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Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957)

Passed | | Biography, Drama, Western | 30 May 1957 (USA)
2:10 | Trailer
Lawman Wyatt Earp and outlaw Doc Holliday form an unlikely alliance which culminates in their participation in the legendary Gunfight at the O.K. Corral.


John Sturges


Leon Uris (screenplay), George Scullin (suggested by an article by)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »


Cast overview, first billed only:
Burt Lancaster ... Wyatt Earp
Kirk Douglas ... Doc Holliday
Rhonda Fleming ... Laura Denbow
Jo Van Fleet ... Kate Fisher
John Ireland ... Johnny Ringo
Lyle Bettger ... Ike Clanton
Frank Faylen ... Cotton Wilson
Earl Holliman ... Charles Bassett
Ted de Corsia ... Shanghai Pierce (as Ted DeCorsia)
Dennis Hopper ... Billy Clanton
Whit Bissell ... John P. Clum
George Mathews ... John Shanssey
John Hudson ... Virgil Earp
DeForest Kelley ... Morgan Earp
Martin Milner ... James Earp
Learn more

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After a long career as a lawman that made him a legend, Wyatt Earp decides to quit and join his brothers in Tombstone, Arizona. There he would see them in a feud with the Clantons, a local clan of thugs and cattle thieves. When the showdown becomes inevitable, the help will come from Doc Holliday, a terminally-ill gambler who happens to be another Wild West legend. Written by Dragan Antulov <dragan.antulov@altbbs.fido.hr>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Wildest Gunfight in the History of the West ! See more »


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Jo Van Fleet, who had trained at Actor's Studio, needed help to get into the character of the abused woman. She asked Kirk Douglas to hit her in the face. So he did. See more »


When Cotton Wilson and Wyatt are talking in the sheriff's office, Cotton is leaning back in his chair. Cotton tells Wyatt not to get his blood heated up, Wyatt than stands and walks right up to Cotton who is now leaning forward with his arms on the desk. See more »


[first lines]
John Shanssey: [lighting a cigar as Ed and his gangmen enter the saloon] Hello Ed.
Ed Bailey: Where's Doc Holiday?
John Shanssey: Over at the hotel more than likely. He's been expecting you...
Ed Bailey: Get word over there I'm waitin' for him.
John Shanssey: No need to do that Ed, the whole town knows you're waitin' for him by now. Before there's another killing...
Ed Bailey: You just go on servin' your watered down liquor, and keep outta my business Shanssey.
John Shanssey: Your brother came in here stinkin' drunk spoilin' for a fight; he drew a gun on Holiday.
Ed Bailey: [...]
See more »


Referenced in MacGyver: Serenity (1990) See more »


Buffalo Gals
(1844) (uncredited)
Music by William Cool White
Arranged by Jack Hayes
See more »

User Reviews

An OK telling of the famous shootout with Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas
24 September 2016 | by WuchakkSee all my reviews

Released in 1957 and directed by John Sturges, "Gunfight at the OK Corral" stars Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas as Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday in a loose adaption of the events that led up to the famous shootout in Tombstone, Arizona, on October 26, 1881. Rhonda Fleming and Jo Van Fleet are on hand as the protagonists' respective babes. Earl Holliman is noteworthy as Earp's deputy in Dodge City while John Ireland plays Johnny Ringo. DeForest Kelley (Bones from Star Trek) has a small role as one of the Earp brothers while a young Dennis Hopper plays Billy Clanton.

This is a dialogue-driven production that reflects the era in which it was made, hokey opening cowboy song and all. If you can acclimate to its 'world' there are a lot of rewarding elements, particularly the growing friendship of Wyatt and Doc, which starts out shaky, to say the least. It's their relationship that anchors the story, which has trouble working up suspense since it takes place in three distant locations—Fort Griffen, Texas; Dodge City, Kansas; and Tombstone, Arizona. By the time the Earp brothers & Holliday relocate to Tombstone there are a mere 50 minutes left in the movie, which means there's only a small measure of time to establish the villainy of Ike Clanton (Lyle Bettger) & his 'Cowboys' outlaw gang and subsequently build-up to the climatic shootout.

Speaking of which, the real Tombstone gunfight only lasted about 30 seconds; here's it's 16-times longer at 8 minutes. Most other versions are more accurate on this count, e.g. "Hour of the Gun" (1967) (which, by the way, is Sturges' sequel to this one, albeit with a different cast and a more accurate gunfight at the OK Corral), "Doc" (1971), "Tombstone" (1993) and "Wyatt Earp" (1994). Speaking of "Tombstone," one of the reasons it was a hit is because it had well over an hour to build up to the main shootout and did so expertly; "Wyatt Earp" less so, but then "Wyatt" excels in areas that "Tombstone" doesn't, like mundane realism and exposition on the title character. Besides the anchor of Wyatt and Doc's relationship "Gunfight at the OK Corral" does try to work-up suspense through a fictitious growing rivalry between Doc and Johnny Ringo.

While this is a talky Western it's interspersed with nigh shocking violence, like a knife-to-the-chest in the opening act. Nevertheless, it IS dialogue-oriented so to get the most out of it you'll have to (1.) listen closely or (2.) use the subtitles, like I did, which helps you keep track of names and various important (mumbled) statements. I shouldn't close without mentioning Rhonda Fleming and her whoa-man beauty in a fictitious peripheral role.

The film runs 122 minutes and was shot in Old Tucson and other Arizona locations, as well as Paramount Ranch and Paramount Studios, California.


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Release Date:

30 May 1957 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gunfight at the O.K. Corral See more »


Box Office


$2,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Wallis-Hazen See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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