The Legion of the Condemned

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The Legion of the Condemned
The Legion of the Condemned 1928 Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by William A. Wellman
Produced by
Written by
Cinematography Henry W. Gerrard
Edited by
  • Carl Pierson
  • Alyson Shaffer
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release dates
  • March 10, 1928 (1928-03-10) (USA)
Running time
74 minutes
Country United States
Language English intertitles
Budget $295,000 (est.)

The Legion of the Condemned is a 1928 American silent film directed by William A. Wellman and starring Fay Wray and Gary Cooper.[1] Written by John Monk Saunders and Jean de Limur, with intertitles by George Marion, Jr., the film is about four young men from various walks of life who sign up for the Lafayette Escadrille, known as "The Legion of the Condemned".

The film was produced by Jesse L. Lasky, Wellman, and Adolph Zukor. The film was distributed by Paramount Pictures.[2]


Four young men from various walks of life sign up as flyers for the Lafayette Escadrille, a military unit known as "The Legion of the Condemned" composed mostly of American volunteer pilots flying fighters in World War I. All four men are running away from something—the law, love, or themselves. Whenever a dangerous mission comes up, the four men draw cards to see who will fly off to near-certain doom. With his best friend Byron Dashwood (Barry Norton) already having died in combat, Gale Price (Gary Cooper) draws the high card next time around.

As he prepares to drop a spy behind enemy lines, Gale remembers the events leading up to this moment—remembering his ill-fated romance with Christine Charteris (Fay Wray), whom he now believes to be a German spy. As he approaches his aircraft, Gale discovers that his passenger is Christine, who is actually an operative in the French secret service. Before she can explain her true identity, Gale is obliged to fly Christine to her rendezvous point. She is arrested as a spy and sentenced to be executed but is saved when the firing squad is destroyed by a bombing raid. Afterwards, they are rescued by their unit and reconciled.[1]


Preservation status[edit]

No copies of this film are known to have survived, and it is now considered a lost film.[3] The film used some aerial footage from the Paramount film Wings (1927).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Legion of the Condemned (1928)". The New York Times. Retrieved September 14, 2012. 
  2. ^ The American Film Institute Catalog Feature Films: 1921-30. The American Film Institute, c.1971.
  3. ^ "Legion of the Condemned". Silent Era. Retrieved September 9, 2012. 

External links[edit]