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Lady of Burlesque (1943)

After one member of their group is murdered, the performers at a burlesque house must work together to find out who the killer is before they strike again.



(novel), (screenplay)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gee Gee Graham
Dolly Baxter
Victoria Faust ...
Lolita La Verne
The Princess Nirvena
Charles Dingle ...
Inspector Harrigan
Marion Martin ...
Alice Angel
Pete Gordon ...
Officer Pat Kelly (as Eddie Gordon)
Frank Fenton ...
Russell Rogers
Pinky Lee ...
Frank Conroy ...
'Stacchi' Stacciaro
Lew Kelly ...
The Hermit


Sassy Dixie Daisy is the hot new attraction at a former opera house that's been turned into a burlesque theater. She's popular with the customers, although not with Lolita La Verne, a stuck-up diva who was hoping she'd get the top spot. Also complicating matters is the return of the Princess Nirvena, the show's former star who once had a fling with the boss. When the Princess blackmails her way into the top spot, Dixie is none too pleased. When both Lolita and the Princess are murdered, Dixie becomes a prime suspect. She then sets up a trap to nail the real killer. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


GIRLS and GAGS! MUSIC and MIRTH! See more »


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

1 May 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The G-String Murders  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A studio plot synopsis indicates that the film originally contained the following opening scene: Burlesque dancers "Dixie Daisy" and "Gee Gee Graham" perform in Columbus, Ohio. While eating breakfast in a cafeteria one morning they read the tea leaves in the bottom of their cups, and see a trip and violent death predicted for their future. Just then Dixie receives a telegram from burlesque impresario "S.B. Foss" inviting her to perform at his theater in New York. Dixie makes her debut a week later. As this scene was not included in the viewed print, and is not referred to in reviews, it may have been cut prior to the film's press preview. See more »


Dixie comes off stage in one costume and goes to the dressing room where the body is found. When the performers are questioned by the police, Dixie is in an entirely different costume. See more »


Biff: Aren't you a teeny weeny bit glad to see me back?
Dixie: [pause] No.
See more »


Featured in The Lady in Question Is Charles Busch (2005) See more »


Burlique Bugle
Music by Gene Rose
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User Reviews

One-of-a-Kind Mystery From a Gypsy Rose Lee Novel; Delightful Fun
26 June 2005 | by See all my reviews

Gypsy Rose Lee wrote several mystery novels. The most famous is "The G-String Murders", from which "Lady of Burlesque" was adapted. The novel is delightful, as many have noted, opening a window onto a lost world of performances and the lives of those who peopled it. Director William Wellman and writer James Gunn combined their talents with Bernard Herbzrun's inspired art direction to produce a wonderfully-mounted B/W classic of images, characters and mystery here. Heading the cast are dynamic Barbara Stanwyck, Marion Martin, Pinky Lee, J. Edward Bromberg as the policeman on the case and Michael O'Shea as the brash but lovable comic who pursues Stanwyck. The storyline involved rivalries, pretensions and tensions among the ladies of a burlesque troupe; the plot is about respect and how the characters plan to obtain it. The entry of a murderer into the performers' insular and fascinating world of performing and being apart from a society which finds them amusing, exotic and unknowable makes this an interesting "island" vehicle, one used for examining and exampling human values, ideas and actions. The rooftop sequences are still stunning; I find that the human values retain their potency to move and to interest. Stanwyck is marvelous, O'Shea and Pinky Lee perfect. Marion Martin and Iris Adrian, as well as Bromberg, get everything out of their parts that is there, and then some. One-of-a-kind because of Miss Lee's authenticity. faithfully reproduced on screen with swift pace and intelligence. Highly recommended for its atmosphere and for much, much more.

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Lady of Burlesque (1943) Remake jastsp1
bad reception kaye-paletz9
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