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The Sellout (1952)

Approved | | Crime, Drama | 6 June 1952 (Australia)
Haven D. Allridge is the editor-in-chief of the News-Intelligencer newspaper in St. Howard, a town where he and his family have lived all their lives. Peggy, Randy and Marcia Staunton - ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (story)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Haven D. Allridge
Chick Johnson
Cleo Bethel
Peggy Stauton
Kellwin C. Burke
Randy Stauton
Capt. Buck Maxwell
Nelson S. Tarsson
Jonathan Cott ...
Ned Grayton
Bennie Amboy
Hugh Sanders ...
Judge Neeler
J.R. Morrison
Elk M. Ludens
Wilfred Jackson
Roy Engel ...
Sam F. Slaper


Haven D. Allridge is the editor-in-chief of the News-Intelligencer newspaper in St. Howard, a town where he and his family have lived all their lives. Peggy, Randy and Marcia Staunton - Haven's married daughter, her husband, and their child - now live about thirty miles away in Bridgewood County, which is adjacent to the St. Howard town limits. Randy is the county prosecutor. Haven learns first hand the corruption of the county sheriff, K.C. Burke, and his associates when, in an innocent enough move in picking up an acquaintance, Wilfred Jackson, at a bus stop located within the county and lightly bumping but not damaging a county sign with his car in the process, Haven and Wilfred are hauled into jail, where they spend the night before appearing before the county judge the next morning. Beaten up by prisoners with who they shared the cell, Wilfred, who has no money and pleads not guilty to the charge of soliciting rides on the highway, is held at a labor camp for trial in thirty days... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


How much does it take for a Woman to Sellout her Man?


Crime | Drama


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

6 June 1952 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

Difendete la città  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Final film of Richard Cramer, whose career started back in the days of silent films. See more »


Chick Johnson: Buck is everybody around here chicken?
Capt. Buck Maxwell: You ever been scared of losing your job? Having your little store maybe burned out? or your truck wrecked? or getting beat up? Maybe crippled or lying around on a Phony Rap? Or maybe having your wife bothered or even your kids?
Chick Johnson: Scared or Bought?
Capt. Buck Maxwell: Bought guys talk slick. These guys talk sore. Here. You ever noticed this thing? These guys have all been called in for the Treatment.
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits all appear on newspapers which have just been dumped from a truck and are ready for delivery. The title appears as if it were a newspaper headline. See more »


You Can't Do Wrong Doing Right
Written by Al Rinker and Floyd Huddleston
Performed by Ruth Martin
[Sung by the character Cleo Bethel portrayed by Audrey Totter]
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User Reviews

Decent crime drama
20 January 2003 | by (Oakland CA) – See all my reviews

Dealing with police corruption in a small American city, The Sellout isn't all that far away from films like The Phenix City Story or Kansas City Confidential. Walter Pidgeon plays a crusading journalist trying to get the goods on bent sheriff Thomas Gomez before Gomez gets the goods on him. The MGM cast is solid throughout, including John Hodiak as the reluctant out of town prosecutor, Karl Malden as the policeman assisting him, and good ol' Whit Bissell as a whistleblower. There's a small role for Audrey Totter--whose place in the credits implies a more significant part--and oily Everett Sloane is excellent as the misguided local lawyer. There's not much original here, but the film takes itself seriously and reminds the viewer of a time when it was possible for independent journalism to hang the bad guys out to dry.

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