The Mark of the Renegade

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Mark of the Renegade
Directed by Hugo Fregonese
Screenplay by
Based onDon Renegade
by Johnston McCulley
Produced by Jack J. Gross
Cinematography Charles P. Boyle
Edited byFrank Gross
Music by Frank Skinner
Universal Pictures
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release date
  • July 24, 1951 (1951-07-24)(Los Angeles)
  • August 2, 1951 (1951-08-02)(New York City)
Running time
81 minutes
CountryUnited States

Mark of the Renegade is a 1951 American Technicolor adventure western film directed by Hugo Fregonese starring Ricardo Montalban and Cyd Charisse. [1] The film is based on the novel Don Renegade by Johnston McCulley, and is set in Mexican-ruled Los Angeles in the 1820s.



In 1825, after fleeing a pirate ship, Marcos Zappa is taken to meet Don Pedro Garcia, whose ambition is to be emperor of California for the Republic of Mexico. Able to blackmail Marcos because of an "R" mark hidden beneath his bandanna permanently identifying Marcos as a renegade and traitor, Garcia schemes to have Marcos seduce and marry Manuella, the daughter of his rival, Jose de Marquez, having been rejected as a suitor himself.

Manuella is already engaged to be married to Miguel De Gandara. A gambling-house owner, Anita Gonzales, in league with Garcia, is angry when Marcos fails to succumb to her charms. Manuella is attracted to Marcos but not sure how much to trust him. He reveals the "R" brand as a demonstration of good faith. They spend a night together, whereupon her father insists they marry.

At the wedding, Miguel jealously challenges Marcos to a duel. Anita then exposes Marcos as a disloyal renegade, only to have it revealed that the "R" brand has been faked, with Marcos working undercover to unearth Garcia's treachery. In a sword fight, Marcos kills Garcia, then is free to marry Manuella.


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  1. Blottner p.157