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The Great Man (1956)

Approved | | Drama | December 1956 (USA)
Joe Harris, preparing a eulogy for popular radio commentator Herb Fuller, finds that nobody has a good word to say about him.

Director:

José Ferrer

Writers:

Al Morgan (screenplay), José Ferrer (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
José Ferrer ... Joe Harris
Dean Jagger ... Philip Carleton
Keenan Wynn ... Sid Moore
Julie London ... Carol Larson
Joanne Gilbert Joanne Gilbert ... Ginny
Ed Wynn ... Paul Beaseley
Jim Backus ... Nick Cellantano
Russ Morgan Russ Morgan ... Eddie Brand
Edward Platt ... Dr. O'Connor (as Edward C. Platt)
Robert Foulk ... Mike Jackson
Lyle Talbot ... Harry Connors
Vinton Hayworth ... Charley Carruthers
Henny Backus Henny Backus ... Mrs. Helen Rieber
Janie Alexander Janie Alexander ... Mary Browne
Vikki Dougan ... Marcia Miller - Receptionist
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Storyline

On the death of popular national radio commentator Herb Fuller, underling Joe Harris undertakes to prepare an hour long, eulogistic program featuring interviews with Fuller's friends. But, though Fuller was beloved by 150 million of what all the pros term the "great unwashed," all Harris can find is victims, cynical users, and outright enemies of Fuller. Is this where the magic of editing comes in? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Everybody loved the Great Man except those who hated his guts! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

December 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Luz de uma Ilusão See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Loosely based on the career of Arthur Godfrey. See more »

Goofs

When Joe, Mike, and Jinny are listening to the "blood bank" tape, the VU meter has no relation to the audio. See more »

Quotes

Ginny: Feet of clay, huh?
Joe Harris: Right up to the knees, at least.
See more »

Connections

Version of Pretendent (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock of Ages
Music by Thomas Hastings
Lyrics by Augustus Montague Toplady
See more »

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User Reviews

The Great Man is a thinly disguised Arthur Godfrey
4 September 2001 | by stevie-1See all my reviews

Just as Charlie Kane was based on William Randolph Hearst, great man Herb Fuller was based on TV and radio icon Arthur Godfrey. I believe several of the story lines in Great Man paralleled events in Godfrey's life. The one that stands out involved a `boy singer' that was fired by Herb Fuller. In real life Arthur Godfrey fired `boy singer' Julius LaRosa. I have heard that Godfrey – the `old redhead' was none too pleased with Jose Ferrer's film.

There is a brilliant scene in the film where the hard-boiled, cynical reporter Joe Harris (Jose Ferrer) meets a former employer of great man Herb Fuller, the guy who gave Fuller his start in broadcasting. Harris and his secretary make fun of Paul Beaseley (veteran actor Ed Wynn, who only has this one scene), a doddering old bumpkin who owns a small radio station in New England. Beaseley tells a story that reveals the two sides of Herb Fuller – a folksy, down-to- earth radio personality that people love on the one hand and a mean-spirited, drunken rat bastard on the other. At the end of the scene Beaseley says something like, `I know that some people find me ridiculous' and Harris, no longer mocking Beaseley, replies, `Mr. Beaseley, I don't find you ridiculous at all'. This is one of my favorite movie scenes of all time.


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