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Blowing Wild

Blowing Wild(1953)

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The song "Blowing Wild (The Ballad of Black Gold)" is sung by Frankie Laine intermittently throughout the film. Although the film was shot at the Churubusco Studios and on location in Mexico, a June 1948 Los Angeles Times news item reported that producer Milton Sperling had shot backgrounds in South America. It has not been determined if this footage was used in the final film. At that time, according to the news item, Sperling wanted Robert Mitchum and Joel McCrea to star in the film. A December 1952 Hollywood Reporter news item reported that director Hugo Fregonese scouted Vera Cruz for location sites, but it has not been determined if filming took place there. McClure Merrick's name is misspelled "McCluer" in the opening onscreen credits. Although the character played by Anthony Quinn is listed as "Ward" in the CBCS and New York Times review, he is called "Paco" throughout the film. February and March Hollywood Reporter news items add Mickey Simpson, Luis Madero, Tito Junco, Ernesto Casteras and Jorge Trevio to the cast, but their appearance in the film has not been confirmed. A modern source adds Juan Garca and Carlos Riquelme to the cast. Although copyright records and reviews place the story in Mexico, and as noted, the picture was shot in Mexico, the viewed print contained a title card, placed after the credits, setting the story in South America. According to an April 1954 Variety article, Mexican officials initially banned Blowing Wild and demanded that cuts be made, as they felt that the picture portrayed Mexicans unfavorably. Although Mexican officials had approved the film's script before giving permission to shoot in that country, other newly elected officials disapproved of the film, according to a June 1954 Los Angeles Times news item. After months of negotiation, during which the Mexican government threatened to ban all Warner Bros. productions in Mexico and to appeal to the U. S. State Department to prevent worldwide distribution of the film, Warner Bros. agreed to make the cuts. Besides making cuts in the film, Warner Bros. May have changed the location of the story as a result of the dispute and altered the title card after the film's 1953 release in the U.S. According to February 1954 Los Angeles Daily News and March 1954 Variety news items, writer Robert Blees sued producer Milton Sperling, United States Pictures and Warner Bros. for plagiarism and breach of contract. Blees claimed that Blowing Wild was taken from material he submitted to Sperling in 1951. The final disposition of the suit is not known. A November 1965 Film Daily article announced that Blowing Wild was among several pictures to be reissued by Herts-Lion International Corp. According to an October 1986 Variety article, the film was one of seventeen bought by Republic for television release from New York-based distributor Dick Feiner who had acquired the Sperling library.