Born to Be Bad ()

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Letty, a young woman who ended up pregnant, unmarried and on the streets at fifteen is bitter and determined that her child will not grow up to be taken advantage of. Letty teaches her child... See more »


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Complete, Cast awaiting verification

Letty Strong
Malcolm Trevor
Mickey Strong
Mrs. Alyce Trevor
Attorney Brian
Steve Karns
Adolph - Letty's Lawyer
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Apartment House Clerk (uncredited)
Guard at Trevor Estate (uncredited)
Truant Officer (uncredited)
Trevor's Butler (uncredited)
Admirer at Nightclub (uncredited)
J. K. Brown - Claim Adjustor (uncredited)
Dean Hall ...
Man in Courtroom (uncredited)
Man at Bar with Letty (uncredited)
Admirer at Nightclub (uncredited)
Eddie Kane ...
Waiter (uncredited)
Admirer at Nightclub (uncredited)
Party Guest Admiring Letty (uncredited)
Mike Lally ...
Courtroom Extra (uncredited)
Dr. Steele (uncredited)
Assistant Attorney (uncredited)
Jack LeMaire ...
Elevator Boy (uncredited)
John Marston ...
Second Doctor (uncredited)
Dance Extra at Party (uncredited)
Miss Crawford - Malcolm's Secretary (uncredited)
Party Guest (uncredited)
H. Sennells ...
Assistant Attorney (uncredited)
Policeman at Mickey's Accident (uncredited)
Guy Usher ...
Judge McAffee (uncredited)

Directed by

Lowell Sherman
Jack Conway ... (uncredited)

Written by

Ralph Graves ... (story and screenplay)
Harrison Jacobs ... (continuity)

Produced by

William Goetz ... associate producer
Raymond Griffith ... associate producer
Darryl F. Zanuck ... producer
Joseph M. Schenck ... executive producer (uncredited)

Music by

Alfred Newman ... (uncredited)

Cinematography by

Barney McGill ... (photographed by)

Film Editing by

Maurice Wright ... (as Maurice E. Wright)

Editorial Department

Everett Douglas ... assistant cutter (uncredited)
Roy V. Livingston ... cutter (uncredited)

Art Direction by

Richard Day
Joseph C. Wright ... (as Joseph Wright)

Costume Design by

Gwen Wakeling

Makeup Department

Lucille D'Antoine ... hair stylist (uncredited)
Burt Amanda Hadley ... makeup artist (uncredited)

Production Management

Ed Ebele ... production manager (uncredited)

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

Tom Andre ... second assistant director (uncredited)
William J. Scully ... assistant director (uncredited)

Art Department

Bud Kuykendall ... assistant props (uncredited)
Gene Rossi ... props (uncredited)

Sound Department

Howard Wilson ... sound mixer (uncredited)

Camera and Electrical Department

Bob Comer ... gaffer (uncredited)
Buzz Gibson ... grip (uncredited)
Don Green ... assistant camera (uncredited)
Kenneth Green ... second camera operator (uncredited)
LeRoy Robbins ... still photographer (uncredited)
William P. Whitley ... assistant camera (uncredited)

Costume and Wardrobe Department

Alice Carey ... wardrobe (uncredited)
Ernest Rotchy ... wardrobe (uncredited)

Music Department

Alfred Newman ... musical director

Other crew

Joseph M. Schenck ... presenter
Grace Dubray ... script clerk (uncredited)
Milt Howe ... press representative (uncredited)
Molly Jarvis ... double: Loretta Young (uncredited)
Jessie Kenyon ... stand-in: Loretta Young (uncredited)
Sidney Lanfield ... director: re-takes (uncredited)
Pat McCoy ... dialogue director (uncredited)
V.L. McFadden ... production staff (uncredited)
Billy Mellman ... stand-in: Jackie Kelk (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

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Special Effects


Other Companies



Plot Summary

Letty, a young woman who ended up pregnant, unmarried and on the streets at fifteen is bitter and determined that her child will not grow up to be taken advantage of. Letty teaches her child to lie, steal, cheat and anything else he'll need to be street smart. We meet Letty when Mickey is 7-1/2. Mal enters the picture when his truck and Mickey, who is hanging on to the back of a delivery truck and being pulled along the streets on his roller skates, collide. Mickey is not injured badly, but when Letty discovers that Mal is rich, she concocts a scheme to take Mal to the cleaners. When her plot is uncovered, Letty is also discovered for the unfit parent that she is, and Mickey is taken away from her. Mal and his wife Alice, unable to have children of their own, take Mickey in and give him a father's love, a true mother's love, and a home he can call his own. Letty is jealous of Mickey's growing attachment to these two good people and she still sees Mal as a ticket to riches. Letty seduces Mal, records the seduction and then plans to blackmail Mal. Her plans are upset when Mal immediately tells his wife, and Alice accepts the relationship. Letty learns a painful lesson in selfless love and finally sees that what is best for Mickey is more important than her own plans. Written by

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Additional Details

Also Known As
  • Nacida para ser mala (Spain)
  • Pigen uden Moral (Denmark)
  • Рожденная быть плохой (Soviet Union, Russian title)
  • Nascida para o Mal (Brazil)
  • Nascida para o Mal (Portugal)
  • See more »
  • 62 min
Aspect Ratio
Sound Mix

Box Office

Budget $252,238 (estimated)

Did You Know?

Trivia The film ran into censorship problems from the start, mainly from the character portrayed by Loretta Young and the skimpy clothes she wore. It was rejected twice by the Hays office before it was finally given an approval certificate, after several cuts and retakes (and all this before the Production Code was more rigorously enforced). Sidney Lanfield directed retakes on 10 November 1933 because director Lowell Sherman was on vacation; other retakes were made early in 1934. In 1935, the film was on a list at the Hays Office, of those films whose release should be halted, but it is not known if any action was ever taken. See more »
Movie Connections Featured in Darryl F. Zanuck: 20th Century Filmmaker (1995). See more »

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