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Gideon's Trumpet (1980)

Not Rated | | Biography, Drama, History | TV Movie 30 April 1980
The story of Clarence Earl Gideon and his fight for the right to have publicly funded legal counsel for the needy.

Director:

Robert L. Collins (as Robert Collins)

Writers:

Anthony Lewis (book), David W. Rintels (teleplay)
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Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Henry Fonda ... Clarence Earl Gideon
José Ferrer ... Abe Fortas
John Houseman ... Chief Justice / Offscreen Narrator
Fay Wray ... Edna Curtis
Sam Jaffe ... 1st Supreme Court Justice
Dean Jagger ... Sixth Supreme Court Justice
Nicholas Pryor ... Jacob
William Prince ... 5th Supreme Court Justice
Lane Smith ... Fred Turner
Richard McKenzie ... Judge Robert McCrary
Dolph Sweet ... Charlie
Ford Rainey ... 2nd Supreme Court Justice
David Sheiner ... Abe Krash
J. Patrick McNamara ... Harris
Les Lannom ... Bobby Earle
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Storyline

True story of Clarence Gideon's fight to be appointed counsel at the expense of the state. This landmark case led to the Supreme Court's decision which extended this right to all criminal defendants. Written by Steve Walker <swalker@ionet.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 April 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: Gideon's Trumpet (#29.3) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Henry Fonda played Barney Greenwald on stage in "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial" in 1954, the same year that José Ferrer played the same role in The Caine Mutiny (1954). See more »

Goofs

In the first trial, when the bailiff is swearing in Lester Wade, he instructs him to "raise your right hand" [the audio of this is clipped]. However, Lester actually places his right hand on the bible and raises his left hand. On all other occasions in the movie, witnesses actually raise their right hands (and put their left hands on the bible) when being sworn in. See more »

Quotes

Abe Fortas: [discussing a person's right to have an adequate defense during a trial] What I'd like to say to the Court is: "Let's not talk; let's go down there and watch one of these fellows try to defend themselves".
See more »

Connections

Edited into Hallmark Hall of Fame (1951) See more »

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User Reviews

Not shown in actor's filmography
18 May 2011 | by DeusvoltSee all my reviews

Unfortunately, many will miss knowing about this if they just check on the actor's filmography on this site. It is not explicitly listed. You will have to look for it under Hallmark Hall of Fame.

It is one of Fonda's finest performances reminiscing and rivaling his portrayal of an innocent accused in The Wrong Man. Here, at age 75 he portrays Clarence Gideon who was actually only 53 at the time of the trial in 1963. Obviously, not in health when this was filmed, Henry Fonda's age and frailty adds authenticity and pathos to the character's situation.

It is a landmark movie (for TV) that celebrates a landmark Supreme Court decision that added protection to the rights of the accused by ensuring that they are provided proper legal counsel.


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