IMDb > Damon and Pythias (1962)

Damon and Pythias (1962) More at IMDbPro »Il tiranno di Siracusa (original title)

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Damon and Pythias -- Pythias, a liberal Athenian who believes all men are brothers, is condemned to death by Dionysus, the tyrant of Syracuse, who finds this view dangerous.


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Samuel Marx (story) and
Samuel Marx (screenplay) ...
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Release Date:
June 1962 (USA) See more »
World-famed story of friendship and fury!
Pythias, a liberal Athenian who believes all men are brothers, is condemned to death by Dionysus, the tyrant of Syracuse... See more » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Too good for its own good See more (5 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Guy Williams ... Damon
Don Burnett ... Pythias
Ilaria Occhini ... Nerissa
Liana Orfei ... Adriana
Marina Berti ... Mereka - Nerissa's Friend

Arnoldo Foà ... Dionysius the Tyrant
Carlo Giustini ... Cariso
Aldo Silvani ... Patriarch
Andrea Bosic ... Arcanos
Maurizio Baldoni ... Dionysius the Younger
Franco Fantasia ... Rumius the Fencing Master
Osvaldo Ruggieri ... Demetrius - Nerissa's Brother

Lawrence Montaigne ... Flute Player
Enrico Glori ... Nikos
Gianni Bonagura ... Phylemon
Vittorio Bonos ... Digenis
Carlo Rizzo ... Libia
Giovanna Maculani ... Hermione
Enzo Fiermonte
Tiberio Mitri
Franco Ressel
Tiberio Murgia
Luigi Bonos
Maurizio Bedoni
Giovanni Bagliori
Carolyn De Fonseca ... Chloe (as Carolyn Fonseca)
Carla Bonavera
Enrico Salvatore
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Aldo Pini ... Fencing Master (uncredited)

Directed by
Curtis Bernhardt 
Writing credits
Samuel Marx  story and
Samuel Marx  screenplay &
Franco Riganti  screenplay

Paola Ojetti (english version) story &
Franco Riganti (english version) story and
Bridget Boland (english version) screenplay &
Barry Oringer (english version) screenplay

Produced by
Sam Jaffe .... associate producer
Samuel Marx .... associate producer
Franco Riganti .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Angelo Francesco Lavagnino  (as A.F. Lavagnino)
Cinematography by
Aldo Tonti (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Niccolò Lazzari 
Production Design by
Alberto Boccianti 
Set Decoration by
Ennio Michettoni 
Costume Design by
Adriana Berselli 
Makeup Department
Nilo Jacoponi .... makeup artist
Rosa Luciani .... hair stylist
Production Management
Giorgio Riganti .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Alberto Cardone .... assistant director
Art Department
Italo Tomassi .... manager of art department (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Joseph Nathanson .... matte shots
Camera and Electrical Department
Luigi Kuveiller .... camera operator (uncredited)
Music Department
Franco Ferrara .... conductor: Orchestra Filarmonica Romana
Other crew
Franco Fantasia .... fencing master
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Il tiranno di Siracusa" - Italy (original title)
See more »
USA:99 min | Italy:101 min
Color (Metrocolor) | Color (Technicolor)
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Sound Recording)

Did You Know?

The tyrant featured in the film is a historical figure: Dionysius I of Syracuse (reigned c. 405-367 BC). He was a military commander who seized power in a coup. He was one of the most famous tyrants in Antiquity, known for his conquests in Sicily and Southern Italy, his inconclusive wars against Carthage, and his foundation of new cities (such as Ancona).See more »
Movie Connections:
Follows Damon and Pythias (1914)See more »


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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful.
Too good for its own good, 12 September 2002
Author: dinky-4 from Minneapolis

While it looks like just another of those "sword and sandal" movies from the 1960s, this one has ambitions. Too bad. Instead of being a snappy, unpretentious piece of entertainment with beefcakey guys and bosomy babes racing their way through an action-filled plot, we get a long, slow, deliberate, almost thoughtful re-telling of the Damon and Pythias myth. Strange, you don't think you're going to miss the fire-breathing monster and the scantily-clad virgin chained to a rock and the bare-chested hero stretched between two chariots, but darn it, when these ingredients aren't present, you miss them!

The problems probably began with the choice of director, Curtis Bernhardt. He was fine for MGM's women's pictures such as "Beau Brummell" and "Interrupted Melody," but he's not well suited to this kind of material. Guy Williams isn't the right choice to play Damon, either. He's supposed to be one of those lovable rogue types such as Burt Lancaster or even Kirk Douglas used to play, but he just can't bring this off.

Don Burnett does better as Pythias. He plays the quiet, serious one and though the "mismatched buddies" formula usually works, it stumbles here because there simply isn't much chemistry between the two leads. And, curiously enough, neither of the two men gets to take his shirt off, not even in the climactic scene in which Damon is bound to a pillar for his impending execution. What's a sword-and-sandal movie without a generous helping of pecs?

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