IMDb > "Columbo" Ransom for a Dead Man (1971)
"Columbo: Ransom for a Dead Man (#1.0)"
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"Columbo" Ransom for a Dead Man (1971)

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Overview

User Rating:
7.5/10   1,119 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Dean Hargrove (teleplay)
Richard Levinson (creator) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Ransom for a Dead Man on IMDbPro.
TV Series:
Original Air Date:
1 March 1971 (Season 1, Episode 0)
Genre:
Plot:
A brilliant tort attorney gets rid of her boring husband by faking his kidnapping and keeping the ransom. The FBI may be fooled, but not Columbo. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
A very strong second pilot See more (23 total) »

Cast

 (Episode Cast) (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Peter Falk ... Columbo

Lee Grant ... Leslie Williams
John Fink ... Michael Clark

Harold Gould ... Agent Carlson
Patricia Mattick ... Margaret Williams

Paul Carr ... Hammond

Jed Allan ... Phil
Charles Macaulay ... Richard
Hank Brandt ... Attorney (as Henry Brandt)

Jean Byron ... Pat (as Jeane Byron)
Richard Roat ... Perkins
Norma Connolly ... Celia
Harlan Warde ... Paul Williams
Bill Walker ... Crowell

Timothy Carey ... Bert
Judson Morgan ... Judge
Richard O'Brien ... Priest

Celeste Yarnall ... Gloria
Lisa Moore ... Nancy
Lois Battle ... Waitress
Reginald Fenderson ... Mechanic
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Angelo De Meo ... Desk Clerk (uncredited)
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Episode Crew
Directed by
Richard Irving 
 
Writing credits
Dean Hargrove  teleplay &
Richard Levinson  creator &
William Link  creator

Richard Levinson (story) &
William Link (story)

Richard Levinson (based on a character created by) &
William Link (based on a character created by)

Gene Thompson  uncredited

Produced by
Dean Hargrove .... producer
Richard Irving .... executive producer
 
Original Music by
Billy Goldenberg 
 
Cinematography by
Lionel Lindon (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Edward M. Abroms 
John Elias (uncredited)
 
Art Direction by
John J. Lloyd 
 
Set Decoration by
Bert Allen (set decorations) (as Bert F. Allan)
 
Production Management
Donald L. Gold .... unit manager (as Don Gold)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
George Bisk .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Robert R. Bertrand .... sound (as Robert Bertrand)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Burton Miller .... costumes
 
Editorial Department
Richard Belding .... editorial supervisor
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
95 min | USA:98 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Australia:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-7 (2004) | Sweden:11 | UK:PG (video rating) (2000) (2004) | UK:U (theatrical release) (1972)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Produced as a second pilot for "Columbo" (1971) three years after Prescription: Murder (1968) (TV). Its success led to "Columbo" being made part of a rotating Mystery Movie wheel of programs for most of the 1970s.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Columbo and Mrs. Williams are ordering drinks at the airport bar, a Boeing 747 can be seen taxiing toward them in the background. In the time it takes for Columbo to say "I'll have a Root Beer", the plane vanishes. 20 seconds later you can see the same plane taxiing farther into its parking space.See more »
Quotes:
Lt. Columbo:You know the soap you have in the bathroom, the ones shaped like little lemons? Well I was almost afraid to use 'em.
Leslie Williams:But that's what they're there for, lieutenant - to be used.
Lt. Columbo:Well if you don't mind my asking: when you use one, and you put it back in the plate, how do you keep it from sticking to the others?
Leslie Williams:It's a problem.
Lt. Columbo:That's what I figured.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Simpsons: Virtual Springfield (1997) (VG)See more »

FAQ

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
A very strong second pilot, 19 June 2011
Author: TheLittleSongbird from United Kingdom

I'm a fan of Columbo, and Ransom for a Dead Man is a personal favourite. It does drag towards the beginning and Patricia Mattick is rather annoying. However, the usual ingredients are there. While the production values improved a tad in quality as it progressed, the episode is still very striking to look at, and the music score is one of my personal favourites of any Columbo episode. The story once it gets going is compelling, with a well-used pivotal telephone gimmick and a classic Columbo scene at an airport, and the writing is strong throughout having some funny, thoughtful and atmospheric moments. The performances are excellent, Peter Falk is exceptional as usual and Lee Grant as a very beautiful, cold, confident and also arrogant murderess is superb. In conclusion, a great episode. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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Why is Colombo on a kidnapping case? jonjax71
Music Score? girlhasknife
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