Johnny Eager was an unusual MGM entry into the crime melodrama racket benefits from the high-budget treatment and attractive stars. Johnny, a cagey racketeer looking to tighten his grip on local gambling operations, gets involved with a vulnerable society girl, and the daughter of the local D.A., who becomes a tool for his criminal schemes.
Lana Turner was just 21 when she appeared in the movie. Already famous as “The Sweater Girl,” the luscious Turner was assiduously courted by her co-star, Robert Taylor.
The original publicity proclaimed “The flaming drama of a high-born beauty who blindly loved the most icy-hearted big shot gangland ever knew!”
Academy Awards: Van Heflin
Cast: Robert Taylor, Van Heflin, Lana Turner, Edward Arnold, Robert Sterling, Patricia Dane, Glenda Farrell, Henry O’Neill
Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Producer: John W. Considine Jr.
Director of Photography: Harold Rossen
Editor: Albert Akst
Composer: Bronislau Kaper
Screenwriters: James Edward Grant, John Lee Mahin
Production Designers: Cedric Gibbons, Stan Rogers
USA / MGM / 107 minutes / 1942