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12 Angry Men (1957) Henry Fonda, Jack Klugman, Martin Balsam, Reginald Rose, & Sidney Lumet

Book Vs Movie Podcast

Book Vs. Movie: 12 Angry Men

The 1954 Teleplay Vs. the 1957 Classic Film

The Margos close out a month of theatre vs. films with 12 Angry Men, which began as a teleplay in 1954 and was adapted to film by Sidney Lumet, with Henry Fonda serving as the lead actor and producer of the 1957 movie. The story centers on a young man who is accused of stabbing his father to death, and a group of 12 jurors must decide if he is guilty of premeditated murder, which carries a death sentence.

Writer Reginald Rose came up with the idea while serving jury duty in New York City and found the process “solemn” and “impressive.” The first airing on Studio One was September 20, 1954, with stars Robert Cummings, Franchot Tone, George Veskovec, Joseph Sweeney, and Norman Fell. Rose won an Emmy Award for his screenplay.

Henry Fonda produced the wok in 1957 with Sidney Lumet, and the low-budget affair failed to make a profit. Until he died in 1982, Fonda never received any money for his work or performance. But he rightly considered it one of his best.

The film stars some of the best character actors of the time and earned multiple Academy Award nominations (Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay) but competed in the same year as The Bridge on the River Kwai, which swept all of the major awards in 1957. In this episode, the Margos discuss the significant differences between the teleplay and the movie and try to decide which we like better.
In this ep the Margos discuss:

Clips used:

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