AFI Catalog of Feature Films

The AFI Catalog of Feature Films,[1] also known as the AFI Catalog[1] is an ongoing project by the American Film Institute to catalog all commercially made and theatrically exhibited American motion pictures, from the earliest days of the industry to the present. It has begun as a series of hardcover books known as The American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures,[1] and subsequently became an online database exclusively.

Each entry in the catalog typically includes the film's title, physical description, production and distribution companies, production and release dates, personal credits, a plot summary, and notes on the film's history. The films are indexed by personal credits, production and distribution companies, year of release, and major and minor plot subjects.

To qualify for the "Feature Films" volumes, a film must have been commercially made by an American company, and given a theatrical release in 35 mm or larger gauge to the general public, with a running time of at least 40 minutes.


The hardcover volumes published:

  • A, Film Beginnings, 1893–1910 (1995)
    • Subtitled "A Work in Progress" due to the scant information available on many films released in this era. Foreign-made films are included if they were released by American companies.
  • F1, Feature Films, 1911–1920 (1988)
  • F2, Feature Films, 1921–1930 (1971)
  • F3, Feature Films, 1931–1940 (1993)
    • With this volume, the project began to include plot summaries written especially for the catalog from viewing the movie itself, whenever possible, instead of relying on plot summaries taken from copyright registrations, studio publicity materials, or reviews.
  • F4, Feature Films, 1941–1950 (1997)
  • F6, Feature Films, 1961–1970 (1976)
    • Due to the large number of co-productions between American and foreign companies in the 1960s, and the difficulty of determining any particular film's nationality, this volume includes all feature films released theatrically in the United States in that period. The hardcover edition includes pornographic features, although they have been excluded from the electronic database edition. Errors in the print editions have been carried over to the online version, despite published criticisms, and there is no means by which users can offer discussions or corrections.

The publication of the hardcover volumes was suspended due to budgetary reasons after volume F4 in 1997. Feature films released from 1951 through 1960, and from 1971 through 1973 have been cataloged only in the online database. The project estimates that additional years will be cataloged at six-month intervals. Film School students are offered the opportunity to provide plot synopses and original research, but input from other, experienced film researchers is not encouraged.

The project will also eventually catalog short films (beyond 1910) and newsreels.


  1. ^ a b c "About the AFI Catalog of Feature Films". American Film Institute. Retrieved September 13, 2014.

External links

American Film Institute

The American Film Institute (AFI) is an American film organization that educates filmmakers and honors the heritage of the motion picture arts in the United States. AFI is supported by private funding and public membership fees.

Boston Blackie

Boston Blackie is a fictional character created by author Jack Boyle (October 19, 1881 – October 1928). Blackie, a jewel thief and safecracker in Boyle's stories, became a detective in adaptations for films, radio and television—an "enemy to those who make him an enemy, friend to those who have no friend."

Actor Chester Morris was the best-known Blackie, playing the character in 14 Columbia Pictures films (1941–1949) and in a 1944 NBC radio series. Boston Blackie is the role for which Morris is best remembered.

Burns and Allen

Burns and Allen was an American comedy duo consisting of George Burns and his wife, Gracie Allen. They worked together as a successful comedy team that entertained vaudeville, film, radio, and television audiences for over forty years.

The duo met in 1922 and married in 1926. Burns was the straight man and Allen was a silly, addle-headed woman. The duo starred in a number of movies including Lambchops (1929), The Big Broadcast (1932) and two sequels in 1935 and 1936, and A Damsel in Distress (1937). Their 30-minute radio show debuted in September 1934 as The Adventures of Gracie, whose title changed to The Burns and Allen Show in 1936; the series ran, moving back and forth between NBC and CBS, until May 1950. After their radio show's cancellation, Burns and Allen reemerged on television with a popular situation comedy, which ran from 1950 to 1958.

Burns and Allen's radio show was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 1994. Their TV series received a total of 11 Primetime Emmy Award nominations and produced what TV Guide ranked No. 56 on its 1997 list of the 100 greatest episodes of all time. They were inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1988.

Duncan Renaldo filmography

Duncan Renaldo (1904–1980) was an American actor of European birth. He was best known in the 1950s United States for his lead role in The Cisco Kid, which co-starred Leo Carrillo as Pancho. The children's television series ran for six years and 156 episodes 1950–1956. He and Carrillo first crossed professional paths in the 1935 film Moonlight Murder. Prior to his television success, Renaldo appeared in 67 feature-length films beginning in the silent era. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer hired him in 1929 for a silent version of The Bridge of San Luis Rey. Paramount Pictures cast him in five films, including the acclaimed Two Years Before the Mast and For Whom the Bell Tolls.

Twenty of his films were for Republic Pictures, appearing alongside Republic lead stars John Wayne, Gene Autry, Roy Rogers and Bob Steele. When Ray Corrigan left the popular Three Mesquiteers series of western films in 1939, rather than immediately casting another actor in his recurring role of Tucson Smith, Republic created the role of Rico for Renaldo who portrayed the character in seven subsequent Mesquiteer films.Although Renaldo was seen by audiences most often as Spanish surnamed characters, the Romania-born actor never knew his own parents or his ethnic heritage. His film career took a two-year hiatus at McNeil Island Federal Prison for falsifying passport documents by claiming his birthplace as New Jersey. When President Franklin D. Roosevelt granted him a pardon in 1936, he was able to resume his career and was granted full American citizenship by Judge James O'Connor in 1941.In 1945, he appeared in three Monogram Pictures films as the Cisco Kid, paired with Martin Garralaga as Cisco's sidekick Pancho. Preceding the successful television series, he and Leo Carrillo teamed up in 1949 and 1950 for five feature length Cisco Kid movies for United Artists, four of which he co-produced. For his contributions to the entertainment industry, Renaldo received a star at 1680 Vine Street on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on February 8, 1960.

Ethel Barrymore on stage, screen and radio

Ethel Barrymore (born Ethel Mae Blythe; 1879–1959) was an American actress of stage, screen and radio. She came from a family of actors; she was the middle child of Maurice Barrymore and Georgie Drew Barrymore, and had two brothers, Lionel and John. Reluctant to pursue her parents' career, the loss of financial support following the death of Louisa Lane Drew, caused Barrymore to give up her dream of becoming a concert pianist and instead earn a living on the stage. Barrymore's first Broadway role, alongside her uncle John Drew, Jr., was in The Imprudent Young Couple (1895). She soon found success, particularly after an invitation from William Gillette to appear on stage in his 1897 London production of Secret Service. Barrymore was soon popular with English society, and she had a number of romantic suitors, including Laurence Irving, the dramatist. His father, Henry Irving, cast her in The Bells (1897) and Peter the Great (1898).On her return to America in 1898, Barrymore was lauded by the press and public and, under Charles Frohman's management, she appeared in Catherine (1898) and Captain Jinks of the Horse Marines (1901) on Broadway. The latter play was a success, and Barrymore received particular praise. She went on to have a series of similarly popular roles in Cousin Kate (1903), Alice-Sit-by-the-Fire (1905), Lady Frederick (1908) and Déclassée (1920), among others. After a series of less well-received roles in the early 1920s, she returned to popularity with her role as the sophisticated spouse of a philandering husband in The Constant Wife (1927). In 1928 the Ethel Barrymore Theatre was opened in her honor, and she appeared in its inaugural production, The Kingdom of God.Barrymore began her film career in 1914 in a series of silent films, but she never dedicated herself to the medium fully. When opportunities for the right stage roles declined in the 1930s and she encountered financial difficulties, she appeared in her first talking film, Rasputin and the Empress (1932)—in which both her brothers also starred—and began radio broadcasts on the Blue Network with The Ethel Barrymore Theater. In the 1940s she had a last stage triumph in the long-running The Corn Is Green (1942), in which she had "perhaps her most acclaimed role", according to her biographer, Benjamin McArthur. Her film work became increasingly prominent in the 1940s and 1950s, and she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for None but the Lonely Heart (1944). She received subsequent Academy Award nominations—again for Best Supporting Actress—for The Spiral Staircase (1946), The Paradine Case (1947) and Pinky (1949). She was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame on February 8, 1960 and is, along with her two brothers, included in the American Theater Hall of Fame.

Florenz Ziegfeld Jr.

Florenz Edward Ziegfeld Jr. (March 21, 1867 – July 22, 1932), popularly known as Flo Ziegfeld, was an American Broadway impresario, notable for his series of theatrical revues, the Ziegfeld Follies (1907–1931), inspired by the Folies Bergère of Paris. He also produced the musical Show Boat. He was known as the "glorifier of the American girl". Ziegfeld is a member of the American Theater Hall of Fame.

Howard Da Silva

Howard Da Silva (born Howard Silverblatt, May 4, 1909 – February 16, 1986) was an American actor, director and musical performer on stage, film, television and radio. He was cast in dozens of productions on the New York stage, appeared in more than two dozen television programs, and acted in more than fifty feature films. Adept at both drama and musicals on the stage, he originated the role of Jud Fry in the original 1943 run of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Oklahoma!, and also portrayed the prosecuting attorney in the 1957 stage production of Compulsion. Da Silva was nominated for a 1960 Tony Award as Best Featured Actor in a Musical for his work in Fiorello!, a musical about New York City mayor LaGuardia. In 1961, Da Silva directed Purlie Victorious, by Ossie Davis.

Many of his early feature films were of the noir genre in which he often played the villain, such as that of Eddie Harwood in The Blue Dahlia and the sadistic Captain Francis Thompson in Two Years Before the Mast (both 1946). Da Silva's characterization of historic figures are among some of his most notable work: he was Lincoln's brawling friend Jack Armstrong in both play (1939) and film (1940) versions of Abe Lincoln in Illinois written by Robert Sherwood; Benjamin Franklin in the 1969–1972 stage musical 1776 and a reprisal of the role for the 1972 film version of the production; Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev in The Missiles of October (1974); Franklin D. Roosevelt in The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover (1977); and Louis B. Mayer in Mommie Dearest (1981).

Da Silva's American television character work included the defense attorney representing the robot in The Outer Limits episode "I, Robot" (1964), and district attorney Anthony Cleese in For the People (1965). For his performance as Eddie in the Great Performances production of Verna: USO Girl (1978), the actor received a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Comedy or Drama Special.In the 1970s, Da Silva appeared in 26 episodes of the radio series, the CBS Radio Mystery Theater.

Hugh Beaumont

Eugene Hugh Beaumont (February 16, 1909 – May 14, 1982) was an American actor, television director, and writer. He was also licensed to preach by the Methodist church. Beaumont is best known for his portrayal of Ward Cleaver on the television series Leave It to Beaver, originally broadcast from 1957 to 1963. Earlier, in 1946, he had starred in a series of low-budget crime films distributed by the Producers Releasing Corporation, performing in the role of private detective Michael Shayne.

Jack Carter (actor)

Jack Carter (c. 1902 – November 9, 1967) was an African-American actor. He is known for creating the role of Crown in the original Broadway production of Porgy (1927), and for starring in Orson Welles's stage productions including Macbeth (1936) and Doctor Faustus (1937). He appeared in a few motion pictures in the 1930s and 1940s.

Laurence Harvey

Laurence Harvey (born Laruschka Mischa Skikne; 1 October 1928 – 25 November 1973) was a Lithuanian-born British Jewish actor. In a career that spanned a quarter of a century, Harvey appeared in stage, film and television productions primarily in the United Kingdom and the United States. His performance in Room at the Top (1959) resulted in an Academy Award nomination. That success was followed by the role of William Barret Travis in The Alamo (1960), and as the brainwashed Raymond Shaw in The Manchurian Candidate (1962).

Lee Patrick (actress)

Lee Patrick (November 22, 1901 – November 21, 1982) was an American actress whose career began in 1922 on the New York stage with her role in The Bunch and Judy which headlined Adele Astaire and featured Adele's brother Fred Astaire. Patrick continued to perform in dozens of roles on the stage for the next decade, frequently in musicals and comedies, but also in dramatic parts like her 1931 performance as Meg in Little Women. She began to branch out into films in 1929. For half a century she created a credible body of cinematic work, her most memorable being in 1941 as Sam Spade's assistant Effie in The Maltese Falcon, and her reprise of the role in the George Segal 1975 comedy sequel The Black Bird. Her talents were showcased in comedies such as the 1942 Jack Benny film George Washington Slept Here and in 1958 as one of the foils of Rosalind Russell in Auntie Mame. Dramatic parts such as an asylum inmate in the 1948 The Snake Pit and as Pamela Tiffin's mother in the 1961 Summer and Smoke were another facet of her repertoire. She made numerous guest roles in American television, but became a staple for that medium during the two-year run of Topper. As Henrietta Topper, her comedic timing played well against Leo G. Carroll as her husband, and against that of the two ghosts played by Robert Sterling and Anne Jeffreys. Patrick lent her voice to various animated characters of The Alvin Show in the early 1960s.

Leo Carrillo on stage and screen

Leo Carrillo (Spanish pronunciation: [Cay-reel-yo]) (1881–1961) was an American cartoonist, a comedian in vaudeville, and an actor on stage, film and television. He was best known in the United States as the Cisco Kid's sidekick Pancho on 1950s children's television, a role which capped a long show business career that began decades earlier.Growing up in culturally diverse Los Angeles, Carrillo was conversant in five languages with a keen ear for dialects. When he went to work for the San Francisco Examiner as a cartoonist, he began performing humorous monologues on the San Francisco stage, easily transforming himself into a variety of personas. Soon he began working in vaudeville with Major Bowes, and toured the Orpheum Circuit with Walter C. Kelly. Theatrical producer Oliver Morosco offered him a role in the original Broadway play Upstairs and Down in 1916, and within a year, he landed the title role in Lombardi, Ltd. For the next decade he performed on the vaudeville circuit in between acting in Broadway productions. A 1927 touring revival production of Lombardi, Ltd., again featured Carrillo in the lead, and began at George M. Cohan's Theatre before going on the road.Carrillo's first screen appearances were in 1927 Vitaphone shorts. In the early decades of his film career, he was often the starring lead. And while he played many different ethnic roles, or characters with no discernible ethnicity, he was often cast as Italian or Hispanic. He played everything from the hero to the villain, in straight dramatic parts as well as appearing in light comedy and musical films. Over the course of his movie career, Carrillo appeared in over 80 feature-length films, ending in 1950 with Pancho Villa Returns. He was 68 years old when he first teamed with Duncan Renaldo to co-star in five Cisco Kid movies in 1949–1950. The ensuing popular The Cisco Kid television series ran for 156 episodes 1950–1956.For his contributions to the entertainment industry, Carrillo received two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on February 8, 1960 . The star for his contributions to motion pictures is located at 1635 Vine Street, and the star for his television work is a block away at 1517 Vine Street.

Lionel Barrymore on stage, screen and radio

Lionel Barrymore (born Lionel Herbert Blythe; 1878–1954) was an American actor of stage, screen and radio. He also directed several films, wrote scripts, created etchings, sketches and composed music. He was the eldest child of the actors Maurice Barrymore and Georgie Drew Barrymore, and his two siblings were John and Ethel; these and other family members were part of an acting dynasty. Reluctant to follow his parents' career, Barrymore appeared together with his grandmother Louisa Lane Drew in a stage production of The Rivals at the age of 15. He soon found success on stage in character roles. Although he took a break from acting in 1906–09 to train in Paris as a painter, he was not successful as an artist and returned to the US and acting. He also joined his family troupe, from 1910, in their vaudeville act.Barrymore began his film career in 1911, appearing in numerous silent films, many of which have subsequently been lost. In 1911 he signed a contract with D. W. Griffith's Biograph Company and appeared as a character actor in short films before moving into feature-length productions in 1914. He began writing scripts and directing films shortly afterwards, and for the next five years he did not act on the legitimate stage. Although he had several successes on Broadway after the First World War, he encountered strongly negative criticism in a 1921 production of Macbeth and in three productions in a row in 1925. Afterwards, he never again appeared on the New York stage. In 1925 he signed a contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, where he became a close friend of Louis B. Mayer and for whom he made numerous films. He directed several films from 1929 to 1931 but concentrated on acting afterwards.Barrymore became well known in curmudgeonly roles. In 1938 he broke his hip and, aggravated by arthritis, he lived the remainder of his life in a wheelchair. Mayer made sure that roles were found or written to accommodate Barrymore, who continued to act in films until 1953. During that time he appeared as Dr. Gillespie in the popular Dr. Kildare film series with Lew Ayres in the titular role, and as Mr. Potter in It's a Wonderful Life—a role that was highly placed on the American Film Institute's list of the 100 Heroes and Villains in a film that the critic Philip French described as "a complex inspirational work". Beginning in the 1930s, Barrymore increasingly worked in radio, initially as Ebenezer Scrooge in Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, which was broadcast annually from 1934 to 1953, then in Mayor of the Town beginning in 1942, and also in a radio series spun off from the Dr. Kildare films (playing the same character that he had played in the films), among others.Two of the films in which Barrymore appeared—Grand Hotel (1932) and You Can't Take It with You (1938)—won the Academy Award for Best Picture. He was considered for the Academy Award for Best Director for his 1929 film, Madame X, and won the Best Actor award for his performance in A Free Soul (1931). He was inducted to the Hollywood Walk of Fame on February 8, 1960 and is, along with his two siblings, included in the American Theater Hall of Fame.

Marjorie Reynolds

Marjorie Reynolds (née Goodspeed; August 12, 1917 – February 1, 1997) was an American film/television actress and dancer, who appeared in more than 50 films.

Norman Kerry

Norman Kerry (born Norman Hussey Kaiser, June 16, 1894 – January 12, 1956) was an American actor whose career in the motion picture industry spanned twenty-five years beginning in 1916 and peaking during the silent era of the 1920s. Changing his name from the unmistakably German "Kaiser" at the onset of World War I, he rose quickly in his field, becoming "the Clark Gable of the [1920s]." He often played the heroic dashing swashbuckler or the seductive lothario and was extremely popular with female fans. On a personal level, Kerry was known as a prankster and was said to have a wonderful sense of humor and to be very popular. He also achieved some recognition as a dog fancier, maintaining kennels at his home that were "known throughout the world among lovers of aristocratic dogs." As his film career waned in the 1930s, he became known as an international bon vivant and adventurer who lived in the French Riviera and even joined the French Foreign Legion.

Orson Welles filmography

This is the filmography of Orson Welles.

Rusty (film series)

The Rusty film series comprises eight American films produced for young audiences between 1945 and 1949 by Columbia Pictures. Child actor Ted Donaldson stars as Danny Mitchell in the series, which relates the adventures of a German Shepherd dog named Rusty. The role of Rusty was played by Ace the Wonder Dog in the first feature, Adventures of Rusty (1945). A police dog named Rip took over the role for the second film, The Return of Rusty (1946). In the later films Rusty was played by Flame, a charismatic dog star who was featured in three separate series.Though the Rusty films were B-movies primarily shown as the second half of a double-bill, the films usually had a humanist subtext and subtly promoted positive values on social issues of the era. Among the directors of the series was John Sturges who subsequently became famous for directing The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape, and Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Among the regular cast members was child actor David Ackles, who appeared in six of the eight films.

Selznick International Pictures

Selznick International Pictures was a Hollywood motion picture studio created by David O. Selznick in 1935, and dissolved in 1943. In its short existence the independent studio produced two films that received the Academy Award for Best Picture—Gone with the Wind (1939) and Rebecca (1940)—and three that were nominated, A Star Is Born (1937), Since You Went Away (1944) and Spellbound (1945).

Vanguard Films

Vanguard Films, Inc. was an American film production company, established by producer David O. Selznick in 1943, after the dissolution of Selznick International Pictures. The company's president was Daniel T. O'Shea; Dore Schary was the head of production. The company was liquidated in 1951.

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