The Covered Wagon


1h 45m 1924

Brief Synopsis

Two wagon caravans converge at what is now Kansas City, and combine for the westward push to Oregon. On their quest the pilgrims will experience desert heat, mountain snow, hunger, and indian attack. To complicate matters further, a love triangle develops, as pretty Molly must chose between Sam, a brute, and Will, the dashing captain of the other caravan. Can Will overcome the skeleton in his closet and win Molly's heart?

Film Details

Release Date
Sep 8, 1924
Premiere Information
New York opening: 16 Mar 1923
Production Company
Famous Players--Lasky
Distribution Company
Paramount Pictures
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the novel The Covered Wagon by Emerson Hough (New York, 1922).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 45m
Sound
Silent
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.33 : 1
Film Length
9,407ft (10 reels)

Synopsis

Two wagon trains--one led by Wingate, the other by Will Banion--in 1848 travel from Westport Landing (Kansas City) over the Oregon Trail to California and Oregon. Their major adventures include the crossing of the Platte River, an Indian attack, and a prairie fire. The narrative revolves around Will Banion and Wingate's daughter, Molly. Her scoundrel fiancée, Sam Woodhull, works constantly to discredit Banion, with the eventual result that Banion and his wagons are banished from the train and follow the lure of gold to California. Molly learns the truth through Kit Carson and Bridger and sends Jackson for Banion. They are married after Jackson saves Banion from being murdered by Woodhull.

Film Details

Release Date
Sep 8, 1924
Premiere Information
New York opening: 16 Mar 1923
Production Company
Famous Players--Lasky
Distribution Company
Paramount Pictures
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the novel The Covered Wagon by Emerson Hough (New York, 1922).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 45m
Sound
Silent
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.33 : 1
Film Length
9,407ft (10 reels)

Quotes

Trivia

In an early cut of this film prior to its release, director James Cruze appeared in a brief cameo heavily disguised as an Indian. Screenwriter 'Jack Cunningham' wrote him a memo saying that, even if viewers didn't recognize him from his days as an actor, he looked too "white" alongside the genuine Indians who appeared in the film. Cunningham prevailed, and the scene was deleted.

Notes

Adolph Zukor was later added as Presenter with Jesse L. Lasky. "'The Covered Wagon' ... is dedicated to the memory of Theodore Roosevelt" (souvenir program). The cast of 3,000 people includes 1,000 Indians brought from reservations in Wyoming, New Mexico, and other States under the direction of Col. T. J. McCoy.