Director: William Wyler Cast: Bette Davis, Henry Fonda, George Brent

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Jezebel was, in 1938, widely regarded as Warner Bros.' "compensation" to Bette Davis for her losing the opportunity to play Scarlett O'Hara in Gone with the Wind. Resemblances to the two properties are inescapable: Jezebel heroine Julie Morrison is a headstrong Southern belle not unlike Scarlett (Julie lives in New Orleans rather than Georgia); she foolishly loves a man (played by Henry Fonda) who is betrothed to another; and she makes a public spectacle of herself by wearing an inappropriate red dress at a ball, just as Scarlett O'Hara brazenly danced with Rhett Butler while still garbed in widow's weeds. There are several other resemblances between the two properties, but it's important to note that Jezebel is set in the 1850s, several years before Gone with the Wind's Civil War milieu; and we must observe that, unlike Scarlett O'Hara, Julie Morrison is humbled by her experiences and ends up giving of her time, energy and health during a deadly Yellow Jack outbreak. Bette Davis won an Academy Award for her portrayal of Julie Morrison; an additional Oscar went to Fay Bainter for her portrayal of the remonstrative Aunt Belle (she's the one who labels Julie a "Jezebel" at a crucial plot point). The offscreen intrigues of Jezebel, including Bette Davis' romantic attachment to director William Wyler and costar George Brent, have been fully documented elsewhere. Jezebel was based on an old and oft-produced play by Owen Davis Sr.

Product Details

Release Date: 08/27/2019
UPC: 0883929692477
Original Release: 1938
Source: Warner Archives
Presentation: [B&W]
Time: 1:44:00
Sales rank: 5,984

Special Features

Commentary by film historian Jeanine Basinger; Featurette Jezebel: Legend of the South; Vintage musical short Melody Masters: Jimmy Dorsey and His Orchestra; Classic cartoon Daffy Duck in Hollywood; Promotion: "Rambling 'Round the Hollywood Studio with the Candid Cameraman; Theatrical trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Bette Davis Julie Marsden
Henry Fonda Preston Dillard
George Brent Buck Cantrell
Margaret Lindsay Amy Bradford Dillard
Donald Crisp Dr. Livingstons
Fay Bainter Aunt Belle Bogardus
Richard Cromwell Ted Dillard
Henry O'Neill Gen. Theopholus Bogardus
Spring Byington Mrs. Kendrick
John Litel Jean La Cour
Gordon Oliver Dick Allen
Janet Shaw Molly Allen
Theresa Harris Zette
Margaret Early Stephanie Kendrick
Irving Pichel Huger
Lou Payton Uncle Cato
Jesse Graves Black Servant
Charles B. Middleton Officer
Fred Lawrence Bob
Suzanne Dulier Midinette
Eddie "Rochester" Anderson Gros Bat
Georgia Caine Mrs. Petion
Matthew "Stymie" Beard Ti Bat
Georges Renavent De Lautrec
Ann Codee Mme. Poulard the Dressmaker
Sam McDaniel Driver
Trevor Bardette Sheriff at Plantation
Al Bridge New Orleans Sheriff
Maurice Brierre Drunk
Daisy Bufford Black Flower Girl
Frederick Burton First Director
Davison Clark Deputy Sheriff
Frank Darien Bank Bookkeeper
Jack George Orchestra leader
George Guhl Fugitive Planter
John Harron Jenkins
Philip Hurlic Erronens
Edward McWade Second Director
Louis Mercier Bar Companion
Tony Paton Drunk
Jacques Vanaire Durette
Charles Wagenheim Customer

Technical Credits
William Wyler Director
Henry Blanke Associate Producer
Robert Bruckner Screenwriter
Alexis Dubin Songwriter
Abem Finkel Screenwriter
Leo F. Forbstein Musical Direction/Supervision
Robert M. Haas Art Director
Ernest Haller Cinematographer
John Huston Screenwriter
Orry Kelly Costumes/Costume Designer
Warren Low Editor
Johnny Mercer Songwriter
Orry-Kelly Costumes/Costume Designer
Clements Ripley Screenwriter
Max Steiner Score Composer
Hal B. Wallis Executive Producer
Harry Warren Songwriter

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Jezebel 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Bette Davis took home the Best Actress Oscar for her performance as spoiled Southern belle, Julie Marsden in 'Jezebel'. More than anything Julie wants to be loved. But her mean spirit and fiery desire seem to destroy her only chances for happiness. When Julie arrives at a debutante ball wearing a harlot-red gown amongst the virginal white ladies of the evening, she humiliates and alienates her rich lawyer beaux, Preston Dillard (Henry Fonda). Throughout the course of the film Julie will try in vane to win back Preston¿s love, a dream that is shattered when Preston retreats to the North, only to return on the arm of Molly Allen (Janet Shaw) ¿ his wife. Engorged by jealous rage, Julie attempts to instill jealousy in her old friend, Buck Cantrell (George Brent), but his feeble attempt to pistol duel his way to her honor results in his own death. Then 'yellow fever' hits and the south begins to fall down around Julie¿s ankles. Davis is superb and she is supported by a stellar cast of character actors, topped off by Faye Bainter, as her sympathetic aunt. This film really stirred the breeze in 1936. It also killed whatever small chances Bette Davis may have had to play Scarlett O'Hara in 'Gone With The Wind'. This is no 'Gone With The Wind' but, as told by director William Wyler, it¿s a finely crafted melodrama and a tour de force for Davis. So where's the problem? In the transfer: Warner doesn't give us much to hope for. Like 'Dark Victory' this DVD is riddled with artifacts and digital compression problems that leave most of the image looking excessively harsh and grainy. The audio is mono but nicely balanced. Black levels are good but the gray scale seems to be lacking - too much middle range and not enough high and low end balance so that everything registers a dismal gray rather than a vibrant silvery spectrum of lights and darks. There are no extras.