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Back at the Front

Back at the Front (titled Willie and Joe in Tokyo in the UK) is a 1952 American comedy film directed by George Sherman and starring Tom Ewell and Harvey Lembeck, very loosely based on the characters Willie and Joe by Bill Mauldin. It is a sequel to Up Front (1951).

Back at the Front
Directed byGeorge Sherman
StarringTom Ewell
Harvey Lembeck
CinematographyClifford Stine
Edited byPaul Weatherwax
Distributed byUniversal-International
Release date
  • October 1952 (1952-10)
Running time
87 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1.3 million (US rentals)[1]


Willie (Ewell) and Joe (Lembeck) are two U.S. Army veterans of World War II who got through the war by Goldbricking. After returning to civilian life they are recalled to active duty and end up part of the post war occupation forces in Japan. Chaos ensues as they attempt one con job after another in order to avoid work details and get leave to spend time in Tokyo.

Mauldin repudiated both films, and refused his advising fee.



  1. ^ 'Top Box-Office Hits of 1952', Variety, January 7, 1953

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