IMDb > Beat the Devil (1953)
Beat the Devil
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guide
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Beat the Devil (1953) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 29 | slideshow) Videos
Beat the Devil -- On their way to Africa are a group of rogues who hope to get rich there, and a seemingly innocent British couple. They meet and things happen...


User Rating:
6.6/10   6,443 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Up 1% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Claud Cockburn (based on the novel "Beat the Devil" by)
Truman Capote (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for Beat the Devil on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 December 1953 (Italy) See more »
The film that was ten years ahead of its time is ten years old...(it's time!) (1962 reissue ad). See more »
On their way to Africa are a group of rogues who hope to get rich there, and a seemingly innocent British couple. They meet and things happen... Full summary » | Add synopsis »
1 win See more »
User Reviews:
Brilliant Dry Humor See more (115 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Humphrey Bogart ... Billy Dannreuther

Jennifer Jones ... Mrs. Gwendolen Chelm

Gina Lollobrigida ... Maria Dannreuther

Robert Morley ... Peterson

Peter Lorre ... Julius O'Hara
Edward Underdown ... Harry Chelm
Ivor Barnard ... Maj. Jack Ross
Marco Tulli ... Ravello

Bernard Lee ... Insp. Jack Clayton
Mario Perrone ... Purser on SS Nyanga
Giulio Donnini ... Administrator

Saro Urzì ... Captain of SS Nyanga (as Saro Urzi)
Juan de Landa ... Hispano-Suiza Driver (as Juan De Landa)
Aldo Silvani ... Charles - Restaurant Manager
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Dave Crowley ... (uncredited)
Julie Gibson ... (uncredited)
Alex Pochet ... Hotel Manager (uncredited)
Mimmo Poli ... Barman (uncredited)

Peter Sellers ... Billy Dannreuther (voice) (uncredited)
Manuel Serano ... Ahmed - Arab Inquisitor (uncredited)

Directed by
John Huston 
Writing credits
Claud Cockburn (based on the novel "Beat the Devil" by) (as James Helvick)

Truman Capote (screenplay) and
John Huston (screenplay)

Anthony Veiller  screenplay collaboration (uncredited)
Peter Viertel  screenplay collaboration (uncredited)

Produced by
Jack Clayton .... associate producer
John Huston .... producer
Humphrey Bogart .... producer (uncredited)
Angelo Rizzoli .... producer (uncredited)
John Woolf .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Franco Mannino 
Cinematography by
Oswald Morris (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Ralph Kemplen 
Art Direction by
Wilfred Shingleton 
Makeup Department
Betty Lee .... hairdresser (as Bette Lee)
Connie Reeve .... makeup artist (as Constance Reeve)
Production Management
Bill Kirby .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
John Arnold .... assistant director
Erica Masters .... third assistant director (uncredited)
Robert Sterne .... second assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
John Hoesli .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Harry White .... draughtsman (uncredited)
Alan Withy .... draughtsman (uncredited)
Sound Department
Stan Hawkes .... dubbing editor (as Stanley Hawkes)
E. Law .... sound recordist
George Stephenson .... sound recordist
Barbara Hopkins .... dubbing crew (uncredited)
Bob Jones .... dubbing crew (uncredited)
Kevin McClory .... boom operator (uncredited)
Peter Myers .... assistant boom operator (uncredited)
Ernest Webb .... sound camera operator (uncredited)
Ivor Worsley .... dubbing crew (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Reg Johnson .... travelling mattes (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Bryan Langley .... special processes (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Freddie Francis .... camera operator
Louis H. Lavelly .... chief production electrician
Robert Capa .... still photographer (uncredited)
James Devis .... clapper loader (uncredited)
Eric Gray .... still photographer (uncredited)
Dennis C. Lewiston .... clapper loader (uncredited)
Stephen Sondheim .... clapper boy (uncredited)
Gerry Turpin .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Philip Auguste .... second assistant editor (uncredited)
Roy Hyde .... first assistant editor (uncredited)
Location Management
James H. Ware .... location manager (as James Ware)
Music Department
Lambert Williamson .... musical director
Other crew
Angela Allen .... continuity
Jeanie Sims .... personal assistant to John Huston
Beryl Booth .... production secretary (uncredited)
Harriet Medin .... dialogue coach (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
89 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Argentina:Atp | Australia:PG | Australia:G (TV rating) | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Finland:S | Spain:T | Sweden:15 | Switzerland:14 | UK:A (original rating) | UK:PG (tv rating) | UK:U (video rating) (1986) (1998) (1999) (2001) (2003) (2005) | USA:Approved (Certificate No. 16817) | West Germany:6

Did You Know?

Final film of Ivor Barnard. He died before it was released.See more »
Continuity: When Billy, Peterson and the driver push the car for the first time, there are four suitcases tied on its rear. When they do it for the second time, there are only three higher suitcases and when the car falls off the cliff, the four suitcases from the beginning reappear.See more »
Billy Dannreuther:I've got to have money. Doctor's orders are that I must have a lot of money, otherwise I become dull, listless and have trouble with my complexion.
Gwendolyn Chelm:But you're not like that now, and you haven't any money.
Billy Dannreuther:It's my expectations that hold me together.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Cinema Falado (1986)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
55 out of 67 people found the following review useful.
Brilliant Dry Humor, 12 July 2005
Author: jim_altman from United States

Most of the reviews of 1953's "Beat the Devil" regard it as a Humphrey Bogart picture. Certainly his company produced it, but it is truly a John Huston film. Huston's legendary dry wit suffuses the whole enterprise from start to finish. Essentially, a comedy of errors, Huston's script, co-authored by Truman Capote, also serves up wry social commentary on a range of subjects from social position to the industrial world's exploitation of Africa, a place near and dear to Huston's heart. Jennifer Jones' prophecy that Africa will become an ugly place with "all those holes," has long since become a reality. A brilliant cast, with Bogie playing his typical world-weary existentialist, spiral avarice and misconception into hilarity; a comic exposition of the proverb, "What a tangled web we weave . . ." Often criticized for being unrealistic, Huston's and Capote's comic script has none-to-funny real parallels in the present day debacles of Enron and WorldCom. In "Beat the Devil," greed and deceit are brilliantly juxtaposed to reveal the ultimate folly of even the most devious criminal enterprise. This is a superior black comedy that plays even better today than it did 52 years ago.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (115 total) »


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The English Patient And Now... Ladies and Gentlemen... The Stunt Man The Quiet American Original Sin
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Action section IMDb UK section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.