Illegal is a 1955 American film noir directed by Lewis Allen. It stars Edward G. Robinson, Nina Foch, Hugh Marlowe and Jayne Mansfield.[1] When his career as a D.A. unexpectedly collapses, tenacious Victor Scott turns to defending criminal lowlifes. Scruples? “None whatever,” Scott says. Edward G. Robinson plays Scott in Illegal a snap-crackle-pow remake of The Mouthpiece directed by Lewis Allen (The Uninvited). Film buffs’ moments include Jayne Mansfield’s scenes and real-life art expert Robinson’s comments on a crimelord’s collection of paintings. Plot Victor Scott (Edward G. Robinson) is a District Attorney with a drive to win every case. He is assisted by attorney Ellen Miles (Nina Foch) who is not quite as relentless, but is devoted to her D.A. boss. After Scott discovers that a man he sent to his death is innocent, he falls into an alcoholic haze, is arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct, and determines to defend another incarcerated man. This leads to a new career as a defense attorney. Scott ends up defending an associate of the city's crime boss, a man he refused to work for earlier due to the fact that "...no one would testify against you; you own the people who work for you." This, in turn, leads him into direct confrontation with the very office he used to head. Ellen Miles kills her husband in self-defense. Scott is determined to clear her, as there are no witnesses. There is an ongoing leak between the D.A.'s office and the crime boss. The leak turns out to be Ellen's husband, Ray Borden. The new D.A., not knowing this, determines that Ellen herself is the leak and that she murdered her husband when found out. Alluded to is a long relationship between Miles and Scott. In that past, Scott is encouraged and mentored by Ellen's father. When the father slipping away, Scott makes a death-bed promise to the man to protect his daughter. There is also a hint that the relationship between Ellen and Scott might have been a romantic one had Scott allowed it. Angel O'Hara (Jayne Mansfield) plays a small yet important role as witness for the defense. Her testimony places the role of "leak" firmly in the lap of Borden (Hugh Marlowe), whom she testifies has had continuing contact with the crime boss, Frank Garland (Albert Dekker). Production During filming Robinson lent his considerable contemporary art collection to the production company. These include some impressionist works by Gauguin, Degas, Duran, and Gladys Lloyd, all of which appear in the film. Because Robinson was also the target of investigation by the House Un-American Activities Committee this movie was of a lower budget and caliber than his earlier films. The film offered a rare serious performance by the future sex symbol, Jayne Mansfield, who went on to star in hits like: The Girl Can't Help It (1956) and Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (1957). Reception Critical response Film critic Bosley Crowther compared the film to The Asphalt Jungle but thought it was not as good. He wrote, "For one thing, the story of Illegal invades the higher echelons of crime, with a fast-thinking, double-dealing lawyer as the principal character ... The fact that this hard-bitten lawyer is played by Edward G. Robinson in his old vein of stinging sarcasm is a clue to what you may expect. But more than this and more than the climate of sordid deceit that is achieved is the fact that Illegal tries to blueprint The Asphalt Jungle's Marilyn Monroe. You may remember that Miss Monroe's first screen role was in the latter. She spoke not a word but she went right to work as an adornment in the apartment of the criminal counselor. Well, in Illegal Jayne Mansfield plays precisely the same sort of role in the apartment of Albert Dekker, the big poobah of crime. Miss Mansfield, we might add, is the beauty who is imitating Miss Monroe in a feeble imitation of Once In a Lifetime on the Broadway stage."[2]

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Illegal (1955)

G

Film-Noir/Drama/Crime · 1h 28m · 10/28/1955

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Description

Illegal is a 1955 American film noir directed by Lewis Allen. It stars Edward G. Robinson, Nina Foch, Hugh Marlowe and Jayne Mansfield.[1] When his career as a D.A. unexpectedly collapses, tenacious Victor Scott turns to defending criminal lowlifes. Scruples? “None whatever,” Scott says. Edward G. Robinson plays Scott in Illegal a snap-crackle-pow remake of The Mouthpiece directed by Lewis Allen (The Uninvited). Film buffs’ moments include Jayne Mansfield’s scenes and real-life art expert Robinson’s comments on a crimelord’s collection of paintings. Plot Victor Scott (Edward G. Robinson) is a District Attorney with a drive to win every case. He is assisted by attorney Ellen Miles (Nina Foch) who is not quite as relentless, but is devoted to her D.A. boss. After Scott discovers that a man he sent to his death is innocent, he falls into an alcoholic haze, is arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct, and determines to defend another incarcerated man. This leads to a new career as a defense attorney. Scott ends up defending an associate of the city's crime boss, a man he refused to work for earlier due to the fact that "...no one would testify against you; you own the people who work for you." This, in turn, leads him into direct confrontation with the very office he used to head. Ellen Miles kills her husband in self-defense. Scott is determined to clear her, as there are no witnesses. There is an ongoing leak between the D.A.'s office and the crime boss. The leak turns out to be Ellen's husband, Ray Borden. The new D.A., not knowing this, determines that Ellen herself is the leak and that she murdered her husband when found out. Alluded to is a long relationship between Miles and Scott. In that past, Scott is encouraged and mentored by Ellen's father. When the father slipping away, Scott makes a death-bed promise to the man to protect his daughter. There is also a hint that the relationship between Ellen and Scott might have been a romantic one had Scott allowed it. Angel O'Hara (Jayne Mansfield) plays a small yet important role as witness for the defense. Her testimony places the role of "leak" firmly in the lap of Borden (Hugh Marlowe), whom she testifies has had continuing contact with the crime boss, Frank Garland (Albert Dekker). Production During filming Robinson lent his considerable contemporary art collection to the production company. These include some impressionist works by Gauguin, Degas, Duran, and Gladys Lloyd, all of which appear in the film. Because Robinson was also the target of investigation by the House Un-American Activities Committee this movie was of a lower budget and caliber than his earlier films. The film offered a rare serious performance by the future sex symbol, Jayne Mansfield, who went on to star in hits like: The Girl Can't Help It (1956) and Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (1957). Reception Critical response Film critic Bosley Crowther compared the film to The Asphalt Jungle but thought it was not as good. He wrote, "For one thing, the story of Illegal invades the higher echelons of crime, with a fast-thinking, double-dealing lawyer as the principal character ... The fact that this hard-bitten lawyer is played by Edward G. Robinson in his old vein of stinging sarcasm is a clue to what you may expect. But more than this and more than the climate of sordid deceit that is achieved is the fact that Illegal tries to blueprint The Asphalt Jungle's Marilyn Monroe. You may remember that Miss Monroe's first screen role was in the latter. She spoke not a word but she went right to work as an adornment in the apartment of the criminal counselor. Well, in Illegal Jayne Mansfield plays precisely the same sort of role in the apartment of Albert Dekker, the big poobah of crime. Miss Mansfield, we might add, is the beauty who is imitating Miss Monroe in a feeble imitation of Once In a Lifetime on the Broadway stage."[2]

Where to Watch

Status

Released

Language

English

Production Companies

Warner Bros., Warner Bros. Pictures
Cast
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Edward G. Robinson

Victor Scott
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Nina Foch

Ellen Miles
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Hugh Marlowe

Ray Borden
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Jayne Mansfield

Angel O'Hara
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Albert Dekker

Frank Garland
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Howard St. John

E.A. Smith
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Ellen Corby

Miss Hinkel
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Edward Platt

Ralph Ford
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Jan Merlin

Andy Garth
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Robert Ellenstein

Joe Knight
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Jay Adler

Joseph Carter
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Henry Kulky

Taylor
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James McCallion

Allen Parker
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Addison Richards

Steve Harper
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Lawrence Dobkin

Al Carol
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DeForest Kelley

Edward Clary (as DeForest Kelly)
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Clark Howat

George Graves
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Stuart Nedd

Phillips
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John Albright

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Chris Alcaide

Cop at Property Desk (uncredited)
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Leon Alton

Court Clerk (uncredited)
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John Alvin

Court Clerk (uncredited)
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Roxanne Arlen

Ginnie Hathaway (uncredited)
Person Photo

Phil Arnold

News Vendor (uncredited)
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Benjie Bancroft

Bailiff (uncredited)
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Baynes Barron

District Attorney's Man (uncredited)
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Don Bender

Newsboy (uncredited)
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Julie Bennett

Ms. Worth (uncredited)
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John Beradino

Scott's Client (uncredited)
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George Boyce

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Lovyss Bradley

Matron (uncredited)
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Paul Bradley

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Chet Brandenburg

Defendant (uncredited)
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John Breen

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Joe Brooks

Reporter (uncredited)
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George Bruggeman

Guard (uncredited)
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Boyd Cabeen

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Alexander Campbell

Municipal Court Judge (uncredited)
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Dee Carroll

Ruth (uncredited)
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Charles Cirillo

Waiter (uncredited)
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Bill Clark

Bailiff (uncredited)
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John Cliff

Bar Patron (uncredited)
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John Close

Prison Switchboard Guard (uncredited)
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Fred Coby

Prison Guard (uncredited)
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Bud Cokes

Police Officer (uncredited)
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Tom Coleman

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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James Conaty

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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Paul Cristo

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Oliver Cross

Client Leaving Office (uncredited)
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Diana Darrin

Dorothy (uncredited)
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Dan Dowling

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Pauline Drake

Woman (uncredited)
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Minta Durfee

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Charles Evans

Judge (uncredited)
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Joe Evans

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Franklyn Farnum

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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Adolph Faylauer

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Tom Ferrandini

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Bess Flowers

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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Charles Fogel

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Curt Furberg

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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James Gonzalez

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Dick Gordon

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Marion Gray

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Duke Green

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Robert Haines

Juror (uncredited)
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Charlie Hall

Bellhop (uncredited)
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Stuart Hall

Department Head (uncredited)
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Mark Hanna

Reporter (uncredited)
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Ed Haskett

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Jack Henderson

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Jonathan Hole

Doctor (uncredited)
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Jimmie Horan

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Larry Hudson

Detective (uncredited)
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Dick Johnstone

Barfly (uncredited)
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Fred Kelsey

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Kenner G. Kemp

Restaurant Patron / Courtroom Photographer (uncredited)
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Donald Kerr

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Louise Lane

Juror (uncredited)
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John Larch

District Attorney's Man (uncredited)
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Perk Lazelle

Attorney (uncredited)
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King Lockwood

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Maurice Marks

Bailiff (uncredited)
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Kathy Marlowe

Gloria Benson (uncredited)
Person Photo

Thomas Martin

Party Waiter (uncredited)
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Mathew McCue

Defendant (uncredited)
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John McKee

Detective (uncredited)
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William Meader

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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Charles Meredith

Judge (uncredited)
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Harold Miller

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Person Photo

Frank Mills

Man in Drunk Tank (uncredited)
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Eleanor Moore

Mrs. Seltzer (uncredited)
Person Photo

Sol Murgi

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Richard Neill

Juror (uncredited)
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William H. O'Brien

Butler (uncredited)
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Monty O'Grady

Reporter (uncredited)
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John Pedrini

Bailiff (uncredited)
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Gilman Rankin

Juror (uncredited)
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Anthony Redondo

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Waclaw Rekwart

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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Grandon Rhodes

John Seltzer (uncredited)
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Suzanne Ridgway

Party Guest (uncredited)
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George Ross

Cop (uncredited)
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Henry Rowland

Jailer (uncredited)
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John Roy

Bailiff (uncredited)
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Loretta Russell

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
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Cosmo Sardo

Party Guest (uncredited)
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Jeffrey Sayre

Party Guest (uncredited)
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Phil Schumacher

Bailiff (uncredited)
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Scott Seaton

Juror (uncredited)
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Bernard Sell

Paramedic (uncredited)
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Stephen Soldi

Juror (uncredited)
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Ted Stanhope

Bailiff (uncredited)
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Marjorie Stapp

Night Orderly (uncredited)
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Norman Stevans

Attorney (uncredited)
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Bert Stevens

Restaurant Patron (uncredited)
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Hal Taggart

Courtroom Well-Wisher (uncredited)
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Arthur Tovey

Juror (uncredited)
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Archie Twitchell

Mr. Manning (uncredited)
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Herb Vigran

Municipal Court Bailiff (uncredited)
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Max Wagner

Bartender (uncredited)
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Justice Watson

Judge Wick (uncredited)
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Tom Wilson

Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Crew
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Lewis Allen

Director
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W.R. Burnett

Writer
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James R. Webb

Writer
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Frank J. Collins

Writer
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Frank P. Rosenberg

Producer
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J. Peverell Marley

Cinematograpy
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Thomas Reilly

Editor
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Max Steiner

Music
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Stanley Jones

Sound
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Stanley Fleischer

Art
Disc Releases
Disc Title Front Cover

Illegal

(DVD)

7/31/2007

Disc Title Front Cover

Illegal

(DVD, Keep Case (Std.))

7/31/2007

Disc Title Front Cover

Illegal

(DVD, Keep Case (Std.))

7/31/2007

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