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Phantom Ship (1935)

The Mystery of the Mary Celeste (original title)
Approved | | Drama, Horror, Mystery | 15 October 1936 (USA)
During a horrific storm at sea, the crew realizes that there is a murderer among them who is killing them off one by one.


Denison Clift


Denison Clift (story), Charles Larkworthy (scenario)




Cast overview, first billed only:
Bela Lugosi ... Anton Lorenzen / A. Gottlieb
Shirley Grey ... Sarah Briggs
Arthur Margetson ... Capt. Benjamin Briggs
Edmund Willard Edmund Willard ... Toby Bilson
Dennis Hoey ... Tom Goodschild
George Mozart George Mozart ... Tommy Duggan
Johnnie Schofield Johnnie Schofield ... Peter Tooley
Gunner Moir Gunner Moir ... Ponta Katz
Ben Welden ... Boas 'Sailor' Hoffman
Clifford McLaglen Clifford McLaglen ... Capt. Jim Morehead
Bruce Gordon Bruce Gordon ... Olly Deveau
Gibson Gowland ... Andy Gilling
Terence de Marney ... Charlie Kaye (as Terrence de Marney)
Edgar Pierce Edgar Pierce ... Arian Harbens (as J. Edward Pierce)
Herbert Cameron Herbert Cameron ... Volkerk Grot


During a horrific storm at sea, the crew realizes that there is a murderer among them who is killing them off one by one.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Mystery of the Sea That Has Baffled Three Generations See more »


Drama | Horror | Mystery


Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Bela Lugosi shot this feature in England after The Raven (1935) and prior to The Invisible Ray (1936). See more »


The story is set in 1872, but Shirley Grey's hair style is a typical 1935 blonde bob. See more »


Anton Lorenzen: I killed a man!
Toby Bilson: You killed a wretch!
Anton Lorenzen: [distraught] Oh, God!
[falls to his knees, crying]
Anton Lorenzen: I killed my fellow man!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening cast list: "The famous 'Q' Ship "Mary B. Mitchell" as Mary Celeste." See more »

Alternate Versions

The U.S. distributor, Guaranteed Pictures Corporation, cut the movie down to 62 minutes and changed the title to "Phantom Ship". See more »


Featured in Chiller Theater: Phantom Ship (2005) See more »

User Reviews

Not historically accurate but a good movie.
13 February 2005 | by ChuckStraubSee all my reviews

The Mary Celeste was a real ship that was found adrift in good condition, with its cargo intact, in the Atlantic with no one aboard and no record of what happened to them. It's one of histories great mysteries of the sea. This film is very loosely based on this event but it has many of the facts wrong. The film cannot be viewed as a historically correct movie about the real Mary Celeste's voyage. As an example, the captain gets married just before they sail. In reality the Captain was married for some time and had a child that was on the voyage. The child was absent from the movie. There are many more inaccuracies. The accuracy of the personalities of the ship's crew is also very questionable. The movie has taken huge liberties with the facts. Ignoring that this is supposed to take place on the Mary Celeste, this is still a pretty good drama/mystery. I was happily surprised to find that this is one of the very early films from Hammer studios. The atmosphere and settings were great and the characters interesting. Overall the acting is good. Bela Lugosi really stands out with a great dramatic performance and is excellent in his role. The quality of the film and sound are not the greatest but acceptable considering it's age. This USA version is what remains of an earlier and longer British version which I presume is lost but it's still a decent movie. Hammer studios, Bela Lugosi, 1935, isn't that enough to have you take a look at this movie?

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Release Date:

15 October 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Phantom Ship See more »

Filming Locations:

Falmouth, Cornwall, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hammer Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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