Tulsa (film)

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Tulsa DVD Cover.jpg
Tulsa DVD Cover
Directed by Stuart Heisler
Produced by Walter Wanger
Edward Lasker
Written by Curtis Kenyon
Frank S. Nugent
Richard Wormser (story)
Starring Susan Hayward
Robert Preston
Pedro Armendáriz
Narrated by Chill Wills
Music by Frank Skinner
Cinematography Winton C. Hoch
Edited by Terry O. Morse
Walter Wanger Productions
Distributed by Eagle-Lion films
Release date
  • April 13, 1949 (1949-04-13) (Tulsa, Oklahoma)
  • May 26, 1949 (1949-05-26) (United States)
Running time
90 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $1,158,035[1]
Box office $2,340,336[1]

Tulsa is a 1949 American Technicolor Western action film directed by Stuart Heisler, and starring Susan Hayward and Robert Preston, and featured Lloyd Gough, Chill Wills (as the narrator), and Ed Begley in one of his earliest film roles, billed as Edward Begley.

The film's plot revolved around greed, conservation, and romance.[2] It was nominated for an Oscar for its special effects in 1950.[3]


The plot revolved around the Tulsa, Oklahoma oil boom of the 1920s and detailed how obsession with accumulating wealth and power can tend to corrupt moral character.[2] The story begins with the death of rancher Nelse Lansing, who is killed by an oil well blowout while visiting a well operated by Tanner Petroleum to report that pollution from the oil production has killed some of his cattle.[4] The plot thickens as Lansing's daughter, Cherokee, acquires drilling rights and meets Brad Brady, a geologist who wants the oil drillers to limit their drilling in order to minimize oil field depletion and to preserve the area's grasslands.[4]

A fire in a derrick tailing pool started by Jim Redbird, a Cherokee who had been made a rich owner of oil land through crooked dealings of oilmen, and who later renounces his holdings, results in an extravagant fire scene for which the movie got its Oscar nomination.[2] In its aftermath, in recognition of the destruction caused by improper oil drilling, and how money and power can corrupt even those who love the land, the oil drillers and the geologist learn to work together.[2]



The film earned an estimated $1.6 million in the US.[5] It recorded a loss of $746,099.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Matthew Bernstein, Walter Wagner: Hollywood Independent, Minnesota Press, 2000 p444
  2. ^ a b c d Tulsa Plot Synopsis (accessed June 7, 2010).
  3. ^ Tulsa (1949) - Awards Internet Movie Database (accessed June 7, 2010).
  4. ^ a b Tulsa (1949) Synopsis (accessed June 7, 2010).
  5. ^ "Top Grossers of 1949". Variety. 4 January 1950. p. 59. 

External links[edit]