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HISTORY

A Jul 1951 DV news item states that American independent producer Robert L. Lippert hired the actors but then charged their salaries to James Carreras, owner of Exclusive Films, Ltd., the film's British production company. Hal Wallis Productions loaned Lizabeth Scott to Lippert for the picture. According to information in the file on the film in the MPAA/PCA collection at the AMPAS library, the Breen office objected to film's portrayal of the antagonist, "Lily," as the only character to trying to uphold "the sanctity of marriage," while the sympathetic leads "treat marriage lightly." To this end, the writers were instructed to have "Phil" re-lock the train door in the closing scene to establish that he was not to blame for her death. The viewed print was missing the first few frames of the opening ... More Less

A Jul 1951 DV news item states that American independent producer Robert L. Lippert hired the actors but then charged their salaries to James Carreras, owner of Exclusive Films, Ltd., the film's British production company. Hal Wallis Productions loaned Lizabeth Scott to Lippert for the picture. According to information in the file on the film in the MPAA/PCA collection at the AMPAS library, the Breen office objected to film's portrayal of the antagonist, "Lily," as the only character to trying to uphold "the sanctity of marriage," while the sympathetic leads "treat marriage lightly." To this end, the writers were instructed to have "Phil" re-lock the train door in the closing scene to establish that he was not to blame for her death. The viewed print was missing the first few frames of the opening credits. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
7 Jun 1952.
---
Daily Variety
28 Jul 1951.
---
Daily Variety
23 May 1952.
---
Hollywood Reporter
15 Nov 51
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Nov 51
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Dec 51
p. 18.
Hollywood Reporter
23 May 1952.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
7 Jun 1952.
---
Variety
28 May 52
p. 22.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Hammer Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITERS
Based on an orig story by
Based on an original story by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Lizabeth Scott's ward
SOUND
DANCE
Spec number
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
Casting dir
SOURCES
SONGS
"By the Light of the Silvery Moon," music by Gus Edwards, lyrics by Edward Madden.
DETAILS
Release Date:
16 June 1952
Premiere Information:
London opening: 2 May 1952
Production Date:
late October--early December 1951 at Riverside Studios, London
Copyright Claimant:
Exclusive Films, Ltd.
Copyright Date:
12 May 1952
Copyright Number:
LP1695
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
71
Length(in feet):
6,436
Length(in reels):
8
Countries:
United Kingdom, United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
15740
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Dr. Philip Ritter, a London plastic surgeon, believes that physical deformities can lead to a life of crime. Along with his partner, Dr. John Wilson, he rejects more lucrative work removing wrinkles from vain socialites in favor of operating on criminals at a local prison in the hope of reforming them. One day, the prison doctor informs Philip about a young woman named Lily Colvert, who turned to robbery after being horribly scarred during the war, and Philip promises her a new face and a new life. Driving home from work that night, Philip is so exhausted from overwork that he almost crashes his car, and Jack insists that he take a vacation. On the way to his country cabin, however, a sudden storm forces Philip to take shelter at a small inn. As he settles into bed, he is awoken by the coughing of his next-door neighbor. Annoyed, he knocks on the door to offer aspirin and whiskey, only to discover that the culprit is the stunning pianist Alice Brent. He ministers to her cold and within days the two are falling in love. They spend a magical week together, but at the end of the week, Philip asks Alice to marry him and she cries and runs out of the room. The next day, she leaves mysteriously, and although Philip finally tracks her to her home, she spurns his call. Instead, she turns guiltily to her fiancé David, declaring that she owes him everything and will never leave him. Distraught, Philip dives into the only project that holds interest for him, the reconstruction of Lily's face. Days later, Alice calls to admit that she ran away because ... +


Dr. Philip Ritter, a London plastic surgeon, believes that physical deformities can lead to a life of crime. Along with his partner, Dr. John Wilson, he rejects more lucrative work removing wrinkles from vain socialites in favor of operating on criminals at a local prison in the hope of reforming them. One day, the prison doctor informs Philip about a young woman named Lily Colvert, who turned to robbery after being horribly scarred during the war, and Philip promises her a new face and a new life. Driving home from work that night, Philip is so exhausted from overwork that he almost crashes his car, and Jack insists that he take a vacation. On the way to his country cabin, however, a sudden storm forces Philip to take shelter at a small inn. As he settles into bed, he is awoken by the coughing of his next-door neighbor. Annoyed, he knocks on the door to offer aspirin and whiskey, only to discover that the culprit is the stunning pianist Alice Brent. He ministers to her cold and within days the two are falling in love. They spend a magical week together, but at the end of the week, Philip asks Alice to marry him and she cries and runs out of the room. The next day, she leaves mysteriously, and although Philip finally tracks her to her home, she spurns his call. Instead, she turns guiltily to her fiancé David, declaring that she owes him everything and will never leave him. Distraught, Philip dives into the only project that holds interest for him, the reconstruction of Lily's face. Days later, Alice calls to admit that she ran away because their love was too threatening and that she is to marry David. Philip continues to work on Lily over months, performing a series of grueling operations while Alice tours the world playing the piano. After her final concert, David approaches Alice and informs her that, since he can tell she is in love with another man, he must leave her. Meanwhile, Lily finally recovers, and when the bandages are removed, her face is identical to Alice's. Convinced that she can be rehabilitated now that she is beautiful, Philip asks Lily to marry him. He changes her clothes, makeup and hair to further mirror Alice. At first they are happy together, but Lily's true crass nature soon surfaces, and she reconnects with her old boyfriend Pete. Within weeks, she is stealing jewelry and furs, and Philip is forced to bribe storekeepers to keep her out of jail. One day, Alice returns to London and visits Philip, eager to tell him that she is no longer engaged. When she enters his office, however, she sees a photo of Lily and he is forced to reveal what he has done. She forgives him, but when Lily sees Alice, she realizes that Philip has created her in Alice's image and threatens to make trouble for him if he tries to control her. Lily begins to throw wild parties in their house, and desperate, Philip writes a letter to Alice stating that he is leaving town. She runs to his house, where Lily's friend mistakes Alice for Lily and reveals that Philip seemed murderously angry. Alice then learns that Lily has left to track Philip down and, worried that he may kill his wife, races to the train. There, a drunken Lily has found Philip's private car and is infuriating him with her ravings. When she lurches for a drink, she almost falls out of the exit door, and Philip grabs her just as Alice opens the inner door. She thinks that Philip is attacking Lily until Lily lunges at Alice's throat. As the two struggle, Lily falls out the exit to her death. The train is stopped, and as Philip puts his arms around Alice to comfort her, the conductor remarks that at least Lily does not have to go through life disfigured. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.