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The Desperate Hours (1955) Poster

Trivia

The original Broadway production of "The Desperate Hours" by Joseph Hayes opened at the Ethel Barrymore Theater in New York on February 10, 1955, ran for 212 performances and won the 1955 Tony Award for the Best Play. The play starred Paul Newman, George Grizzard and George Mathews as the gangsters with Karl Malden and Nancy Coleman as the Hilliard parents and Pat Peardon and Malcolm Brodrick as their children.
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After the movie previewed, Humphrey Bogart told director William Wyler, "I think I'm too old to play gangsters".
Fredric March's part was intended for Spencer Tracy, a good friend of Humphrey Bogart's, but neither Tracy nor Bogart was willing to concede top billing to the other.
Humphrey Bogart's last tough-guy role.
Gig Young was considered too old for his character.
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During a short outdoor shot of the front lawn, you hear the sounds of children playing (one of the children shouts something like "I missed you!"). This exact same sound clip is used repeatedly 18 years later in the final exterior scenes of 1973's "The Exorcist."
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The exterior of the house used in the film is the same set used as the Cleaver home in the TV series Leave It to Beaver (1957).
The Character of Glenn Griffin was made older so Humphrey Bogart could play the role. The stage version starred Karl Malden and a young Paul Newman in the Bogart role
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This movie and the play on which it was based, are loosely based on the experience of the Hill family in 1952. An article published by Life magazine about the play is the subject of the Supreme Court case Time Inc. v. Hill, in which the family sued the magazine for stating that play depicted what really happened.
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The first black and white movie in VistaVision.
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The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Humphrey Bogart, Fredric March and Gig Young; and two Oscar nominees: Arthur Kennedy, Martha Scott
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Chuck's car was a Nash-Healey.
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The music Gail Kubik composed for the picture was considered too modernistic by Paramount's executives, therefore some of it was rescored by Daniele Amfitheatrof. Two years later, Paramount returned the music rights to Kubik and published his suite from the score titled Scenario for Orchestra.
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Hugh O'Brian played the Fredric March role on the stage of the Arlington Park Theater in Arlington Heights, IL, in the early 1970s.
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