The Greatest Show on Earth was a dazzling, only-by-DeMille spectacle focusing on life with a traveling three-ring circus. James Stewart appears in an unfamiliar guise as a clown hiding from his past (as a doctor!), and there is romance and adventure under this big top, too.
Look for many guest appearances. DeMille went all out re-creating the color and pageantry of the circus, even traveling with Barnum and Bailey to learn the rhythms of big-top life.
Golden Globes for Best Director; Best Color Cinematography; Best Motion Picture, Drama.
Academy Award Nominations: 5, including Best Director; Best Editing. Won the Oscar for best picture.
Cast: Betty Hutton, Cornel Wilde, James Stewart, Charlton Heston, Dorothy Lamour, Gloria Grahame, Lyle Bettger, Henry Wilcoxon, Emmett Kelly, Lawrence Tierney, John Kellogg, John Ringling North
Producer and Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Original Story: Frank Cavett
Directors of Photography: George Barnes, W. Wallace Kelley, Peverell Marley
Editor: Anne Bauchens
Composer: Victor Young
Screenwriters: Fredric M. Frank, Barre Lyndon
Production Designer: Hal Pereira
Costume Designers: Dorothy Jeakins, Miles White
Set Designers: Sam Comer, Ray Moyer
Special Effects: Gordon Jennings, Devereaux Jennings, Paul K. Lerpae
Art Director: Walter Tyler
Choreographer: Richard Barstow
USA / Paramount / 152 minutes / 1952