Gunfight at the OK Corral

Music: Gunfight at the OK Corral

For my Brother Richard

Song: “Gunfight at the OK Corral” by Frankie Laine
Used very effectively throughout the movie. Note the powerful use of whistling
– echoed so many years later in Sergio Leones Dollars Trilogy.

All gunfighters are lonely. They live in fear. They die without a dime, a woman or a friend.
– Wyatt Earp


Gunfight at the O.K. Corral – Official Trailer

Gunfight At The O.K. Corral (1957) — (Movie Clip) No Women Gambling

Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1/9) Movie CLIP – You Want to Get Killed (1957) HD

Gunfight At The O.K. Corral (1957) — (Movie Clip) I Like Your Cut

Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (5/9) Movie CLIP – In a Charitable Mood (1957) HD


One of the finest and most memorable westerns of the fifties is GUNFIGHT AT THE OK CORRAL! A splendid Vista Vision Technicolor presentation based around the famous shootout that took place in Tombstone Arizona on the 26th October 1881. Produced by Hal Wallis for Paramount Pictures in 1957 it was masterfully directed by John Sturges and mightily cast with Burt Lancaster as the great frontier lawman Wyatt Earp and Kirk Douglas as Doc Holliday. The combination of these two heavyweight stars playing the leads plus the movie’s catchy fire cracker title assured the picture’s box office success. From an excellent screenplay by Leon Uris it was stylishly complimented by the brilliant and glowing cinematography of Charles B. Lang together with Dimitri Tiomkin’s rollicking score including the clever vocal sung by Frankie Laine which operatically guided us through the narrative.

Boot hill Boot hill,
so cold so still.
There they lay side by side,
the killers that died,
in the gunfight at ok corral

Lyrics: Gunfight at the OK Corral
– by Frankie Laine.


“Gunfight at the O.K. Corral is a confident entertainment that sums up everything good
about the big-scale commercial oater of the time …”

There was no law in Tombstone against having too many posters


The Cast of ‘Gunfight at the OK Corral':

Burt Lancaster … Marshal Wyatt Earp
Kirk Douglas … Doc Holliday
Rhonda Fleming … Laura Denbow
Jo Van Fleet … Kate Fisher
John Ireland … Johnny Ringo
Lyle Bettger … Ike Clanton
Earl Holliman … Deputy Sheriff Charlie Bassett
Dennis Hopper … Billy Clanton
John Hudson … Virgil Earp
DeForest Kelley … Morgan Earp
Martin Milner … James ‘Jimmy’ Earp
Lee Van Cleef … Ed Bailey




Two guys who know how to spoil a party
“Look, Holliday, as long as I’m the law here, not one of those cowpokes is going to cross that deadline with a gun.”
Wyatt Earp



“I never lose. You see, poker’s played by desperate men who cherish money.
I don’t lose because I have nothing to lose, including my life.”
– Doc Holliday

The Ladies of Gunfight at the OK Corral

The Ladies of ‘Gunfight at the OK Corral’

The GUNS - Gunfight at the OK Corral

The GUNS – Gunfight at the OK Corral

Source: Internet Movie Firearms Database

Earp Family Website:

From AMC Blog – The Ten Faces of Wyatt Earp

Doc Holliday, who had saved Wyatt Earp’s life at one time and was a very close friend, had been living in Prescott, Arizona and making a living as a gambler … In late September, 1880, he followed the Earps to Tombstone.  He had a reputation as a gunman, and had been in eight shootouts during his life, although it has only been verified that he killed two men.”

Earp’s doing ‘The Walk’

Kirk Douglas

‘Gunfight at the OK Corral’: Kirk Douglas, Burt Lancaster, John Hudson, DeForest Kelley

Jason Robards, James Garner

‘Hour of the Gun’: Frank Converse, Sam Melville, Jason Robards, James Garner

Val Kilmer

‘Tombstone’: Val Kilmer, Sam Elliott, Kirk Russel, Bill Paxton

‘Wyatt Earp’: Dennis Quaid, Michael Madsen, Kevin Costner, Linden Ashby

‘Wyatt Earp’: Dennis Quaid, Michael Madsen, Kevin Costner, Linden Ashby


‘The Wild Bunch’ doing ‘the Walk’?
You betcha!

The Wild Bunch Edmond O'Brien, Warren Oates, William Holden, Ernest Borgnine

The Wild Bunch Ben Johnson, Warren Oates, William Holden, Ernest Borgnine

High Noon Badguys - Sheb Wooley, Ian McDonald, Lee Van Cleef, Robert J. Wilkie

High Noon Badguys – Sheb Wooley, Ian McDonald, Lee Van Cleef, Robert J. Wilkie



Poster BASED upon Tombstone Gun Law 1880
$”250 Fine” !!! That’s pretty steep. In 1880 this was more money than many folks made in a year!
The Actual No-Carry Gun Law: Passed in 1977, Section 5-5-1 of the (Tombstone) city code:
The statute states: “It is hereby declared to be unlawful for any person other than a peace officer in the course of his official duties, to carry any deadly weapon concealed or otherwise within the limits of the city.”

 “Awful quiet. Too quiet.”

Boot Hill” refers to the number of men who died with their boots on. Among a number of pioneer Boot Hill cemeteries in the
Old West, Boot Hill in Tombstone is among the most well-known … approximately 300 people buried there.”

The Earps and the McCoys?


The real McCoy – Deforest Kelley (Center)

Spectre of the Gun (25 Oct. 1968)

An (original) TV Star Trek did an episode called Spectre of the Gun (1968) revolved around the gunfight at OK Corral. The kicker was that Deforest Kelley (Dr. McCoy of Star Trek) had played Morgan Earp in the original movie Gunfight at the OK Corral.

Related articles

10 Responses to “Gunfight at the OK Corral”

  1. Teepee12 September 28, 2012 at 8:09 pm #

    This is fabulous stuff. You’ve done a huge amount of work on this … and it’s absolutely gorgeous!! My husband will love this site. He is a total western movie addict. I’m sending him the link. You guys should get on very well.

  2. Teepee12 March 9, 2013 at 10:49 am #

    I went to see this with my mother when it came out in the movies. We got there late and wound up having to sit in the second row, so I remember the head of Bert and Kirk were twenty feet high. It’s still one of my favorite old westerns, though I am even fonder these days of Tombstone. But this one is so branded into my psyche as THE ultimate OK corral movie, I will always love it.

  3. Garry Armstrong March 25, 2013 at 10:13 am #

    Just revisited this post AGAIN. It’s become ritual. I love it! Thank you!!

  4. jcalberta March 25, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

    Thanks Gary – I’m very happy that a few people are enjoying the site.

    Unfortunately, I’m one of those damn Virgo perfectionists and every time i look at thingsI see some editing I want to do … I’ll never get finished !

    You know we’re going to keep nagging you about your memiors eh ?

  5. didier September 1, 2013 at 10:05 am #

    wow, very well documented article, one of my fav’ westerns too… Beautiful pics, with a lot of posters, I Like it.
    You can see one of my drawings about this movie ( a second on my wordpress blog (
    Beautiful Blog, you’re talented !

    • jcalberta September 5, 2013 at 9:44 am #

      Thank you Friend ! I’ve looked at your site. Nice work. You have proven your technical masterful of medium. NOW .. keep going ! You will then move past an invisible barrier and break into the open – displaying your own unique style.
      Bravo !

  6. Phil Davis August 2, 2014 at 6:42 pm #

    In the photo from The Wild Bunch….. of the 4 guys walking….. that’s not Edmund O’Brien on the far left, it’s Ben Johnson next to Warren Oats. I know the movie well, and I know all the actors. Check it out on imdb.

    • jcalberta August 2, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

      Dang ! I’ll have to fix that. I know that’s Ben Johnson – the great Western actor. Just a silly mistake.
      Thank you.

  7. didgiv August 3, 2014 at 1:48 am #

    Hi Jc ! very good article, with nice pics as usual… it’s one of my best western, I like especially the scenario : a voice tells the story, between each scene, with the beautiful song of Franke Laine. The best scene in my view is the final scene, when Doc Holliday decides to leave the city with Wyatt Earp. I’ve thrills when I see this scene ! It’s a perfect vision of friendness. Kirk Douglas is very, very good in the charachter of Doc Holliday
    (please look at my portrait of Earp :

    • jcalberta August 3, 2014 at 8:25 am #

      Your artwork is wonderful. You inspire me.

      Yes, Kirk and Burt – two iconic Western Greats. I never get tired of this movie.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 81 other followers

%d bloggers like this: