AFI Catalog of Feature Films
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Charlie Chan in Paris
Director: Lewis Seiler (Dir)
Release Date:   25 Jan 1935
Premiere Information:   New York opening: 21 Jan 1935
Production Date:   12 Nov--mid-Dec 1934
Duration (in mins):   70
Duration (in feet):   6,413
Duration (in reels):   7
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Cast:   Warner Oland (Charlie Chan)  
    Mary Brian (Yvette Lamartine)  
    Thomas Beck (Victor Descartes)  
    Erik Rhodes (Max Corday)  
    John Miljan (Albert Dufresne)  
    Murray Kinnell (Henri Latouche)  
    Minor Watson (Renard)  
    John Qualen (Concierge)  
    Keye Luke (Lee Chan)  
    Henry Kolker (M. Lamartine)  
    Dorothy Appleby (Nardi)  
    Ruth Peterson (Renee Jacquard)  
    Perry Ivins (Bedell)  
    George Davis (Roberts, butler)  
    Auguste Tollaire (Concierge)  
    Louis Natheaux (Reporter)  
    Ed Cecil (Customs officer)  
    Robert Graves (Gendarme)  
    Harry Cording (Gendarme)  
    Marty Faust (Cab driver)  
    Landers Stevens (Bank attendant)  
    John Dilson (Information clerk)  
    Samuel T. Godfrey (Cashier)  
    Rolfe Sedan (Cashier)  
    Moore & Allen (Apache dancers)  
    Gino Corrado (Head waiter)  
    Wilfred Lucas (Doorman)  
    Richard Kipling (Master of ceremonies--Cafe Embassy)  
    Eddie Vitch (Sketch artist)  
    Paul McVey (Detective)  
    Gloria Roy    

Summary: Honolulu detective Charlie Chan arrives in Paris ostensibly on vacation after solving a noteworthy case in London. He makes an appointment to meet Nardi, a dancer at the Café du Singe Bleu, after her performance that night. Chan first visits Victor Descartes, whose father, Chan's friend, is a director of the Lamartine Bank where Victor works as a clerk. After Victor's fiancée, Yvette Lamartine, the bank president's daughter, arrives with two friends, Max Corday, an intoxicated sketch artist, and Renee Jacquard, the group accompanies Chan to the café. As Max gets out of his car, he bumps into a disgruntled man on crutches in dark glasses, who berates him. After her Apache dance, Nardi is murdered in a back room by a knife thrown by the man on crutches. In Nardi's room, Chan finds a diary containing information about Albert Dufresne. As Chan is leaving the building, the man on crutches drops a cement block from the roof, which nearly hits him. Chan is pleasantly surprised to find in his hotel room his son Lee, who has come to vacation with his father. Chan reveals to Lee that he is really investigating a case for a London banking house and that his accomplice, Nardi, has been murdered. The next day, when Yvette visits her father at the bank, Dufresne, her father's assistant, threatens to show love letters she once wrote him to Victor unless she visits his apartment. While Lee waits at the door, Chan enters the bank and witnesses the office manager, Henri Latouche, have the man on crutches, whom he identifies as Marcel Xavier, a shell-shocked, crippled soldier, escorted out for causing a disturbance. Chan meets with Lamartine and Dufresne and after showing them that bonds issued by the bank are, in fact, forgeries, he instructs Lee to follow Dufresne. That night, as Lee watches from the street, Yvette visits Dufresne, who is packing and is secretly being watched by Xavier. Just as Dufresne is handing Yvette the letters, he is shot from the room that Xavier entered. Xavier escapes with the bonds Dufresne packed, but Lee follows his taxi. Yvette, who grabs the gun when the room is invaded by people, is arrested for murder. When Max and Renee are interrogated by the police, Yvette slips the letters to Chan, who promises to destroy them. Lee returns to the hotel, and when Chan joins him, Lee reports that Xavier got into a limousine after the taxi ride and that it was the same limousine in which Max and Renee drove away from the hotel. Chan visits Max and tells him that he suspects Xavier used his limousine to get rid of his disguise. Max, thinking that Chan may suspect him, reminds him that Xavier bumped into him outside the café. Chan then leaves and Max packs the bonds that were in Dufresne's room, but Chan and Lee stop him from leaving. Chan surmises that Max killed Dufresne, but he still has not found Nardi's murderer. While Lee holds Max at gunpoint, Chan goes to the bank where Latouche gives him Xavier's address. Victor, appealing to Chan to help Yvette, drives him to find Xavier. At the address, Chan finds a secret panel leading to the Paris sewers, where they find a room with printing and engraving equipment and more forged bonds. Xavier arrives and fires at Chan, but they apprehend him and Chan removes his wig, glasses and mask to reveal Latouche. When the police arrive with Lee, Chan explains that Max and Latouche both used the disguise so that they each could have alibis. Dufresne, their accomplice in the bond forgeries, tried to leave town with their money and was murdered by Max. Chan then tells police inspector Renard that Yvette is his assistant and was sent by him to get important letters from Dufresne. Renard understands and agrees to release her. 

Production Company: Fox Film Corp.  
Distribution Company: Fox Film Corp.  
Director: Lewis Seiler (Dir)
  Hamilton MacFadden (Orig dir)
  Eli Dunn (Asst dir)
Producer: John Stone (Prod)
  Sol M. Wurtzel (Exec prod)
Writer: Edward T. Lowe (Scr)
  Stuart Anthony (Scr)
  Philip MacDonald (Story)
  William Allen Johnston (Contr on spec seq)
Photography: Ernest Palmer (Photog)
  Dan Clark (Orig photog)
Art Direction: Duncan Cramer (Settings)
  Albert Hogsett (Settings)
Costumes: Lillian (Gowns)
Music: Samuel Kaylin (Mus dir)
Sound: Eugene Grossman (Sd)
Stand In: Betty Bryson (Dance double)
  Fred Wallace (Dance double)
  Alex Chivra (Stand in)
  Gladys Howe (Stand in)
Country: United States
Series: Charlie Chan

Source Text: Based on the character "Charlie Chan" created by Earl Derr Biggers.
Authors: Earl Derr Biggers

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number
Fox Film Corp. 25/1/1935 dd/mm/yyyy LP5275

PCA NO: 507
Physical Properties: b&w:
  Sd: Western Electric Noiseless Recording

 
Genre: Drama
Sub-Genre: Detective
 
Subjects (Major): Americans in foreign countries
  Bonds
  Chinese Americans
  Detectives
  Disguise
  Forgers and forgery
  Murder
  Paris (France)
 
Subjects (Minor): Apache dancers
  Artists
  Bank clerks
  Bank presidents
  Cafés
  Diaries
  Engagements
  False arrests
  Fathers and sons
  Letters
  Sewers
  Threats

Note: According to DV , Hamilton MacFadden, the original director, was relieved of his assignment after the film was in production one week. Dan Clark, who did not received screen credit, was the original cameraman. This was the first film in which Keye Luke played the role of Lee Chan. For information regarding the series, please consult the Series Index and see the entry above for Charlie Chan Carries On

Bibliographic Sources:   Date   Page
Box Office   2 Feb 1935.   
Daily Variety   22 Nov 34   p. 14.
Daily Variety   22 Dec 34   p. 3.
Film Daily   22 Jan 35   p. 4.
HF   15 Dec 34   p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter   9 Nov 34   p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter   12 Nov 34   p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter   19 Nov 34   p. 10, 12
Hollywood Reporter   22 Dec 34   p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter   29 Jan 35   p. 2.
Motion Picture Herald   5 Jan 35   p. 35.
New York Times   22 Jan 35   p. 23.
Variety   29 Jan 35   p. 14.

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.
 
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