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The Wings of Eagles Details


The Wings of Eagles is filmmaker John Ford's paean to his frequent collaborator--and, it is rumored, drinking buddy--Cmdr. Frank "Spig" Wead. John Wayne stars as Wead, a reckless WW1 Naval aviator who (it says here) was instrumental in advancing the cause of American "air power". In private life, Wead becomes estranged from his wife Minnie (Maureen O'Hara) after the death of their baby. Drinking heavily, Wead tumbles down the stairs of his home, and as a result he is apparently paralyzed for life. With the help of happy-go-lucky Navy mechanic Carson (Dan Dailey), Wead is able to regain minimal use of his legs, but it seems clear that his Naval career is over. Fortunately, he manages to find work as a prolific Hollywood screenwriter, and after the attack of Pearl Harbor he is called back to active duty to oversee the construction of "jeep carriers". Not one of John Ford's more coherent films--in fact, it's downright sloppy at times--The Wings of Eagles nonetheless contains several highlights, not least of which are the "I'm gonna move that toe" scene with John Wayne and Dan Dailey, and Ward Bond's inside-joke performance as irreverent film director "John Dodge". ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi


John Wayne
as Frank W. "Spig" Wead
Dan Dailey
as "Jughead" Carson
Maureen O'Hara
as Minnie Wead
Ward Bond
as John Dodge
Ken Curtis
as John Dale Price
Edmund Lowe
as Adm. Moffett
Kenneth Tobey
as Capt. Herbert Allen Hazard
Barry Kelley
as Capt. Jock Clark
Sig Rumann
as Party Manager
Henry O'Neill
as Capt. Spear
Willis B. Bouchey
as Barton
Dorothy Jordan
as Rose Brentmann
Fred Graham
as Officer in brawl
Danny Borzage
as Pete
Janet Lake
as Nurse
Sam Harris
as Patient
Veda Ann Borg
Mae Marsh
as Nurse Crumley
Charles Trowbridge
as Adm. Crown
Olive Carey
as Bridy O'Faolain
William Henry
as Naval aide
Evelyn Rudie
as Doris Wead
Cliff Lyons
Chuck Roberson
as Officer
Harlan Warde
as Executive Officer
Louis Jean Heydt
as Dr. John Keye
James Flavin
as Military Policeman at garden party
William Tracy
as Air Force Officer
Jack Pennick
as Joe McGuffey
Peter Ortiz
as Lt. Charles Dexter
May McAvoy
as Nurse
Mimi Gibson
as Lila Wead
Alberto Morin
as 2nd Manager
Stuart Holmes
as Producer


John Ford
Charles Schnee
Paul Vogel
Jeff Alexander
Composer (Music Score)
Gene Ruggiero
Edwin B. Willis
Set Designer
Keogh Gleason
Set Designer
Walter Plunkett
Costume Designer
Warren Newcombe
Special Effects
Arnold A. Gillespie
Special Effects
Paul Mantz
Paul Mantz
William J. Tuttle