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Darby O'Gill and the Little People (1959)

Approved | | Adventure, Family, Fantasy | 23 March 1960 (Japan)
A wily old codger matches wits with the king of the leprechauns and helps play matchmaker for his daughter and the strapping lad who has replaced him as caretaker.

Director:

Robert Stevenson

Writers:

Lawrence Edward Watkin, H.T. Kavanagh (suggested by "Darby O'Gill" stories)
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Won 1 Golden Globe. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Albert Sharpe Albert Sharpe ... Darby O'Gill
Janet Munro ... Katie O'Gill
Sean Connery ... Michael McBride
Jimmy O'Dea Jimmy O'Dea ... King Brian
Kieron Moore ... Pony Sugrue
Estelle Winwood ... Sheelah Sugrue
Walter Fitzgerald ... Lord Fitzpatrick
Denis O'Dea ... Father Murphy
J.G. Devlin J.G. Devlin ... Tom Kerrigan
Jack MacGowran ... Phadrig Oge
Farrell Pelly Farrell Pelly ... Paddy Scanlon
Nora O'Mahoney Nora O'Mahoney ... Molly Malloy (as Nora O'Mahony)
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Storyline

Darby O'Gill seems to be as full of blarney as any old codger in Ireland, but the stories of leprechauns he tells at the pub are true. In fact, he and the tiny King Brian, ruler of the little people, are friendly adversaries, continually out-foxing each other. Darby needs a bit of magical help from the wily king when Lord Fitzpatrick replaces him as caretaker with the handsome, strapping young Michael from Dublin. Michael falls in love with Darby's beautiful daughter, Katie, which is all right with Darby; but the lad has a rival in a local ruffian, the son of a devious widow who wants her boy to be the caretaker. King Brian's supernatural assistance is necessary to make everything come out all right, but the sneaky leprechaun won't play matchmaker without a fight. Finally, real trouble comes in the form of the Banshee, and Darby will need all his quick wits to save his daughter from the wicked spirit. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

More than a wee bit of magical shenanigans! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Irish

Release Date:

23 March 1960 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

The Little People See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The lighting used to make sure the actors were kept in proper perspective without seeming false used up so much electricity it apparently blew out a substation in Burbank when the lights were turned on without warning. See more »

Goofs

When King Brian is talking to Katie in her sleep and she awakes, you can see the bars of the bed through her head and her hand; when she lays back down. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Katie O'Gill: Come in, Mrs. Sugrue!
Sheelah Sugrue: Katie, darlin'! Can you lend me the loan of a small pinch o' tea; I'll pay ye back Thursday.
Katie O'Gill: Ye can have it an' welcome.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits: My thanks to King Brian of Knocknasheega and his Leprechauns, whose gracious co-operation made this picture possible. - Walt Disney See more »

Alternate Versions

A minor difference between the two laserdisc versions: in the second (Re-Mastered) version, King Brian orders the Strativarius fetched in Irish whereas it was in English in the first version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in St. Elsewhere: Rain (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

The Wishing Song
Written by Lawrence Edward Watkin & Oliver Wallace
Performed by Albert Sharpe and Jimmy O'Dea (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Make a wish
1 January 2005 | by Spirit_of_73See all my reviews

This is a truly enchanting film for all ages. It takes the viewer to the small Irish village of Rushcullen in County Kerry where not much happens except to one person, Darby O'Gill.

Darby is a lovable old caretaker for the local Lord of the Manor whom the Lord jokes retired years ago but never told anyone. Darby's wanderings up to the ruins above the village have led him into contact with the 'little people' ruled by the likable but cunning King Brian.

The battle of wits between Darby and King Brian are the central theme running through the film but the subplots surrounding Darby's beautiful daughter Katie (played by the English actress Janet Munro who tragically died at only 38) and the competition between her suitor's, Sean Connery and Kieron Moore keep the older viewers interest. Add to this a bit of drama surrounding a death carriage and a scary banshee and you have a film which works on even more levels.

This is something of a forgotten gem of the family film genre. With tales of leprechaun's and banshee's all told through the wonderful west coast brogue, it doesn't fail to captivate.

It's somewhat idealised version of Irish life in the 1920's is also a delight. Okay, not all Irish people lived in thatched cottages, tipped their caps to the local priest or went to the pub to catch up on the craig, but a lot did.

As family films go this is right up there with Mary Poppins and The Lion King, 10 out of 10.


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