Iron Man (1951 film)

Iron Man is a 1951 American film noir drama sport film directed by Joseph Pevney and starring Jeff Chandler, Evelyn Keyes and Stephen McNally. The film features an early appearance by Rock Hudson playing a competing boxer. The film is a remake of a film produced two decades earlier by director Tod Browning, also called Iron Man.[2]

Iron Man
Directed byJoseph Pevney
Produced byAaron Rosenberg
Screenplay byBorden Chase
George Zuckerman
Based onthe novel
by W.R. Burnett
StarringJeff Chandler
Evelyn Keyes
Stephen McNally
CinematographyCarl E. Guthrie
Edited byRussell F. Schoengarth
Universal Pictures
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • September 20, 1951 (1951-09-20) (United States)
Running time
82 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1 million (US rentals)[1]


Chandler plays a coal miner who is encouraged by his gambler brother (Stephen McNally) to become a boxer. The problem is when he boxes he is consumed by a murderous rage.



Jeff Chandler trained as a boxer to play the role. "It's my chance to step right up there in a class with Kirk Douglas and Bob Ryan," said Chandler. "And that's pretty fast company."[3]

Filming started 3 January 1951.[4]

To promote the film, Jeff Chandler went two rounds with Jersey Joe Walcott at Polo Grounds in front of 25,000 spectators.[5]


Critical response

When the film was released, the staff at The New York Times gave the film a mixed review. They wrote, "... this story of a fighter, scared and defeated by his own killer instinct, is merely standard for the course. The cast, director and scenarist are professional and take their assignments seriously, but they are not creating a champion in their class. One is reminded of such noted predecessors as Champion but Iron Man is not of that blue-blooded company ... It is not the portrayals, however, that make the film less than memorable. The bouts are exciting enough, but the punches, which are fairly hard and straight, are telegraphed."[6]

Rock Hudson's appearance in the film attracted favorable publicity.[7]

See also


  1. 'The Top Box Office Hits of 1951', Variety, January 2, 1952.
  2. Iron Man at the American Film Institute Catalog.
  3. Jeff Chandler Finally Gets to 'Act His Age': Rising Young (31) Screens Player Considers Himself 'a Lucky Kid' SCHEUER, PHLIP K. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 29 Oct 1950: D3.
  4. ROONEY TO APPEAR IN COLUMBIA FILM: He Will Play Role of a Clown in 'Center Ring,' Scheduled. for Production in April Of Local Origin By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 25 Dec 1950: 23.
  5. Thompson. Howard. The New York Times, "Random Notes on the Screen Scene: Hair Raising Scenes From a Pair of New Pictures. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 19 Aug 1951: 93.
  6. The New York Times. Staff film review, August 20, 1951. Accessed: July 28, 2013.
  7. Percy Kilbride Will Play New Stellar Role Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 28 July 1951: 14
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