AFI Catalog of Feature Films
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The Cisco Kid
Alternate Title: O'Henry's Romantic Bad Man The Cisco Kid
Director: Irving Cummings (Dir)
Release Date:   1 Nov 1931
Premiere Information:   World premiere in Los Angeles: 6 Oct 1931; New York opening: week of 23 Oct 1931
Production Date:   began late Jul or early Aug 1931
Duration (in mins):   60-61
Duration (in feet):   5,533
Duration (in reels):   6
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Cast:   Warner Baxter (The Cisco Kid)  
    Edmund Lowe (Sergt. Michael Patrick "Mickey" Dunn)  
    Conchita Montenegro (Carmencita)  
    Nora Lane (Sally Benton)  
    Frederick Burt (Sheriff Tex Ransom)  
    Willard Robertson (Enos Hankins)  
    James Bradbury Jr. (Dixon, U.S.A.)  
    Jack Dillon (Bouse, U.S.A.)  
    Charles Stevens (Lopez)  
    Chris Martin (Gordito)  
    Douglas Haig (Billy)  
    Marilyn Knowlden (Annie)  
    Rita Flynn (Dance hall girl)  
    Consuelo Castillo de Bonzo (Maria)  
    Allan Garcia    
    Del Maggert    

Summary: During President William McKinley's administration, Sergeant Mickey Dunn, a New Yorker stationed near the Mexican border, is excited to hear that his nemesis, The Cisco Kid, for whom there is a $5,000 reward, has been seen in the vicinity. When The Kid, rustling cattle with his cohorts, Gordito and Lopez, sees Dunn and his two men, Dixon and Bouse, on his trail, he instructs Gordito to fire at him so that it will look like he is trying to steal Gordito and Lopez's cattle. The ruse works, The Kid escapes, and Dunn allows Gordito to keep the cattle. At a café in Carrizo, when Sheriff Tex Ransom sees singer Carmencito, whom the sheriff favors, eye The Kid, he shoots the heel off The Kid's boot. The Kid then shoots a glass from the sheriff's hand. After Carmencita helps The Kid escape, he tells her that he trusts no woman and will give his love to none, but nevertheless kisses her passionately. Dunn interrupts them and wounds The Kid as he rides off. The Kid is cared for by widow Sally Benton, whose ranch is in danger of being taken over by Ransom and banker Enos Hankins. Sally's two young children, Billy and Anita, grow to love the visitor. When Dunn romances Carmencita and tries to get information about The Kid's whereabouts, she gives him a false lead. The Kid recovers, after learning that Hankins plans to take Sally's ranch unless she pays $5,000, he robs Hankins' bank. When Dunn arrives, Carmencita, who earlier was pleased that The Kid risked his life to visit her, runs in front of the departing Kid and feigns being shot. She thus allows The Kid to escape as Dunn goes to comfort her. After The Kid gives Sally the $5,000 from the bank robbery, he starts to ride off as Dunn arrives. Anita, upset that The Kid did not say goodbye, closes the gate in front of his horse and falls as The Kid and his horse jump it. The Kid is captured by Dunn when he rides back to check on Anita, who is not hurt; however, when Dunn learns that The Kid robbed the bank to help Sally, he shakes The Kid's hand and lets him ride to the border. 

Production Company: Fox Film Corp.  
Production Text: Irving Cummings Production
Distribution Company: Fox Film Corp.  
Director: Irving Cummings (Dir)
  Charles Woolstenhulme (Asst dir)
  Earl Rettig (Asst dir)
Producer: William Goetz (Assoc prod)
Writer: Al Cohn (Scr and dial)
Photography: Barney McGill (Photog)
  Jack Marta (2d cam)
  William Whitley (Asst cam)
  J. P. Van Wormer (Asst cam)
Art Direction: Joseph Wright (Art dir)
Film Editor: Alex Troffey (Film ed)
Music: George Lipschultz (Mus score)
Sound: George P. Costello (Sd rec)
Production Misc: Allan Garcia (Dialectician and tech adv)
  Del Maggert (Care of horses)
  Joe List (Still photog)
  William Crawford (Bus mgr)
Stand In: Cherié May (Riding double for Conchita Montenegro)
  Frank McGrath (Riding double for Warner Baxter)
  Albert Dresden (Double for Edmund Lowe)
Country: United States
Series: Cisco Kid

Songs: "My Tonia," words and music by Lew Brown, B. G. DeSylva and Ray Henderson; "Song of the Cisco Kid," words and music by Warner Baxter; "La Cucaracha," Mexican folk song.
Composer: Warner Baxter
  Lew Brown
  B. G. De Sylva
  Ray Henderson
Source Text: Based on the character created by O. Henry.
Authors: O. Henry

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number Passed By NBR:
Fox Film Corp. 18/9/1931 dd/mm/yyyy LP2524 Yes

Physical Properties: b&w:
  Sd: Western Electric System

 
Genre: Western
 
Subjects (Major): Deception
  Mexican-American border region
  Mexican Americans
  Officers (Military)
  Outlaws
  Rivalry
  Singers
 
Subjects (Minor): Bank robberies
  Bankers
  Cafés
  Children
  Escapes
  Flirtation
  Nursing back to health
  Ranches
  Rewards
  Rustlers
  Sheriffs
  Widows

Note: The title card for this film in the opening credits reads, "O'Henry's [sic] Romantic Bad Man The Cisco Kid ." Al Cohn's unpublished story was originally entitled "The Silver City." According to information in the Twentieth Century-Fox Records of the Legal Department at the UCLA Theater Arts Library, much of the film was shot on property on Ventura Boulevard, thirty miles west of Hollywood. The film was a sequel to the 1929 Fox film In Old Arizona , directed by Raoul Walsh, which also starred Warner Baxter and Edmund Lowe and for which Baxter won an Academy Award (see above). The theme song "My Tonia" from the 1929 film was used again in this film. In 1930, Fox produced The Arizona Kid , also starring Warner Baxter, which used the character "The Cisco Kid" without using the name (see above). O. Henry first created The Cisco Kid character in his short story "Caballero's Way" ( Everybody's Magazine , Jul 1907).
       After the 1930 film, a number of writers produced work for a new "Cisco Kid" film, including Harvey Fergusson, Herbert Asbury, Clarke Silvernail and Tom Barry, but it is not known if any of this material was used in the final film. Other films based on O. Henry's character include the 1914 three-reel Eclair film entitled The Caballero's Way ; the 1919 two-reel Universal film entitled The Border Terror ; the 1939 Twentieth Century-Fox film entitled The Return of the Cisco Kid , also starring Warner Baxter (see below); six films starring Cesar Romero, beginning with the 1939 The Cisco Kid and the Lady , made by Twentieth Century-Fox (see below).
       Gilbert Roland made six films for Monogram in the mid-1940s, beginning with The Gay Cavalier in 1946, and Duncan Renaldo, made many films for the same studio, first in 1945, beginning with The Cisco Kid Returns , then additional films after Roland left the series. Renaldo also starred with Leo Carrillo in The Cisco Kid television series, produced from 1951 to 1955. A 1994 television movie entitled The Cisco Kid was broadcast on the TNT cable network. That film was directed by Luis Valdez and starred Jimmy Smits and Cheech Marin. For additional information on "The Cisco Kid," consult the Series Index. 

Bibliographic Sources:   Date   Page
Film Daily   25 Oct 31   p. 10.
HF   1 Aug 31   p. 20.
HF   22 Aug 31   p. 20.
International Photographer   Nov 31   p. 30.
Los Angeles Herald Express   6 Oct 1931.   
Motion Picture Herald   10 Oct 31   p. 46.
New York Times   24 Oct 31   p. 20.
Variety   27 Oct 31   p. 19.

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.
 
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