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Elmer Gantry

Elmer Gantry is a 1960 film which tells the story of a con man who teams up with a female evangelist to sell religion to small-town America. It stars Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Arthur Kennedy, Dean Jagger, Shirley Jones, Patti Page, Edward Andrews and John McIntire.

The movie was adapted by Richard Brooks from the novel by Sinclair Lewis. It was directed by Brooks.

It won Academy Awards for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Burt Lancaster), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Shirley Jones) and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium. It was also nominated for Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture and Best Picture.

When the movie first played on television, the entire subplot involving Shirley Jones as a prostitute (even though she had won an Academy Award for the part) was cut out, because it clashed with her then-wholesome image as the mother from The Partridge Family.