Devil's Lottery (1932)

74 or 77-78 mins | Drama | 27 March 1932

Director:

Sam Taylor

Writer:

Guy Bolton

Cinematographer:

Ernest Palmer

Editor:

Harold Schuster

Production Designer:

William Darling

Production Company:

Fox Film Corp.
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HISTORY

Production was originally scheduled to begin on 5 Oct 1931. Fox trade paper advertising billing sheets incorrectly list 27 Nov 1932 as the release date of this ... More Less

Production was originally scheduled to begin on 5 Oct 1931. Fox trade paper advertising billing sheets incorrectly list 27 Nov 1932 as the release date of this film. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
3 Apr 32
p. 10.
HF
6 Feb 32
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Oct 31
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Nov 31
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Feb 32
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald
9 Apr 32
p. 23.
New York Times
2 Apr 32
p. 13.
Variety
5 Apr 32
p. 23.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
Sam Taylor Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
WRITERS
Contr wrt
Contr wrt
Contr wrt
Contr wrt
Contr wrt
Contr wrt
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Cost
SOUND
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Devil's Lottery by Nalbro Bartley (New York, 1931).
DETAILS
Release Date:
27 March 1932
Production Date:
4 January--early February 1932
Copyright Claimant:
Fox Film Corp.
Copyright Date:
1 March 1932
Copyright Number:
LP2911
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
74 or 77-78
Length(in feet):
6,640
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

After his horse, King Midas, wins the English Derby, newspaper magnate Lord Litchfield invites the winners of the corresponding Calcutta Sweepstakes to his estate in Devonshire to see how the winnings will change their lives. Arriving for the weekend are Evelyn Beresford, whose scandalous past is the object of gossip; American Stephen Alden with his fiancée, Joan Mather, an art student who encourages Stephen to continue his plans to study archeology at Oxford despite the second thoughts he voices now that he has won; Mrs. Mary Ann Meech, a lower-class working woman who becomes miserly and refuses to give her son Jim, a former boxer, any of her winnings; and Captain Geoffrey Maitland, who has been confined to a hospital since being paralyzed by shrapnel in World War I. Maitland recognizes Evelyn as the last woman with whom he danced before the war and tells her that if she loved him he could overcome his paralysis and put his arm around her. Evelyn, however, has become enamored of Stephen. Although Stephen is excited by the chance for adventure that a romance with her represents to him, she encourages him not to break with Joan. Major Hugo Beresford, Evelyn's lover and supposed husband, whom Litchfield recognizes as a card cheat, arrives and tries to blackmail Evelyn. After Beresford wins £600 from Jim by cheating at poker, Jim breaks into his mother's room at night to steal her money. Mrs. Meech screams and retreats to her closet where she is later found to have died of shock or suffocation. Joan leaves Stephen and Evelyn accepts his invitation to meet on the Riviera. However, after Jim, who ... +


After his horse, King Midas, wins the English Derby, newspaper magnate Lord Litchfield invites the winners of the corresponding Calcutta Sweepstakes to his estate in Devonshire to see how the winnings will change their lives. Arriving for the weekend are Evelyn Beresford, whose scandalous past is the object of gossip; American Stephen Alden with his fiancée, Joan Mather, an art student who encourages Stephen to continue his plans to study archeology at Oxford despite the second thoughts he voices now that he has won; Mrs. Mary Ann Meech, a lower-class working woman who becomes miserly and refuses to give her son Jim, a former boxer, any of her winnings; and Captain Geoffrey Maitland, who has been confined to a hospital since being paralyzed by shrapnel in World War I. Maitland recognizes Evelyn as the last woman with whom he danced before the war and tells her that if she loved him he could overcome his paralysis and put his arm around her. Evelyn, however, has become enamored of Stephen. Although Stephen is excited by the chance for adventure that a romance with her represents to him, she encourages him not to break with Joan. Major Hugo Beresford, Evelyn's lover and supposed husband, whom Litchfield recognizes as a card cheat, arrives and tries to blackmail Evelyn. After Beresford wins £600 from Jim by cheating at poker, Jim breaks into his mother's room at night to steal her money. Mrs. Meech screams and retreats to her closet where she is later found to have died of shock or suffocation. Joan leaves Stephen and Evelyn accepts his invitation to meet on the Riviera. However, after Jim, who has learned of Beresford's cheating, kills him, Stephen, who threatened Beresford when he earlier struggled with Evelyn, is arrested. Maitland, who had a stroke after witnessing Jim enter Beresford's window, cannot speak to absolve Stephen until Evelyn looks tenderly into his eyes and touches his hand. He is then able to write "No" in answer to the question of Stephen's guilt. Stephen, disillusioned because of Evelyn's contrived confession of her many past affairs, leaves for Oxford with Joan, who returned when she read about his arrest. Evelyn refuses Lord Litchfield's invitation to take a cruise on his yacht and stays with Maitland, who now can reach his hand to her. +

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.