Return of Sabata (1971)


Return of Sabata (Italian: È tornato Sabata … hai chiuso un’altra volta (original title), lit. ’Sabata is back … you’re finished again’) is a 1971 Spaghetti Western film directed by Gianfranco Parolini.

The third film in The Sabata Trilogy, it features the return of Lee Van Cleef as the title character, which he had played in the first film, Sabata, but was replaced by Yul Brynner in the second film, Adiós, Sabata, due to a scheduling conflict.


Sabata, a former Confederate army officer and steely eyed, quick-drawing, impossibly accurate gunman with a trick gun, is working for a travelling circus as a stunt marksman. The circus comes to a small Texas town, where a former subordinate officer, a lieutenant from the army is running a crooked casino. The man owes Sabata $5,000 from sometime ago. Then the circus manager runs off with the circus funds, so Sabata decides to stay in town and try to collect on the debt from his friend. Sabata then runs into conflict with the town’s land baron, McIntock, who imposes high taxes on gambling, drinking and prostitution with the supposed idea of building the town up, using the money. Sabata, who is after the money himself, finds out that the townspeople’s money in McIntock’s safe is counterfeit and that he and the priest have hidden it elsewhere, in the form of gold coins. After a few attempts on his life and many badmen dying under his guns, Sabata and the lieutenant are apparently killed so McIntock goes for the money, only to find them both still alive. Sabata is helped throughout by his friends; the acrobat, his partner and a fat, pompous man who is anything but what he seems.


  • Lee Van Cleef as Sabata.
  • Reiner Schöne as Clyde.
  • Giampiero Albertini as Joe McIntock.
  • Ignazio Spalla as Bronco.
  • Annabella Incontrera as Maggie.
  • Jacqueline Alexandre as Jackie McIntock.
  • Vassili Karis as Bionda the acrobat.
  • Aldo Canti (as Nick Jordan) as Angel the acrobat.
  • Gianni Rizzo as Jeremy Sweeney.
  • Steffen Zacharias as Donovan.
  • Pia Giancaro as Diane.
  • John Bartha as Sheriff.
  • Günther Stoll as Circus Showman.
  • Carmelo Reale as Chuck.
  • Franco Fantasia as Circus Owner.


  • In the song that is sung over the opening credits, Sabata is referred to as a “nine-fingered man.”
    • This was a reference to actor Lee Van Cleef who was missing a portion of a middle finger, the result of an accident when building a playhouse for his daughter.

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s):
    • Gianfranco Parolini … (as Frank Kramer).
  • Producer(s):
    • Alberto Grimaldi … producer.
  • Writer(s):
    • Renato Izzo … (story and screenplay).
    • Gianfranco Parolini … (story and screenplay).
  • Music:
    • Marcello Giombini.
  • Cinematography:
    • Sandro Mancori … director of photography.
  • Editor(s):
    • Gianfranco Parolini (uncredited).
  • Production:
    • Produzioni Europee Associate (PEA) (a co-production) (as PEA Produzioni Europee Associati S.a.S. Rome).
    • Les Productions Artistes Associés (a co-production) (as Les Productions Artistes Associes S.A. Paris).
    • Artemis Film (a co-production) (as Artemis Film GMBH Berlin).
  • Distributor(s):
    • United Artists Europa (1971) (Italy) (theatrical) (dubbed).
    • C.B. Films S.A. (1972) (Spain) (theatrical).
    • Filmzentrum (1972) (Austria) (theatrical).
    • Kommunenes Filmcentral (KF) (1972) (Norway) (theatrical).
    • Les Artistes Associés (1972) (France) (theatrical).
    • Nova Film (1972) (Netherlands) (theatrical).
    • United Artists (A-Asia) (1972) (Australia) (theatrical).
    • United Artists (1972) (Argentina) (theatrical) (as Artistas Unidos).
    • United Artists (1972) (USA) (theatrical) (dubbed).
    • United Artists (1972) (West Germany) (theatrical).
    • United Artists (1973) (UK) (theatrical) (dubbed).
    • United Artists (1973) (Sweden) (theatrical).
    • Explosive-Media (2015) (Germany) (DVD).
    • Skouras Films (1972) (Greece) (theatrical).
    • Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment (2005) (Netherlands) (DVD).
    • El 9 Besepi S.L. (2021) (Spain) (all media).
    • Eureka Entertainment (2021) (UK) (Blu-ray).
    • Explosive-Media (2015) (Germany) (Blu-ray) (as ‘Sabata kehrt zurück’).
    • Kino Lorber (2017) (USA) (Blu-ray) (DVD).
    • MGM Home Entertainment (2005) (Germany) (DVD).
    • MGM/UA Home Entertainment (VHS).
    • Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment (2007) (Netherlands) (DVD).
    • Warner Home Video (West Germany) (VHS).
  • Release Date: 03 September 1971 (Italy).
  • Rating: A.
  • Running Time: 100 minutes.
  • Country: Italy.
  • Language: English.

Video Clip(s)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.