Judge Priest, was released in 1934. Will Rogers (1879-1935) was a native of Oklahoma and the son of an officer in the Confederate Cherokee regiment. He was one of the most beloved public figures of his time for his gently irreverent humor. In the year that Judge Priest was released Rogers was the No. 1 box-office star of the U.S. The film is based on the stories of Irwin S. Cobb. Rogers is a Confederate veteran who helps lead and solve the problems of the people of his town in post-Reconstruction Kentucky. Judge Priest is one of the early films directed by John Ford and an early appearance of Hattie McDaniel. In 1953 Ford remade the story as The Sun Shines Bright. The second version contains some material on lynching that was cut from Judge Priest and places greater emphasis on the reconciliation of Union and Confederate veterans.
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