Maciste alla corte del Gran Khan

Maciste alla corte del Gran Khan, also known as Samson and the Seven Miracles of the World, and Maciste at the Court of the Great Khan, is a 1961 international co-production starring Gordon Scott. The film reused the sets, extras and Yoko Tani as a princess from Marco Polo (1961) and Freda's The Mongols (1961). The film was distributed in the United States by American International Pictures.

Maciste alla corte del Gran Khan
Directed byRiccardo Freda
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story byOreste Biancoli[1]
Music byCarlo Innocenzi
CinematographyRiccardo Pallotini[1]
Edited byOrnella Micheli[1]
  • Panda Cinematografica
  • Gallus Film[1]
Distributed byJolly Film
Release date
  • 31 October 1961 (1961-10-31) (Italy)
Running time
94 minutes[1]
  • Italy
  • France[1]
Box office₤468.2 million


In his eternal wandering Maciste finds himself in 13th Century China rescuing a Chinese prince and princess from the Tartars and leading the Chinese into a revolt against them.



After the enormous popular success of Hercules , producers and screenwriters began developing other films about muscular heroes performing amazing feats.[2] Most were drawn from literary figures or the Bible, while Maciste was an Italian creation who first appeared in Cabiria (1914).[2] Producer Ermanno Donati thought of the idea of resurrecting Maciste for new audiences, as his brother Piero Donati explained.[2] The producers first shot the film Maciste nella valle dei re.[2]

Freda's film Maciste alla corte del Gran Khan was what was called a "film di recupero" in Italy, meaning a recovery film.[2] The film was created in order to earn money from the expensive epic Marco Polo.[2]


Maciste alla corte del Gran Khan was released in Italy on October 31, 1961 where it was distributed by Jolly Film in Rome and Unidis throughout Italy.[1] The film grossed 467.2 million Italian lire on its theatrical release.[1] The film was released theatrically in the United States as Samson and the 7 Miracles of the World.[3] The American version of the film was distributed by American International Pictures and had its score changed from Carlo Innocenzi to one by Les Baxter.[1]


A contemporary review in the Monthly Film Bulletin noted that the film was "All in all, one of the better Italian spectacles" and that it was "well photographed this time in lovely (though occasionally uneven), restrained colours." and "Freda keeps his camera well back, the better to make attractive, sculptural compositions.[4]

This film has been evaluated as being among director Riccardo Freda's "better" contributions to the peplum genre. [5]



  1. Curti 2017, p. 316.
  2. Curti 2017, p. 152.
  3. Curti 2017, p. 317.
  4. "Samson and the 7 Miracles "(Maciste alla Corte del Gran Khan)"". Monthly Film Bulletin. Vol. 30 no. 348. British Film Institute. 1963. p. 101.
  5. Hughes, p.34


  • Bondanella, Peter E. (2009). A History of Italian Cinema. London - New York: International Publishing Group. ISBN 978-1441160690.
  • Curti, Roberto (2017). Riccardo Freda: The Life and Works of a Born Filmmaker. McFarland. ISBN 1476628386.
  • Hughes, Howard (2011). Cinema Italiano - The Complete Guide From Classics To Cult. London - New York: I.B.Tauris. ISBN 978-1-84885-608-0.
  • Paul, Louis (2005). Italian Horror Film Directors. McFarland. ISBN 978-0-7864-8749-3.
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