With James Stewart, Lee Remick, Ben Gazzara, Arthur O'Connell, Eve Arden, George C. Scott, John Qualen, Murray Hamilton, Joseph N. Welch, Howard McNear, Kathryn Crosby, Russ Brown, Orson Bean, Alexander Campbell, Duke Ellington
Anatomy of a Murder is a 1959 American courtroom crime drama film. It was directed by Otto Preminger and adapted by Wendell Mayes from the best-selling novel of the same name written by Michigan Supreme Court Justice John D. Voelker under the pen name Robert Traver. Voelker based the novel on a 1952 murder case in which he was the defense attorney.
The film stars James Stewart, Lee Remick, Ben Gazzara, Eve Arden, George C. Scott, Arthur O'Connell, Kathryn Grant, Brooks West, Orson Bean, and Murray Hamilton. The judge was played by Joseph N. Welch, a real-life lawyer famous for berating Joseph McCarthy during the Army-McCarthy Hearings. This was one of the first mainstream Hollywood films to address sex and rape in graphic terms. It includes one of Saul Bass's most celebrated title sequences, a musical score by Duke Ellington and has been described by a law professor as "probably the finest pure trial movie ever made".
In 2012, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
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