The High and the Mighty is a 1954 American "disaster" film directed by William A. Wellman and written by Ernest K. Gann who also wrote the novel on which his screenplay was based. The film's cast was headlined by John Wayne, who was also the project's co-producer. Composer Dimitri Tiomkin won an Academy Award for his original score while his title song for the film also was nominated for an Oscar (but the title song did not actually appear in release prints, nor, indeed, in the recent restoration, of the film). The supporting cast includes Claire Trevor, Laraine Day, Robert Stack, Jan Sterling, Phil Harris and Robert Newton. In Honolulu, a DC-4 airliner prepares to take off for San Francisco with 17 passengers and a crew of 5. Former captain Dan Roman (played by John Wayne), the flight's veteran first officer known for his habit of whistling, is haunted by a crash that killed his wife and son and left him with a permanent limp. The captain, Sullivan (Robert Stack), suffers from a secret fear of responsibility after logging thousands of hours looking after the lives of passengers and crew. Young second officer Hobie Wheeler (William Campbell) and veteran navigator Lenny Wilby (Wally Brown) are contrasts in age and experience. Stewardess Spalding (Doe Avedon) attends her passengers, each with varying personal problems, and befriends the terminally ill Frank Briscoe (Paul Fix) after being charmed by his pocket watch. A last minute arrival, Humphrey Agnew (Sidney Blackmer), soon causes her misgivings by his strange behavior.