The Kissing Bandit (film)

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The Kissing Bandit
Directed byLaslo Benedek
Produced byJoe Pasternak
Written byIsobel Lennart
StarringFrank Sinatra
Kathryn Grayson
CinematographyRobert Surtees
Edited byAdrienne Fazan
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • January 1949 (1949-01)
Running time
100 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1,381,000[1]

The Kissing Bandit is a 1949 film starring Frank Sinatra and Kathryn Grayson. The supporting cast includes Ricardo Montalban, Ann Miller, and Cyd Charisse. The movie was directed by Laslo Benedek.


The film is set in the early nineteenth century. Ricardo (Frank Sinatra) is the son of a robber known as the Kissing Bandit. He however is a shy, Boston-bred young man who does not know how to sit on a horse. He falls for the daughter of the Spanish Governor of California.


Frank Sinatra ... Ricardo
Kathryn Grayson ... Teresa
J. Carrol Naish ... Chico
Mildred Natwick ... Isabella
Mikhail Rasumny ... Don Jose
Billy Gilbert ... General Felipe Toro
Sono Osato ... Bianca
Clinton Sundberg ... Colonel Gomez
Carleton G. Young ... Count Ricardo Belmonte
Ricardo Montalban ... Fiesta Specialty Dancer
Ann Miller ... Fiesta Specialty Dancer
Cyd Charisse ... Fiesta Specialty Dancer
Edna Skinner ... Juanita
Vicente Gómez ... Mexican Guitarist


Music by Nacio Herb Brown, lyrics by Earl Brent and Edward Heyman.

  • "Love is Where You Find It"
  • "Tomorrow Means Romance"
  • "What's Wrong With Me?"
  • "If I Steal a Kiss"
  • "I Like You"
  • "Siesta"
  • "Senorita"


The film was a financial disaster, earning $969,000 in the US and Canada and $412,000 overseas, resulting in a loss to MGM of $2,643,000. This made it one of the least successful musicals in MGM history.[1][3][4]

It was reviewed - unfavourably - in Picturegoer : "the progress of [the] romance is uninspired and very dull. The one worthwhile performance comes from J. Carrol Naish as The Kissing Bandit's henchman."[5]


  1. ^ a b c The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study.
  2. ^ Another source puts the cost at $2.5 million Variety February 1948
  3. ^ Variety says it earned $1.8 million see "Top Grossers of 1948", Variety 5 January 1949 p 46
  4. ^ "Top Grossers of 1949". Variety. 4 January 1950. p. 59.
  5. ^ Picturegoer, 4 June 1949, p.16

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