Edison, The Man

Overview

In 1940, MGM turned out two films on the life of Thomas Alva Edison.The first, Young Tom Edison, starred Mickey Rooney and trotted out all the old Edison folklore, including the now-discredited incident in which Tom loses his hearing by being yanked onto a train by his ears. Edison the Man, starring Spencer Tracy in the title role, downplays certain inconvenient facts including Edison's strong-arm tactics to protect his patents, but adheres more closely to actual events than its predecessor. The story ...
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Overview

In 1940, MGM turned out two films on the life of Thomas Alva Edison.The first, Young Tom Edison, starred Mickey Rooney and trotted out all the old Edison folklore, including the now-discredited incident in which Tom loses his hearing by being yanked onto a train by his ears. Edison the Man, starring Spencer Tracy in the title role, downplays certain inconvenient facts including Edison's strong-arm tactics to protect his patents, but adheres more closely to actual events than its predecessor. The story concentrates on Edison's most productive years, from 1872 to 1882 surprisingly ignoring his role in the development of the motion picture! The inventions invented herein include the ticker-tape machine, the phonograph, the Dictaphone, and of course the electric light. Gene Lockhart is on hand to once more perform his movie specialty of the blinkered financier who can see no future in Edison's crazy schemes. The film tries to stir up suspense by giving Edison only six months to complete his dream of illuminating the streets of New York, lest he lose the contract--and, by extension, his credibility. While Young Tom Edison had unexpectedly lost money, Edison the Man was a success; as for Spencer Tracy, he was a versatile enough actor to escape the fate of poor Don Ameche, who was forever and inextricably associated with his portrayal of Alexander Graham Bell.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/23/2009
  • UPC: 883316126219
  • Original Release: 1940
  • Rating:

  • Source: Warner Archives
  • Time: 1:47:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 18,166

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Spencer Tracy Thomas Alva Edison
Rita Johnson Mary Stilwell
Lynne Overman Bunt Cavatt
Charles Coburn Gen. Powell
Gene Lockhart Mr. Taggart
Henry Travers Ben Els
Felix Bressart Michael Simon
Peter Godfrey Ashton
Guy D'Ennery Lundstrom
Byron Foulger Edwin Hall
Milton Parsons Acid Graham
Arthur Aylesworth Bigelow
Gene Reynolds Jimmy Price
Addison Richards Dr. Johnson
William Arnold
Irving Bacon Sheriff
Harlan Briggs Bisbee
George Chandler
Nell Craig Woman
Donald Douglas Jordan
Edward Earle Broker
Frank Faylen Galbreath
Ann Gillis
Paul Hurst
Milt Kibbee Workman
Charles Lane Lecturer
George Lessey
Tom Mahoney Policeman
George Meader Minister
Harold Minjir Blair
Bruce Mitchell Coachman
Grant Mitchell Shade
Charles Trowbridge Clark
Emmett Vogan Secretary
Jay Ward
Joe Whitehead Man
Technical Credits
Clarence Brown Director
Hugo Butler Screenwriter
John W. Considine Jr. Producer
Jack Dawn Makeup
John S. Detlie Art Director
Orville O. Dull Associate Producer
Bradbury Foote Screenwriter
Cedric Gibbons Art Director
Robert A. Golden Asst. Director
Edison Institute Consultant/advisor
Talbot Jennings Screenwriter
Harold Hal Rosson Cinematographer
Dore Schary Screenwriter
William A. Simonds Consultant/advisor
Frederick Y. Smith Editor
Norman R. Speiden Consultant/advisor
Gile Steele Costumes/Costume Designer
Herbert Stothart Score Composer
Dolly Tree Costumes/Costume Designer
Edwin B. Willis Art Director, Set Decoration/Design
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