Cast & Crew
S. Sylvan Simon
William "billy" Severn
During World War II, a dog kennel on the Yorkshire, England estate of the Duke of Rudling is commissioned by the British army to be converted into a training camp for war dogs. The camp is placed under the supervision of Sam Carraclough, the kennel caretaker, who immediately begins the process of selecting the best dogs for training. When Laddie, the young pup of champion collie Lassie, is picked for training, Sam's son Joe, a Royal Air Force cadet who is visiting the estate on furlough, tells his father that Laddie is not qualified for the job. Joe's predictions that Laddie is too obstinate and skittish for the job soon prove true when Laddie resists the training and fails all tests of courage. One day, when Joe leaves the duke's estate to rejoin his regiment, Laddie chases after his bus and follows him to his camp forty miles away. Joe tries to hide Laddie in his bed, but the dog is discovered by the warrant officer and ordered removed. Sam takes Laddie back to the duke's estate, but Laddie escapes again and tries to join Joe on a reconnaissance flight. Sgt. Eddie Brown, Joe's army pal, restrains Laddie, but the dog breaks free and chases after the plane as it races down the runway. Laddie is eventually recaptured and held at the camp until Joe returns. When Joe is sent on his next mission, a dangerous reconnaissance flight to investigate enemy troop movements in Norway, Laddie secretly follows him into the cockpit of his plane and hides there. Joe does not realize that Laddie is on the plane until it is airborne. Somewhere over Norway, the plane comes under enemy fire, and Joe, with Laddie in his arms, is forced to parachute to safety. Joe makes a hard landing in the remote countryside and is knocked unconscious. Laddie tries to help Joe by summoning two Nazi soldiers at a nearby lookout post, but by the time Laddie returns with the soldiers, Joe is gone. The soldiers suspect that Laddie belongs to an English soldier, but when they try to read his collar to identify his owner, Laddie flees. One of the soldiers fires his gun at Laddie, but Laddie manages to escape with only an injured paw. After some young Norwegian children find Laddie and tend to his wounds, Laddie runs off into the wilderness to find his master. Joe, meanwhile, is found by the Nazis and placed in a prisoner-of-war camp. He soon manages to escape, however, and takes refuge with Anton, a Norwegian fisherman, and his wife. Laddie, who has picked up his master's scent and followed it to the prison camp, is captured there by Nazi guards, who decide to use him to help recover their escaped prisoner. Laddie leads the soldiers directly to Joe, who ignores Anton's suggestion that he strike his dog to show the Nazis that it is not his. Joe instead gives himself away by returning his dog's affection, and this results in his return to prison. Laddie comes to the rescue, however, when he attacks the Nazi guard escorting Joe to prison. After knocking the guard unconscious, Joe eludes the Nazis and, with Laddie, escapes back to the fishing village, where he commandeers a fishing boat and returns to England.
S. Sylvan Simon
William "billy" Severn
A. Arnold Gillespie
Hubert B. Hobson
B. G. Johnson
M. J. Mclaughlin
Robert W. Shirley
John A. Williams
Edwin B. Willis
Son of Lassie
Peter Lawford was on his way to becoming a major movie star when he made Son of Lassie. One of MGM's up-and-coming leading men during the war years, Lawford had been busy making a name for himself in such films as The Canterville Ghost (1944) and The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945). According to Lawford, however, he still wasn't as big a star at the time as Pal, the Rudd Weatherwax-trained Collie who appeared in the first seven of MGM's Lassie films. "When I was making Son of Lassie," said Lawford according to the 1988 book The Peter Lawford Story by Lawford's last wife Patricia Seaton Lawford, "I had my first run-in with the star system. First of all, the dog had a dressing room, but I didn't. When we were shooting scenes in Canada of Lassie and the rapids, they had the dog all wired and roped so that they wouldn't lose him, and I was floundering around in the water with very little protection. Lassie was insured for a million dollars, and I had the suspicion that if I was insured at all, it was for a substantially smaller amount."
Donald Crisp and Nigel Bruce reprise their roles from Lassie Come Home as Joe's father and the Duke of Radling respectively, while June Lockhart plays the part of Lawford's sweetheart Priscilla, a role originated by Elizabeth Taylor in the first film.
Producer: Samuel Marx
Director: S. Sylvan Simon
Screenplay: Jeanne Bartlett (screenplay and story); Eric Knight (characters)
Cinematography: Charles Edgar Schoenbaum
Art Direction: Cedric Gibbons, Hubert B. Hobson
Music: Herbert Stothart
Film Editing: Ben Lewis
Cast: Peter Lawford (Joe Carraclough), Donald Crisp (Sam Carraclough), June Lockhart (Priscilla), Nigel Bruce (Duke of Radling), William 'Billy' Severn (Henrik), Leon Ames (Anton), Donald Curtis (Sergeant Eddie Brown), Nils Asther (Olav), Robert Lewis (Sergeant Schmidt), Fay Helm (Joanna).
C-101m. Closed Captioning. Descriptive Video.
by Andrea Passafiume
Son of Lassie
The working title for this film was Laddie, Son of Lassie. The picture marked the screen debut of Laddie, Lassie's first son in real life. Production charts and contemporary news items in Hollywood Reporter indicate that June Lockhart replaced Elsa Lanchester as the female lead a short time after production on the film began. Though Hollywood Reporter news items list actors James Moran, Pauline Bruce (daughter of Nigel Bruce) and Nigel Horton in the cast, their appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. Most of the picture was filmed outdoors at various locations throughout western Canada, including Patricia Bay, Christopher Point, the lake and mountain region of Banff, Lake Moraine, Lake Louise and Lake Minnewanka, and in the United States at Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
In October 1947, according to Hollywood Reporter, a plagiarism suit brought against M-G-M by a writer named John Charles Reed was heard in a federal court. Reed contended in his $200,000 lawsuit that the studio lifted the script for Son of Lassie from a story he wrote in 1943 called "Candy." The jury in the case denied Reed's charges and awarded him no damages. Unlike other films featuring "Lassie" made after Lassie Come Home, Son of Lassie was a true sequel, rather than simply a vehicle for the dog's exploits. For more information on the Lassie series, please consult the entry above for Lassie Come Home.