Grande duello, Il

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Il grande duello (Italy, Germany, France 1972 / Director: Giancarlo Santi)

  • Runtime: 100 min
  • Release Dates: 29.12.1972 (West Germany) | 9.2.1973 (Italy)

Also known as

The Grand Duel (U.S.A.) | Storm Rider (U.S.A.) | Hell's Fighters (U.K.) | Drei Vaterunser für vier Halunken (Germany) | O Grande Duelo (Portugal) | El gran duelo (Spanish) | Gran duello al amanecer (Spain) | Le grand duel (France) | Den Stora Duellen (Sweden) | Suuri kaksintaistelu (Finland) | Sabata, o Justiceiro (Brazil) | Keravnos kato apo ton ilio (Greece) | Monomahia mehri thanatou (Greece) | Veliki dvoboj (Yugoslavia) | Velký souboj (Czech Republic) | The Big Showdown | The Loner | The Great Duel | O Ultimo Grande Duelo (Brazil) | Големият дуел (Bulgaria) | 怒りのガンマン/銀山の大虐殺 (Japan) | ガンファイター (Japan)

Cast and Crew

  • Cast: Lee Van Cleef (Sheriff Clayton), Alberto Dentice [as Peter O'Brien](Phillip Vermeer/Newland), Horst Frank (David Saxon / Patriarch), Jess Hahn (Big Horse / Anthony Peacock), Klaus Grünberg (Adam Saxon / Jeff), Antonio Casale [as Antony Vernon](Hoak / Hole / Skinny), Marc Mazza (Eli Saxon / Joe Buck), Dominique Darel (Elisabeth), Alessandra Cardini [as Sandra Cardini](Anita), Gastone Pescucci (Borghese), Elvira Cortese (Madame Oro), Anna-Maria Gherardi (Saxon's girl), Hans Terofal (Jo Barrel), Salvatore Baccaro (Saxon henchman in saloon), Remo Capitani [as Ray O'Connor](Saxon henchman), Memè Perlini [as Amelio Perlini], Piergiorgio Plebani, Giancarlo Badessi (one-eyed waystation owner), Luigi Antonio Guerra, Maria Teresa Piaggio (Saxon City hotelier), Vittorio Sancisi, Franco Balducci (Bull's friend), Giovanni Filidoro (Old John), Giovanni Cianfriglia, Michelangelo Mastroni, Mimmo Rizzo (undertaker), Giorgio Trestini (Bull), Furio Meniconi (hangman), Luigi Scavran, Angelo Susani (bounty killer), Gianni Di Segni, Clemente Cipriano, Luigi Masinori
  • Also with: Bob Clark (deputy), Franco Fantasia (bounty killer), Ottorino Polentini (bounty killer), Maurizio Streccioni (saloon guest)
  • Story: Ernesto Gastaldi
  • Screenplay: Ernesto Gastaldi
  • Cinematography: Mario Vulpiani [Eastmancolor - CinemaScope 2,35:1]
  • Assistant director/gofer: Harald Buggenig (uncredited)
  • Music: Luis Bacalov (as "Luis Enriquez" in the English credits)
  • Producer: Henryk Choroscicki, Ettore Rosboch, Alfonso Sansone (uncredited)
  • Co-produced by Mount Street Films (Rome), Corona Films (Munich), Terra Films (Berlin) and Societé Nouvelle de Cinematographie (Paris)

The Film

Il Grande Duello is the original title of this Italian/French/West German production. The titular duel pits hard-bitten gunslinger Clayton (Lee Van Cleef) against the equally gritty Saxon (Horst Frank). Before this takes place, however, Clayton champions the cause of Newland (Peter O'Brien) a young punk who'd been framed on a murder charge. One of the beauties of the spaghetti western genre is that there were seldom any clearly defined Good or Bad Guys. This helped to keep the audience guessing as to the ultimate outcome of the film, thereby increasing the entertainment value tenfold.

Versions and Censorship

  • UK version cut by 3-5 seconds for animal cruelty
  • German DVD is slightly cut
  • IMDb lists 98min runtime
  • The German version, while not actually longer, is cut slightly differently with minor deviations in footage, as a comparison included on the Arrow Video BluRay illustrates


Dentice didn't dub himself.


Dentice was paid 3 million lire.

Jo Barrell (played by Hans Terofal) speaks some German (at least in the English dub)


Pisa; Eliios Films...


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