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12 Angry Men (original TV) 1954


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Before this story was made into a 1957 movie, it was a 1954 live television production.  The story goes that Henry Fonda saw the TV version and bought the rights to produce the movie.

The original show has a lot of recognizable actors from their younger years:  

 

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2 hours ago, SadPanda said:

I'm just curious - were women not permitted to serve on juries in 1954?

No! In 1954, all good and respectable women were where they should be...at home vacuuming the floor while wearing high heels and pearls.

Well okay, more than just high heels and pearls, but you get the picture here.

(...'cause if they WERE just wearing high heels and pearls, they would have been more "naughty and wayward" instead of "good and respectable" of course)

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I've only been interviews to serve on a jury (was dismissed after first day) and then they let me leave because they didn't need me (it is a lottery system, and, depending on how many cases they have going, you may never have to show up in the first place).  My Mom and Dad both served on juries in spite of certain things that could count as mitigating circumstances (due to the natures of their respective cases).

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My wife once received a letter requiring her to come in for jury duty, but at the time we had a newborn baby - well, about 4 months - and so she pleaded hardship and was let out of it. That was in 1984 though, not 1954.

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5 minutes ago, Dargo said:

No! In 1954, all good and respectful women were where they should be...at home vacuuming the floor while wearing high heels and pearls.

Well okay, more than just high heels and pearls, but you get the picture here.

(...'cause if they WERE just wearing high heels and pearls, they wouldn't have been more "naughty and wayward" instead of "good and respectful" of course)

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury...

Jury-Facilities_Blog-Title.jpg

perry_mason.jpg

 

Need to watch more Perry Mason. ;)

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2 hours ago, SadPanda said:

I'm just curious - were women not permitted to serve on juries in 1954?

The fact there is an all male jury is a flaw in the plot.     The young man was on trial for killing his father.     Even a  not too bright public defender would want a few moms on the jury since they would be a lot more understanding towards a son as it relates to the father \ son relationship  (verses the Lee J. Cobb bitter father).

 

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All (attempted) kidding aside, ham here actually has the correct answer above.

Yes, women have served on juries in this country since the time they won the right to vote in 1920.

(...but it was still probably a rare occurrence until the 1940s and later)

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1 minute ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

The fact there is an all male jury is a flaw in the plot.     The young man was on trial for killing his father.     Even a  not too bright public defender would want a few moms on the jury since they would be a lot more understanding towards a son as it relates to the father \ son relationship  (verses the Lee J. Cobb bitter father).

I guess that makes Fonda the mom in the movie.

The other 11 were definitely men from the get go.

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3 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

The fact there is an all male jury is a flaw in the plot.     The young man was on trial for killing his father.     Even a  not too bright public defender would want a few moms on the jury since they would be a lot more understanding towards a son as it relates to the father \ son relationship  (verses the Lee J. Cobb bitter father).

Totally agree. It's more patriarchal sexist nonsense. It should be remade with a mixed jury. Or a feminist should remake it with an all-female jury....just to even "the score."

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It's interesting how in this 1954 TV drama, like the movie three years later, all eleven of the jurors in the room turn their backs on the racist on the jury (Edward Arnold on TV, Ed Begley in the film) because they are offended by his blatant bigotry.

In today's America, how likely do you think that would happen?

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9 hours ago, slaytonf said:

I don't think it would be likely in the America of that date.

Yeh, I thought of that, too.

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On ‎7‎/‎25‎/‎2020 at 9:57 PM, TomJH said:

It's interesting how in this 1954 TV drama, like the movie three years later, all eleven of the jurors in the room turn their backs on the racist on the jury (Edward Arnold on TV, Ed Begley in the film) because they are offended by his blatant bigotry.

In today's America, how likely do you think that would happen?

Actually, I think it's a lot more likely to happen in today's U.S.A. than the America of 1957, what with the Black Lives Matter movement gaining momentum.

A more likely outcome would be one of the other open-minded jurors would complain to the judge about #10's bigotry and very likely number 10 would be replaced with an alternate juror.

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2 hours ago, Bethluvsfilms said:

Actually, I think it's a lot more likely to happen in today's U.S.A. than the America of 1957, what with the Black Lives Matter movement gaining momentum.

A more likely outcome would be one of the other open-minded jurors would complain to the judge about #10's bigotry and very likely number 10 would be replaced with an alternate juror.

Yes, I'd say this is true, and not to mention that in today's America, the chances of a jury filled with nothing but middle-aged white males such as is the case of this televised play or the later made movie of it, would also be extremely unlikely now days.

(...and thus the less likelihood of any bigoted jury member feeling he would be free to express his racist feelings out loud in the deliberation room)

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When you think of it, I guess there's no way this movie can ever be remade.

It would have to be changed - 12 Angry People or 12 Angry Citizens or 12 Angry Jurors or something.

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15 minutes ago, SadPanda said:

When you think of it, I guess there's no way this movie can ever be remade.

It would have to be changed - 12 Angry People or 12 Angry Citizens or 12 Angry Jurors or something.

It was redone in 1997.    Jurors were portrayed by

  • Coutney B. Vance
  • Ossie Davis
  • George C. Scott
  • Armin Mueller-Stahl
  • Dorian Harewood
  • James Gandolfini
  • Tony Danza
  • Jack Lemmon
  • Hume Cronyn
  • Mykelti Williamson
  • Edward James Olmos
  • William Petersen

The script was updated by the original screenwriter.  It was produced by MGM Television and aired originally on Showtime.

Per IMDb's trivia section: Screenwriter Reginald Rose updated his own 43-year-old teleplay, racially integrating the cast of jurors for the first time. When asked in an interview why he didn't cast some of the jurors as women, he jokingly (but accurately) quipped, "Then the title would have to be changed to '12 Angry Persons,' and it wouldn't be as effective."

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