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The Greatest Show on Earth ()


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The dramatic lives of trapeze artists, a clown, and an elephant trainer are told against a background of circus spectacle.

Director:
Awards:
  • Won 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 5 nominations.
  • See more »
Reviews:

Photos and Videos

Cast verified as complete

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...
Holly
...
The Great Sebastian
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Brad Braden
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Phyllis
...
Angel
...
FBI Agent Gregory
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Klaus
...
Mr. Henderson
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Emmett Kelly
Cucciola ...
Cucciola
Antoinette Concello ...
Antoinette Concello
John Ringling North ...
John Ringling North
Tuffy Genders ...
Tuffy Genders
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Harry
...
Assistant Manager
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Circus Doctor
...
Ringmaster (as Bob Carson)
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Buttons' Mother
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Birdie
...
'Buttons' A Clown
Lou Jacobs ...
Lou Jacobs
The Alzanas ...
The Alzanas
Trisco ...
Trisco
The Flying Artonys ...
The Flying Artonys
Lilo Juston ...
Lilo Juston
The Chaludis ...
The Chaludis
The Idnavis ...
The Idnavis
The Realles ...
The Realles
The Fredonias ...
The Fredonias
Luciana & Friedel ...
Luciana & Friedel
Buzzy Potts ...
Buzzy Potts
Ernie Burch ...
Ernie Burch
Felix Adler ...
Felix Adler
Paul Jerome ...
Paul Jerome
Miss Patricia ...
Miss Patricia
Eddie Kohl ...
Eddie Kohl
Tiebor's Sea Lions ...
Tibor's Sea Lions
Mroczkowski's Liberty Horses ...
Mroczkowski's Liberty Horses
The Zoppes ...
The Zoppes
Bones Brown ...
Bones Brown
...
Fay Alexander
The Flying Concellos ...
The Flying Concellos
Lola Dobritch ...
Lola Dobritch
The Hemadas ...
The Hemadas
Christy and Gorilla ...
Christy & Gorilla (as Christy & Gorilla)
Tonito ...
Tonito
The Bokaras ...
The Bokaras
Prince Paul ...
Prince Paul
Jimmy Armstrong ...
Jimmy Armstrong
Paul Horompo ...
Paul Horompo
Paul Jung ...
Paul Jung
Charley Bell ...
Charley Bell
Gilbert Reichert ...
Gilbert Reichert
C.H. Lindsey ...
C. H. Lindsey
Peterson's Dogs ...
Peterson's Dogs
Rix's Bears ...
Rix's Bears
Arthur Burson ...
Arthur Burson
La Norma ...
La Norma
Jeanne Sleeter ...
Jeanne Sleeter
Billy Snyder ...
Bill Snyder (as Bill Snyder)
The Flying Comets ...
The Flying Comets
Veronica Martell ...
Veronica Martell
Miss Loni ...
Miss Loni
The Romigs ...
The Romigs
Rusty Parent ...
Rusty Parent
The Maxellos ...
The Maxellos
Martha Hunter ...
Martha Hunter
Truzzi ...
Truzzi
Eugene Scott ...
Eugene Scott
James Barnes ...
James Barnes
Merle Evans ...
Merle Evans
Frank McClosky ...
Frank McClosky
Mike Petrillo ...
Mike Petrillo
Peter Grace ...
Peter Grace
Bob Reynolds ...
Bob Reynolds
George Werner ...
George Werner
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Sam's Wife (uncredited)
...
Canvas Man (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
Vicki Bakken ...
Vicki (uncredited)
Mary Bezemes ...
Minor Role (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
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Hopalong Cassidy (uncredited)
Ralph Brooks ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Helen Brown ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Jeanne Browning ...
Girl (uncredited)
Arthur Q. Bryan ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Donna Burke ...
Girl (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
Lonnie Burr ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Bruce Cameron ...
Bruce (uncredited)
Charles D. Campbell ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Frances Campbell ...
Minor Role (uncredited)
Malcolm Cassell ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Iphigenie Castiglioni ...
Iphigenie Castiglioni (uncredited)
...
Dave (uncredited)
Nathalie J. Christian ...
Minor Role (uncredited)
Ken Christy ...
Tightrope Act Spectator (uncredited)
Archie D. Clark ...
Train Engineer (uncredited)
Davison Clark ...
Farmer Sam (uncredited)
Ronnie Clark ...
Boy (uncredited)
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Circus Girl (uncredited)
Rocky Clinton ...
Barker (uncredited)
Rus Conklin ...
Rus (uncredited)
Gerald Courtemarche ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Jack - Circus Attendant (uncredited)
Dorothy Crider ...
Dorothy (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
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Narrator (uncredited) (voice)
Bobby Diamond ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Midway Game Barker (uncredited)
Gloria Drew ...
Ann (uncredited)
Jimmie Dundee ...
Utility Man / Stake Driver (uncredited)
Claude Dunkin ...
Claude (uncredited)
Don Dunning ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Art Dupuis ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Rosemary Dvorak ...
Rosemary (uncredited)
Daisy Earles ...
Midget (uncredited)
Bonnie Kay Eddy ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Monie Ellis ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
C.L. Elslander ...
Father C.L. Elslander (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
Norman Field ...
Truesdale (uncredited)
Elizabeth Fillman ...
Girl (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
Gerry Ganzer ...
Spectator (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Slim Gaut ...
Circus Man (uncredited)
Everett Glass ...
Board Member (uncredited)
Joseph Granby ...
Spectator (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Linda Green ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Otto Griebling ...
Circus Performer (uncredited)
Dolores Hall ...
Circus Girl (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
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Bill (uncredited)
John Hamer ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Ambulance Driver (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Charmienne Harker ...
Charmienne (uncredited)
Joe Harper ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Kathleen Hartnagel ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Helene Hatch ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Bradford Hatton ...
Osborne (uncredited)
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Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Erin Hennessey ...
Girl (uncredited)
Patsy Henry ...
Girl (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Bette Hill ...
Girl (uncredited)
Paula Hill ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Fay Holderness ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Ronny Hooker ...
Boy (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
Jerry James ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Adele Cook Johnson ...
Mable (uncredited)
Brad Johnson ...
Reporter (uncredited)
Lorna Jordon ...
Lorna (uncredited)
Frances Karath ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
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Pickpocket Victim (uncredited)
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Mona (uncredited)
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Train Fireman (uncredited)
Ann Kunde ...
Spectator (uncredited)
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Hank (uncredited)
Larry Lapham ...
Minor Role (uncredited)
Rudy Lee ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Foreman (uncredited)
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Circus Man (uncredited)
Anthony Marsh ...
Tony (uncredited)
Sydney Mason ...
Carson (uncredited)
Gay McEldowney ...
Gay (uncredited)
Pattie McKenzie ...
Girl (uncredited)
Peggy McKim ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
James McNally ...
Spectator (uncredited)
William Meader ...
Spectator (uncredited)
David M. Mee ...
Little Boy (uncredited)
Frank Meredith ...
Train Engineer (uncredited)
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Chuck (uncredited)
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Gertrude (uncredited)
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Patricia (uncredited)
Royce Milne ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Ralph Montgomery ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Beverly Mook ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Lyle Moraine ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Clarence Nash ...
Spectator (uncredited)
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Truck Boss (uncredited)
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Noel (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Joel Nestler ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Eric Nielsen ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Noralee Norman ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
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Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
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Midway Barker at End (uncredited)
Susan Odin ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Sammy Ogg ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Ruth Packard ...
Spectator (uncredited)
John Parrish ...
Jack Lawson (uncredited)
Luce Potter ...
Midget (uncredited)
Hugh Prosser ...
Hugh (uncredited)
Harry Raven ...
Circus Man (uncredited)
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Keith - Circus Attendant (uncredited)
Bruce Riley Jr. ...
Boy (uncredited)
William J. Riley ...
Policeman (uncredited)
Peter Roman ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Midget (uncredited)
Gladys Rosson ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Robert E. Royal ...
Policeman (uncredited)
William Ruhl ...
Circus Barker (uncredited)
Robert W. Rushing ...
Policeman (uncredited)
Russell Saunders ...
Circus Man (uncredited)
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Circus Barker (uncredited)
Ritz Schroder ...
Harlequin (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Squeaky ...
Squeaky (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Mabel Stark ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Robert R. Stephenson ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Tony Taylor ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Roland Tiebor ...
Roland Tiebor (uncredited)
Nina Torres ...
Girl (uncredited)
Stuart Torres ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
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Man in Train Wreck (uncredited)
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Spectator (uncredited)
Judith Ann Vroom ...
Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Wally Walker ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Gil Warren ...
Minor Role (uncredited)
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Little Girl Spectator (uncredited)
Joan Whitney ...
Spectator (uncredited)
...
Spectator (uncredited)
Kay Wiley ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Dickie June Williams ...
Girl (uncredited)
Robert N. Wilson ...
Motorcycle Cop (uncredited)
Robin Winans ...
Little Boy Spectator (uncredited)
Christine Wright ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Fred Zendar ...
Spectator (uncredited)
Alberto Zoppe ...
Alberto Zoppe - Trick Rider (uncredited)

Directed by

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Cecil B. DeMille

Written by

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Fredric M. Frank ... (screenplay) &
Barré Lyndon ... (screenplay) &
Theodore St. John ... (screenplay) (as Theodore St.John)
 
Fredric M. Frank ... (story) &
Theodore St. John ... (story) (as Theodore St.John) &
Frank Cavett ... (story)
 
Jack Gariss ... (additional writer) (uncredited)

Produced by

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Cecil B. DeMille ... producer
Henry Wilcoxon ... associate producer

Music by

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Victor Young ... (music score by)

Cinematography by

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George Barnes ... director of photography

Film Editing by

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Anne Bauchens

Art Direction by

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Hal Pereira
Walter H. Tyler ... (as Walter Tyler)

Set Decoration by

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Sam Comer
Ray Moyer

Costume Design by

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Edith Head ... (costumes)
Dorothy Jeakins ... (costumes)
Miles White ... (circus costumes)

Makeup Department

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Wally Westmore ... makeup supervisor

Production Management

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Roy Burns ... unit manager (uncredited)
C. Kenneth Deland ... unit manager (uncredited)
Andrew J. Durkus ... unit manager (uncredited)

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

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Arthur Rosson ... unit director
Edward Salven ... assistant director
Frank Baur ... second assistant director (uncredited)
Bud Brill ... second assistant director (uncredited)
Daniel McCauley ... assistant director (uncredited)
Walter H. Tyler ... assistant director (uncredited)

Art Department

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Norman Bel Geddes ... designer: big top (uncredited)
Gene Lauritzen ... construction coordinator (uncredited)
Jack Senter ... assistant art director (uncredited)
Dwight Thompson ... props (uncredited)

Sound Department

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John Cope ... sound recordist
Harry Lindgren ... sound recordist

Special Effects by

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Harold V. McKenzie ... special effects assistant (uncredited)
Barney Wolff ... special effects (uncredited)

Visual Effects by

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Devereaux Jennings ... special photographic effects (as Devereux Jennings)
Gordon Jennings ... special photographic effects
Paul K. Lerpae ... special photographic effects (as Paul Lerpae)

Stunts

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Polly Burson ... stunts (uncredited)
Chuck Hamilton ... stunts (uncredited)
Russell Saunders ... stunts (uncredited)
Galla Shawn ... stunt double: Betty Hutton (uncredited)
Dale Van Sickel ... stunts (uncredited)

Camera and Electrical Department

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W. Wallace Kelley ... additional photography (as Wallace Kelley)
J. Peverell Marley ... additional photography

Costume and Wardrobe Department

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Joan Joseff ... costume jeweller (uncredited)

Music Department

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John Murray Anderson ... stager: circus musical and dance numbers
Sidney Cutner ... orchestrator (uncredited)
George Parrish ... orchestrator (uncredited)
Leo Shuken ... orchestrator (uncredited)

Other crew

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Richard Barstow ... choreographer
Robert Brower ... Technicolor color consultant
Arthur M. Concello ... general manager: Ringling Bros.-Barnum & Bailey Circus
John Ringling North ... president: Ringling Bros.-Barnum & Bailey Circus / technical advisor
Henry Ringling North ... vice president: Ringling Bros.-Barnum & Bailey Circus
Pat Valdo ... general director of performance: Ringling Bros.-Barnum & Bailey Circus
James Vincent ... dialogue supervisor
Lynn Couch ... aerialist coach: Cornel Wilde (uncredited)
Mel Koontz ... animal trainer (uncredited)
Barlow Simpson ... animal handler: elephant (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production Companies

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Distributors

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Special Effects

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Other Companies

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Storyline

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Plot Summary

To ensure a full profitable season, circus manager Brad Braden engages The Great Sebastian, though this moves his girlfriend Holly from her hard-won center trapeze spot. Holly and Sebastian begin a dangerous one-upmanship duel in the ring, while he pursues her on the ground. Subplots involve the secret past of Buttons the Clown and the efforts of racketeers to move in on the game concessions. Let the show begin! Written by Rod Crawford

Plot Keywords
Taglines The Heartbeat Story of Circus People, Filmed with the Cooperation of Ringling Bros. - Barnum and Bailey Circus! See more »
Genres
Parents Guide View content advisory »
Certification

Additional Details

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Also Known As
  • Cecil B. DeMille's The Greatest Show on Earth (United States)
  • Cecil B. DeMille's The Greatest Show on Earth (United Kingdom)
  • Sous le plus grand chapiteau du monde (France)
  • Die größte Schau der Welt (Germany)
  • El mayor espectáculo del mundo (Spain)
  • See more »
Runtime
  • 152 min
Country
Language
Color
Aspect Ratio
Sound Mix
Filming Locations

Box Office

Budget $4,000,000 (estimated)
Cumulative Worldwide Gross $1,689,734

Did You Know?

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Trivia (Cameo) Bing Crosby, Bob Hope: Two circus spectators during the musical song "Lovely Luawana Lady" (sung by Dorothy Lamour, Lamour portrayed Phyllis); after the first lyric there s a musical interval while Lamour is resting her voice for the second lyric of the song. Hope, Crosby, and Lamour famously co-starred in the Road to Singapore (1940), Road to Morocco (1942), Road to Utopia (1945) and several other "Road" pictures. See more »
Goofs The Walt Disney characters are seen getting their costume heads prior to the parade. When the characters are seen on parade inside the tent, they are in different costumes to what they were wearing when they got the heads. See more »
Movie Connections Featured in AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to James Stewart (1980). See more »
Soundtracks The Greatest Show on Earth See more »
Quotes [to Holly, as his blood is being transfused into Brad]
Sebastian: If he should make love well after this, pay no attention - it will be me.
See more »

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