Tennessee's Partner

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Tennessee's Partner
Poster of the movie Tennessee's Partner.jpg
Directed by Allan Dwan
Written by Bret Harte (story)
Starring John Payne
Ronald Reagan
Rhonda Fleming
Coleen Gray
Distributed by RKO Radio Pictures
Release dates
  • September 21, 1955 (1955-09-21) (US)[1]
Running time
87 min.
Country United States
Language English
Box office $1.1 million (US)[2]

Tennessee's Partner (1955) is a Western film starring Ronald Reagan in what Peter Bogdanovich called his "most likeable performance." It co-starred John Payne as Tennessee.

It was directed by Allan Dwan, who lived to be 96 and had a 52-year directorial career.

While the movie is based upon one of Bret Harte's most popular short stories, it departs significantly from the original story line. It was released by RKO Radio Pictures, which was then owned by industrialist Howard Hughes.

This film inspired one of the greatest hits of The Four Seasons. As the character based on Bob Gaudio explains in the musical Jersey Boys, "I'm watching the million dollar movie. Some cheesy John Payne western. He hauls off and smacks Rhonda Fleming across the mouth and says, 'What do you think of that?' She looks up at him defiant, proud, eyes glistening - and she says, 'Big girls don't cry.'"[citation needed]



  1. ^ "Tennessee's Partner: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved June 2, 2014. 
  2. ^ 'The Top Box-Office Hits of 1955', Variety Weekly, January 25, 1956

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