Ruggles of Red Gap
|Ruggles of Red Gap|
|Directed by||Leo McCarey|
|Produced by||Arthur Hornblow Jr.|
|Written by||Walter DeLeon
Harry Leon Wilson (novel)
|Music by||Heinz Roemheld
Egbert Van Alstyne
|Editing by||Edward Dmytryk|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Release dates||February 19, 1935|
|Running time||90 minutes|
Ruggles of Red Gap was serialized beginning December 26, 1914 in The Saturday Evening Post and became a best selling novel in 1915 by Harry Leon Wilson, adapted for the Broadway stage as a musical the same year, and made into a film several times, most famously in 1935.
In the comedy Western film directed by Leo McCarey, Lord Burnstead (Roland Young) gambles away his eminently correct English butler, Marmaduke Ruggles (Charles Laughton). Ruggles' new 'owners', crude nouveau riche Americans Egbert and Effie Floud (Charlie Ruggles and Mary Boland), bring Ruggles back to Red Gap, Washington; a remote Western boomtown. When the butler is mistaken for a wealthy Englishman, he becomes a small-town celebrity. As Ruggles attempts to adjust to this rough new community, he learns to live life on his own terms, achieving a fulfilling independence as a result.
The climax of the film is Laughton’s recitation of the Gettysburg Address (something that does not happen in the original story). This occurs in a saloon filled with typical American Western characters, none of whom can recall any of the lines but are spellbound by the speech. Newly imbued with the spirit of democracy and self-determination, Ruggles becomes his own man, giving up his previous employment and opening a restaurant in Red Gap.
The film's supporting cast includes ZaSu Pitts, Leila Hyams, and Roland Young, and the screenplay was written by Walter DeLeon, Humphrey Pearson and Harlan Thompson. The movie was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture.
The novel contains perhaps the earliest specific reference to Levi brand jeans, clearly describing the trademark leather patch, or "placard" on the back waistband, illustrating "two teams of stout horses attempting to wrench it in twain." In the novel, Red Gap is located near Spokane, Washington. Ruggles predates P. G. Wodehouse's more famous manservant-hero, Jeeves, who debuted in 1915 but didn't become a central character until the 1916 story "Leave It to Jeeves."
- Charles Laughton ... Marmaduke Ruggles
- Mary Boland ... Effie Floud
- Charles Ruggles ... Egbert Floud (billed as Charlie Ruggles)
- ZaSu Pitts ... Prunella Judson
- Roland Young ... George Vane Bassingwell, the Earl of Burnstead
- Leila Hyams ... Nell Kenner
- Maude Eburne ... 'Ma' Pettingill
- Lucien Littlefield ... Charles Belknap-Jackson
- Leota Lorraine ... Mrs. Charles Belknap-Jackson
- James Burke ... Jeff Tuttle
- Dell Henderson ... Sam, bartender (as Del Henderson)
- Clarence Wilson ... Jake Henshaw, reporter
Adaptations to other media
Ruggles of Red Gap was adapted as a radio play on the July 10, 1939 episode of Lux Radio Theater, the December 17, 1945 episode of The Screen Guild Theater and the June 8, 1946 episode of Academy Award Theater, all with Charles Laughton and Charlie Ruggles reprising their film parts.
In Daffy Duck's Quackbusters, Daffy refers to the butler who is refusing to let him see the reclusive billionaire and ailing buzzsaw baron JP Cubish as 'Ruggles'.
In Barton Fink, Ben Geisler refers to the film while talking to the titular character.
- The Project Gutenberg EBook of Ruggles of Red Gap, by Harry Leon Wilson
- "Internet Broadway Database: Ruggles of Red Gap Production Credits". Retrieved 2008-06-07.
- "IMDb Title Search". Retrieved 2008-06-07.
- Harry Leon Wilson. Ruggles Of Red Gap. New York. Doubleday, Page,&Co 1922
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ruggles of Red Gap.|
- Ruggles of Red Gap at the American Film Institute Catalog – 1935 film
- Ruggles of Red Gap at the American Film Institute Catalog – 1923 film
- Ruggles of Red Gap at Project Gutenberg
- Ruggles of Red Gap at the Internet Movie Database
- Streaming audio
- Ruggles of Red Gap on Lux Radio Theater: July 10, 1939
- Ruggles of Red Gap on Screen Guild Theater: December 17, 1945
- Ruggles of Red Gap on Academy Award Theater: June 8, 1946