .... stunts (uncredited)
John McKee .... stunts (uncredited)
Bob Morgan .... stunts (uncredited)
Hal Needham .... stunts (uncredited)
Chuck Roberson .... stunts (uncredited)
Slim Talbot .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Wallace Chewning .... director of photography: second unit
Don Christie .... still photographer (uncredited)
Eddie Garvin .... camera operator (uncredited)
Dick Johnson .... assistant camera (uncredited)
John Livesley .... key grip (uncredited)
Fred Mandl .... camera operator (uncredited)
Harry Sundby .... gaffer (uncredited)
Sidney Zipser .... assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Eddie Armand .... costumer
Neva Rames .... costumer
Joan Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Agnes Koschin .... fitter (uncredited)
Agnes Koschin .... wardrobe cutter (uncredited)
John Lucas .... second wardrobe (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Robert Swink .... supervising editor
Hal Ashby .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Tony Friedman .... assistant editor (uncredited)
William Sands .... assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Lloyd Young .... music editor
Alexander Courage .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Gil Grau .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Bernard Mayers .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Conrad Salinger .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Transportation Department
Chuck Hammond .... transportation gaffer (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Saul Bass .... titles designed by
Carl P. Benoit .... location manager
Sam Freedle .... script supervisor
Clarence Marks .... assistant: William Wyler
Robert Gary .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Kenneth Gilmore .... first aid (uncredited)
Harold Hourihan .... office accountant (uncredited)
Al Jank .... ramrod (uncredited)
Monty W. 'Red' Kennedy .... location auditor (uncredited)
Carey Leverette .... choreographer (uncredited)
Harry Mines .... unit publicist (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
165 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Certification:
Australia:PG | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Finland:K-16 | Netherlands:14 (original rating) (1959) (one cut) | Norway:16 | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) | UK:PG (video rating) (1988) (1993) (2001) (2013) | USA:Unrated | USA:Not Rated (DVD) | USA:Approved (MPAA rating: certificate #18972) | West Germany:12
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Co-stars Heston and Peck both played men named Thorn in later films: Heston in Soylent Green, Peck in The Omen.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: During passenger unloading from the stage, the little girl in the pink dress gets off the stage twice.See more »
Quotes:
Rufus Hannassey:The Hannasseys will have no peace until the bones of Henry Terrill is bleaching in Blanco Canyon. Now he started this blood-spilling, and I aim to finish it.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in It's Showtime (1976)See more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
51 out of 66 people found the following review useful.
Perfect movie, Perfect music., 24 December 2000
Author: NativeTexan from Georgia

There's just not one thing wrong with this movie. The casting is perfect, as is the direction, cinematography, script, and music. The score by Jerome Moross is perfection, and my personal favorite of all the great western movie scores. All the actors/actresses are a perfect fit for their roles, and the male cast of Gregory Peck, Charlton Heston, Charles Bickford, Burl Ives, and Chuck Connors (who shines as the thoroughly bad Buck Hannassey) is ensemble acting at it's best. Carol Baker and Jean Simmons are luminous, compelling, and strangely powerful.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (142 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Big Country (1958)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Use of compass when out riding, Best_ID_I_can_think_of
What was the future for McKay and Leech? gancommercial
How miscasting could have made THE BIG COUNTRY unviewable! ScopeWatcher
Awesome Theme Music rikitiki
Who could play Clem Maragon? mike-osullivan3
Major Terrill and his daughter threeoranges
See more »

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