Mystery Woman (1935)

69 mins | Drama | 15 January 1935

Director:

Eugene Forde

Producer:

John Stone

Cinematographer:

Ernest Palmer

Production Designers:

Duncan Cramer, Lewis H. Creber

Production Company:

Fox Film Corp.
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HISTORY

The working titles for this film were Strangers in the Evening , Twenty-Four Hours by Air , Twenty-Four Hours a Day , Twenty-Four Hours , Mystery Blonde and The Mystery Woman . According to news items, Irving Cummings was originally scheduled to direct and Claire Trevor was to star in the film. According to a HR production chart, John Davidson was in the cast; his participation in the final film has not been confirmed. Although a 35mm print of the film is on nine reels, the print is divided into seven parts and the copyright records confirm that the film was originally seven ... More Less

The working titles for this film were Strangers in the Evening , Twenty-Four Hours by Air , Twenty-Four Hours a Day , Twenty-Four Hours , Mystery Blonde and The Mystery Woman . According to news items, Irving Cummings was originally scheduled to direct and Claire Trevor was to star in the film. According to a HR production chart, John Davidson was in the cast; his participation in the final film has not been confirmed. Although a 35mm print of the film is on nine reels, the print is divided into seven parts and the copyright records confirm that the film was originally seven reels. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
8 Oct 34
p. 3.
Daily Variety
7 Dec 34
p. 3.
Film Daily
8-Aug-34
---
Film Daily
8 Jan 35
p. 8.
HF
13 Oct 34
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Oct 34
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Nov 34
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Dec 34
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald
26 Jan 35
p. 47.
New York Times
9 Jan 35
p. 22.
Variety
22 Jan 35
p. 14.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Exec prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
STAND INS
Stunts
Stand-in for Mona Barrie
Stand-in for Gilbert Roland
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Mystery Blonde
Twenty-Four Hours
Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Twenty-Four Hours by Air
Strangers in the Evening
Release Date:
15 January 1935
Premiere Information:
New York opening: week of 9 January 1935
Production Date:
late October--late November 1934
Copyright Claimant:
Fox Film Corp.
Copyright Date:
18 January 1935
Copyright Number:
LP5261
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Noiseless Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
69
Length(in feet):
6,550
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
PCA No:
456
SYNOPSIS

French Captain Jacques Benoit is found guilty of treason and sentenced to life imprisonment at Devil's Island. His wife Margaret subsequently learns that when he was carrying documents back from Athens, Jacques met Dr. Theodore Van Wyke, a celebrated millionaire and art connoisseur, on a train and then stayed at the same hotel with him in Constantinople, where the documents were stolen. Upon learning that Van Wyke plans to travel to New York on the ocean liner Columbia , Margaret, with the assistance of her husband's friend and fellow officer Cambon, obtains a passport under the name of Marguerite Rivaire. On the ship, Margaret attracts the interest of both Van Wyke and Juan Santanda, whose attempts at flirtation she ignores. On the last day of the voyage, Santanda finds a document in Van Wyke's room and, after tearing it in half, hides half of it in his phonograph and gives the other half to Jepson, the ship's bartender. Margaret, who was about to search Van Wyke's room when she saw Santanda leave it, feigns a fall on the ship's stairs and allows Santanda to carry her to his room, where she finds the half of the document hidden in the phonograph while Santanda leaves to get champagne. After Santanda carries Margaret to her room, Van Wyke, after having been alerted by a radiogram that Santanda is the international thief Juan Perez, questions Santanda while his secretary Dmitri searches his room, including the phonograph. The document's absence surprises Santanda, and after the ship docks in New York, he climbs into the window of Margaret's hotel suite and suggests that they go into partnership to ... +


French Captain Jacques Benoit is found guilty of treason and sentenced to life imprisonment at Devil's Island. His wife Margaret subsequently learns that when he was carrying documents back from Athens, Jacques met Dr. Theodore Van Wyke, a celebrated millionaire and art connoisseur, on a train and then stayed at the same hotel with him in Constantinople, where the documents were stolen. Upon learning that Van Wyke plans to travel to New York on the ocean liner Columbia , Margaret, with the assistance of her husband's friend and fellow officer Cambon, obtains a passport under the name of Marguerite Rivaire. On the ship, Margaret attracts the interest of both Van Wyke and Juan Santanda, whose attempts at flirtation she ignores. On the last day of the voyage, Santanda finds a document in Van Wyke's room and, after tearing it in half, hides half of it in his phonograph and gives the other half to Jepson, the ship's bartender. Margaret, who was about to search Van Wyke's room when she saw Santanda leave it, feigns a fall on the ship's stairs and allows Santanda to carry her to his room, where she finds the half of the document hidden in the phonograph while Santanda leaves to get champagne. After Santanda carries Margaret to her room, Van Wyke, after having been alerted by a radiogram that Santanda is the international thief Juan Perez, questions Santanda while his secretary Dmitri searches his room, including the phonograph. The document's absence surprises Santanda, and after the ship docks in New York, he climbs into the window of Margaret's hotel suite and suggests that they go into partnership to sell the document. Margaret agrees, and because one of Van Wyke's men is watching her door, Santanda stays the night in one of her rooms. The next day, they slip out, eluding Van Wyke's man, and go to Jepson's apartment, where they find him stabbed to death and the other half of the document gone. Margaret goes to see Van Wyke, who, although he knows that she stole the document, still hopes to have a romance with her. She arranges to meet him the next day to sell him her half of the document for $600,000. That night, while Van Wyke is out, Margaret and Santanda, who has fallen in love with her, enter Van Wyke's penthouse, where Santanda subdues Dmitri. While Santanda applies a blowtorch to Van Wyke's safe, Dmitri revives and switches the elevator off. After Santanda retrieves the other half of the document, Margaret takes it and tries to escape in the elevator. When it won't go down, she pulls a gun on Santanda, but as he approaches, she fails to fire. She explains that she needs the document to secure her husband's freedom, whereupon Santanda gives it up. When Van Wyke and his men return, Santanda distracts them while Margaret, who passionately kisses him goodbye, escapes. In the elevator, she hears the shoot-out in which both Van Wyke and Santanda fall. Back in France, Benoit's rank is restored, and he is knighted as a member of the Legion of Honor, as Margaret throws him a kiss. +

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.