Pepe (film)

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Pepe movie poster.jpg
movie poster
Directed by George Sidney
Produced by George Sidney
Written by Leslie Bush-Fekete (play Broadway Zauber aka Broadway Magic)
Claude Binyon
Dorothy Kingsley
Starring Mario Moreno ("Cantinflas")
Dan Dailey
Shirley Jones
Cinematography Joseph MacDonald
Edited by Viola Lawrence
Al Clark
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release dates
  • December 20, 1960 (1960-12-20) (U.S.)
Running time
180 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Box office $4.8 million (US/ Canada rentals) [2]

Pepe is a 1960 film starring Mario Moreno ("Cantinflas") in the title role, directed by George Sidney. A multitude of cameo appearances attempted to replicate the success of Mario Moreno's American debut, notably Around the World in Eighty Days, produced by Mike Todd in 1956.

The film failed to achieve the success of Cantinflas' previous American film and was roundly criticized by film critics. A VHS tape of the film was released on December 7, 1998;[3] in 2015, it began streaming on Netflix.


Mario Moreno ("Cantinflas") is Pepe, a hired hand, employed on a ranch. A boozing Hollywood director, Mr. Holt, buys a white stallion that belongs to Pepe's boss. Pepe, determined to get the horse back (as he considers it his family), decides to take off to Hollywood. There he meets film stars including Jimmy Durante, Frank Sinatra, Zsa Zsa Gabór, Bing Crosby, Maurice Chevalier and Jack Lemmon in drag as Daphne from Some Like It Hot. He is also surprised by things that were new in America at the time, such as automatic swinging doors. When he finally reaches the man who bought the horse, he is led to believe there is no hope of getting it back. However Mr. Holt offers him a job when he realizes the Pepe brings new life to the stallion. Now his luck is changing and in Las Vegas Pepe wins big money, enough that Mr. Hold lets him be the producer of his next movie. Most of the movie centers around his meeting Shirley Jones who plays an actress on hard times and hating the world. Just like with the stallion, Pepe brings out the best in Shirley Jones and helps her become a big star in a movie made by Mr. Holt. Shirley Jones does a great job both as a dancer and singing the lead song called "Pepe." For those who love movies that are set in Acapulco, Mexico, this one has great appeal and beautiful scenery. The last scene shows both him and the stallion back at the ranch with several foals.



Soundtrack album[edit]

This was issued in 1960 by Colpix Records in the USA (CP 507) and Pye International Records in the UK (NPL 28015). The tracks were:


  1. Pepe (Shirley Jones)
  2. Mimi / September Song (Maurice Chevalier)
  3. Hooray for Hollywood (Sammy Davis Jr.)
  4. The Rumble (André Previn)


  1. That's How It Went, All Right (Bobby Darin)
  2. The Faraway Part of Town (Judy Garland)
  3. Suzy's Theme (Johnny Green)
  4. Pennies from Heaven / Let's Fall in Love / South of the Border (Bing Crosby)
  5. Lovely Day (Shirley Jones)


The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards:[4][5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Although various reviews list the film's length as 190 or 195 minutes, studio records reveal that the actual running time was 180 minutes 29 seconds. It is possible that the running time in the reviews included the film's intermission." - Turner Classic Movies.
  2. ^ "All-Time Top Grossers", Variety, 8 January 1964 p 69
  3. ^
  4. ^ "The 33rd Academy Awards (1961) Nominees and Winners". Retrieved 2011-08-22. 
  5. ^ "NY Times: Pepe". NY Times. Retrieved 2008-12-24. 

External links[edit]