Albuquerque (film)

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Albuquerque 1948 Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Ray Enright
Produced by
Screenplay by
  • Gene Lewis
  • Clarence Upson Young
Based on Dead Freight for Piute
by Luke Short
Music by Darrell Calker
Cinematography Fred Jackman, Jr.
Edited by Howard A. Smith
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release date
  • February 20, 1948 (1948-02-20) (USA)
Running time
90 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $728,000[1]
Box office $1.7 million (US rentals)[2]

Albuquerque is a 1948 American Western directed by Ray Enright and starring Randolph Scott, Barbara Britton, George "Gabby" Hayes, and Lon Chaney, Jr.. Based on the novel Dead Freight for Piute by Luke Short, with a screenplay by Gene Lewis and Clarence Upson Young, the film is about a man who is recruited by his corrupt uncle to inherit his freight-hauling empire in the southwest, and who eventually defects to his uncle's honest business rival.[3]


During a stagecoach holdup, Celia Wallace is robbed of $10,000 and little Myrtle Walton is saved from the runaway horses by a passenger, Cole Armin.

Celia is grateful until she learns Cole is coming to Albuquerque to work for his uncle, John Armin, a ruthless freight-line owner who stops at nothing to put competitors Celia and her brother Ted out of business.

Concluding that his uncle was even behind the robbery, Cole switches sides to work for the Wallaces. Armin uses a woman, Letty Tyler, to spy on his adversaries, but she resents being used when a mine is blown up and Ted is wounded by gunfire.

Cole is framed for arson and jailed. Celia, who loves him, turns against Cole until his acquittal, when Letty explains that John Armin is the man responsible. After an ambush, Cole has to shoot the corrupt sheriff and another gunman, and before the Cavalry finally arrives, John Armin is dealt with as well.



The film was based on the Luke Short novel, Dead Freight for Piute published in 1941. The New York Times called it a "stirring tale".[4]

Film rights went to William Pine and William Thomas who ran Pine-Thomas Productions. In January 1946 it was reported Clarence Young was writing the script which would be called The Last Frontier and Johnny Weismuller would star.[5] By March the project was retitled Albuquerque and it was reported Pine and Thomas were looking "for a big time star".[6] In August 1946 Randolph Scott signed to star.[7] Pine-Thomas specialised in low budget films, but in December they formed a separate company, Clarion, to make one expensive film a year. Albuquerque was to be its first.[8][9]

Arlee Whelan was originally announced for the lead.[10] The following month she was withdrawn for another film and replaced by Barbara Britton.[11]

Albuquerque was filmed on location at Iverson Movie Ranch in Chatsworth, California, and in Sedona, Arizona.[12]

Britton later sued Paramount for $100,000 over the size of her billing.[13]


The film was a success at the box office, earning almost $2 million.[2]


  1. ^ "$750,000-$1,000,000 class held just right by Pine Thomas". Variety. 26 January 1949. p. 7.
  2. ^ a b "Top Grossers of 1948", Variety 5 January 1949 p 46
  3. ^ "Albuquerque". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
  4. ^ DEAD FREIGHT FOR PIUTE. By Luke Short. 275 pp. New York Times 9 Feb 1941: BR24.
  5. ^ "Assignments for New Productions". Showmen's Trade Review. 24 January 1946. p. 45.
  6. ^ Ex-Boy Star, Partner Arrange Amazon Deal Schallert, Edwin. Los Angeles Times 25 Mar 1946: A7.
  7. ^ Of Local Origin New York Times 14 Aug 1946: 34.
  8. ^ 'ANGEL FACE' LISTED FOR MISS GODDARD New York Times 9 Dec 1946: 34.
  9. ^ FILM FIRM FORMED BY CHAPLIN'S SON New York Times 20 Aug 1946: 36.
  10. ^ Caulfield to Forego Stage Trek Privilege Schallert, Edwin. Los Angeles Times 9 Nov 1946: A5.
  11. ^ BERNSTEIN SIGNED TO DO FILM SCORE New York Times 31 Dec 1946: 14.
  12. ^ "Locations for Albuquerque". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
  13. ^ Variety. 1948'pine-thomas. Missing or empty |title= (help)

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