6 user

Scandal for Sale (1932)

A man is promised $25,000 if he can bring the circulation of a newspaper up to one million.


Russell Mack


Emile Gauvreau (story "Hot News"), Ralph Graves | 1 more credit »




Cast overview:
Charles Bickford ... Jerry Strong
Rose Hobart ... Claire Strong
Pat O'Brien ... Waddell
Berton Churchill ... Bunnyweather (as Burton Churchill)
J. Farrell MacDonald ... Treadway
Buster Phelps ... Bobby Strong
Betty Jane Graham ... Mildred Strong
Tully Marshall ... Simpkins
Claudia Dell ... Dorothy Pepper
Harry Beresford ... Brownie
Hans Heinrich von Twardowski ... Affner - the Pilot (as Hans Von Twardowski)
Mitchell Harris ... Carrington


A man is promised $25,000 if he can bring the circulation of a newspaper up to one million.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

newspaper | See All (1) »









Release Date:

1 April 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ambition See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Both "Scandal for Sale" and "Five Star Final" were based on the 1920s' New York Evening Graphic, this one from a novel by the first editor, 5*Final from a play by his successor. The paper's Broadway gossip columnist Walter Winchell inspired "Blessed Event" and more. See more »

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User Reviews

Half a Lively Movie
14 December 2016 | by roslein-674-874556See all my reviews

You can certainly tell this is pre-code--they say the word "sex" (ooh!) several times, and the opening sequence dwells on the brutality and gore of a love-triangle double-hammer slaying. There are also plenty of satirical and contemptuous snapshots typical of the era and this type of film--the boss who steals other people's ideas and who spends all his time chasing floozies; the floozy who pretends to be a betrayed innocent but turns out to be in a gangster's pocket.

But the raciness of the first third or so of the picture is let down by a meandering, repetitious plot and an increasingly censorious and lugubrious tone. Charles Bickford's triumphs as an editor are contrasted, reproachfully, with his neglect of his wife and children. The marriage is happy--though I'd walk out on any husband who never called me anything but "Mumsie"--so there is no sex angle as far as Bickford is concerned, or anyone else either. Pat O'Brien, as in so many pictures, leans against a lot of door jambs and makes wisecracks out of the side of his mouth, but, as in all his pictures, he...has...no...sex...appeal. When Bickford goes on trial, the courtroom scenes are brief, dull, and completely lacking in suspense.

On the whole, then, I'd say catch the first 20 minutes or so for the atmosphere, but when it starts to slow down, bail out--it's not going to get better.

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