Latter-day Saint Characters in Media  |  LDS Characters  |  Mormon Characters
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Theatrically Released Feature Films with
Major Characters who are
Latter-day Saints/Mormons

Films with Mormon characters. The pages in this section list film media (feature films, videos, DVDs, TV series, etc.) which feature Latter-day Saint characters and references to Latter-day Saints (Mormons/LDS). The focus of this section is on mainstream media - national and international media produced for a general audience. Most of the writers and directors whose works are listed in this section are not Latter-day Saints.

This page lists theatrically released feature films in which at least one major character is a Latter-day Saint/Mormon, or based on a real-life Latter-day Saint. Movies listed on this page include movies made by Hollywood studios as well as movies made by studios run by Latter-day Saints. All outlooks are included here.

This listing has nothing to do with the religious/ethnic affiliation of the filmmakers or actors -- only the characters who are portrayed. Most of these films were made by non-Latter-day Saint filmmakers. Most of the actors who have portrayed Latter-day Saint/Mormon characters in these movies are not actually members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Related pages in this section and elsewhere:

Note that some of the Latter-day Saint characters listed here (such as Butch Cassidy) were not active church-goers as adults. In some of these films, the Latter-day Saint character's religious affiliation/ethnicity is not a significant element in the movie's overall plot, but is a significant part of the character (e.g., Donnie Brasco; Goodbye Lover). In other films, Latter-day Saint Christian themes are central to the plot (e.g., God's Army; Brigham Young: Frontiersman).

The total U.S. box office gross for the movies in this list of movies with major Latter-day Saint characters is over $973,967,289.

Movie TitleTotal U.S. Box Office GrossYearRank
ACTOR and LDS/Mormon characterDirectorScreenwriterOther Info
Ocean's Eleven $183,405,771 2001 8 Scott Caan as Turk Malloy
Casey Affleck as Virgil Malloy
Steven Soderbergh Stephen W. Carpenter; Ted Griffin Rated PG-13. Budget: $90 million. Turk and Virgil Malloy, two of the titular Eleven, are Latter-day Saints from Provo, Utah. The brothers are hired to drive the getaway car and do other jobs for the heist central to the plot. Details
Rain Man $172,825,435 1988 1 Dustin Hoffman as Raymond Babbitt ("Rain Man") Barry Levinson Barry Morrow; Ronald Bass Rated R. Hoffman received an Academy Award for his role. The film also garnered Academy Awards in the Best Director, Best Picture, and Best Original Screenplay categories. It was nominated in the Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Original Musical Score categories. Note that although the Hoffman's character and savant abilities are based on the real-life "Rain Man" (Kim Peek, a Latter-day Saint), the story and events in this movie are fictitious.
Deep Impact $140,464,664 1998 8 Ron Eldard as Mission Commander Oren Monash
Jennifer Jostyn as Marietta Monash
Mimi Leder Bruce Joel Rubin; Michael Tolkin Rated PG-13. $75 million budget. Science fiction film about impending comet. Utah-raised actor Ron Eldard plays the pivotal role of Mission Commander Oren Monash, a Latter-day Saint astronaut. Monash pilots the ship Messiah from the Earth to the oncoming comet that threatens to destroy most life on Earth. After initial attemps to destroy the comet fail, Monash sacrifices himself and his crew by using the remaining nuclear bombs on board their ship to destroy the comet, thus saving the world. Details
Ocean's Twelve $125,531,634 2004   Casey Affleck as Virgil Malloy
Scott Caan as Turk Malloy
Steven Soderbergh George Nolfi Rated PG-13. Budget: $85 million. Casey Affleck and Scott Caan are featured as Virgil and Turk Malloy, two Latter-day Saint brothers from Provo, Utah who are part of the titular "Twelve" that assist Danny Ocean (George Clooney) in three elaborate European heists. Caan and Affleck have 9th and 10th billing the movie poster for their Mormon roles. One of the first scenes in the film shows the brothers at a wedding dinner, as one of them is getting married. Their large Latter-day Saint saint family is introduced. The Malloy brother who is getting married even introduces and thanks the bishop from his ward. This is the sequel to "Ocean's Eleven" (2001). Directed by Steven Soderbergh. Also stars Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Andy Garcia, Don Cheadle, Bernie Mac, Julia Roberts, Peter Fonda, Elliott Gould, Eddie Izzard, Shaobo Qin, Carl Reiner, Bruce Willis. Screenplay by George Nolfi (whose one other major film credit is as the screenwriter of "Timeline" (2003), which starred Latter-day Saint actor Paul Walker in the lead role.
S.W.A.T. $116,877,597 2003 18 James DuMont as Gus Clark Johnson Robert Hamner (characters); story: Ron Mita, Jim McClain; screenplay: David Ayer, David McKenna Rated PG-13. Budget: $80 million production; $30 million P&A. Subplot has lead character (Colin Farrell) assigned to work w/ LDS S.W.A.T. agent Gus (in charge of equipment cage). Farrell amicably teases Gus about temptation to eat junk food, which Gus claims is against the Word of Wisdom. Details
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid $102,308,900 1969 1 Paul Newman as Butch Cassidy George Roy Hill William Goldman Rated PG. Co-stars Robert Redford as the Sundance Kid. Butch Cassidy (whose real name was Robert Leroy Parker) was born and raised as a Latter-day Saint. As an adult he was not an active Church member.
Fletch $46,700,000 1985 14 Tim Matheson as Alan Stanwyk
Robert Sorrells as Marvin Stanwyk
Penny Santon as Velma Stanwyk
Michael Ritchie Gregory McDonald (novel); Andrew Bergman (screenplay) Rated PG. Chevy Chase stars as "Fletch," a journalist who investigates non-churchgoing Latter-day Saint airline executive Alan Stanwyk, a bigamist from Provo, Utah who is the film's main antagonist character. Film has extensive references to Utah, many scenes in Provo, Utah, and multiple LDS references. Tim Matheson, as "Alan Stanwyk, has 6th billing. Details
Donnie Brasco $41,974,656 1997 51 Gerry Becker as FBI Section Chief Dean Blandford (Donnie Brasco's boss) Mike Newell book: Joseph D. Pistone, Richard Woodley; screenplay: Paul Attanasio Rated R. Johnny Depp stars in title role. Depp is an undercover FBI agent infiltrating the mafia. His boss in the FBI is a Latter-day Saint. Al Pacino co-stars as a mobster Depp works under. Details.
Paint Your Wagon $31,678,778 1969 7 Jean Seberg as Elizabeth Woodling/Rumson
John Mitchum as Jacob Woodling
Sue Casey as Sarah Woodling
Joshua Logan Paddy Chayefsky; Alan Jay Lerner; Frederick Loewe Rated PG-13. After a successful Broadway run, Paramount spent an estimated $20 million to turn this production into a film. 7th most successful film of 1969. Academy Award nomination for Best Musical Score. Stars Lee Marvin and Clint Eastwood as California prospectors. A town full of prospectors force a Mormon man (John Mitchum) traveling through town to "sell" his Mormon wife (Jean Seberg) to Lee Marvin. But while Marvin is away from the town, Seberg falls in love with Eastwood and declares she would like both him and Marvin as husbands.
Fire in the Sky $19,724,334 1993 74 D.B. Sweeney as Travis Walton
Scott MacDonald as Dan Walton
Georgia Emelin as Dana Rogers
Robert Lieberman Travis Walton (book); Tracy Torme (screenplay) Rated PG-13. The film's main character is a Latter-day Saint lumberjack named Travis Walton. The film is based on Walton's book recounting his abduction by aliens. The film is set in the Latter-day Saint community of Snowflake, Arizona, and has some overt references to Latter-day Saints. Details
Wonder Boys $19,389,454 2000 98 Katie Holmes as Hannah Green Curtis Hanson Michael Chabon (novel); Steven Kloves (screenplay) Rated R. $35 million budget. One of film's main characters is Hannah Green, an LDS college student from Provo, Utah renting a room from lead character, writing professor Grady Tripp (Michael Douglas). Hannah is played by actress Katie Holmes, who has 5th-billing in the film. Details
Punch-Drunk Love $17,791,031 2002 112 David Stevens as David
Nathan Stevens as Nate
Jim Smooth Stevens as Jim
Michael D. Stevens as Mike D.
Paul Thomas Anderson Paul Thomas Anderson Rated R. $25 million budget. Critically acclaimed film premiered at Cannes Film Festival, where it was nominated for a Golden Palm. Starring Adam Sandler and Emily Watson. Four blond brothers are the dispatched from Provo, Utah by the movie's very profane-speaking bad guy, played by Philip Seymour Hoffman, an actor who appears in all of P.T. Anderson's films. (The brothers are played by four actual Latter-day Saint brothers from Provo, Utah.) The brothers are to attack and rob Adam Sandler's character after he foolishly gives his credit card number to a corrupt phone-sex business, and, when he didn't want to call the service any more, angers the owner of the business, played by Hoffman. The movie doesn't mention "Mormons," but many reviewers called the Stevens' characters "Mormons," and they were identified as such on the director's own website.
Bugs! (IMAX) $16,401,500 2003 127 Papilio, a Great Mormon butterfly Abby Aron; Mike Slee Mike Slee Rated G. The 40-minute 3D IMAX film is divided into two sections exploring the survival mechanisms of two insects: a great Mormon butterfly and a green mantis. Narrated by Judi Dench
Family Plot $13,200,000 1976 24 William Devane as Edward Shoebridge, a.k.a. Arthur AdamsonAlfred HitchcockVictor Canning (novel); Ernest Lehman (screenplay) Rated PG. Budget: $3 million. "Arthur Adamson," one of film's four main characters, was adopted when he was a baby by Latter-day Saint parents. His adoptive parents died when he was a teenager. When this movie takes place Adamson is a grifter. He is not an active Church member, and has probably not been since he was a teen. There are multiple Latter-day Saint references, including a lengthy quotation from the Book of Mormon. Details
Somewhere in Time $9,070,000 1980 36 Jane Seymour as Elise McKenna Jeannot Szwarc Richard Matheson Rated PG. Budget: $5.1 million. Original budget: $4 million. The film's main female character "Elise McKenna" was based entirely on famous real-life Mormon actress Maude Adams, who was born in 1872. Christopher Reeve plays "Richard Collier," a contemporary man who falls in love with "Elise" after seeing her photo and then travels back in time 70 years to be with her. Details
Six Degrees of Separation $6,410,676 1993 128 Heather Graham as Elizabeth
Eric Thal as Rick
Fred SchepisiJohn Guare Rated R. Adaptation of John Guare's play. Two major characters are Rick and Elizabeth, a young Mormon couple from Utah who meet Paul (lead actor Will Smith) in Central Park, and then let him stay in their apartment. When Paul asks if there are any black people in Utah, Rick responds, "Maybe two. Yes, the Mormons brought in two." Paul's manipulation's drive Rick to commit suicide. Details
One Night at McCool's $6,276,532 2001 139 Andrew Dice Clay as twins: "Utah" and "Elmo," his "Mormon brother"Harald ZwartStan Seidel Rated R. Andrew Dice Clay plays a man known as "Utah" (an apparently non-practicing Mormon), and his more devout twin brother. Utah is killed by his girlfriend, Jewel (Liv Tyler), while attempting to rob a bar. Much of the movie focuses on the investigation into Utah's killing. In the film's climax, Utah's "Mormon brother" (intentionally made to look like a Latter-day Saint missionary) confronts the film's main characters (Matt Dillon, Paul Reiser, John Goodman), declaring that he has come to avenge his brother. Michael Douglas co-stars. Details
The Other Side of Heaven $4,720,371 2001 151 Christopher Gorham as Elder John Groberg
Anne Hathaway as Jean Sabine
[Other Latter-day Saint characters, including Tongans.]
Mitch Davis John Groberg (book); Mitch Davis (screenplay) Rated PG. Budget: $7 million. Produced by Academy Award-winner Jerry Molen. Recounts the true story of a missionary in Tonga.
Melvin and Howard $4,309,490 1980 86 Paul Le Mat as Melvin Dummar
Elizabeth Cheshire as Darcy Dummar
Pamela Reed as Bonnie Dummar
Melissa Williams as Sherry Dummar
Dabney Coleman as the judge
Jonathan Demme Bo Goldman Rated R. True story of billionaire Howard Hughes' famous "Mormon Will." Hughes had a motorcycle accident in the Nevada desert, and then met a Mormon named Melvin Dummar, who acted as a "good Samaritan," rescuing Hughes and returning him to his home, all without knowing who he really was. Hughes liked Melvin so much that he named him in his will. Mary Steenburgen received an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as "Lynda Dummar," wife of the title character. The film also received an Academy Award for Best Screenplay. Details
The Covered Wagon $3,800,000 1923    James CruzeJack Cunningham; Emerson Hough Great classic silent film about pioneers heading west. Budget: $782,000
The Work and the Glory $3,347,647 2004   Alexander Carroll as Nathan Steed
Sam Hennings as Benjamin Steed
Brenda Strong as Mary Ann Steed
Tiffany Dupont as Lydia McBride
Brighton Hertford as Melissa Steed
Colin Ford as Matthew Steed
Sarah Darling as Emma Smith
Jonathan Scarfe as Joseph Smith
Jarron Vosburg as young Joseph Smith
Ryan Wood as Hyrum Smith
Russ Holt Gerald N. Lund (author); Russ Holt (screenplay) Rated PG. Budget: $7.5 million. Movie adaptation of best-selling historical novel series set in time of Joseph Smith.
Messenger of Death $3,074,000 1988 104 Charles Dierkop as Orville Beecham
Jeff Corey as Willis Beecham
John Ireland as Zenas Beecham
J. Lee Thompson Rex Burns (novel); Paul Jarrico (screenplay) Rated R. Stars Chuck Bronson as Garret Smith, a journalist helping police investigate the murder of Orville Beecham's fundamentalist Mormon family, who were apparently killed by people opposed to their religion. Bronson's character tracks down a serial killer who preys on the group of fundamentalists, who have broken away from the mainstream Church. The characters in this film are not members of the mainstream Church based in Salt Lake City.
Heavenly Creatures $3,049,000 1995 155 Kate Winslet as Juliet Hulme Peter Jackson Frances Walsh; Peter Jackson Rated R. Set in New Zealand. Peter Jackson received Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Winslet won the London Film Critic Circle's ALFS Award for British Actress of the Year for this role. Film's events take place before Hulme joined the Church. Hulme does not consider this film an accurate portrayal of the events depicted.
God's Army $2,628,829 2000 172 Matthew Brown as Elder Allen
Richard Dutcher as Elder Dalton
Jacque Gray as Sister Fronk
DeSean Terry as Elder Banks
Michael Buster as Elder Kinegar
Luis Robledo as Elder Sandoval
Jeff Kelly as Elder Mangum
John Pentecost as President Beecroft
Lynn Carr as Sister Beecroft
Kelli Coleman as Sister Monson
Richard Dutcher Richard Dutcher Rated PG. Cost $300,000 to make. In addition to its impressive box office returns, "God's Army" had over $2 million in sales the first month it was released on video/DVD. This means that within a year of its release, the film generated combined box office/video sales 15 times higher than what it cost to make.

Clearly "God's Army" wasn't the first movie by or about Latter-day Saints, but Dutcher called this the "birth of Mormon cinema." By this he meant that he hoped the film would launch a new niche genre in filmmaking -- independent films by and clearly about Latter-day Saints. Received the first ever AML Award for Film.

Brigham Young: Frontiersman $2,500,000 1940   Dean Jagger as Brigham Young
Tyrone Power as Jonathan Kent
Linda Darnell as Zina Webb
John Carradine as Porter Rockwell
Mary Astor as Mary Ann Young
Vincent Price as Joseph Smith
Jean Rogers as Clara Young
Ann E. Todd as Mary Kent
Willard Robertson as Heber Kimball
Stanley Andrews as Hyrum Smith
Henry Hathaway Louis Bromfield; Lamar Trotti Academy Award-winner Dean Jagger starred in the title role. Jagger later joined the Church, but was not a member when this film was made. Conrad Lane wrote: "There were many impressive sequences, such as the Mormons crossing the ice, the locust plague, and spectacular scenes of covered wagons (some of which were lifted from The Big Trail). But the whole thing just didn't come off, and public response didn't cover the $2,700,000 outlay." Details
Riding Giants $2,271,826 2004 156 Jeff Clark as himself Stacy Peralta Stacy Peralta; Sam George Rated PG-13. This documentary is divided into 3 segments, each of which profiles a real-life extreme surfer. These are men dedicated to seeking out and riding the biggest waves. Northern California resident Jeff Clark is featured in 2nd segment, and received 3rd billing on the movie poster. Clark is a descendant of Utah Latter-day Saints. He was born in California and raised in the Church. At age 23 he met and married fellow Latter-day Saint Constance, a young woman he met through the Church. In the mid-1980s Clark came to low point in his life when he divorced and lacked zeal for surfing. He went to church and prayed for direction. Beginning in the early 1990s Clark gained famed throughout the surfing world as a big-wave surfer.
La Resa dei conti
(a.k.a. "The Big Gundown")
$2,000,000 1966     Sergio Sollima Tulio Demicheli; Sergio Donati; Sergio Sollima; story: Fernando Morandi, Franco Solinas The first of Sergio Sollima's politically oriented Spaghetti Westerns. Cuchillo, one of the main characters, encounters a camp of Latter-day Saint pioneers and a number of Latter-day Saint characters.
Goodbye Lover $1,923,061 1999 191 Ray McKinnon as Detective Nathan Rollins Roland Joffé Ron Peer, Joel Cohen, Alec Sokolow Rated R. Featuring Ray McKinnon as a Latter-day Saint police detective, "Rollins", who is frequently the subject of ethnic jokes and rude comments uttered by his partner (Ellen DeGeneres). Also stars Patricia Arquette, Don Johnson, Mary-Louise Parker. Details
The Book of Mormon Movie, Vol. 1: The Journey $1,672,730 2003 191 Dustin Harding as Joseph Smith
Noah Danby as Nephi
Bryce Chamberlain as Lehi
Mark Gollaher as Laman
Jan Broberg Felt as Sariah
Cragun Foulger as Lemuel
Jacque Gray as Nephi's Wife
Kirby Heyborne as Sam
Gary Rogers Gary Rogers; Craig Clyde Rated PG-13. Budget: $2,00,000. Dramatic adaptation of 1st Nephi and the beginning of 2nd Nephi from the Book of Mormon. Around 600 B.C., the prophet Lehi leads his family, including the faithful Nephi, out of Jerusalem into the wilderness and eventually across the ocean to the American continent.
Northfork $1,420,578 2003 197 Marshall Bell as Mr. Stalling
Saralyn Sebern as Mrs. Stalling
Ginny Watts as Mrs. Stalling
Michael Polish Mark Polish; Michael Polish Rated PG-13. Budget: $1,900,000. In a rural area of Montana being evacuated by the movie's main characters in anticipation of a flood, Mr. Stalling is a deeply religious polygamous taxidermist who has built a home in the shape of Noah's ark, and intends to float safely when the flood comes. The movie does not name these or any characters as "Mormons" but some reviewers have identified them as Mormon fundamentalists. In the filmmakers' commentary track, the writer/director states that Mr. Stalling is a man practicing "plural marriage or polygamy," and that the character represents a mix-match of religion (implying that the character is inspired in part by early Latter-day Saints, but not intended to be a Latter-day Saint per se. Furthmore, in their documentary about the making of "Northfork," the Polish brothers explain that the 6 members of the evacuation committee who are the central characters of one of the film's two stories are based on members of a few different religious groups, but are primarily based on Latter-day Saint missionaries. The actors portraying the members of the evacuation committee include the film's top-billed star James Woods, as well as Mark Polish, Graham Beckel, Josh Barker, Peter Coyote and Jon Gries.
Saints and Soldiers $1,310,470 2004 179 Corbin Allred as Nathan 'Deacon' Greer Ryan Little Matt Whitaker; Geoffrey Panos Rated PG-13. Production budget: $780,000. Corbin Allred stars as a Latter-day Saint serviceman in World War II, trapped behind enemy lines in Germany: the country he had previously come to as a full-time missionary.
The Singles Ward $1,250,798 2002 214
Will Swenson as Jonathan
Connie Young as Cammie
Daryn Tufts as Eldon
Kirby Heyborne as Dallen
Michael Birkeland as Hyrum
Wally Joyner as Bro. Angel
Lincoln Hoppe as DeVerl
Tarance Edwards as Troy
Gretchen Whalley as Stacie
Sedra Santos as Laura
Kurt Hale John E. Moyer; Kurt Hale Rated PG. Budget: $500,000. All-out comedy about a singles ward. Jonathan Jordan must adjust to live as a newly single Latter-day Saint. Film features vast array of cameos, including Richard Dutcher, Julie Stoffer (MTV's "Real World"), football legend Steve Young, Danny Ainge, Ruth Hale, Wally Joyner, Shawn Bradley, Thurl Bailey and more.
The Pursuit of D.B. Cooper $1,214,767 1981 94 Treat Williams as J.R. Meade (a.k.a. D.B. Cooper) Roger Spottiswoode J.D. Reed (book); Jeffrey Alan Fiskin (screenplay) Rated PG. In their book D. B. Cooper, the Real McCoy (Salt Lake City: University of Utah, 1991), Bernie Rhodes and Russell P. Calame, two FBI agents who worked the cases, make the argument that the famed D.B. Cooper was really Richard McCoy, a Latter-day Saint police officer who worked at Brigham Young University. Details
The Best Two Years $1,163,450 2004 94 KC Clyde as Elder Rogers
Kirby Heyborne as Elder Calhoun
David Nibley as Elder Johnson
Cameron Hopkin as Van Pelt
Scott Christopher as Kyle Harrison
Michael Flynn as Pres. Sandburg
Scott S. Anderson Scott S. Anderson Rated PG. Budget: $400,000. Story of four Latter-day Saint missionaries serving in contemporary Holland, adapted from Anderson's successful stage play, which was based on his own mission experiences.
The R.M. $1,111,615 2003 192 Kirby Heyborne as Jared Phelps
Will Swenson as Kori Swenson
Britani Bateman as Kelly Powers
Tracy Ann Evans as Emma Phelps
Merrill Dodge as Brigham Phelps
Michael Birkeland as Dewey
Maren Ord as Sariah Phelps
Leroy Te'o as Humu
Wally Joyner as Brother Jensen
Kurt Hale John E. Moyer; Kurt Hale Rated PG. Budget: $500,000. Comedy about an R.M. (returned missionary) who experiences Job-like challenges in adjusting to post-mission life.
Wagonmaster $1,000,000 1950 94  John FordJohn Ford; Patrick Ford Sometimes spelled: "Wagon Master" or "WagonMaster." Joseph Harder, IMDb:
"Together with the even more underrated, The Sun Shines Bright, Wagon Master was one of Ford's favorite films. It is a Western of exceptional beauty and narrative purity, well acted by members of Ford's 'stock company', including Jane Darwell, Alan Mowbray, Ward Bond,and Harry Carey, Jr. Like almost all of Ford's films,it is a meditation on freedom and community. It is also noteworthy for a much more positive portrayal of Indians than in most of Ford's movies. Ford, for all his faults, remains the supreme poet of American Democracy."

Rod Crawford, IMDb: "A group of Mormons hoping to found a new colony in the trackless San Juan River country hire horse traders Travis and Sandy as wagonmaster and guide. One attraction for Sandy is "redheaded gal" Prudence. Soon they're joined by Doc Hall's broken down medicine show, with "scarlet women" Denver and Fleuretty. Then the Clegg boys, slightly psycho outlaws, decide a Mormon wagon train will make ideal camouflage..."

Brigham City $905,073 2001 204 Richard Dutcher as Sheriff Wes Clayton
Matthew Allen as Terry (deputy)
Wilford Brimley as Stu (retired sheriff)
Carrie Morgan as Peg
Wendy Gardiner as April (Terry's wife)
Sterling Brimley as Glen (the mayor)
Rick Macy as Ernie
Nick Whitaker as Spencer
Jon Enos as Ed
Richard Clifford as Steve
Frank Gerrish as Ralph
Richard Dutcher Richard Dutcher Rated PG-13. Opened April 6, 2001. Budget: $900,000. A classic murder mystery with a "Mormon noir" twist, set in the fictionalized Latter-day Saint town of Brigham, Utah. Most major and minor characters are Latter-day Saints. Also stars Tayva Patch as the non-member FBI agent from New York.
Jack Weyland's Charly $814,666 2002 230 Heather Beers as Charly
Jeremy Elliott as Sam
Diana Dunkley as JoEllen Roberts
Randy King as Frank Roberts
Adam Thomas Anderegg Jack Weyland (novel); Janine Gilbert (screenplay) Rated PG. Budget: $950,000. Adaptation of the most popular LDS market novel in history.
Latter Days $809,475 2004 191 Steve Sandvoss as Elder Aaron Davis
Mary Kay Place as Gladys Davis
Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Elder Ryder
C. Jay Cox C. Jay Cox Rated R. Budget: $850,000. "Latter Days" is about a promiscuous and shallow GLBT party boy named Christian who, on a bet, seduces a Latter-day Saint missionary ("Elder Davis"). Their resulting relationship awakens Christian to spiritual values, as Elder Davis criticizes Christian for his complete lack of beliefs and ethical values. Elder Davis leaves his mission, is excommunicated and embraces a GLBT lifestyle. Writer/director C. Jay Cox, best known as the screenwriter of the hit feature film "Sweet Home Alabama," based "Latter Days" in large part on elements from his own life. Cox himself served a full-time mission, after which he left Church activity and embraced a GLBT lifestyle.
Mean Creek $603,943 2004 203 Rory Culkin as Sam Jacob Aaron Estes Jacob Aaron Estes Rated R. This independent feature film debuted in competition at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in January 2004. The protagonist and at least one of the other main characters are from a Latter-day Saint family, a fact which is subtly but effectively alluded to by a CTR sticker and an Angel Moroni sticker on the door of their home. The writer/director said that he included these clues in the film in order to add texture and a little faith-based background to the characters. Plot synopsis: A group of kids decide to play a prank on the school bully. When their plan goes awry, they must deal with the moral and legal consequences of their actions.
Orgazmo $582,024 1997 223 Trey Parker as Joe Young Trey Parker Trey Parker Two versions were released: Rated R and NC-17. Parker made this low-budget film before his success as the creator of the cable TV series "South Park." Obviously this film about a missionary who becomes an "adult" film star/superhero is offensive to many filmgoers (either for moral or aesthetic reasons), but Parker maintains his film doesn't make fun of Latter-day Saints. In an interview he was asked "Have you known any Mormons in your own life?" Parker answered:
"I grew up in Colorado, so we had a lot of Mormons that we went to school with. Actually, my first girlfriend was Mormon. Every Mormon I've ever met is a great person, and to me this was a great character -- I didn't go out of my way to make him give up his religion, like Joe's been stupid all this time. He remains a Mormon, he wins, he destroys evil, and stays a Mormon. The Mormons win."
The Cremaster Cycle $514,622 2003 235 Matthew Barney as Gary Gilmore
Lauren Pine as Bessie Gilmore
Wally Grant as an LDS Elder
Matthew Barney Mathew Barney Budget for "Cremaster 2": $1.7 million ( "Cremaster 2," one of the 5 "art films" films that comprises the "Cremaster Cycle," features the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, beehives, and myriad other Latter-day Saint/Utah images. Director Matthew Barney plays the part of Gary Gilmore, the film's lead role. Gilmore (who had a Latter-day Saint and an abusive, alcoholic Catholic father) was executed for murdering two Latter-day Saint men in Utah. The "Cremaster" films were originally displayed in fine art museums, before being shown in art house theaters. In an official synopsis of "Cremaster 2," some of the film's many Latter-day Saint elements are noted: "Barney depicts Gilmore's murder of a Mormon gas station attendant in both sculptural and dramatic forms... This act sets in motion the trial and verdict that will condemn him to death, a sentence he embraces despite all efforts to overturn it. Barney stages the judgment of Gilmore in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Gilmore welcomes death, refusing to appeal his sentence and opting for execution by firing squad, in a literal interpretation of the Mormon belief that blood must be shed in order for a sinner to obtain salvation. His execution is staged as a prison rodeo in a cast-salt arena in the middle of the flooded Bonneville Salt Flats. Gilmore is lowered onto a bull and he rides to his death. In Barney's interpretation of the execution, Gilmore was less interested in attaining Mormon redemption than in performing a chronological two-step that would return him to the space of his alleged grandfather, Houdini..."
Pride & Prejudice $372,752 2003 253 Kam Heskin as Elizabeth Bennet
Orlando Seale as Darcy
Lucila Sola as Jane
Kelly Stables as Lydia
Honor Bliss as Anna Darcy
Ben Gourley as Charles Bingley
Nicole Hamilton as Kitty
Kara Holden as Caroline Bingley
Rainy Kerwin as Mary
Henry Maguire as Jack Wickam
Hubbel Palmer as Collins
Carmen Rasmusen as Charlotte
Andrew Black Jane Austen (novel); Anne K. Black, Jason Faller, Katherine Swigert Rated PG. Budget: $350,000. Contemporary Latter-day Saint retelling of the classic Jane Austen novel.
SLC Punk! $299,200 1999 257 Salt Lake City James Merendino James Merendino Rated R. In the early 1980's Stevo and Heroin Bob are the only two dedicated punks in the "Mormon stronghold" of Salt Lake City, Utah. Essentially a story of non-LDS slackers seeking "outsider" status by rebelling against the ethics, values and high expectations of the Latter-day Saint community they live in. Despite being made entirely as a reaction to this community, the film actually contains only one overt reference to the Church, and only a few over references to Utah. "Two punks live in Salt Lake City. The film covers their all-day routine. The realism of the character-narrated movie may be discussed. One of the punks gets ill, stays in hospital for three weeks, comes out again. Three parties are covered and one concert including a fight between punks, rednecks and others."
The Home Teachers $196,123 2004 259
Michael Birkeland as Greg
Jeff Birk as Nelson
Elizabeth Sands as Melissa Blazer
many others
Kurt Hale John E. Moyer; Kurt Hale Rated PG. Production budget: $425,000; initial P&A: $75,000. Buddy comedy about two mismatched home teachers who encounter disaster as they attempt to do all of their home teaching on the last day of the month.
Baptists at Our Barbecue $172,151 2004 285 Dan Merkley as Tartan Jones
Heather Beers as Charity
Micaela Nelligan as Wynona Wingate
Frank Gerrish as Conroy Hatch
Jan Broberg Felt as Tartan's mom
Rhett Willman as Ian Smith
Oscar Rowland as Earl
Steve Anderson as ??
Christian Vuissa Robert Farrell Smith (novel); Christian Vuissa (screenplay) Rated PG. Tartan is a 29-year-old Latter-day Saint forest ranger who decides to flee his home in Utah and take a job anywhere else in order to escape the constant pressure to get married. He ends up in the bizarre little mountain town of Longwinded, which is evenly divided between 262 Latter-day Saints and 262 Baptists. Tartan's arrival breaks the tie and escalates the longstanding feud in the town. Meanwhile, Tartan courts the one seemingly normal person in town: Charity (Heather Beers), who went there immediately after her fiance broke up with her.
Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars $162,548 1973 Mick Ronson as himself D.A. Pennebaker   Rated PG. $162,548 U.S. box office shown is for film's 2002 theatrical re-release, in restored, remastered version. This is essentially a concert film featuring David Bowie in his "Ziggy Stardust" persona, and his band, led by Latter-day Saint glam rocker Mick Ronson.
Mobsters and Mormons $145,613 2005 Scott Christopher as Michael Jaymes
Britani Bateman as Kate Jaymes
Olesya Rulin as Julie Jaymes
Jan Broberg Felt as Louise Means
Dan Larsen as President Perry
Alex Nibley as Ryan
Kathy Varga as Ryan's wife
Joseph L. Puente as Sunday School Teacher
John E. Moyer John E. Moyer Budget: $350,000. Mark DeCarlo plays "Carmine 'Beans' Pasquale", a low-level mob enforcer in New Jersey who is forced by the FBI to testify against his superiors. In order to protect him and his family from recriminations, the federal Witness Relocation Program gives him a new identity "George Cheeseman" and moves him to a predominantly LDS community in Utah. He experiences culture shock (and his new neighbors experience some shock as well) as he adjusts to live among Latter-day Saints. The first counselor in the bishopric (played by Scott Christopher) extends frienship but some neighbors are less welcoming. Pasquale's old employers in the mob find out where he is, and bring danger to the otherwise peaceful community.
Sons of Provo $120,488 2005   Will Swenson as Will Jensen
Kirby Heyborne as Kirby Laybourne
Danny Tarasevich as Danny Jensen
Jennifer Erekson as Jill Keith
Peter D. Brown as Grayson Jensen
Maureen Eastwood as Yvonne Bolschweiler
Michael Birkeland as hotel clerk
Alison Akin Clark as Shantel
Curt Dousett as Bishop Bestor
Jeremy Elliott as Jeremy Jackson
Carrie Morgan as Shaela
Alan Osmond as himself
many more
Will Swenson Will Swenson; Peter D. Brown Rated PG. Production budget: $200,000. Mockumentary about a Latter-day Saint boy band.
Handcart $98,666 2002 333 Jaelan Petri as Samual Hunter
Stephanie Albach as Abigail
Chris Kendrick as Moose
Shannon Skinner as Patricia
Gretchen Condie as Gretchen
Joel Bishop as Edward Martin
Lincoln Hoppe as Tanner Hunter
Kels Goodman Kels Goodman; Mark von Bowers Rated PG. Budget: $300,000. Historical pioneer epic set against the tragedy of the Martin Handcart trek.
Thumbsucker $85,327 2005 Lou Taylor Pucci as Justin Cobb
Tilda Swinton as Audrey Cobb
Vincent D'Onofrio as Mike Cobb
Chase Offerle as Joel Cobb
Mike Mills Walter Kirn (novel); Mike Mills (screenplay) Rated R. Budget: $4,000,000. Feature film adaptation of acclaimed novelist Walter Kirn's novel Thumbsucker. Although not autobiography, the book has many autobiographical elements, including the fact that the title character and his family met LDS missionaries and all became active converts to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The last third of the novel is about young oral obsessive Justin Cobb and his family joining the Church, and then he becomes a full-time missionary. These overtly LDS elements have been rendered generic in the film adaptation.
Out of Step $80,000 2002 345 Alison Akin Clark as Jenny Thomas
Michael Buster as Paul Taylor
Tayva Patch as Jenny's mother
Rick Macy as Jenny's father
Ryan Little Michael Buster; Willow Leigh Jones; Nikki Schmutz Rated PG. Total final production budget: $700,000. Jenny is a gifted dancer from Utah who get accepted to a prestigious dance program in New York City, where she ends up torn between two men, a Latter-day Saint film student (played by Michael Buster), and a non-LDS musician (played by Jeremy Elliott).
The Work and the Story $14,474 2003 424 Nathan Smith Jones as Peter Beuhmann
Kirby Heyborne as Ephraim Thomas
Jennifer Hoskins as Judy Schumway
Eric Artell as Kevin Evans
Richard Dutcher as Richard Dutcher
Dave Boud as Dave Skousen
Dan Merkley as Michael-Enoch Glaser
Nathan Smith Jones Nathan Smith Jones Total production budget: $120,000 (does not include prints and advertising). A mockumentary (fictional film made in documentary style) about the mysterious disappearance of Richard Dutcher, founder of the modern LDS Cinema movement. Three young Latter-day Saint filmmakers scramble to take Dutcher's place as the new leading creator of LDS Cinema movies.
This Divided State $6,500 2005   Kay Anderson as himself
Joe Vogel as himself
Jim Bassi as himself
Alex Caldiero as himself
Dennis Potter as himself
Ken Brown as himself
Steven Greenstreet Steven Greenstreet NR (not rated). Budget: $15,000. Fascinating fly-on-the-wall documentary (without narration) that captures a controversy that arose in Utah County, Utah, where approximately 90% of the population are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The student body officers at the predominantly LDS school Utah Valley State College (UVSC) used student activity funds to invite controversial "liberal" documentary filmmaker Michael Moore to speak on campus. Moore, who had received an Academy Award for his 2002 documentary Bowling for Columbine (about gun violence in America), was one of the most widely-recognized figures in popular culture at the time, and was a popular speaker on college campuses. But the invitation to speak at UVSC came during the middle of a U.S.-led war in Iraq which had prompted Michael Moore to criticize the presidential administration of George W. Bush. Moore had recently stirred considerable controversy nationwide with the release of his documentary Fahrenheit 9/11, a documentary-format film that criticized the Bush administration's involvement in Iraq. Moore had become a target of conservative political criticism and was viewed as an embarrassment by many moderate liberals and Democrats. At the same time, Moore was also heralded as an innovative filmmaker and a proponent of free speech and unfettered dialogue. Moore's invitation to speak on campus divided the county and the state, with Latter-day Saints on both sides, expressing fervent support or criticism. Many hated the fact that Moore had been invited to speak at UVSC, and an opposition movement successfully arranged for conservative talk show host Sean Hannity to give a "pre-emptive" speech from a counterbalancing viewpoint. Some opponents of Michael Moore's even visit tried unsuccessfully to have the event cancelled. These opponents included Kay Anderson, who simply offered to write a check that would more than reimburse UVSC for the cost of cancelling the visit. Although Anderson was one of the few on either side of the controversy that actually was willing to back up his views with action and a significant financial incentive (or "bribe", some might say), his offer was widely castigated by those who supported inviting Moore to campus. A small minority of critics even viewed Moore's invitation as an anti-LDS move by UVSC, even though the student officers who issued the invitation and stood by their decision were returned missionaries and active Latter-day Saints. Moore was not known to have ever been critical of Latter-day Saints, and when he actually spoke at UVSC he exhibited a suprising level of awareness of and admiration for Latter-day Saints. In the end, some observers felt that neither the speeches by Michael Moore nor Sean Hannity had been sufficiently noteworthy or interesting enough to warrant so many weeks of controversy and media attention. The genuinely interesting events were those that happened in Utah leading up to these speeches, and it is these events that are captured in this compelling and unusual documentary.

The following films were released in commercial theaters (although in some cases their commercial theatrical release was very limited), but we do not have U.S. box office data for them. Listed chronologically:

Movie TitleYearACTOR and Mormon characterDirectorScreenwriterOther Info
Day of Defense 2003 John Foss as Elder Burke
Allan Groves as Elder Davis
Adam Lawson A. Melvin Mcdonald (novel); Jim Westwood (screenplay) Budget: $500,000. Well-intentioned but poorly received courtroom and theological drama centering on a debate over the right of two Latter-day Saint missionaries to preach the Gospel in a small Southern Protestant town that has passed legislation intended to prevent them from being able to do so.
The Tulse Luper Suitcases, Part 1: The Moab Story 2003 Scot Williams as Percy Hockmeister
Caroline Dhavernas as Passion
Peter Greenaway Peter Greenaway Budget: $10,000,000 (source: From review by Jonathan Romney, reporting for from the Cannes Film Festival, 5 June 2003: The story traces Luper (adventurer, collector and polymath) from childhood in Wales in the 1920s, through his adventures in the Moab Desert, Utah, to imprisonment in Antwerp railway station in 1938. Hunting for vanished cities in Utah, Luper (Feild) falls foul of the crypto-fascist Mormon family Hockmeister, after glimpsing the vampish [Latter-day Saint woman] Passion (Dharnernas) in her bathtub. Luper is captured and submitted to various indignities, but hits it off... with Passion.

Tulse also meets Latter-day Saints again in Belgium, where they are involved in politics. The film is the first part of an eight-hour trilogy that is part of a giant multi-media project that includes 92 DVDs, an extensive web sight, art installations and a video game. Director Greenaway told reporters: "I think that Mormonism, for me -- and I speak as an absolute atheist -- is an extraordinary, very almost contemporary example of how to construct a religion. And that to me was a fascinating investigation."

Messengers of Truth 2003 Mark DeWitt as Elder Wood
Humberto Arcila as Elder Diaz
Dave Romero as Kevin
William Jones as President Lofton
"Smokey Tom" Hodgins as Epaphroditus Wood
Mark Daemon as Elder Wright
Marc Miller as Elder Anderson
Mike Tulumello as Elder Hensen
Marcus Noel as Elder Grant
Elizabeth Esquibel as Sister Lee
Jane Harris as Sister Dixon
Brent Jones Brent Jones First shown at Sunstone Symposia in 2001 and 2002 under the title "Missionary Position." Shown on a commercial theater screen in April 2003, with 10 scheduled screening in a single Salt Lake City art film theater. Written and directed by BYU graduate Brent Jones. Ultra-low budget, independent, and sometimes irreverent. Unrated; probably PG-13. Comedy about a Latter-day Saint missionary serving in San Diego who tries to do all the right things but encounters many disastes and setbacks. His hard-driving, numbers-obsessed mission president assigns him to reform a rebellious junior companion missionary who has unorthodox ways and a shaky testimony. This video was eviscerated by film critics who dismissed it as amateurish, completely unfunny and poorly executed.
The Beaver Trilogy 2001 Groovin' Gary as himself
Sean Penn as Groovin' Larry
Crispin Glover as Groovin' Larry
Trent Harris Trent Harris Comedy/documentary. 83 minutes total running time. Black and white. "The Beaver Trilogy" is actually a combination of 3 films, all of which tell the same story, all filmed by non-churchgoing Latter-day Saint filmmaker Trent Harris. The first segment, "The Beaver Kid," is an actual documentary about Gary, a young Mormon who is also known as "The Beaver Kid" because he is from the predominantly LDS town of Beaver, Utah. He is rather quirky, and seems unreserved when he dresses up as Olivia Newton-John and performs for a talent show in his small town. The documentary segment is followed by two re-enactments of the documentary "The Beaver Kid 2" (starring a young Sean Penn in the title role) and "The Orkly Kid" (starring Crispin Glover). "The Beaver Trilogy" won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Independent/Experimental Film and Video Award. A bit of trivia: In the final credits of "The Beaver Trilogy," there is a special thanks to LDS convert Melvin Dummar, whose band Melvin and the Dreamers did fundraising for the project. Melvin Dummar was later depicted in the Academy Award-winning movie "Melvin and Howard" (1980).
Plan 10 from Outer Space 1994 Stefene Russell as Lucinda
Curtis James as Talmadge
Patrick Michael Collins as Larsen
Trent Harris Trent Harris Comedy. IMDb: "A woman accidentally discovers the Plaque of Kolob which leads her to discover an insidious alien plot for world domination documented by... early Mormon prophet." Also stars Academy Award nominee Karen Black as "Nehor."

Harris: " Salt Lake City alone, we sold 10,000 tickets... the funny thing is, Mormons like it! They had me speak at a Mormon symposium, and then they showed the film. They all got a big yuk out of it."

The Great Brain 1978 Jimmy Osmond as Tom Fitzgerald (title role) Sidney Levin John D. Fitzgerald (novel); Alan Cassidy (screenplay) Rated G. Tells the fictionalized story of John D. Fitzgerald's youth, as a half-Catholic, half-Mormon boy growing up in turn-of-the-century Utah, where nearly all his neighbors are Latter-day Saints. John D. Fitzgerald's novels are narrated by a fictional version of his younger self. The title character, the "Great Brain" is John's older brother Tom Fitzgerald. The books are told from the perspective of the younger brother (John). John remained Catholic throughout his life and was never baptized as a Latter-day Saint. Tom Fitzgerald (the movie's title character) became a Latter-day Saint, served a mission in China, and lived the rest of his life in Price, Utah.
Goin' Coconuts 1978 Donny Osmond as himself
Marie Osmond as herself
Howard Morris Raymond Harvey Rated G. Set in Hawaii. Grossed $213,220 in Hong Kong. When giving interviews, Donny and Marie Osmond consistently mention this film first when asked if they have any regrets about their careers.
Damnation Alley 1977 Jan-Michael Vincent as Tanner (main character) Jack Smight Roger Zelazny (novel); Lukas Heller, Alan Sharp (screenplay) Rated PG. Budget: $8 million. A significant segment of the novel takes place in Salt Lake City, where there are minor Latter-day Saint characters. In the film, Tanner stops in Salt Lake to refuel, but the novel's Utah characters and extended scenes aren't portrayed. In the novel, Tanner is an ethnic Mormon, but his parents died when he was a baby and he was not raised in the Church. These background details aren't clear in the film version.
Brigham 1977 Maurice Grandmaison as Brigham Young
Richard Moll as Joseph Smith
   Comments from IMDb listing:
"This film deals with the early years of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), and more particularly with the life of Brigham Young. It is an accurate portrayal of his life from the time he met Joseph Smith (Richard Moll, "Bull" from the sitcom "Night Court"), through his leadership during the trek westward, and finishes with his last years of life as the President of the LDS Church. In these politically-correct times, many may be offended by the film's depiction of polygamy, but the subject is handled in a forthright and tasteful manner. The film also delves into some of the more profound beliefs and doctrine of the church, without resorting to sermonizing or a preachy tone. No apologies are made -- only the portrayal of pioneer life among the Mormons, a "peculiar" people (by some people's standards), with a fascinating story that has yet to be told fully on the big screen."

From an article in the St. Louis Riverfront Times:
"When Dutcher hears the name Brigham, a low-budget polemic about the LDS leader who brought the flock to Utah, he moans painfully: '...yes, what an embarrassment. Those (movies) worked against me, too. There have been some LDS filmmakers who have been making movies for the past 20 years or so -- only a couple have had anything to do with real Mormon themes and real Mormon characters. And those that have been made were just abysmal.'"

The Duchess and the Dirtwater Fox 1976 Thayer David as Josiah Widdicombe, Mormon Patriarch Melvin Frank Melvin Frank; Jack Rose; Barry Sandler Thayer David has the fourth-billed role as Josiah Widdicombe, a "Mormon Patriarch," in this comedy Western. In the third-billed role Conrad Janis plays Gladstone, Widdicombe's assistant. George Segal and Goldie Hawn star as a gambler and a saloon singer.
Jessi's Girls 1975 Sondra Currie as Jessica
Geoffrey Land (?) as her husband
Al Adamson Bud Donnelly Rated R. A young Latter-day Saint couple is attacked by a bunch of outlaws. They kill the man and [leave the woman] for dead in the desert. With the last ounce of her strength she gets to the hut of an old hermit who nurses her back to health and teaches her how to shoot. The woman then frees three female criminals and seeks vengeance on the outlaws.
Lo chiamavano Trinita (a.k.a: "They Call Me Trinity") 1971 Dan Sturkie as Tobias Enzo Barboni Enzo Barboni (screenplay); Gene Luotto (English dialogue) Rated G. Terence Hill stars as a nomadic gunslinger ("Trinity") who joins his reformed-outlaw brother to defend a village of Latter-day Saint farmers from the evil Farley Granger and his outlaw gang. The Latter-day Saints really are a prominent part of this movie, although the focus is on the non-LDS lead character and his brother. One of the film's major characters is Tobias, the leader of the Latter-day Saints. The Latter-day Saints are portrayed as pacifists, unwilling to fight back against Farley Granger gang or the Mexican outlaws who harrass them. Eventually Trinity convinces them to defend themselves so that their community will not be destroyed by the outlaws, but they do so through entirely non-lethal means. The depiction of the Latter-day Saints is quite positive. In some ways they seem like Amish or Quakers, but they are specifically referred to as "Mormons" in the film. This film is well worth watching in large part because it is a truly hilarious comedy, sending up countless tropes of the Western genre. Box office gross was SEK 7,845,000 in Sweden.
And Should We Die 1966   Judge Whitaker (Wetzel O. Whitaker) Scott Whitaker Western. 53 min. Pancho Villa's men harrass and kill Americans during the Mexican Revolution (early 20th Century) for aiding Villa's enemies. Raphael and Vincente (leaders of a small Mormon congregation) are arrested on charges that they support Villa's opponents and follow the wrong religion. In jail they overhear plans to harm the Mormon community of Dublan. Raphael sends his little brother Pedro to warn the unarmed settlement. Dublan fasts and prays for a god-given answer to the threat, as Raphael and Vincente are promised death by firing squad unless they renounce their faith.
Advise and Consent 1962 Don Murray as Senator Brigham Anderson Otto Preminger Allen Drury (novel); Wendell Mayes (screenplay) One of the greatest political dramas in the history of cinema. Based on Drury's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, which was on the New York Times best-seller list for 70 weeks, this was a much-anticipated, major motion picture. 140 minutes. "Brigham Anderson," the fictional senator from Utah played by Don Murray, is either the most important or second most important character in the film. Although Sen. Anderson's story is ultimately a tragic one, this is one of the most positive portrayals of an LDS character found in in Hollywood movie.

Daniel Bubbeo (IMDb): "Robert Leffingwell (Henry Fonda) is the president's candidate for Secretary of State. Prior to his approval, he must first go through a Senate investigation to determine if he's qualified. Leading the Senate committee is idealistic Senator Brig Anderson, who soon finds himself unprepared for the political dirt that's revealed, including Leffingwell's past affiliations with a Communist organization. When Leffingwell testifies about his political leanings, he proves his innocence. Later, however, Anderson learns that he lied under oath and even asks the president to withdraw Leffingwell for consideration, especially after the young senator begins receiving blackmail threats about a skeleton in his own closet."

Ocean's 11 1960 Clem Harvey as Louis Jackson Lewis Milestone George Clayton Johnson (story); Jack Golden Russell (story); Harry Brown; Charles Lederer; Billy Wilder (uncredited) One of the titular Eleven is a Latter-day Saint cowboy from Salt Lake City. Details
Blood Arrow 1958 Phyllis Coates as Bess Charles Marquis Warren Fred Freiberger A devout Latter-day Saint girl must cross Indian territory to obtain a needed smallpox serum for her settlement.
The Maverick Queen 1956 Howard Petrie as Butch Cassidy Joseph Kane Zane Grey (novel); Kenneth Gamet; DeVallon Scott Aside from featuring Latter-day Saint outlaw Butch Cassidy, this is also an adaptation of one of the Zane Grey novels which most prominently features Latter-day Saint characters and settings.
The Lawless Rider 1954 Rose Bascom as Texas Rose Bascom
Frankie Darro as Jim Bascom
Yakima Canutt Johnny Carpenter; Edward D. Wood Jr. Famed Latter-day Saint cowgirl is the lead actress in this movie, playing a character based on herself in a fictionalized story. Non-Latter-day Saint actor Frankie Darro plays Rose's fictional brother "Jim."
Wild Horse Mesa 1947   Wallace Grissell Zane Grey (novel); Norman Houston Black and White. 61 min. Adaptation of one of Zane Grey's novels which most prominently features Latter-day Saint characters.
Bad Bascomb 1946   S. Sylvan Simon D.A. Loxley (story); screenplay: William R. Lipman, Grant Garett Western. It's just after the civil war when the elderly outlaw Bascomb and his gang try to rob a bank. They run into a trap as officers are waiting in ambush. Bascomb and the cold blooded killer Yancy escape and join a Mormon wagon train heading for Utah. They learn there is gold hidden on the train and eventually Yancy finds it. The plan is to take the gold and flee but a nine year old girl has become attached to Bascomb and Bascomb is beginning to change his mind.
Thunder Town 1946 Steve Clark as Sheriff Matt Warner
Syd Saylor as Utah McGirk
Harry L. Fraser Oliver Drake Matt Warner, the famous Latter-day Saint outlaw who became a sheriff in Price, Utah is a major character in this Western.
Tenting Tonight on the Old Camp Ground 1943 Al Bridge as Matt Warner Lewis D. Collins Elizabeth Beecher; Harry L. Fraser (story) The famous Latter-day Saint outlaw who became a sheriff in Price, Utah is a major character in this Western.
The Riders of the Purple Sage 1941 Mary Howard as Jane Withersteen
Robert Barrat as Judge Dyer
Lynne Roberts as Bess
Kane Richmond as Adam Dyer
LeRoy Mason as Jerry Card
James Tinling Zane Grey (novel); William Bruckner; Robert F. Metzler 58 min. Black and white. Produced by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp. Adaptation of Grey's Western novel about Jane, a Latter-day Saint ranch heiress, and other LDS characters.
The Heritage of the Desert 1939 Evelyn Venable as Miriam Naab
Russell Hayden as David Naab
Robert Barrat as Andrew Naab
Paul Guilfoyle as Snap Thornton
Lesley Selander Zane Grey (novel); Norman Houston (screenplay); Harrison Jacobs (additional dialogue) 73 min. Black and white. Produced by Paramount Pictures. Also known as: "The Way of the West", "When the West Was Young." Adaptation of a Zane Grey Western novel about John Hare, rescued from outlaws by a heroic Latter-day Saint: August Naab ("Andrew" in the film).
Desert Mesa 1935   Victor Adamson Victor Adamson Reissued in 1941 as "Mormon Conquest", this bottom-of-the-barrel entry from Victor Adamson/Art Mix/Denver Dixon productions finds jobless cowpuncher Jim Kirk (Wally West as Tom Wynn)riding into Cottonwood, Arizona looking for the man who swindled his father. Old pal Art James (Victor Adamson as Denver Dixon) tells him that Ed Calder (Horace B. Carpenter), a shady rancher who moved in a few months ago, might be his man. Jim joins Art at the Crazy K Ranch owned by Sam Kent (Bill McCall) and his daughter Sally (Tonya Beauford), with Bill Dobbs (Allen Greer) as their foreman. Jim saves Sally from badman Lynx Merson (Lew Meehan), who is out to get her father for past transgressions. Later, it is discovered that El Garto, a bandit from below the border, is actually Merson, and is working with Calder.
A Study in Scarlet 1933   Edwin L. Marin Arthur Conan Doyle (novel); Robert Florey; Reginald Owen 71 minutes. Adaptation of the very first Sherlock Holmes story, in which Holmes' faces off against Latter-day Saints.
Wild Horse Mesa 1932   Henry Hathaway Zane Grey (novel); Frank Howard Clark; Harold Shumate Black and White. 65 min. Adaptation of one of Zane Grey's novels which most prominently features Latter-day Saint characters.
The Heritage of the Desert 1932 Sally Blane as Judy Naab
J. Farrell MacDonald as Adam Naab
Gordon Westcott as Snap Naab
Henry Hathaway Zane Grey (novel); Frank Partos; Harold Shumate 60 min. Black and white. Produced by Paramount Pictures. Also known as: "The Way of the West", "When the West Was Young." Adaptation of a Zane Grey Western novel about John Hare, rescued from outlaws by a heroic Latter-day Saint: August Naab ("Adam" in the movie).
The Rainbow Trail 1932 Minna Gombell as Ruth
William L. Thorne as Dyer
Alice Ward as Jane Withersteen
David Howard Zane Grey (novel); Barry Conners; Philip Klein 65 minutes. Black and White. Produced by Fox Film Corporation. Adaptation of Zane Grey's Western novel.
Riders of the Purple Sage 1931 Marguerite Churchill as Jane Withersteen
Noah Beery as Judge Dyer
Yvonne Pelletier as Bess
Frank McGlynn Jr. as Adam Tull
Hamilton MacFadden Zane Grey (novel); Barry Conners; John F. Goodrich; Philip Klein 58 min. Black and white. Produced by Fox Film Corporation. Adaptation of Grey's Western novel about Jane, a Latter-day Saint ranch heiress, and other LDS characters.
Wild Horse Mesa 1925   George B. Seitz Zane Grey (novel); Lucien Hubbard Silent. Black and White. 95 min. Budget: $125,000 ( Adaptation of one of Zane Grey's novels which most prominently features Latter-day Saint characters.
The Rainbow Trail 1925 Lucien Littlefield as Joe Lake
Vivien Oakland as Bessie Erne
Carol Holloway as Jane Withersteen
Lynn Reynolds Zane Grey (novel); Lynn Reynolds Silent. Black and White. Produced by Fox Film Corporation. Adaptation of Zane Grey's Western novel.
Riders of the Purple Sage 1925 Mabel Ballin as Jane Withersteen
Warner Oland as Judge Dyer
Beatrice Burnham as Millie Erne
Seesel Ann Johnson Bess Erne, as child
Charles Le Moyne as Richard Tull
Marian Nixon as Bess Erne
Lynn Reynolds Zane Grey (novel); Edfrid A. Bingham 56 min. Silent. Black and white. Produced by Fox Film Corporation. Adaptation of Grey's Western novel about Jane, a Latter-day Saint ranch heiress, and other LDS characters.
The Heritage of the Desert 1924 Bebe Daniels as Mescal
Ernest Torrence as August Naab
Anne Schaefer as Mrs. Naab (as Ann Schaeffer)
Jim Mason as Snap Naab (as James Mason)
Tom London ("Leonard Clapham") as Dave Naab
Irvin Willat Zane Grey (novel); Albert S. Le Vino Silent. Black and white. Produced by Famous Players-Lasky Corporation. Adaptation of a Zane Grey Western novel about John Hare, rescued from outlaws by a heroic Latter-day Saint: August Naab.
Married to a Mormon 1922   H.B. Parkinson Frank Miller Silent. Black and white. British-made anti-Mormon propaganda film. Starring Evelyn Brent, Clive Brook, George Wynn, Booth Conway, Molly Adair
Trapped by the Mormons 1922 Louis Willoughby as Isoldi Keene
Ward McAllister as Elder Kayler
Olaf Hytten as Elder Marz
H.B. Parkinson Frank Miller (screenplay); Winifred Graham (novel) Silent. Black and white. British-made anti-Mormon propaganda film in which small town English women are captured to be taken to Salt Lake City as wives. Based on the novel The Love Story of a Mormon, by Winifred Graham. Innocent young English lass Nora Prescott (played by Evelyn Brent) is the daughter of Mormon-hating parents, and engaged to marry sailer Jim Foster (George Wynn). Nora is mesmerized by Isoldi Keene, who is intent on making her his wife, and using her to lure other single women to Salt Lake. But Nora is saved by her wheelchair-bound father and her sailor boyfriend. Re-issued 1928 as "The Mormon Peril."
Action 1921 J. Farrell MacDonald as Mormon Peters John Ford Peter B. Kyne (story); J. Allen Dunn (story); Harvey Gates Western. Silent. Universal Pictures. Adapted from the Peter B. Kyne story, "Three Godfathers." Also starring Hoot Gibson, Francis Ford, Clara Horton. Also released as "Let's Go."
The Fighting Shepherdess 1920 Noah Beery as Mormon Joe Millard Webb; Edward José Frank Mitchell Dazey; Lenore J. Coffee; Caroline Lockhart (novel) Western. Romance. A young woman fights to keep her Wyoming sheep ranch from being overrun and destroyed by cattle ranchers. Produced by Louis B. Mayer and Anita Stewart.
The Rainbow Trail 1918 Mary Mersch as Jane Withersteen
William Burress as Waggoner
Genevieve Blinn as Ruth
Frank Lloyd Zane Grey (novel); Charles Kenyon; Frank Lloyd 60 minutes. Silent. Black and White. Produced by Fox Film Corporation. Adaptation of Zane Grey's Western novel.
Riders of the Purple Sage 1918 Mary Mersch as Jane
Murdock MacQuarrie as Tull
Marc Robbins as Dyer
Kathryn Adams as Masked rider/Millie
J. Holmes as Jerry Carol
Frank Lloyd Zane Grey (novel); Frank Lloyd (screenplay) Produced by Fox Film Corporation. Adaptation of Zane Grey's anti-Mormon Western novel about a Latter-day Saint ranch heiress and other LDS characters.
A Mormon Maid 1917 Mae Murray as Dora
Frank Borzage as Tom Rigdon
Hobart Bosworth as John Hogue
Edythe Chapman as Nancy Hogue
Noah Beery as Darius Burr
Richard Cummings as Lion of the Lord
Robert Z. Leonard Charles Sarver (screenplay); Paul West (story) A handsome Latter-day Saint man (played by Utah native Frank Borzage, who later became first person ever to receive the Academy Award for best Director) saves a beautiful Latter-day Saint woman (Mae Murray) from being pressed into joining the "harem" of a villainous older man.
A Study in Scarlet 1914   Francis Ford Arthur Conan Doyle (novel); Grace Cunard Short, silent film. Adaptation of the very first Sherlock Holmes story, in which Holmes' faces off against Latter-day Saints. Silent short film.
A Study in Scarlet 1914 Agnes Glynne as Lucy Ferrier
Henry Paulo as John Ferrier
George Pearson Arthur Conan Doyle (novel); Harry Engholm Short, silent film. Adaptation of the very first Sherlock Holmes story, in which Holmes' faces off against Latter-day Saints. Silent short film.
The Mormon 1912 J. Warren Kerrigan in the title role Allan Dwan   1 reel. 35 mm. Short, silent anti-Mormon film starring J. Warren Kerrigan and Pauline Bush. Produced by American Film Manufacturing Company. Released 25 January 1912. The plot focuses on polygamy and kidnapping women, based on false ideas perpetuated by pulp fiction and anti-Mormon propaganda circulated at the time. The film envisions Mormons in the early days of the West routinely ambushing non-Mormon wagon trains in order kidnap women. The women would then be taken into Mormon territory where they would become polygamous wives. The protagonist of the film (played by Warren Kerrigan) is a young Latter-day Saint sent as a scout to observe the wagon trail, report on the number of men and women in each wagon party, and assist in the raids. One day he sees through his telescope a solitary wagon crossing the plains. He tells the Elders, among them his father, an important local Mormon leader. But when he returns to observe the wagon more, he is entranced by the eyes of a woman travelling with the wagon. He falls in love with her and desires to have her for himself, rather than allow her to be captured by the other Mormons. He renounces his faith and warns the people travelling with the wagon. The young man fights off his own people. His father returns home grieving that the son left the faith. The woman's husband was killed in the attack, so the young Mormon who fought off the attack is able to take take that man's place, travelling toward a new life with the woman who is his newfound love.

According to some sources, more than thirty anti-Mormon films were made between the years 1910 and 1945. The first of these was the Nordisk Films Kompagni film "Mormonens Offer," which opened in Copenhagen, Denmark on October 2, 1910. (1910, also known as "Mormon's Offer"). It went into international distribution, with the English title "Victim of the Mormons."

Subsequent anti-Mormon films include: "The Mountain Meadow Massacre" (1912), "The Mormon" (1912), "Deadwood Dick Spoils Brigham Young" (1915), "The Rainbow Trail" (1918) and "Marriage or Death." Despite their often brazen promotion of anti-Mormon hatred and religious prejudice, some of these films continue to be shown occasionally in historical forums and at independent theaters such as the Tower Theater in Salt Lake City, Utah. These older films are watched by Latter-day Saints and non-members alike, who find them quaint and humorous.

Feature Films with Major Latter-day Saint Characters:
Listed Chronologically

Below is a chronological listing of the theatrically-released feature films with major LDS characters from the two tables above:

Thumbsucker (2005)
Mobsters and Mormons (2005)
This Divided State (2005)
Sons of Provo (2005)
Ocean's Twelve (2004)
The Work and the Glory (2004)
Baptists at Our Barbecue (2004)
Riding Giants (2004)
Mean Creek (2004)
Saints and Soldiers (2004)
The Best Two Years (2004)
Latter Days (2004)
The Home Teachers (2004)
The Work and the Story (2003)
The Book of Mormon Movie, Vol. 1: The Journey (2003)
Pride & Prejudice (2003)
S.W.A.T. (2003)
Northfork (2003)
The R.M. (2003)
The Cremaster Cycle (2003)
Bugs! (2003)
The Tulse Luper Suitcases, Part 1: The Moab Story (2003)
Messengers of Truth (2003)
Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
Jack Weyland's Charly (2002)
Handcart (2002)
Out of Step (2002)
The Singles Ward (2002)
The Other Side of Heaven (2001)
Ocean's Eleven (2001)
Brigham City (2001)
One Night at McCool's (2001)
The Beaver Trilogy (2001)
God's Army (2000)
Wonder Boys (2000)
SLC Punk! (2000)
Goodbye Lover (1999)
Deep Impact (1998)
Donnie Brasco (1997)
Orgazmo (1997)
Heavenly Creatures (1995)
Rockwell: A Legend of Life in the West (1994)
Plan 10 from Outer Space (1994)
Fire in the Sky (1993)
Six Degrees of Separation (1993)
Messenger of Death (1988)
Rain Man (1988)
The Pursuit of D.B. Cooper (1981)
Melvin and Howard (1980)
Somewhere in Time (1980)
The Great Brain (1978)
Goin' Coconuts (1978)
Damnation Alley (1977)
Brigham (1977)
Family Plot (1976)
The Duchess and the Dirtwater Fox (1976)
Jessi's Girls (1975)
Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1973)
Lo chiamavano Trinita (1971)
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
Paint Your Wagon (1969)
And Should We Die (1966)
La Resa dei conti (1966)
Advise and Consent (1962)
Ocean's 11 (1960)
Blood Arrow (1958)
The Maverick Queen (1956)
The Lawless Rider (1954)
Wagonmaster (1950)
Bad Bascomb (1946)
Thunder Town (1946)
Tenting Tonight on the Old Camp Ground (1943)
The Riders of the Purple Sage (1941)
The Mormon Conquest (1941)
Brigham Young: Frontiersman (1940)
The Heritage of the Desert (1939)
A Study in Scarlet (1933)
The Heritage of the Desert (1932)
The Rainbow Trail (1932)
Riders of the Purple Sage (1931)
The Rainbow Trail (1925)
Riders of the Purple Sage (1925)
The Heritage of the Desert (1924)
The Covered Wagon (1923)
Married to a Mormon (1922)
Trapped by the Mormons (1922)
Action (1921)
The Fighting Shepherdess (1920)
The Rainbow Trail (1918)
Riders of the Purple Sage (1918)
A Mormon Maid (1917)
A Study in Scarlet (1914)
A Study in Scarlet (1914)
One Hundred Years of Mormonism (1913)
The Mormon (1912)

"Feature Films with Major Latter-day Saint Characters" (LDS Characters/ Mormon Characters/ LDS Movie Characters/ Mormon Movie Characters/ LDS Film Characters/ LDS Movie Characters) page created 9 February 2001. Last modified 23 September 2005.