Monday, September 16, 2019

The 50th Anniversary of Sabata

Today marks the 50th Anniversary of Sabata. The film premiered in Rome, Italy on September 16, 1969. Directed by Gianfranco Parolini as Frank Kramer the film created a series of Spaghetti Western films released between 1969 and 1971, it starred Lee Van Cleef in the first, Sabata, Yul Brynner in the second, "Adiós, Sabata", and Van Cleef returning for the third, "Return of Sabata". Even though the second in the series was not initially a Sabata character it contained many of the same crew members and actors and the Italian title was changed to "Adios Sabata" for the English language release of the film and therefore became a part of the trilogy. Additional films copied the character and used it in the titles to confuse audiences and capitalize on the success of the original series. Such titles as "Wanted Sabata" (1970) directed by Roberto Mauri and starring Brad Harris; "Arriva Sabata!" (1970) directed by Tulio Demicheli and starring Peter Lee Lawrence; "Dig Your Grave Friend... Sabata's Coming" (1971) directed by Juan Bosch and starring Raf Baldassarre and "Watch Out Gringo! Sabata Will Return" (1972) directed by Alfonso Balcázar and starring George Martin are now part of the bag of Sabata films and rip-offs.

Ehi amico... c'è Sabata, hai chiuso! – Italian title
Sabata – Brazilian title
Heroj crnog kolta - Croatian title
Sabata, salaperäinen ratsastaja – Finnish title
Sabata – French title
Sabata – German title
Sabata, o tromokratis tou El Paso – Greek title
Hé barátom, itt van Sabata – Hungarian title
Sabata viene a matar – Mexican title
Sabata – Portuguese title
Oro sangriento – Spanish title
Sabata vadiler hakimi – Turkish title
Sabata – U.S.A. title

A 1969 Italian film production [P.E.A. (Rome)]
Producer: Alberto Grimaldi
Director: Frank Kramer (Gianfranco Parolini)
Story: Gianfranco Parolini, Renato Izzo
Screenplay: Gianfranco Parolini, Renato Izzo
Cinematography: Sandro Mancori (Alessandro Mancori) [Technicolor, Techniscope]
Music: Marcello Giombini
     Song: “Ehi Amico C'e' Sabata” I Cantori Moderni
Running time: 111 minutes

Story: Sabata rides into the town of Dougherty. While enjoying a drink in the local saloon, a group of thieves are robbing the town bank, making off with a huge metal safe containing $100,000. Sabata heads off the thieves and retrieves the money and brings back a wagon load of corpses. Sabata then runs across and old acquaintance, Banjo, who is passing through town. Sabata meets two other characters in Daugherty that he takes a liking to: a comical fat guy named Carrincha and an acrobatic mute named Alleycat, they soon become his sidekicks. After returning the money Sabata is offered a reward, by naming his price. He asks for $5,000. What everyone in town doesn’t know is that the respected town officials, Stengel, and Judge O'Hara are behind the actual robbery and Sabata just ruined their plans for collecting the insurance to buy a large portion of land that will be set aside for a train line coming through. After finding out this information, Sabata, Carrincha and Alleycat work together to blackmail Stengel and his army to get the money back. Banjo on the other hand has his own priorities and he tries to steal the money from Sabata. It all ends with a showdown and the double-crosser getting his just deserts.

Sabata – Lee Van Cleef (Clarence Van Cleef, Jr.)
Banjo – William Berger (Wilhelm Berger)
Hardy Stengel – Franco Ressel (Domenico Orobano)
Jane – Linda Veras (Sieglinde Veras)
Carrincha – Pedro Sanchez (Ignazio Spalla)
Judge O’Hara – Gianni Rizzo (Giovanni Rizzo)
Ferguson – Anthony Gradwell (Antonio Gradoli)
Indio/Jumping Kid/Alley Cat – Nick Jordan (Aldo Canti)
Oswald – Robert Hundar (Claudio Undari)
Slim – Spanny Conversi (Espartaco Conversi)
Sharky – Marco Zuanelli
McCallum – Gino Marturano (Luigi Marturano)
Frankie Virginia – Joseph Matthews (Giuseppe Mattei)
Virginia brothers – Franco Ukmar, Bruno Ukmar
Clayton brother - Franco Pasquetto, Luigi Ciavarro
Father Brown – R. Lodi (Rodolfo Lodi)
False Father Brown – Allan Collins (Luciano Pigozzi)
Logan – Vittorio André
Rocky Bendato – Romano Puppo
Tequila – Andrew Ray (Andrea Aurelli)
Army Captain – Franco Marletta (Francesco Marletta)
Sheriff of Daugherty City – John Bartha (János Barta)
Nichols – Charles Tamblyn (Carlo Tamberlani)
Stengel henchman – Fortunato Arena, Sisto Brunetti, Bruno Arié, Angelo Susani, Amerigo
     Santarelli (Americo Santarelli)
Stratford - Gino Barbacane
Shotgun – Gilbert Galimberti (Gian Galimberti)
Sharky’s mother – Ana María Noé
Barman – Mimmo Poli (Domenico Poli)
Old saloon patron - Antonio Marcolini
Croupier - Alfonso Giganti
Saloon patron – Elio Angelucci
Townsman – Aldo Formisano, Fulvio Pellegrino
With: Armando Bottin
Stunts: Miguel Pedregosa

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