Soldier of Fortune (1955 film)

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Soldier of Fortune
Soldier of Fortune (1955 film) (DVD box art).jpg
DVD cover
Directed by Edward Dmytryk
Produced by Buddy Adler
Written by Ernest K. Gann
Starring Clark Gable
Susan Hayward
Music by Hugo Friedhofer
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date
  • May 24, 1955 (1955-05-24)
Running time
96 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $2,515,000[1]
Box office $2,750,000 (US rentals)[2]

Soldier of Fortune is a 1955 adventure film about the rescue of an American prisoner in the People's Republic of China in the 1950s. It was directed by Edward Dmytryk, starred Clark Gable and Susan Hayward, and was written by Ernest K. Gann based on his 1954 novel.


Jane Hoyt (Susan Hayward) arrives in Hong Kong, looking for her husband, thrill-seeking photojournalist Louis Hoyt (Gene Barry). She attracts the eye of shady shipping magnate Hank Lee (Clark Gable). With his help, she learns that Louis entered Communist China and was imprisoned as a suspected spy.

She decides to arrange his escape. Hank advises her to give up the foolhardy venture, but she refuses. She foolishly meets Fernand Rocha (Mel Welles) alone and gives him a $500 deposit to set up a rescue, but he merely gambles the money away and locks her up for his lecherous purposes. Fortunately, word reaches Hank in time to save her.

Having fallen in love with Jane and realizing that she will not let herself get involved with him while her husband's fate remains uncertain, Hank decides to rescue the man himself. Hong Kong Marine Police Inspector Merryweather (Michael Rennie), inspecting Hank's junk when Hank decides to make his attempt, gets shanghaied into helping rescue the husband.

Hoyt is freed. Merryweather is forced to help Lee fight off a Chinese gunboat sent in pursuit. When they return safely to Hong Kong, Hoyt graciously bows out of his wife's life.



The film was set mostly in Hong Kong and was filmed on location there, but Hayward could not leave the United States because of a battle in divorce court, and scenes featuring her were filmed in Hollywood.[citation needed] In a few brief outdoor scenes shot at Hong Kong landmarks, a Hayward double with her back to the camera was shown with Gable.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Solomon, Aubrey. Twentieth Century Fox: A Corporate and Financial History (The Scarecrow Filmmakers Series). Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press, 1989. ISBN 978-0-8108-4244-1. p249
  2. ^ 'The Top Box-Office Hits of 1955', Variety Weekly, January 25, 1956

External links[edit]