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Road Demon (1938)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Sport | 2 December 1938 (USA)
At the Indianapolis Speedway mobsters try to bump off a young racer just as they did his dad. Junk yard owner tap dances.



(original screenplay), (original screenplay)


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Complete credited cast:
Henry Arthur ...
Jimmy Blake
Papa Luigi Gambini
Ted Rogers (as Tom Beck)
Hap Flynn
Eddie Marr ...
Skid Miller (as Edward Marr)
Bud Casey
Inez Palange ...
Johnnie Pirrone Jr. ...
Tony Gambini (as Johnny Pironne Jr.)
Eleanor Virzie ...


At the Indianapolis Speedway mobsters try to bump off a young racer just as they did his dad. Junk yard owner tap dances. Written by Ed Stephan <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Sport


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

2 December 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Pista da Morte  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Filmed June 27-late July 1938, released December 2. See more »


Follows Speed to Burn (1938) See more »

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User Reviews

"Road Demon," second of the Gambini family three picture series
17 November 2009 | by (Youngstown,Ohio) – See all my reviews

1938's "Speed to Burn" introduced the Gambini family, Henry Armetta as Papa, Inez Palange as Mama, Johnny Pironne Jr. and Eleanor Virzie the two children, all returning in this sequel, "Road Demon." Aspiring race car driver Jimmy Blake (Henry Arthur) constantly calls upon Papa Gambini to help him build up a junked race car, so that he can win the heart of pretty Joan Rogers (Joan Valerie), whose race driver brother Ted (Thomas Beck) is given half the percentage. The siblings are unaware that their father was murdered by racketeers led by Anderson (Jonathan Hale), run off the track a year earlier, profiting by any means possible by ending Ted's career the same way. Edward Gargan shows up as a truck driver, while Bill 'Bojangles' Robinson plays the tap dancing junk dealer. The three drivers in Anderson's employ are played by Murray Alper, Edward J. Marr, and Lon Chaney, whose character of Bud Casey is the only one to dish it out to Anderson for the fadeout. This was a rare featured role during Chaney's two years at Fox, usually only in 'B' programmers, of which this certainly qualifies. He'd earlier played a small bit in "Speed to Burn," and does not appear in "Winner Take All," the last of the brief series, all three of which had a different supporting cast apart from the Gambini quartet, and all directed by Otto Brower.

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