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The Court Martial of Billy Mitchell Details


In this 1955 Otto Preminger film, Gary Cooper stars as World War I hero Brigadier General Billy Mitchell. The film recounts Mitchell's efforts to prove the viability of a strong air force. The hidebound military higher-ups refuse to finance aviation any further, figuring that the strength of the United States lies in its navy. When a friend is killed by flying a faulty plane, Mitchell charges the War and Navy department with incompetence and criminal negligence. When the brass tries to quietly court-martial Mitchell, they are forced into the open by the strength of public opinion, largely in Mitchell's favor. Subjected to the grilling of prosecutor Alan Guillon (Rod Steiger) during his trial, Mitchell sticks to his guns, even outlining a potential Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor unless the military wises up and strengthens its air power. Elizabeth Montgomery makes her film debut in the role of Margaret Landsdowne. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi


Gary Cooper
as Brig.-Gen. William Mitchell
Charles Bickford
as Gen. James Guthrie
Ralph Bellamy
as Congressman Frank Reid
Rod Steiger
as Maj. Allen Gullion
Elizabeth Montgomery
as Margaret Lansdowne
Fred Clark
as Col. Moreland
James Daly
as Col. Herbert A. White
Jack Lord
as Cmdr. Zachary Lansdowne
Peter Graves
as Capt. Elliott
Darren McGavin
as Russ Peters
Charles Dingle
as Sen. Fullerton
Dayton Lummis
as Gen. Douglas MacArthur
Ian Wolfe
as Calvin Coolidge
Will Wright
as Adm. William S. Sims
Carleton Young
as Gen. Pershing's Aide
Gregory Walcott
as Reporter Millikan
William Forrest
as Commandant FSH
Edna Holland
as Woman Secretary
William Henry
as Officer
Edward Keane
as Court Judge
Cy Malis
as Reporter
Griff Barnett
as Civilian Steno
Robert Simon
as Adm. Adam Gage
Frank Wilcox
as Officer Tom
Mike Lally
as Reporter
George Mayon
as Reporter
Jack Perrin
as Court Reporter
Herbert Heyes
as Gen.John J. Pershing
Max Wagner
as Sergeant Major


Otto Preminger
Milton Sperling
Milton Sperling
Milton Sperling
Screen Story
Emmett Lavery
Screen Story
Emmett Lavery
Dimitri Tiomkin
Composer (Music Score)
Folmar Blangsted
Howard Shoup
Costume Designer
Gordon Bau
Dimitri Tiomkin