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The Squaw Man

The Squaw Man(1931)


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William Faversham and William S. Hart played the leading roles in the 1905 stage production of The Squaw Man. This film was Cecil B. DeMille's third version of the play. His first, also his first directorial effort, was released in 1914 and starred Dustin Farnum and Monroe Salisbury. DeMille followed the 1914 production with a 1918 remake, also entitled The Squaw Man, which starred Elliott Dexter and Ann Little A sequel to the original, The Squaw Man's Son, was released in 1917, was directed by E. J. Le Saint and starred Wallace Reid and Anita King (see below). According to a contemporary New York Times article, filming of the fox hunt sequences took place at the 16,000 acre Agoura Ranch in Agoura, CA. The Variety review mistakenly listed Charles Bickford's character as "Big Bill," and J. Farrell McDonald's as "Cash Hawkins." According to a biography of writer Lenore Coffee, DeMille brought her to work with Elsie Janis on the script because he felt that Janis, a former musical comedy star, was "talented but had no idea of story structure." Modern sources also relate that DeMille was less than enthusiastic about making this picture (the last film to satisfy his contract with M-G-M), a fact that has been attributed in part to poor revenue prospects and Loew's, Inc. president Nicholas Schenck's request that he cancel the production before it had begun. DeMille, in his autobiography, notes that he eventually got permission to shoot the doomed picture after arguing that the studio would have to pay as much to halt the picture as it would to continue it. As predicted, The Squaw Man lost nearly $150,000, according to DeMille. Following his disappointing experience with this production, DeMille wrote, "I do not know whether M-G-M or I was more relieved that my contract had come to an end." Most of this picture was filmed at Hot Springs Junction, Arizona, which was near the location that DeMille had rejected for his 1914 version.