A faded dance star of film and stage murders her husband and makes it look like a suicide; Lt. Columbo doubts her seemingly perfect alibi.



(as Bill Driskill), (created by) | 1 more credit »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Grace Wheeler Willis
Dr. Henry Willis
Ned Diamond
Linda Gaye Scott ...
Alma (as Linda Scott)
Dr. Westrum
Sgt. Leftkowitz
Dr. Lansberg
Jerome Guardino ...
Danny Wells ...
Bookstore Clerk
Harvey Gold ...


Grace Wheeler Willis was a star, a very famous star. Every night in her house she sees one of her old movies. When she decides to set up a new show and her husband refuses to finance it, Grace coldly kills him, staging a suicide. Lt. Columbo is not deceived from her performance. But at the end, the murderer will escape her sentence, or perhaps not. Written by Baldinotto da Pistoia

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Release Date:

14 September 1975 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Janet Leigh is a guest star of this episode. Leigh's daughter, Jamie Lee Curtis, later appeared as a waitress in the episode Columbo: The Bye-Bye Sky High I.Q. Murder Case (1977). See more »


Dr. Willis' body is discovered at 1:10 a.m. When Columbo shows up at the house he asks a policeman what time it is. He responds it is 1:30 a.m. It is highly unlikely that only 20 minutes elapsed from the time the body is discovered, the police called, two patrol cars and the coroner arrive, then Columbo, especially in a city as large as L.A. See more »


Grace Wheeler Willis: That policeman's starting to get on my nerves.
Ned Diamond: What's he still hanging around for?
Grace Wheeler Willis: He says... he's searching for a crystal-clear reason why Henry killed himself. I've tried to be patient, helpful, but the point is Henry did, and he just keeps bringing up painful memories.
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Features The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962) See more »


Walking My Baby Back Home
(1931) (uncredited)
Music by Fred E. Ahlert
Lyrics by Roy Turk
Heard over main titles of movie that's projected and heard in mirror scene
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User Reviews

John Payne Steals The Movie
15 February 1999 | by (Stony Brook NY) – See all my reviews

Even though Janet Leigh plays perhaps the most sympathetic killer of any Columbo mystery (due to her health in story) the guest performance of John Payne is outstanding as her former song and dance movie partner. Peter Falk as always is excellent as Lt. Columbo and veterans Maurice Evans and Sam Jaffe turn in thier trademark performances as men of fine culture.

25 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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