IMDb > The Shootist (1976)
The Shootist
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The Shootist (1976) More at IMDbPro »

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The Shootist -- A dying gunfighter spends his last days looking for a way to die with a minimum of pain and a maximum of dignity.


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7.7/10   15,840 votes »
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Up 45% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Glendon Swarthout (novel)
Miles Hood Swarthout (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for The Shootist on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
20 August 1976 (USA) See more »
He's got to face a gunfight once more to live up to his legend once more - TO WIN JUST ONE MORE TIME.
A dying gunfighter spends his last days looking for a way to die with a minimum of pain and a maximum of dignity. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 1 win & 3 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Don Siegel crafted a milestone along the trail to the last sunset with "The Shootist"... See more (143 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

John Wayne ... J.B. Books

Lauren Bacall ... Bond Rogers

Ron Howard ... Gillom Rogers

James Stewart ... Dr. Hostetler

Richard Boone ... Sweeney

Hugh O'Brian ... Pulford
Bill McKinney ... Cobb

Harry Morgan ... Marshall Thibido

John Carradine ... Beckum

Sheree North ... Serepta

Rick Lenz ... Dobkins (as Richard Lenz)

Scatman Crothers ... Moses
Gregg Palmer ... Burly Man
Alfred Dennis ... Barber
Dick Winslow ... Streetcar Driver

Melody Thomas Scott ... Girl on Streetcar (as Melody Thomas)
Kathleen O'Malley ... School Teacher
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Johnny Crawford ... Books' Victim in Flashback (archive footage) (uncredited)
Chuck Dawson ... Extra (uncredited)
Duke Fishman ... Barfly (uncredited)

Christopher George ... Books' Victim in Flashback (archive footage) (uncredited)

Jonathan Goldsmith ... Book's Victim (uncredited)
Leo Gordon ... Books' Victim in Flashback (archive footage) (uncredited)
Charles G. Martin ... Murray the Bartender (uncredited)

Ricky Nelson ... Books' Fellow Lawman in Flashback (archive footage) (uncredited)
James Nolan ... Gambler (uncredited)
Henry Slate ... Pulford Confidant (uncredited)

Bob Steele ... Books' Victim in Flashback (archive footage) (uncredited)
Ralph Volkie ... White-Haired Bartender (uncredited)

Directed by
Don Siegel 
Writing credits
Glendon Swarthout (novel)

Miles Hood Swarthout (screenplay) and
Scott Hale (screenplay)

Produced by
M.J. Frankovich .... producer
William Self .... producer
Original Music by
Elmer Bernstein 
Cinematography by
Bruce Surtees (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Douglas Stewart 
Production Design by
Robert F. Boyle  (as Robert Boyle)
Set Decoration by
Arthur Jeph Parker  (as Arthur Parker)
Makeup Department
Joe DiBella .... makeup artist (as Joe Di Bella)
Dave Grayson .... makeup artist
Vivienne Walker .... hair stylist
Production Management
Russell Saunders .... executive production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Joseph C. Cavalier .... assistant director (as Joe Cavalier)
Joe Florence .... second assistant director
Art Department
Bill Dietz .... property master
Richard Lawrence .... assistant art director
Joseph M. LeBaron .... construction coordinator
William Cruse .... set designer (uncredited)
Sound Department
Les Fresholtz .... sound re-recordist
Michael Minkler .... sound re-recordist
Al Overton .... sound mixer (as Alfred J. Overton)
Arthur Piantadosi .... sound re-recordist
Jerry Whittington .... sound effects editor (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Augie Lohman .... special effects
David Domeyer .... special effects (uncredited)
Denny Arnold .... stunts (uncredited)
Jim Burk .... stunt double (uncredited)
Jim Burk .... stunt double: John Wayne (uncredited)
Jim Burk .... stunts (uncredited)
Steven Burnett .... stunts (uncredited)
Roydon Clark .... stunts (uncredited)
Chuck Roberson .... stunts (uncredited)
Henry Wills .... stunts wrangler (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Kenneth Adams .... key grip
Thomas Del Ruth .... camera operator (as Tom Del Ruth)
Charles Holmes .... gaffer (as Chuck Holmes)
Richard A. Mention III .... camera assistant (as Rick Mention)
Timothy E. Wade .... camera assistant
Robert Jason .... electrician (uncredited)
Dave Sutton .... still photographer (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Luster Bayless .... costumes: men
Moss Mabry .... costumes: Miss Bacall
Edna Taylor .... costumes: ladies
Editorial Department
Jerrold L. Ludwig .... assistant editor
Music Department
Dan Wallin .... score mixer (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Chris Haynes .... driver (uncredited)
Other crew
Jack Casey .... publicist
Eudie Charnes .... production coordinator
Dino De Laurentiis .... presenter
Al Horwits .... public relations
Betsy Norton .... script supervisor
Buzz Barton .... horse wrangler (uncredited)
Robert S. Birchard .... dailies projectionist (uncredited)
Martha Manor .... stand-in (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
100 min
Black and White | Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:16 | Australia:PG | Finland:K-16 | France:U | Germany:16 (DVD rating) | Norway:16 | Singapore:PG | Spain:13 | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) | UK:PG (1991) | USA:PG | USA:TV-PG (cable rating) | West Germany:16 (f)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Hugh O'Brian wanted to be in the film, so he was given the character of Pulford, who was originally in the novel. Pulford was a card dealer. In the movie, his gun fight with a patron is depicted as occurring after Books comes to town. In the book, however, the gun fight took place much earlier.See more »
Factual errors: Pulford kills the gambler with a shot through the heart that covers the length of the saloon. Such a wound should have only resulted in a relatively small amount of blood. Yet, when he hits the floor, he is literally covered with blood down to his legs.See more »
Gillom Rogers:[Gillom is dusting off a carriage as Books and Mrs. Rogers prepare for a drive to Lake Tahoe] Moses says he don't rent out this buggy too often.
Mrs. Rogers:Doesn't.
Gillom Rogers:'Doesn't'... except for funerals.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Gran Torino (2008)See more »
Maple Leaf RagSee more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
76 out of 92 people found the following review useful.
Don Siegel crafted a milestone along the trail to the last sunset with "The Shootist"..., 7 November 1999

"The Shootist" begins with clips from Wayne's previous pictures: "Hondo," "Rio Bravo," "El Dorado" etc...

Wayne portrays J. B. Books, the most famous lawman in the West who killed thirty men in his life... Books arrives to Carson City in 1901, the day Queen Victoria died in England...

Wayne went first to get a medical diagnosis known to everyone as cancer.

Dr. Hostetler (James Stewart) was too practical... He gives Book the most potent pain-killer he gets, and tells him where to stay in town...

The film is build to one and only purpose: To let Wayne die with dignity, without physical pain, at the Metropole gambling saloon, in a showdown with three heavies: Richard Boone, a bad-tempered ugly man who wants to avenge his brother's death; Hugh O'Brien, a skilled dealer and a presumptuous gunfighter; and Bill McKinney, an unpleasant provoking gunman just released from prison...

Ron Howard plays the crude graceless adolescent, the first to meet Wayne in the street: 'The old man ain't worth a bullet,' he says, 'he looks all tuckered out.' In this particular scene, it comes to my mind the insolent young punk, Skip Homeir, who tries to prove something when he confronts Gregory Peck in the psychological Western "The Gunfighter."

Wayne seems surprised by the visit of Serepta (Sheree North), an unscrupulous aging lady-love who tries to take advantage of him, asking him to marry her simply for a marriage certificate, and a famous name... She surely was not the woman of quality, the good prostitute (Claire Trevor) in "Stagecoach."

John Carradine, who plays the mysterious passenger, also in "Stagecoach," makes a brief appearance as the undertaker...

Tying to overcome his bloody past, John Wayne shows, in the film, the other side of the 'Shootist,' his human side... We find him pleasantly amusing when he reveals to Stewart the truth about the red fancy cushion he carries in the film...

Filmed in Carson City, Nevada, and with a fine supporting cast, this untraditional motion picture is a lyrical elegiac Western of the highest quality, a moving tribute to a legendary actor and a tender farewell to a Super Star...

Was the above review useful to you?
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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Shootist (1976)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
John Wayne was good in this. thomaswilliamboner
A very ominous film driver_8
I can't figure the ages of the characters. hightp
Why does this look like a made for TV film? thundergod1
Tribute to TV Westerns? Pearsey
Something I've never understood frog-34
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