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My Favorite Spy (1951)

Approved | | Comedy, Crime, Music | 25 December 1951 (USA)
Peanuts White, a burlesque comic, is recruited by U.S. agents to impersonate international spy Eric Augustine (whom White resembles) in a mission to purchase a million-dollar microfilm in ... See full summary »


Norman Z. McLeod


Edmund Beloin (story), Lou Breslow (story) | 5 more credits »

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bob Hope ... Peanuts White / Eric Augustine
Hedy Lamarr ... Lily Dalbray
Francis L. Sullivan ... Karl Brubaker
Arnold Moss ... Tasso
John Archer ... Henderson
Luis Van Rooten Luis Van Rooten ... Rudolf Hoenig
Stephen Chase ... Donald Bailey
Morris Ankrum ... Gen. Frazer
Angela Clarke ... Gypsy Fortune Teller
Iris Adrian ... Lola
Frank Faylen ... Newton
Mike Mazurki ... Monkara
Marc Lawrence ... Ben Ali
Tonio Selwart Tonio Selwart ... Harry Crock
Ralph Smiley Ralph Smiley ... El Sarif


Peanuts White, a burlesque comic, is recruited by U.S. agents to impersonate international spy Eric Augustine (whom White resembles) in a mission to purchase a million-dollar microfilm in mysterious, exotic Tangier. There, he encounters the irresistable Lily Dalbray, an "old friend" of Augustine who is now dealing with his arch-enemy, Brubaker. But where is the real Eric? Comedy thriller with slapstick climax. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Crime | Music | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

25 December 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Passage to Cairo See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In the original script, Peanuts is a schoolteacher who is caught impersonating a deceased gangster and is sent on a mission to Cairo. See more »


At the very end of Hope's song and dance number "Taking a Fall," his stunt stand-in can be clearly seen taking the final fall. His hair is much darker, and his hairline is different. See more »


Peanuts White: That dress does things for you. Doesn't do me any harm either.
See more »


Referenced in Hogan's Heroes: My Favorite Prisoner (1969) See more »


William Tell Overture
Music by Gioachino Rossini
See more »

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User Reviews

Bob Hope in a dual role
4 June 2008 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

1951's "My Favorite Spy" stars Bob Hope, Hedy Lamarr, Francis L. Sulllivan and Mike Mazurki. Hope plays Peanuts White, a burlesque comedian, who bears a strong resemblance to a spy, Eric Augustine. When Augustine is injured, the government gets Peanuts to go in his place to Tangier with $1 million to collect some microfilm. Peanuts, like Hope's other characters, is a bona fide coward, but he goes after Harry Truman talks with him on the phone. ("Oh, she's out on tour?" Hope asks, referring to Truman's daughter Margaret, who at that time was pursuing a singing career.) When Peanuts arrives in Tangier, he meets the woman with whom Eric was previously involved, the beautiful nightclub singer Lily Dalbray. She's under orders from the other side to get the microfilm, so she acts as if she's ready to resume things with Eric. Unfortunately, the real Eric escapes from the hospital and makes his way to Tangier, causing the situation to become even more confusing as everyone chases everyone else.

Hope is very funny in this and does indeed create a second role in Eric Augustine, who has a much darker persona than Peanuts. There are some great laughs, my favorite scene being Hedy and Peanuts dancing in the hotel while his contact tries to get his attention. The part where Lamarr drives a fire engine while Hope hangs onto the ladder is funny as well.

Hedy Lamarr was 36 or so at the time of the filming and looks glorious, particularly in the form-fitting white sequined gown she wears during her nightclub act. It's so unfortunate that in Hollywood, once a woman turned 30, lead roles became so difficult to get. Lamarr was one of the most beautiful and glamorous women in film - at any age. She's basically straight man to Hope here and holds her own in what is a Dorothy Lamour part, right down to the nightclub act. She contributes to the foreign flavor of the film.

This isn't Hope's best film, but it's still very good with some great bits and laughs.

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