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The Gal Who Took the West

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Gal Who Took the West
09-04-1950 08107 Cinema Royal (6526605051).jpg
Film being shown in 1950 at a cinema in Amstradam
Directed byFrederick de Cordova
Screenplay byWilliam Bowers
Oscar Brodney
Story byWilliam Bowers
Oscar Brodney
Produced byRobert Arthur
StarringYvonne De Carlo
Charles Coburn
Scott Brady
John Russell
CinematographyWilliam H. Daniels
Edited byMilton Carruth
Music byFrank Skinner
Color processTechnicolor
Universal Pictures
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • September 1949 (1949-09) (United States)
Running time
84 minutes
CountryUnited States

The Gal Who Took the West is a 1949 American comedy-drama Western film directed by Frederick de Cordova starring Yvonne De Carlo, Charles Coburn, Scott Brady and John Russell.[1] It was nominated for an award by the Writers Guild of America 1950.[2]


A journalist is writing an article on the O'Hara family of Arizona. They tell about the time in the 1890s when a girl, Lily, was caught in a feud between two O'Haras.



The film was originally known as The Western Story. It was the idea of William Bowers, about three interpretations of a single incident in the life of a Western pioneer; it would be told in flashback from an old person's home. Bowers says he got the idea from reading an article in Life magazine about old gunfighters who lived in an old person's home in Prescott Arizona. Bowers was under contract to Universal at the time for $750 a week, and says he wrote the script in four weeks. Bowers says Billy Wilder wanted to buy the script for $100,000 and Universal were interested, but Bowers persuaded the studio to make the film themselves.[3]

William Bowers and Robert Arthur were assigned to make it in December 1947.[4]

In April 1948, Deanna Durbin and Charles Coburn were announced for the lead roles.[5] Jerome Hines was signed for a support role.[6]

By November, Durbin had dropped out and Universal replaced her with Yvonne De Carlo.[7] (Bowers says Susan Hayward was going to star but Universal decided to use their contracted talent "and it went right out the window"[3]) Stephen McNally and Howard Duff were given support roles.[8] They dropped out and were replaced by Scott Brady and John Russell (the latter borrowed from 20th Century Fox).[9]

Filming started in February 1949. The film was retitled The Gal Who Took the West during editing.[10]


  1. ^
  2. ^ IMDb record for the 1950 awards
  3. ^ a b Froug, William (1991). The screenwriter looks at the screenwriter. Silman-James press. p. 37.
  4. ^ THOMAS F. BRADY (December 13, 1947). "Bowers and Arthur Will Do 'The Western Story,' Novel Film on Pioneers, for U-I". New York Times. p. 12.
  5. ^ THOMAS F. BRADY (April 13, 1948). "JOHNSON TO MAKE 'THE PURPLE MASK': Producer and U-1 Get Rights to Matheson Lang's Play -- Story of Napoleonic Era". p. 33.
  6. ^ Schallert, Edwin (April 21, 1948). "20th to Seek Bergman; Valli Bid for Wine Epic". Los Angeles Times. p. 23.
  7. ^ THOMAS F. BRADY (November 27, 1948). "YVONNE DE CARLO GETS LEAD IN FILM: Takes Role in 'Western Story' in Place of Deanna Durbin -- De Cordova to Direct". New York Times. p. 11.
  8. ^ THOMAS F. BRADY (December 2, 1948). "F M. PAC KARD SIGNS PACT AT COLUMBIA: Son-in-Law of J. Arthur Rank Will Be Studio Producer -Two Directors Named". New York Times. p. 39.
  9. ^ THOMAS F. BRADY (January 21, 1949). "DE SYLVA WORKING ON MOVIE OF BARA: Discussing Deal With Columbia for Story on Actress' Life -- Hutton May Do Role". New York Times. p. 25.
  10. ^ THOMAS F. BRADY (June 15, 1949). "VAN JOHNSON GETS METRO FILM LEAD: Named for Role in Taurog's 'Please Believe Me' -- Color Firm Splits Its Stock". p. 39.

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This page was last edited on 22 October 2021, at 13:22
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