I Am a Thief (Warner Bros.) (1934)

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“I Am A Thief” Is Amazing, Baffling Mystery Thriller “IT Am a Thief,’ Warner Bros. latest melodramatic mystery thriller, is scheduled to open at the cons dac ee oe Theatre one. fe with Mary Astor and Ricardo Cortez heading an all star cast. The picture, based on a story by Ralph Block and Doris Malloy, recounts the breath-taking adventures of a band of international jewel robbers who plot to steal an almost priceless set of diamonds known as the Kareninas. The diamonds are used by secret service operatives as a_ bait to catch a gang of jewel thieves composed of renegade nobles, beautiful adventuresses and men of such daring and cleverness that they have succeeded in outwitting the officials. The famed Kareninas, the prize loot of the Continent, attract the attention of rival gangs whose battles with each other and with officers of the French Surete results in cold blooded murders, killings, and the wounding of several others. Mary Astor has the role of a beautiful and cultured woman who is trying to get hold of the famous diamonds by hook or crook. She spies on and follows the first purchaser of the jewels, a gentlemanly dilettante of evident wealth, a part played by Ricardo Cortez. Each is at first suspicious of the other while at the same time the two are magnetically attracted by the other’s personality. Others who are vitally interested in the jewels, and who are all grouped on the Simplon Express following the purchaser to Istanbul, either for the purpose of stealing the gems or protecting them, include Dudley Digges, who has the role of an American Colonel, afterwards slain on the train; Robert Barrat, in the guise of a German Baron; Irving Pichel, an Italian Count; Hobart Cavanaugh, an insurance broker; Ferdinand Gottschalk and Florence Fair, who have the roles of a lawyer and his wife. The mystery is not revealed until after the murder of the American and the death of another who has leaped from the train, a part played by John Wray. Robert Florey is the director. Players: In Paris Mystery Film All Expert Linguists The company of players making the thrilling drama of an international jewel robbery on board a European trans-continental train, under the title, “I Am a Thief,” the Warner Bros. production now showing ah dieie. «Yea ot:.] Theatre, constitutes a group of accomplished linguists, in addition to their ability as actors. Ricardo Cortez, who was born in Vienna, speaks and reads _ both German and French. The same is true of Mary Astor, although she is an American girl, born in the state of Illinois. Irving Pichel is conversant with French, German and Italian. Robert Barrat is a German and French scholar. Ferdinand Gottschalk is at home in the same two languages. Frank Reicher, of the famous German stage family of that name, is naturally at home in German, and knows French and Italian besides. Leo White is a five-way linguist, with a sufficient command of French, German, Spanish and Italian to have played part in talking pictures in all four languages. And Robert Florey, the director of the production, a Frenchman born in Paris, speaks German, Spanish and Italian, besides his native tongue, and has a very fair working vocabulary of Chinese, Japanese and one or two of the Malay languages. Page Ten Mary Astor Trains Like Athlete For Her Screen Work Once Mary Astor begins work in a picture, she lives by a schedule similar to that of an athlete training for a championship event. Social activities of all kinds are suspended until the picture is over. MARY ASTOR Mat No. 1— 10c They don’t bulk very large in Mary’s life at any time, but even her best friends know they’re not welcome (except on a Saturday night or a Sunday afternoon), until the picture is finished. She goes to bed at nine o’clock sharp every night until her work in a picture is concluded. “If I don’t happen to feel sleepy,” said Mary, during the making of her latest Warner Bros. picture, “T Am a Thief,” which comes to Ee cr see Rah cts ota Theatre on EASA, Se Bea SR OAT So » “I read in bed for a little while. But the light goes out before ten, invariably. I’m up at six-thirty when I’m working, and I always have breakfast with my daughter. Similarly, I rush home from the studio to see her again before she goes to bed at dinner time. “When working in a picture, one needs eight hours of sound, refreshing sleep. At least I do. Otherwise, I find myself below par and going on my nerves before it’s over.” In “I Am a Thief,” a thrilling and baffling murder mystery drama, Miss Astor plays the role of a secret service operative. There is an all star cast which includes, besides Miss Astor, Ricardo Cortez, Dudley Digges, Robert Barrat, Irving Pichel and Hobart Cavanaugh. Robert Florey directed the picture from the screen play by Ralph Block and Doris Malloy. Cortez Calls New Mystery Thriller Cleverest In Plot Ricardo Cortez, who plays the leading role opposite Mary Astor in the Warner Bros. production, “Tt Am a Thief,’ which comes to PN oie taal ve a Theatre on TSE At We fo $ , considers the story the most cleverly constructed criminal mystery drama he has encoun tered during his years in pictures. “The drama is bound to keep an audience in suspense to the last moment of its climax, because that is precisely what it did with the production crew around the sound stage while we were making the picture,” said Cortez, after “I Am a Thief” was completed. “T’ve played in a number of mystery pictures, but this is the first story I have found that could keep every member of the crew who hadn’t read the script guessing until the last day of production. “These boys have worked on scores of pictures, and any story that could hold and heighten their interest in its development, as ‘I Am a Thief’? did, must have unusual elements of entertainment value.” The picture revolves around a plot to steal the famous Karenina diamonds, which leads to several baffling murders. Others in the cast include Dudley Digges, Robert Barrat, Irving Pichel, Hobart Cavanaugh and Arthur Aylesworth. Robert Florey directed the production from the screen play by Ralph Block and Doris Malloy. Parisian Mystery Play Sets Unique Costume Problem The wardrobe department of Warner Bros. studios was called upon to solve unique costume problems during the filming of “I Am a Thief,’ which comes to the Peake VA ae Theatre on. ............... The picture deals with the machinations of an international ring of jewel thieves on board the Simplon Express, running from Paris to Istanbul. As the train passes through Italy and Jugoslavia on its way to the shores of the Bosphorus, the story calls for important stops in each of these countries. Each place has its own peculiarities of dress. First of all, the studio had to prepare correct attire for the train crew of the Simplon Express and the station attaches at its point of departure, Paris. The halt at the Italian frontier, a customs point, required the official uniform of both French and Italian customs inspectors, the Italian station master, and the uniforms of the Civil Guard, or local police, as well as that of the famous Italian Bersaglieri, with their imposing hats surmounted with black coq plumes. Finally, at the Jugoslavian frontier station, the correct uniforms of the Jugoslavian customs officials and of the local police were required, besides the costumes of townspeople and peasants who would naturally be found on the station platform. Ricardo Cortez and Mary Astor have the principal roles in “I Am a Thief.” Other important. players in the cast are Robert Barrat, Irving Pichel, Hobart Cavanaugh, Ferdinand Gottschalk, Florence Fair, Dudley Digges, Arthur Aylesworth and Leo White. Mary Astor In the cast of “I Am a Thief,” the Warner mystery-drama_ at DRC ee eee, Theatre. Real Thieves Rob Director Making Gem Theft Film A robbery that had not been written into the script and a thief who was not in the cast added a touch of surprise and suspense to the making of “I Am a Thief,” the Warner Bros. picture which comes LOPEMG eee Hea treon, oc During the shooting of some of the most exciting scenes in the disappearance of the famous diamonds whose fate on the Paris-Istanbul express forms the theme of the picture, Director Robert Florey found his coat was missing. With it had disappeared a considerable amount of money in a wallet. Stars of Strand Mystery Ricardo Cortez and Mary Astor are featured in Warner Bros.’ latest mystery hit, “I Am a Thief,” now playing at the oe... Theatre. An all-star cast will hold you breathless until the final reel unfolds the startling solution to the most spectacular jewel robbery in the annals of crime. Mat No. 27—20c OPENING DAY STORY New Mystery Play “I Am A Thief” At ..» Theatre Today “IT Am a Thief,’ said to be one of the most thrilling and baffling murder mystery dramas screened, GomesutOzt Nes. -2..<. 5. ree Theatre today. The story by Ralph Block and Doris Malloy depicts the exciting battle between the French Surete and a band of international jewel robbers composed of impoverished nobles, beautiful adventuresses and men so diabolically cunning they are able to steal millions in gems. A trap is set by the secret service operatives for the thieves with the most famous diamonds of Europe, the Kareninas, which are worth a fabulous sum. Bloodshed and murder follow in the wake of the auctioning off of these diamonds which robbers are trying to transport from Paris to Istanbul. Much of the action takes place on the famous Simplon Express, with the suspense building up to one of the most astounding climaxes. There is an all star cast headed by Mary Astor and Ricardo Cortez, while others include such talented players as Dudley Digges, Robert Barrat, Irving Pichel, Hobart Cavanaugh, Arthur Aylesworth, Ferdinand Gottschalk, Frank Reicher, John Wray and Oscar Apfel. Robert Florey, born in Paris and thoroughly familiar with the gay atmosphere of the Continent in which the picture is set, directed the production. Florey reported the loss to the studio police department and went on with the picture. While Mary Astor, who has the role of a secret service operator, busied herself aboard the train, hunting for the lost Karenina diamonds in the film sequence, two plainclothes men were engaged in a parallel but more realistic search for the director’s vanished coat. The real officers, however, were not as successful in their search as Miss Astor was in hers. The picture is a melodramatic mystery thriller in which the attempt to steal the Karenina diamonds leads to several baffling murders. Miss Astor, with Ricardo Cortez, heads the all star cast which also includes Dudley Digges, Robert Barrat, Irving Pichel, Hobart Cavanaugh and Arthur Aylesworth. Robert Florey directed the production from the screen play by Ralph Block and Doris Malloy. (Prepared Review ) New Mystery Film “Tl Am A Thief” Is Great Melodrama The mystery melodrama, “I Am a Thief,” held audiences in breathtaking suspense at the ...................... Theatre yesterday, where it was shown on the screen for the first time locally, with Mary Astor and RICARDO CORTEZ Mat No. 2— 10¢ Ricardo Cortez in the stellar roles. The story is set in the colorful background of Paris and the Continent where impoverished nobles, beautiful adventuresses, and men of diabolical cleverness, plot to steal the famous Karenina diamonds, almost priceless jewels, which have been auctioned off as a bait to catch the thieves. Crime after crime is committed, including two cold blooded murders, a third killing, and the injury of several others. Thrill follows on thrill in the battles between rival robber bands which wind up with a daring which winds up with a daring gem bandit holding up a car full of people on a trans-continental express and stealing the Kareninas from the head of the secret service. The entire cast is admirably fitted for the various roles its members portray. No _ better choice for a woman secret service operative could have been made than Mary Astor. She has the beauty, coolness and poise necessary for the role and handles her part admirably. Ricardo Cortez plays opposite Miss Astor in the role of an apparently wealthy dilettante. Cortez, cool, suave and very much the manof-the-world as always, fits admirably into his role and does one of the best pieces of acting in his career. Dudley Digges adds a comedy touch to the picture as a blustering American Colonel who announces loudly that he is determined to purchase the Kareninas at any price, and whose connection with the criminals finally leads to his murder. Robert Barrat, Ferdinand Gottschalk, Frank Reicher, Florence Fair and John Wray, as well as Irving Pichel, Arthur Aylesworth and Hobart Cavanaugh are excellent in their characterizations.