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Film poster

A Streetcar Named Desire
Directed by Elia Kazan
Produced by Charles K. Feldman
Written by Tennessee Williams
(play A Streetcar Named Desire
and screenplay)
Oscar Saul (adaptation)
Starring Vivien Leigh
Marlon Brando
Kim Hunter
Karl Malden
Rudy Bond
Nick Dennis
Music by Alex North
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Released September 18, 1951 U.S. release
Running time 122 min / USA:125 min (re-release)
Language English
IMDb profile

A Streetcar Named Desire is a 1951 film adaption of the play A Streetcar Named Desire. It was directed by Elia Kazan and starred Marlon Brando (Stanley Kowalski), Vivien Leigh (Blanche DuBois), Kim Hunter and Karl Malden. All but Leigh were chosen from the Broadway cast of the play.1

In 1999 the film, widely regarded a classic, was deemed "culturally significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. Censorship of the time called for the end of the film involving Stella's renunciation of Stanley's rape, perhaps to the point of leaving the household. The actual play's ending is far more ambiguous with a distraught Stella (at having sent off her sister Blanche) mutely allowing herself to be raped by Stanley.


The movie won Academy Awards for Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Karl Malden), Best Actress in a Leading Role (Vivien Leigh), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Kim Hunter), and Best Art Direction -- Set Decoration, Black-and-White. It was also nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Marlon Brando), Best Cinematography, Black-and-White, Best Costume Design, Black-and-White, Best Director, Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture, Best Picture, Best Sound, Recording and Best Writing, Screenplay.

Ironically, although it was Marlon Brando's memorable performance as Stanley Kowalski in the 1951 movie that signalled the start of a new era in film acting, he was the only one of the four actors nominated from the film not to win an award.

Note 1: Leigh had starred in the West End production in London, was chosen for the film version over Jessica Tandy, who had played the role in the Broadway production.

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