The Cossacks (1928 film)

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The Cossacks
The Cossacks 1928 lobbycard.jpg
Directed by George W. Hill
Clarence Brown
Written by Frances Marion (adaptation)
John Colton (intertitles)
Screenplay by Frances Marion
Based on The Cossacks
by Leo Tolstoy
Starring John Gilbert
Renée Adorée
Music by William Axt
Paul Lamkoff
Cinematography Percy Hilburn
Edited by Blanche Sewell
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • June 23, 1928 (1928-06-23)
Running time
74 min
Country United States
Language Silent
English intertitles

The Cossacks is a 1928 American silent drama film produced and distributed by MGM and directed by George Hill and Clarence Brown. The film stars John Gilbert and Renée Adorée and is based on the 1863 novel The Cossacks by Leo Tolstoy.[1][2]



The Cossacks was beset with problems due to MGM executives requesting various script changes during filming. Frances Marion, who wrote the screenplay, became frustrated by the numerous requests and later said she "lost track of what the story was really about and the material seemed frayed on all edges." The film's stars John Gilbert and Renée Adorée complained about the numerous rewrites and felt their roles were "not worthy".[3]

Before filming completed, director George W. Hill requested that he be removed as director as he did not like the film's subject matter and had tired of Gilbert and Adorée's complaints. Clarence Brown was later hired to reshoot several scenes and ultimately completed the film.[3]


  1. ^ White Munden, Kenneth, ed. (1997). The American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures Produced in the United States: Feature Films, 1921-1930. University of California Press. p. 146. ISBN 0-520-20969-9. 
  2. ^ The Cossacks at
  3. ^ a b Beauchamp, Cari (1998). Without Lying Down: Frances Marion and the Powerful Women of Early Hollywood. University of California Press. pp. 219–220. ISBN 0-520-92138-0. 

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