IMDb > The Bad Sister (1931)
The Bad Sister
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The Bad Sister (1931) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 13% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Edwin H. Knopf (adaptation)
Edwin H. Knopf (dialogue)
View company contact information for The Bad Sister on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 March 1931 (USA) See more »
She was a bad, bad girl - but Oh! how Good at the box office! (Trade paper ad). See more »
Marianne falls in love with a con artist who has a hidden agenda. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
(3 articles)
User Reviews:
Foolish sister would be closer the mark See more (15 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Conrad Nagel ... Dr. Dick Lindley

Sidney Fox ... Marianne Madison

Bette Davis ... Laura Madison

Humphrey Bogart ... Valentine Corliss

Charles Winninger ... Mr. Madison

Emma Dunn ... Mrs. Madison

Zasu Pitts ... Minnie

Slim Summerville ... Sam

Bert Roach ... Wade Trumbull

David Durand ... Hedrick Madison
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Mary Alden ... Minor Role (uncredited)

King Baggot ... Policeman on Street (uncredited)
Sammy Blum ... Dave - Townsman / Investor (uncredited)

Helene Chadwick ... Amy, Sam's Wife (uncredited)

Grace Cunard ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Charles Giblyn ... Townsman / Investor (uncredited)
Payne B. Johnson ... Baby (uncredited)
Cornelius Keefe ... New Father in Hospital (uncredited)

Cyril Ring ... Doctor (uncredited)

Will Walling ... Townsman / Investor (uncredited)

Dick Winslow ... Paper Boy (uncredited)

Directed by
Hobart Henley 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Edwin H. Knopf  adaptation (as Edwin Knopf)
Edwin H. Knopf  dialogue (as Edwin Knopf)
Edwin H. Knopf  screenplay (as Edwin Knopf)
Tom Reed  adaptation
Tom Reed  screenplay
Raymond L. Schrock  adaptation
Raymond L. Schrock  screenplay
Booth Tarkington  novel "The Flirt"

Produced by
Carl Laemmle Jr. .... producer
Cinematography by
Karl Freund 
Film Editing by
Ted J. Kent  (as Ted Kent)
Art Direction by
Walter Koessler  (as Walter R. Koessler)
Sound Department
C. Roy Hunter .... recording supervisor
Editorial Department
Maurice Pivar .... supervising editor
Music Department
David Broekman .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Other crew
Carl Laemmle .... presenter
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
68 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.20 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Did You Know?

Bette Davis' first film. In her later appearances on TV talk shows, whenever an interviewer asked Bette "What was your first film?", her frequent response was: "It was called THE BAD SISTER. And I played the GOOD sister!" Invariably, the audience would roar with laughter and applaud.See more »
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6 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Foolish sister would be closer the mark, 4 August 2014
Author: jjnxn-1 from United States

Bette's first picture is a by the numbers affair. She seems a bit stiff at times as if she's still getting use to the camera, an unease that would vanish quickly. It's not hard to see why she was referred to as the little brown wren when she debuted. Her hairstyle and wardrobe are dowdy, even more so when you consider she's playing the younger "good" sister. Universal never did understand her appeal so it's fortunate that she didn't remain there long.

A word or two about the title, Sidney Fox the bad sister of the title, is more foolish and naive then really bad in the fashion that Bette would one day make the word mean. Fox was getting the big push from Universal but she makes little impact in the lead. Humphrey Bogart also just starting out is slender and attractive and even though his character has a bit more depth it's still a stock one. A good supporting cast, including Charles Winninger and ZaSu Pitts, helps but this is worth seeing only as a document of Davis's first film and early Bogie.

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