Based on a true story. In neutral Turkey during WWII, the ambitious and extremely efficient valet for the British ambassador tires of being a servant and forms a plan to promote himself to rich gentleman of leisure. His employer has many secret documents; he will photograph them, and with the help of a refugee Countess, sell them to the Nazis. When he makes a certain amount of money, he will retire to South America with the Countess as his wife.Written by
Ken Yousten <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This was Joseph L. Mankiewicz's last film under his contract with Twentieth Century-Fox. A great deal of preparatory work had been already been done on the film when he expressed an interest in the story, and studio chief Darryl F. Zanuck was reluctant to let him wait out the last few months of his contract without doing anything. Mankiewicz rewrote the dialogue extensively without taking a credit, but his contract was up by the time the editing process had to begin. He always claimed that Zanuck, who supervised the editing, had taken out several of the film's best scenes. See more »
When the Britsh ambassador's valet Diello (Brit James Mason) suggests that his new German spymaster change the combination on the latter's safe, he gives the existing combination 1-30-33 as based on the date of Hitler's rise to power, suggesting instead 6-18-15, the date of the Battle of Waterloo. One would expect an employee of the Britsh Embassy (particularly one born in the UK) to have used "European" notation (date/month/year) instead of US notation (month/day/year), particularly when speaking with a German. See more »
A brilliant suspense classic headed by the always exciting James Mason, a superb script from Michael Wilson and top notch direction from Joseph Mankeweicz, who received a Best Director nomination for this film, as did Wilson's screenplay.
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