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The Story of Will Rogers (1952)

Approved | | Biography, Comedy, Drama | 26 July 1952 (USA)
The homespun humorist and social critic starts as a cowboy and goes on to vaudeville, movies, radio.

Director:

Michael Curtiz

Writers:

Frank Davis (screenplay), Stanley Roberts (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Will Rogers Jr. ... Will Rogers
Jane Wyman ... Betty Rogers
Carl Benton Reid ... Senator Clem Rogers
Eve Miller ... Cora Marshall
James Gleason ... Bert Lynn
Slim Pickens ... Dusty Donovan
Noah Beery Jr. ... Wiley Post
Mary Wickes ... Mrs. Foster
Steve Brodie ... Dave Marshall
Pinky Tomlin ... Orville James
Margaret Field Margaret Field ... Sally Rogers
Eddie Cantor ... Eddie Cantor
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Todd Karns ... 1st Mechanic (scenes deleted)
Dub Taylor ... Actor (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

A film biography of American humorist Will Rogers of Oklahoma. It captures the highlights of his life from Oklahoma ranch life to traveling the world in search adventure and a life as a performer in vaudeville. Portrayed by Will Rogers, Jr. He has the sound and character to be his father--the Cherokee Kid, Will Rogers.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

All His Great Joy and Gol-Darned Greatness! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 July 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A História de Will Rogers See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on Janaury 12, 1953 with Will Rogers Jr. and Jane Wyman reprising their film roles. See more »

Goofs

When Will Rogers leaves on his flight to Alaska in 1935 the plane that he and Wiley Post are flying is a Vultee BT-13 or -15 (depending on the engine used), an aircraft that didn't come into use until 1940. In the background as they are taking off are Boeing 377s (or C-97s), which debuted in the mid-1940s. See more »

Quotes

Will Rogers: Well it looks like the women are finally gonna get the vote. A lot of men say they shouldn't be trusted with it. Seems kind of silly to stop trustin' them now after eatin' their cookin' for 4000 years.
See more »

Connections

Features Everybody Sing (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Home on the Range
(uncredited)
Music by Daniel E. Kelley
Lyrics by Brewster M. Higley
Played at the beginning and during the opening credits
Sung at the Rogers party and used often in the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not a great movie, but an honest one
15 January 2017 | by richard-1787See all my reviews

When they discuss the great movies of director Michael Curtiz, they start with Casablanca, which may well be the greatest American movie - for which he earned a well-deserved Oscar - and go on to such screen gems as The Adventures of Robin Hood, Captain Blood, The Sea Hawk, Yankee Doodle Dandy (which is a slow movie with a great performance by its star), Life with Father, and a host of others. I doubt anyone would think to mention this movie.

And The Story of Will Rogers is not a great movie. It does not move with the relentless drive of Casablanca or Robin Hood, it does not sparkle like Life with Father. Seventeen years after his untimely death in 1935, it tells the story of the then still well-remembered American humorist, Will Rogers. Since everyone still knew his story then, the movie did not have to tell it; rather, it picked the moments that it wanted to stand out.

That isn't Rogers' years in the Ziegfeld Follies, which made him a household word, or his appearance in movies, even through, for a short while, he was the biggest box office attraction in talkies.

Rather, it concentrates on Rogers' support of General William (Billy) Mitchell and his efforts to get Congress to put money into air power at a time when the U.S. was pulling back into isolationism. World War II and the terrifying German blitzkrieg would eventually show that Mitchell and Rogers were right.

It also concentrates, in the last part, on Rogers' fund raising for the poor during the depths of the Depression. That, too, is an aspect of Rogers' career that is probably forgotten today.

This movie won't keep you glued to your seat. But it does serve to remind us, now that there are few among us who remember seeing and hearing Rogers, what warm-hearted pleasure he brought to Americans when so many of us needed a smile so badly. His sense of humor may seem corny today - it was corny back then, too - but there is a lack of nastiness or derision to it that I often miss today.


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