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Private War of Major Benson, The (Universal 1955, Charlton Heston, Julie Adams)



A hard-nosed, maverick Army major (Charlton Heston) loses his assignment after going public with some less than acceptable views. Disgraced, he takes a job as an ROTC instructor at a school run by nuns, ultimately winning the respect of his young charges–and romance with the camp doctor, to boot. This film served as the basis for the 1996 Damon Wayans comedy Major Payne.

Location scenes for The Private War of Major Benson were filmed at St. Catherine’s Military School in Anaheim, California.

production details
Charlton Heston as Maj. Bernard R. ‘Barney’ Benson
Julie Adams as Dr. Kay Lambert
William Demarest as John
Tim Hovey as Cadet Thomas ‘Tiger’ Flaherty
Nana Bryant as Mother Redempta
Tim Considine as Cadet Lt. Gerald Hibler
Sal Mineo as Cadet Col. Sylvester Dusik
Milburn Stone as Maj. Gen. Wilton J. Ramsey
Mary Field as Sister Mary Theresa
Joey D. Vieira as Cadet Cpl. Scawalski (as Donald Keeler)
Gary Pagett as Cadet Lt. Molony
Don Haggerty as Harold Hibler
David Janssen as Young Lieutenant
Richard H. Cutting as Monsignor Collins

Director: Jerry Hopper
Producer: Howard Pine
Original Story: Joe Connelly, Bob Mosher
Director of Photography: Harold Lipstein
Editing: Ted J. Kent
Script: William Roberts, Richard Alan Simmons
Art Direction: Robert Boyle, Alexander Golitzen

USA / Universal / 104 minutes / 1955