Undercover Agent (1939)

56 mins | Drama | 5 April 1939

Director:

Howard Bretherton

Writer:

Milton Raison

Producer:

E. B. Derr

Cinematographer:

Arthur Martinelli

Production Designer:

Frank Dexter

Production Company:

Crescent Pictures Corp.
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HISTORY

Although onscreen credits attribute the original story to Martin Mooney, memos from E. B. Derr's office contained in the production file on the film at the AMPAS Library credit Mooney with original screenplay. The Var review credits Russell Schoengarth with film editing, although screen credits only list Howard Dillinger. Actors Shirley Deane and Russell Gleason also co-starred as romantic juvenile leads in the Jones Family series. Modern sources add Dave O'Brien to the cast. ...

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Although onscreen credits attribute the original story to Martin Mooney, memos from E. B. Derr's office contained in the production file on the film at the AMPAS Library credit Mooney with original screenplay. The Var review credits Russell Schoengarth with film editing, although screen credits only list Howard Dillinger. Actors Shirley Deane and Russell Gleason also co-starred as romantic juvenile leads in the Jones Family series. Modern sources add Dave O'Brien to the cast.

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PERSONAL & COMPANY INDEX CREDITS
HISTORY CREDITS
CREDIT TYPE
CREDIT
General (mod):
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Hollywood Reporter
25 Feb 1939
pp. 6-7
Motion Picture Herald
8 Apr 1939
p. 50
Variety
19 Apr 1939
p. 23
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
Scott R. Dunlap Vice President in charge of production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig story
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTOR
Frank Dexter Sr.
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
DETAILS
Release Date:
5 April 1939
Production Date:
began late Feb 1939
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Monogram Pictures Corp.
21 March 1939
LP8742
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
56
Length(in reels):
6
Country:
United States
PCA No:
5174
SYNOPSIS

Postman William Trent races from the mail train to join his fiancée, Betty Madison and her father Thomas, an unemployed actor, before Betty goes to work as a hat check girl in Bartel's betting parlor. Bartel's business has been bad lately, in part due to the popularity of the sweepstakes. Consequently, he decides to set up a phony sweepstakes and sends his man Slicker to France to mail back receipts for the Monte Carlo Sweepstakes to make the scam look legitimate. When ticket sales take off, Thomas becomes a ticket agent to pay his bar tab. Meanwhile, Trent passes the postal inspector's test and takes Betty to Patrick Murphy's pawnshop to buy an engagement ring. While they are there, the shop is robbed and Trent uses his service revolver to apprehend the robber. Although Trent is hailed as a hero, he has violated postal regulations by carrying his revolver while off duty, and consequently, is suspended for ninety days by his supervisor, Mr. Graham. When Trent hears about the new sweepstakes, he becomes suspicious and offers Graham his services as an agent. Although Graham is unable to commission Trent as an agent, he asks to be kept informed. Trent follows Bartell's runner, Pussyfoot, to the betting parlor, where he creates a scene to gain entrance to Bartell's office. Once inside, Trent sees the records and reports back to Graham who sets up a raid for the next day. When Thomas tells his future son-in-law about his new income, Trent tells him about the raid to prevent him from selling more tickets. Drunk, Thomas goes to the bartender and demands his money back, ...

More Less

Postman William Trent races from the mail train to join his fiancée, Betty Madison and her father Thomas, an unemployed actor, before Betty goes to work as a hat check girl in Bartel's betting parlor. Bartel's business has been bad lately, in part due to the popularity of the sweepstakes. Consequently, he decides to set up a phony sweepstakes and sends his man Slicker to France to mail back receipts for the Monte Carlo Sweepstakes to make the scam look legitimate. When ticket sales take off, Thomas becomes a ticket agent to pay his bar tab. Meanwhile, Trent passes the postal inspector's test and takes Betty to Patrick Murphy's pawnshop to buy an engagement ring. While they are there, the shop is robbed and Trent uses his service revolver to apprehend the robber. Although Trent is hailed as a hero, he has violated postal regulations by carrying his revolver while off duty, and consequently, is suspended for ninety days by his supervisor, Mr. Graham. When Trent hears about the new sweepstakes, he becomes suspicious and offers Graham his services as an agent. Although Graham is unable to commission Trent as an agent, he asks to be kept informed. Trent follows Bartell's runner, Pussyfoot, to the betting parlor, where he creates a scene to gain entrance to Bartell's office. Once inside, Trent sees the records and reports back to Graham who sets up a raid for the next day. When Thomas tells his future son-in-law about his new income, Trent tells him about the raid to prevent him from selling more tickets. Drunk, Thomas goes to the bartender and demands his money back, and Bartel's men take him back to headquarters where they prepare to flee. As Betty calls Graham, Trent and Thomas turn the tables on the gang and hold them until Graham arrives with his agents to take them into custody. Trent is then reinstated and immediately promoted to postal inspector so that he and Betty can get married.

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

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