The Black Kino Fist: Black life as depicted in film history

No Way Out (1950)

"Lester Samuels, in a NYT article dated 30 Jul 1950, stated that he originally wanted to write about 'the cancerous results of hatred,' but did not intend to focus on an African-American doctor until he learned from colleagues of his daughter's fiancé, a doctor, about the problems faced by African-Americans doctors. According to correspondence in the Twentieth Century-Fox Produced Scripts Collection, a number of Fox producers who examined the story before the purchase were enthusiastic about it and wanted to produce it, including Otto Preminger, Sol Siegel and Nunnally Johnson. Johnson called the story, 'the most reasonable approach to the racial question in a dramatic form that I have seen. It argues for professional fairness and equality, not for social reasons but for purely practical purposes.'
A 17 Oct 1949 LADN article asserted that the picture, which was about to start shooting, 'will differ from its predecessors in that it will consider Negroes as everyday citizens in a big American city. Previous pictures have dealt with less representative phases of Negro life.' In the article, Mankiewicz stated, 'we are dealing with the absolute blood and guts, the bread and potatoes, so to speak, of Negro hating. Darryl F. Zanuck decided to produce this picture because, as he said, 'We want to tell a story of the Negro in a white man's everyday world, rather than the Negro in the Negro's world.' We are going to show the kind of hate the Negro runs up against in his daily life, how he is afraid to walk on certain streets." Studio press material noted that the studio delayed the film so that it would be released a year after Pinky (see below) in order to achieve 'a gradual build-up to audience receptivity.'"
- American Film Institute 
The film also featured Sidney Poitier's feature film debut.
Status: Available for purchase.
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