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King  Vidor

pioneer director King Vidor [1894-1982] (signed photo)          short profile

movies of King Vidor

other works By King Vidor

works about King Vidor


"The director is the channel through which a motion picture reaches the screen."
— King Vidor

     B I O
     h e r e

King Vidor entry at Wikipedia
King Vidor credits at Internet Movie Database

star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame  won Honorary Oscar in 1979      King Vidor won an Honorary Oscar® in 1979
and was nominated for Best Director Oscar® five times {1929-1957)
He also received
a Best Director Award at the Venice Film Festival (1935)
the D.G.A. Lifetime Achievement Award [1957]
a Career Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival (1982)
and a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

L i n k s

browse King Vidor on DVDsearch videos/DVDs
King Vidor credits at Internet Movie Database
King Vidor entry at Wikipedia

Movies  By  King  Vidor

King Vidor credits at Internet Movie Database

·            ·

"Hurricane In Galveston" [1913]
"The Grand Military Parade" [1913]
"The Lost Lie" [1918]

"Bud's Recruit" silent short [Boy City Films Jan 1918]
still photo of actor Wallace Brennan from King Vidor's 1918 silent comedy "Bud's Recruit"   Young Bud's mother is a member of the anti-war Peace Society, and his older brother is a coward doing anything that he can to stay out of uniform. Pro-war Bud is too young to enlist, so he organizes his own army and trains the kids in hope that they somehow can get to Berlin and punch the Kaiser in the nose. Produced & co-written by Judge Willis Brown {founder of the Boy City orphanage}; co-written & directed by King Vidor; starring Wallace Brennan, Robert Gordon, Ruth Hampton & Mildred Davis
full credits from IMDbmovie entry at Wikipedia
available on DVD on "Treasures From American Film Archives III" [2007]
Image Ent. b&w/color DVD box set [10/2007] 48 films on 3 disks for $80.99

"The Chocolate of The Gang" [1918]
"Tad's Swimming Hole" [1918]
"The Accusing Toe" [1918]
"I'm A Man" [1918]
"The Turn In The Road" [1919]
"Better Times" [1919]
"The Other Half" [1919]
"Poor Relations" [1919]
"The Family Honor" [1920]
"The Jack-Knife Man" [1920]
"The Sky Pilot" [1921]
"Love Never Dies" [1921]
"Real Adventure" [1922]
"Dusk To Dawn" [1922]
"Conquering The Woman" [1922]
"Peg o' My Heart" [1922]
"The Woman of Bronze" [1923]
"Three Wise Fools" [1923]
"Alice Adams" [producer 1923]
"Wild Oranges" [1924]
"Happiness" [1924]

"Wine  of  Youth"  [M.G.M. Aug 1924]
Wine of Youth movie poster   Three generations named Mary argue about the new morality of the Twenties. Two men vie for the attentions of the granddaughter, whose flapper pals convince her that living with a man for two weeks (no sex) is the only way to 'get to know each other'. The adults discover the plans, the youths run away to a remote campsite (bungling the experiment) and when they return, the two older generations have much to say about their disappointment in marriage and each other and in the 'wild' daughter. Co-produced & directed by King Vidor; based on the 1923 Broadway play "Mary The Third" by Rachel Crothers; starring Eleanor Boardman, Eulalie Jensen, E.J. Ratcliffe, Gertrude Claire, Pauline Garon, William Haines, Ben Lyon, William Collier Jr., James Morrison & Johnnie Walker
video/DVD not available; full credits from IMDb

"His Hour" [1924]
"The Wife of The Centaur" [1924]
"Proud Flesh" [1925]

"The  Big  Parade"  [M.G.M. Nov 1925; restored 2005]
The Big Parade silent classic  Actually the prologue to screenwriter L. Stallings's autobiographical novel "Plumes"; an idle rich American boy enlists in the Army and is sent to France where he becomes friends with two fellow soldiers, suffers in the trenches, and finds love with a French girl. Directed by King Vidor [1894-1982]; script by Harry Behn, based on a play by Joseph Farnham [1884-1931] and the story "Plumes" {below) by Laurence Stallings; starring John Gilbert, Renée Adorée, Hobart Bosworth, Claire McDowell, Claire Adams, Robert Ober, Tom O'Brien, Karl Dane, Kathleen Key, Rosita Marstini & Julanne Johnston; listed on National Film Registry (1992)
Warner b&w VHS [4/92] out of prodn/used
full credits from IMDbmovie entry at Wikipedia
Plumes autobographical novel  
"Plumes" [1924] by Laurence Stallings [1894-1968]
Used as partial basis for Vidor's silent war film "The Big Parade" [1925], the autobographical novel tells of the aftermath of military service in Europe during The Great War; the author/protagonist returned to a wife and daughter after losing a leg in battle and struggled with the loss of his idealistic faith in government and society.
Univ SC Press 8x5 pb [11/2006] for $15.56

"Metaphor"  [1980 short]
Color documentary produced & directed by King Vidor about the influence of his 1925 silent film
"The Big Parade" on American painter Andrew Wyeth;
video/DVD not available; credits from IMDb

"La Bohème" [1926]

"Bardelys The Magnificent" [1926]

"The Crowd"  [M.G.M. Feb 1928]
Co-written & directed by King Vidor [1894-1982]; full credits from IMDb

"The Patsy" also known as "The Politic Flapper" [1928]

"Show People" [1928]

"Hallelujah !" [M.G.M. Aug 1929]
movie poster for King Vidor's 1929 musical "Hallelujah!"   Vidor's first sound film, and the second Hollywood feature film with an all-black cast. An Afro-American sharecropper falls for a beautiful dancer at the local juke joint, and is fleeced in a crooked crap game. When his brother is killed in an ensuing gunfight, the sharecropper must flee, only to return disguised as a charismatic preacher. Co-written & directed by King Vidor; starring Daniel L. Haynes, Nina Mae McKinney, William Fountaine, Harry Gray, Fanny Belle DeKnight, Everett McGarrity, Victoria Spivey & the Dixie Jubilee Singers; Oscar nom for Best Director
Warner Home Video b&w DVD [1/2006] for $17.99
M.G.M. b&w VHS [9/98] out of prodn/used
full credits from IMDb

"Not So Dumb" [1930]

"Billy  The  Kid"
aka "The Highwayman Rides" [M.G.M. Oct 1930]
King Vidor's Billy The Kid 1930 poster  Based on the hit W.N. Burns novel; the first sound film about Billy The Kid [1859-81]; well-acted melodrama with a {no kidding} happy ending! Directed by King Vidor; starring John Mack Brown {as Billy}, Wallace Beery, Kay Johnson, Warner Richmond & James A. Marcus
video/DVD not available; full credits from IMDb
11"x17" poster from Amazon for $9.99

"Street Scene" [1931]

"The  Champ" [M.G.M. Nov 1931]
won Best Actor Oscar (Wallace Beery)  
won Best Script Oscar  
King Vidor's The Champ movie poster  
A drunken ex-boxing champion wins a racehorse, and gives it to his boy, who adores the man despite his many faults. The boy is reunited with his mother (unbeknownst), then the father loses the horse and gets thrown in jail, and realizes that the boy is better off with his wealthy mother. But the boy runs away, back to his father, and the man is inspired to go into training for a comeback in the ring. {Remade in 1953 & 1979.} Co-produced & directed by King Vidor; script by Frances Marion [1886-1973]; starring Wallace Beery, Jackie Cooper, Irene Rich & Roscoe Ates; won Oscars for Best Actor (Beery) & Best Original Script, nominated for Best Picture & Best Director
Warner Home Video b&w DVD [1/2006] for $17.99
M.G.M./U.A. b&w VHS [12/94] out of prodn/many used
full credits from IMDb

"Bird of Paradise" [1932]
"Cynara" aka US reissue title "I Was Faithful" [1932]
"The Stranger's Return" [1933]

"Our Daily Bread" [1934]
Directed by King Vidor; starring Karen Morley, Tom Keene
Our Daily Bread & Other Films of the Great Depression (1999)

"The Wedding Night" [1935]
"So Red The Rose" [1935]
"The Texas Rangers" [1936]
"Stella Dallas" [1937]
"The Citadel" [1938]
"The Wizard of Oz" [1939] uncredited, Kansas scenes only
"Northwest Passage" [1940]
"Comrade X" [1940]
"H.M. Pulham, Esq." [1941]
"An American Romance" [1944]
"Duel In The Sun" [1946]
"On Our Merry Way" also known as "A Miracle Can Happen" [1948]
"Streets of Laredo" [original screenplay 1948]

"The  Fountainhead"  [Warner Bros. July 1949]
Fountainhead poster  Idealistic young architect Howard Roark has a tough time because he will not compromise with the mediocre architecture of the establishment. When his 'big chance' skyscraper is redesigned without his knowledge, he dynamites the construction site and is put on trial. Directed by King Vidor; script by Ayn Rand, based on her 1943 novel {below}; starring Gary Cooper, Patricia Neal, Raymond Massey, Kent Smith, Robert Douglas & Henry Hull
Warner b&w DVD [11/2006] for $17.49
Warner b&w VHS [1/90] out of prodn/used
full credits from IMDb
11"x17" cream poster from Amazon for $9.99
27"x40" cream poster from Amazon for $19.99
Fountainhead novel  
1943 novel by philosopher Ayn Rand [1905-82]
Signet pb [8/96] for $8.99
Plume 60th Anniv 9¼x6½ hardcover [12/2002] for $27.97
Blackstone UNABR audio CD [6/2003] for $44.95

"Streets of Laredo" [Paramount May 1949]
Filmed in Technicolor in California & Gallup, New Mexico; directed by Leslie Fenton; based on an original script
by King Vidor; music by Victor Young; starring William Holden, Macdonald Carey, Mona Freeman,
William Bendix, Stanley Ridges, Alfonso Bedoya, Ray & Clem Bevans; W.G.A. nom for Best Script
full credits at IMDb

"Beyond The Forest" [1949]
"Lightning Strikes Twice" [1951]
"Japanese War Bride" [1952]
"Ruby Gentry" [1952]
"Light's Diamond Jubilee" [1954 TV]
"Man Without A Star" [1955]

"War  and  Peace" [Paramount Aug 1956]
War & Peace movie poster   A true epic film, running 3½ hours. During preparations for France's planned invasion of Russia, an intellectual aristocrat inherits a fortune and marries a shallow princess. The French release a captured Russian officer; he returns home to witness his wife's death in childbirth, then visits a fellow soldier and falls in love with the sister. While he is away on a mission in Poland, she is attracted to a scoundrel, but her brother convinces her not to elope. Napoleon invades Russia, and loses the war, and the lovers are finally married. Co-written & directed by King Vidor; based on Tolstoy's 1869 epic novel; starring Jeremy Brett, Mel Ferrer, Henry Fonda, Audrey Hepburn, Anita Ekberg, Vittorio Gassmann, Herbert Lom (as Napoleon), Oskar Homolka, May Britt, Helmut Dantine & John Mills; nominations for Best Director & Best Color Cinematography Oscars, BAFTA for Best Film, D.G.A. Award
Paramount widescreen color DVD [12/2002] for $7.99
Paramount color VHS [10/96] 2 tapes - out of prodn/many used
full credits from IMDb

"Solomon  and  Sheba"  [1959]

"Metaphor"  [1980 short]
Color documentary produced & directed by King Vidor about the influence of his 1925 silent film
"The Big Parade" on American painter Andrew Wyeth;
video/DVD not available; credits from IMDb

Other  Works  By  King  Vidor

"Southern Storm" short fiction [May 1935 issue of Esquire Magazine]
An acount based on Vidor's experiances surviving the 1900 storm that killed
a third of the population of Galveston, Texas on 8 September 1900.

"King Vidor On Film Making" [David McKay, 1972] 0679503463

autobiography "A Tree Is A Tree" [1976] 0573606021
"Un Arbol Es Un Arbol" 844931397X

Works  About  King  Vidor

In the Fifties-era noir detective novel "Backlot Requiem" [2005] by G.E. Nordell,
the character of silent director Victor King is modeled after King Vidor.
Here is a brief excerpt from Chapter Six.

        A client was waiting in my waiting room. He was a tall, distinguished and extremely elderly gentleman wearing a dark flannel suit and white shirt and a string necktie. He wore boots and was holding a black Stetson in his lap. As he stood up, unfolding himself like an arthritic stork, I realized it was the director Victor King, who I had seen leaving the studio party in his elegant Duesenberg limousine.
        "Mr. King, isn't it?"
        He was surprised and pleased. "It is, young man. I've been waiting to speak to you."
        I unlocked the inner door and gestured for him to precede me. His steps were halting and he leaned heavily on the stout crook-topped cane in his hand. He sat in the chair facing my desk and placed the cane on the glass top of the desk and his hat alongside it. He was easily ninety years old and pale, his skin clear and pink and transparent, but his deep gray eyes looked at me with force behind them. I set my sandwich atop the desk and sat myself in my chair.
        He took out a white lawn handkerchief and mopped his brow. It wasn't the heat. [He] raised his long gaunt face and looked straight into my eyes. The man must be a helluva poker player. He was having a strong reaction, something deep, but I couldn't read it.

For further information on the novel "Backlot Requiem",
visit the Rick Walker novels website

30 Years of Fun 1963 docufilm on DVD  "30 Years of Fun" [Fox Feb 1963]
85-minute docufilm produced, written & directed by Robert Youngson; features silent-era actors & filmmakers Billy Bevan, Charlie Chaplin, Charley Chase, Andy Clyde, Vernon Dent, Douglas Fairbanks, Greta Garbo, Oliver Hardy, Buster Keaton, Harry Langdon, Stan Laurel, Tom Mix, Mabel Normand, Mary Pickford, 'Snub' Pollard, Edna Purviance, and King Vidor
Televista b&w DVD [10/2007] for $24.95
full credits at IMDb

"The Men Who Made The Movies: King Vidor" [1973 TV]

Men Who Made The Movies interviews book by Richard Schickel  "The Men Who Made The Movies: Interviews With Frank Capra, George Cukor, Howard Hawks, Alfred Hitchcock, Vincente Minnelli, King Vidor, Raoul Walsh & William A. Wellman" [1975]
by Richard Schickel

Ivan R. Dee, Publr 9x6 pb [4/2001] for $19.95
Atheneum 10¼x7¼ hardcover [1975] out of print/used

"Hollywood: A Celebration of The American Silent Film" [1980 TV mini-series]

KING VIDOR, AMERICAN by Raymond Durgnat (Hardcover - 1988) 0520057988

"King Vidor" by King Vidor, Interviewed by Nancy Dowd & David Shepard" [9/88] /0810821613/

King Vidor by Carlos Senor (Paperback - Oct 31, 1997) 8489564094

Great Moviemakers of Hollywood's Golden Age  "Conversations With The Great Moviemakers of Hollywood's Golden Age: At The American Film Institute" [2006] by George Stevens, Jr.
interviews with 32 major writers, directors & cinematographers, including Ingmar Bergman, writer Ray Bradbury, Richard Brooks, Frank Capra, William Clothier, Stanley Cortez, George Cukor, Federico Fellini, George Folsey, Howard Hawks, Alfred Hitchcock, James Wong Howe, John Huston, Elia Kazan, Gene Kelly, Stanley Kramer, Fritz Lang, David Lean, Ernest Lehman, Mervyn LeRoy, Harold Lloyd, Rouben Mamoulian, Satyajit Ray, Jean Renoir, George Stevens, King Vidor, Hal Wallis, Raoul Walsh, Billy Wilder, Robert Wise, William Wyler & Fred Zinnemann
Knopf 9½x6½ hardcover [2/2006] for $23.10

2010 article "King Vidor: The Leading Light" by film historian David W. Menefee

Online sales in association with  browse King Vidor on DVD at Amazon

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