IMDb > 1939: Hollywood's Greatest Year (2009) (TV)

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Release Date:
2 July 2009 (USA) See more »
User Reviews:
Good coverage of Hollywood's Greatest Year... See more (7 total) »


  (in credits order)

Kenneth Branagh ... Narrator (voice)

Leonard Maltin ... Himself - Film Critic and Historian
Thomas Schatz ... Himself - Author of 'The Genius of the System'
F.X. Feeney ... Himself - Film Critic and Historian
Scott Eyman ... Himself - Author of 'Lion of Hollywood: The Life and Legend of Louis B. Mayer'
Jeanine Basinger ... Herself - Author of 'The Star Machine'
Aubrey Solomon ... Himself - Author of 'The Films of Twentieth Century-Fox'
Molly Haskell ... Herself - Author of 'Frankly, My Dear'

George Cukor ... Himself (archive footage)

Rudy Behlmer ... Himself - Author of 'Inside Warner Bros.'

Francis Lederer ... Himself (archive footage)

A.C. Lyles ... Himself
Joseph McBride ... Himself - Author of 'Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success'

Frank Capra ... Himself (archive footage)

Howard Hawks ... Himself (archive footage)
Richard B. Jewell ... Himself - Author of 'The RKO Story' (as Dr. Richard Jewell)

Douglas Fairbanks Jr. ... Himself (archive footage)

Maureen O'Hara ... Herself (archive footage)

Claire Trevor ... Herself (archive footage)
Daniel Selznick ... Himself

Ann Rutherford ... Herself (archive footage)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Fred Astaire ... (archive footage)

Humphrey Bogart ... (archive footage)

Charles Boyer ... (archive footage)

James Cagney ... (archive footage)

Joan Crawford ... (archive footage)

Bette Davis ... (archive footage)

Olivia de Havilland ... (archive footage)

Walt Disney ... Himself (archive footage)

Robert Donat ... (archive footage)

Irene Dunne ... (archive footage)

Errol Flynn ... (archive footage)

John Ford ... Himself (archive footage)

Clark Gable ... (archive footage)

Greta Garbo ... (archive footage)

Judy Garland ... (archive footage)

Greer Garson ... (archive footage)

Cary Grant ... Himself (archive footage)

Bob Hope ... Himself (archive footage)

Charles Laughton ... (archive footage)

Vivien Leigh ... (archive footage)

Myrna Loy ... (archive footage)

Louis B. Mayer ... Himself (archive footage)

Hattie McDaniel ... Herself (archive footage)

Thomas Mitchell ... Himself (archive footage)

Edward G. Robinson ... (archive footage)

Ginger Rogers ... (archive footage)

Mickey Rooney ... (archive footage)

Franklin D. Roosevelt ... Himself (archive footage) (as Franklin Delano Roosevelt)
David O. Selznick ... Himself (archive footage)

George Stevens ... Himself (archive footage)

James Stewart ... (archive footage)

Spencer Tracy ... (archive footage)

Lana Turner ... (archive footage)

Jack L. Warner ... Himself (archive footage)

John Wayne ... Himself (archive footage)

Darryl F. Zanuck ... Himself (archive footage)

Directed by
Constantine Nasr 
Writing credits
Gary Leva  and
Constantine Nasr 

Produced by
Michael Crawford .... producer
Victoria Csatar .... co-producer
George Feltenstein .... executive producer
Peter Fitzgerald .... consulting producer
Michael Meadows .... executive producer
Constantine Nasr .... producer
Film Editing by
David Creal 
Peter Fitzgerald (uncredited)
Makeup Department
Claire Doyle .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Dale Carroll .... post-production supervisor
Art Department
Michael Bonner .... graphics designer
Sound Department
Chris Colley .... sound mixer
Marla Hettinger .... sound
Tim Nichol .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
William Hooke .... camera operator (as Will Hooke)
Adam Rehmeier .... camera operator
Editorial Department
Robert Buttermilch .... assistant editor
Elizabeth C. Cook .... assistant editor (as Elizabeth Cook)
Johanna Moyal .... on-line editor
Brittaney Parbs .... on-line editing coordinator
Anthony Rose .... additional editorial
Jason Schwab .... assistant editor
Music Department
Rachel Glassberg .... music coordinator
Other crew
Alexandra Broudy .... researcher
Randal Kaplan .... researcher
Amy Rodrigue .... researcher
Leith Adams .... special thanks
Steven Arcieri .... special thanks
Michael Arick .... special thanks
Andy Bandit .... special thanks
Jeanine Basinger .... special thanks
Rudy Behlmer .... special thanks
Stacey Behlmer .... special thanks
Steve Bingen .... special thanks (as Steven Bingen)
Bob Burns .... acknowledgment: photographs and film footage provided by
Lea Carlson .... special thanks
Ned Comstock .... special thanks
Barry Dagestino .... special thanks
Rick DeCroix .... special thanks
Margarita Diaz .... special thanks
Scott Eyman .... special thanks
Michael Fallavollita .... special thanks
F.X. Feeney .... special thanks
Dan Ford .... special thanks
John Gallagher .... special thanks
John A. Gallagher .... special thanks
Samuel Goldwyn Jr. .... special thanks (as Sam Goldwyn Jr.)
Molly Haskell .... special thanks
Omar Herrera .... special thanks
Richard B. Jewell .... special thanks (as Dr. Richard B. Jewell)
Roni Lubliner .... special thanks
A.C. Lyles .... special thanks
Alice Tlusty Maltin .... special thanks
Leonard Maltin .... special thanks
Gregory W. Mank .... special thanks (as Gregory William Mank)
Joseph McBride .... special thanks
Geoff Murillo .... special thanks
Constantine Nasr .... acknowledgment: photographs and film footage provided by
John M. Poole .... special thanks
Thomas Schatz .... special thanks
Aubrey Solomon .... special thanks
Michael Sragow .... special thanks
Jeff Stevens .... special thanks
Alisa Trimble .... special thanks
Catherine Wyler .... special thanks (as Catharine Wyler)

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
69 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »

Did You Know?

Available on the Gone with the Wind (1939) Ultimate Collector's Edition and Scarlet Edition Blu-Ray releases, as well as the Ultimate Collector's Edition DVD.See more »
Movie Connections:
Features Union Pacific (1939)See more »


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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Good coverage of Hollywood's Greatest Year..., 2 July 2009
Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.

Narrated by KENNETH BRANAGH, I'd give this one even higher points if the narration included even more key points when discussing actors like Errol Flynn. Scant mention is made of his famous co-star Olivia de Havilland and certainly the fact that they became a great screen team after their first film in 1935 (CAPTAIN BLOOD). Instead we get a brief glimpse of Olivia (a covered wagon close-up from DODGE CITY) and one brief scene arguing with Flynn. Anyone would think their screen team magic in eight films wasn't worth a mention. Indeed, all of his best films were with Olivia at his side.

I could mention a few other omissions, but you get the drift. As always in these sort of tributes to studios and stars, there are some that really needed to be pointed out. Spending so much time on STAGECOACH when honoring John Ford westerns without a single scene from his other '39 masterpiece, DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK, is an oversight hard to forgive--especially since the narration mentions the stunning new use in '39 of a little thing called Technicolor.

The films and stars that get the most attention are NINOTCHKA (because of Garbo), the Bette Davis era at Warner Brothers, the Cagney/Raft gangster films, and the most unusual Warner melodrama that dealt with the Nazis--CONFESSIONS OF A NAZI SPY.

At Paramount, we get brief mention of Cecil B. DeMille and Claudette Colbert.

At Fox, it's Darryl F. Zanuck and director John Ford's talent for making westerns but still no mention of DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK. Instead, it's the Tyrone Power film JESSE JAMES that's called the most popular western of the year and given the full Technicolor treatment.

Then a brief look at United Artists which was formed back in the '30s by icons like Chaplin, Fairbanks and Pickford--and how independent producers like Walter Wanger and Hal Roach found a niche and made some great films. A clip from OF MICE AND MEN shows a tense scene between Lon Chaney, Jr. and Betty Field.

At RKO, it's GUNGA DIN directed by George Stevens that cost the most to make and proved highly successful at the box-office. The other biggie is THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME and Maureen O'Hara tells how awestruck she was by the masterful sets recreated entirely on a sound stage. The narration mentions that both of these films had underlying significance for audiences at that time--freedom from oppression being the theme in a world on the brink of war.

A brief clip of Fred and Ginger from THE STORY OF VERNON AND IRENE CASTLE, and a love scene from LOVE AFFAIR are shown for the conclusion of the RKO segment.

Then it's on to Selznick's independent feature GONE WITH THE WIND and all the obstacles in the producer's path before the film was finally made and declared an outstanding success.

As noted before, it's the omissions that will grate on some people--but all in all a good treatment of Hollywood's most incredibly creative year under the studio system.

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