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The film is loosely based on the life of Wyatt Earp (19 March 1848-13 January 1929), who served as a police officer in Wichita, KS, for a brief period of time, circa 1874-1876. For more information on films about Wyatt Earp, please consult the entries for the 1934 Fox production Frontier Marshal in AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 and the 1946 Twentieth Century-Fox picture My Darling Clementine in AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1941-50.
According to studio publicity and Hollywood Reporter news items and production charts, location sites for the production included Arizona and Newhall, Thousand Oaks, Sonora and Modesto, CA, as well as California's Sierra Nevada foothills. Studio publicity noted that the picture marked the motion picture acting debut of Joel McCrea's son Jody, who had previously appeared as a stunt double in one of his father's films. [Some contemporary sources refer to Jody McCrea as "Jode."] Modern sources add Kermit Maynard to the cast. Wichita was Allied Artist's first CinemaScope production.