Filmed December 10 to 29, 1928. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for details.
Title sheet prepared by H. M. Walker on January 4, 1929.
Copyrighted April 1, 1929, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Corporation. Registration no. LP265. Renewed
September 13, 1956, with registration no. R176895. This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2024.
Released May 4, 1929. It was the 85th film in the series to be released. That is, unless "Small Talk" was
released earlier, as per some sources, in which case "Fast Freight" would have been the 86th release.
Probable opening title: '"Our Gang" Comedies - Hal Roach presents His Rascals in "Fast
Featured role. He does almost all of the talking among the white kids.
Supporting role. He gets his rear end burned on the train, and keeps falling into a vat of flour at the old house.
Mary Ann Jackson
Supporting role. She does mostly ensemble work, but gets a moment where her rear end catches on fire.
Bobby "Wheezer" Hutchins
Supporting role. The nickname doesn't appear in this print. He does mostly ensemble work, but has a
featured scene where he's throwing lightbulbs.
Supporting role. She does almost entirely ensemble acting in this short.
Pete (no. 1) as "Petie"
Featured role. He rides the rails with Farina, and is featured in many gags along the way.
Bit part. The wolf that walks between the kids looks quite a lot like a German shepherd to me, and
presumably the one seen in "Barnum & Ringling, Inc." (no. 74).
Bit part. The MGM lion appears at the opening of the film.
(1.) The frog that gets under Farina's hat.
(2.) The owl that spooks Farina.
(3.) The lizard that crawls down the back of Mary Ann's coat.
The bees that Farina lets loose under the train, including both real ones and animated.
Robert Dudley as the chief of police
Small part. He shows up at the end of the film to round up the runaways.
(1.) The face in the spooky wall painting, which Maltin & Bann identify as James Finlayson, but I have
to admit to some skepticism.
(2.) The railroad worker who closes the train door on Farina.
(3.) The conductor seen on the back of the train.
15 shooting dates went into the making of this film. Shooting for "Wiggle Your Ears" was still being directed
by Robert F. McGowan when the 'start' date for "Fast Freight," directed by Anthony Mack, arrived on Dec.
10th. "Wiggle Your Ears" continued until Dec. 12th, after which "Fast Freight" continued until the
'finish' date of Dec. 27th. Two days later, on Dec. 29th, train shots were taken on what proved to be the last
day of shooting. No shooting took place on Dec. 9th or Dec. 23rd, which were both Sundays. However, there was shooting on
Sunday, Dec. 16th, no doubt to create a day off on Dec. 24th. And, of course, no shooting took place on Christmas, Dec.
25th. After this, five weeks passed before the Our Gang unit began to shoot "Little Mother" (no. 86).
The studio was closed for four of those weeks.
Pete puts on a record called "The Ravings Of John McCullough."
The script submitted to MGM was given the catalog number B406.
This is a home movie print from Blackhawk Films. The inter-titles are remade, but retain the original
wording. The picture quality is fairly good. The footage totals 22:32, with about 20:05 of it original.
This copy is a home movie print from Blackhawk, but with the company name blacked out. It includes a
textual introduction. The inter-titles have been remade, but appear to retain the original wording. At least a couple
seem to be missing from this print. The picture quality is fairly good. The print totals 19:51, with about 17:15
of it original footage. Ignoring the inter-titles, it appears that almost all of the original version is included.
This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.
There's a European video release of this film lasting 18:06 which has better picture quality than
the Grapevine version. The titles are all remade, with the object of making them appear original. However, the font is not
quite the same as on the original prints, and there are a few instances of misspellings and the like. Also, Farina's
pamphlet advertising California is reproduced in a less-than-accurate fashion. Music is provided by the Beau Hunks
with sound effects.
My thanks to the following people for assisting with this page: Henry Sorenson (for providing info about the European video release of this film) Rob Stone (for providing the production number and shooting dates) Joe Moore (for providing the copyright information)