Gunsmoke (film)

Gunsmoke is a 1953 Western film directed by Nathan Juran and starring Audie Murphy, Susan Cabot, and Paul Kelly. Gunsmoke is a Technicolor film for action star and war hero Audie Murphy.[2] The film has no connection to the contemporary radio and later TV series of the same name. The film was based on the 1951 novel Roughshod by Norman A. Fox.

Directed byNathan Juran
Produced byAaron Rosenberg
Written byD.D. Beauchamp
Based onRoughshod
by Norman A. Fox
StarringAudie Murphy
Susan Cabot
Paul Kelly
CinematographyCharles P. Boyle
Edited byTed J. Kent
Universal Pictures
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • February 11, 1953 (1953-02-11) (Los Angeles)
  • March 1953 (1953-03) (San Francisco)
  • April 27, 1953 (1953-04-27) (New York City)
  • May 4, 1953 (1953-05-04) (United States)
Running time
79 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1.3 million (US rentals)[1]


Murphy stars as Reb Kittridge, a wandering hired gun who is hired to get the deed of the last remaining ranch not owned by local boss Matt Telford that is owned by Dan Saxon (played by Paul Kelly). Though Reb has not yet accepted the job he is ambushed by Saxon's ramrod, ranch foreman Curly Mather (played by Jack Kelly) and challenged to a gun fight by Saxon, both attempts to kill him being unsuccessful.

Saxon, a former wild outlaw who settles down senses Reb has good in him and when he hears Reb's goal in life is to own his own ranch he loses the deed of the ranch to Reb in a card draw. Reb takes over the ranch and moving its cattle herd to a railhead for sale to the workers. Telford hires Reb's fellow gunslinger Johnny Lake to stop the herd and Reb.

Reb has also fallen in love with the rancher's daughter (Susan Cabot) who currently is in love with Mather.[3]



The movie started filming in June 1952 under the title of Roughshod. It was the first of three Westerns Murphy made with Nathan Juran over two years.[4]


  1. 'The Top Box Office Hits of 1953', Variety, January 13, 1954
  2. Gunsmoke at Audie Murphy Memorial Site
  3. Gossett, Sue, The Films and Career of Audie Murphy, Empire Publishing, Inc., 1996, pp. 47–48.
  4. Don Graham, No Name on the Bullet: The Biography of Audie Murphy, Penguin, 1989 p 228
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