Damon and Pythias (film)

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Damon and Pythias
Damon and Pythias FilmPoster.jpeg
Directed by Curtis Bernhardt
Produced by Sam Jaffe (associate producer)
Samuel Marx (associate producer)
Written by Samuel Marx (story)
Samuel Marx (screenplay)
Franco Riganti (screenplay)
Paola Ojetti/Franco Riganti (dialogue: Italian version)
Bridget Boland (dialogue: English version)
Music by Angelo Francesco Lavagnino
Cinematography Aldo Tonti
Edited by Niccolò Lazzari
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • 1962 (1962)
Running time
101 minutes (Italy)
99 minutes (U.S.)
Country Italy
United States
Language English

Il tiranno di Siracusa (English Release Title: Damon and Pythias) is a 1962 Italian/American film directed by Curtis Bernhardt. The film is based on the Greek legend of Damon and Pythias, and set during the reign of Dionysius I of Syracuse (432-367 BC).

Plot summary[edit]

In ancient Greece, Pythias from Athens is on a trip to Syracuse. The tyrant Dionysius of Syracuse sees him as a dangerous follower of the philosopher Pythagoras and condemns him to death.

Pythias begs Dionysus to allow him to visit his wife in Athens promising to return to Syracuse to be executed. Pythias' friend Damon volunteers to be held hostage until Pythias returns. Dionysius sees this as the opportunity to demonstrate the falsity of Pythagoras' philosophy.

Dionysius allows Pythias to leave but doesn't expect him to return. Dionysius prepares to execute Damon, but at the last minute, Pythias returns to take Damon's place before the executioner. The tyrant's son intervenes and Damon and Pythias are both spared.



The film made a profit of $6,000.[1]


The international distribution was taken over by MGM.[2]


  • Hughes, Howard (2011). Cinema Italiano - The Complete Guide From Classics To Cult. London - New York: I.B.Tauris. ISBN 978-1-84885-608-0. 


  1. ^ The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study .
  2. ^ Hughes, p.53

External links[edit]