23 user 4 critic

Star in the Night (1945)

Not Rated | | Short, Drama, Family | 13 October 1945 (USA)
Three cowboys riding across the desert with gifts for no particular recipient, see a distant bright light and find it comes from the Star Auto Court sign where the owners and guests work together to help a young pregnant wife and husband.


Don Siegel


Robert Finch (story), Saul Elkins (screenplay)

On Disc

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Won 1 Oscar. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
J. Carrol Naish ... Nick Catapoli
Donald Woods ... Hitchhiker
Rosina Galli Rosina Galli ... Rosa Catapoli
Richard Erdman ... Cowboy (as Dick Erdman)
Lynn Baggett ... Maria Santos
John Miles John Miles ... Cowboy (as Johnny Miles)
Anthony Caruso ... José Santos (as Tony Caruso)


It's Christmas Eve. Three cowboys have just bought out a store of items as Christmas presents, despite not having anyone to give the presents to. While two of them admit to wanting to impress the pretty sales clerk, the third just felt good buying gifts to give to someone. Riding through the dark desert on horseback, they see a flashing star off in the distance, which they ride over to investigate. The newly purchased second hand star is a sign just erected by Nick Catapoli for his business, the Star Auto Court. Nick has no Christmas spirit, especially as he deals with the problems of customers, this despite his wife Rosa serving all their customers with a smile and warm heart. He believes most people are hypocrites in that they espouse this spirit at this one time of the year while not having it any other time. As such, he does not want to extend his lobby as shelter for a drifter who just wants to come in from the cold for a little while. Although the drifter tries to explain the ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Short | Drama | Family | Western


Not Rated | See all certifications »





English | Italian

Release Date:

13 October 1945 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Featurettes (1945-1946 season) #2: Star in the Night See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This was director Don Siegel's first commercial theatrical release. See more »


Joy to the World
Music arranged by Lowell Mason
Played after the customers get an extra blanket
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Simply wonderful
13 September 2004 | by jnwa3See all my reviews

This black and white short made almost 60 years ago is one sweet surprise to anyone who happens upon it. Turner classic movies airs this from time to time during the holidays and even though I saw it by accident last Christmas I'm so thankful I had the idea to tape it "just in case" it was a keeper. It takes place on Christmas eve long ago as three cowboys happen to show up at a small place where others also are wanting a place to stay for the night. Most are bitter and full of complaints until something happens to bring these people together on this freezing Christmas eve. A poor young couple wander in and are in obvious discomfort as the young woman is close to having a child. The people earlier so full of scorn and complaints all learn the true meaning of Christmas when they come together giving the couple the things they need so that this new little baby can safely be born.

It will make your heart swell and bring a tear or two to your eyes as you experience this sweet tale.

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