Released in 1943 by Columbia Pictures, 97 mins., black and white, mono sound

"Filmed during World War II, this film was intended to be a propaganda piece for the U.S. government. Seargant Joe Gunn (Bogart) leads an abandoned tank unit after the fall of Tobruk in North Africa. The tank picks up British, French, South African, and Sudanese soldiers along the way, becoming a microcosm of the Allied troops. The group works together to defeat a much larger German force that wants the same water well that they have. The film portrays all of the images that the U.S. deemed important for the American people see in regards to the war." (Summary by Kasey Kist {}). The film was based on THE THIRTEEN that was filmed in Russia in 1937. The most recent version is the 1995 made-for-TV Sahara with James Belushi.


Directed by Zoltan Korda
Written by Sidney Buchman, Zoltan Korda, John Howard Lawson, adapted by James O'Hanlon from the story by Philip MacDonald
Produced by Harry Joe Brown
Original music by Miklos Rozsa
Cinematography by Rudolph Maté
Film Editing by Charles Nelson
Art Direction Lionel Banks, Eugene Lourie
Set Decoration William Kiernan

Humphrey Bogart .... Sergeant Joe Gunn
Bruce Bennett .... Waco Hoyt
J. Carrol Naish .... Giuseppe
Lloyd Bridges .... Fred Clarkson
Rex Ingram .... Sergeant Tambul
Richard Nugent .... Captain Jason Halliday
Dan Duryea .... Jimmy Doyle
Carl Harbord .... Marty Williams
Patrick O'Moore .... Ozzie Bates
Louis Mercier .... Jean Leroux (as Louis T. Mercier)
Guy Kingsford .... Peter Stegman
Kurt Kreuger .... Captain Von Schletow
John Wengraf .... Major Von Falken


History Department | Filmnotes | revised 3/21/99