The producers got their money’s worth out of Maurice Denham in British melodrama Blanche Fury. As well as playing the role of Major Fraser, he also dubbed the voice of elderly actor Townsend Whitling, who was playing the part of a butler. ‘Townsend looked wonderful but proved to be incomprehensible on the soundtrack, so I was asked to dub his voice,’ Denham later recalled. ‘There is one scene between me and him, where I am talking as Major Fraser in my normal voice, then he answers and it’s still me, talking in my ‘old man’s’ voice. Suddenly there is a shout off-camera, ‘Fire!’ – and that’s me as well!’ The joys of working on a no-expense-spared British movie!
Using matinee idol Stewart Granger in the role of a villain for a change, Blanche Fury stars Valerie Hobson as Blanche Fuller, a young woman whose decision to take up an invitation from a rich uncle, Simon Fury (Walter Fitzgerald), to be governess to a young girl, Lavinia (Susanne Gibbs), is the catalyst for murder. Although Blanche soon agrees to marry Simon’s widowed son Laurence (Michael Gough, now best known for playing the butler in the Batman franchise), she secretly lusts after the steward of the Fury estate, Philip Thorn (Granger).
In the best tradition of Victorian melodrama, Philip is an illegitimate Fury and believes the estate should be his. When he sees a group of gypsies interrupt the wedding of Blanche and Laurence, Philip devises a scheme that will give him what he wants: the estate and Laurence’s new wife. Initially keen to follow his murderous plan, Blanche starts to have second thoughts when it becomes apparent that Philip also intends to kill Lavinia.
UK / 90 minutes / 1948
Writers:Audrey Lindop, Cecil McGivern (based on the novel by Joseph Shearing),
Valerie Hobson as Blanche Fury
Stewart Granger as Philip Thorn
Michael Gough as Laurence Fury
Walter Fitzgerald as Simon Fury
Susanne Gibbs as Lavinia
Sybille Binder as Louisa
Ernest Jay as Calamy
Townsend Whitling as Banks
J.H. Roberts as Doctor
Allan Jeayes as Mr. Weatherby
Edward Lexy as Col. Jenkins
Amy Veness as Mrs. Winterbourne
Cherry London as Molly
George Woodbridge as Aimes
Lionel Grose as Jordon
Bryan Herbert as Elliot
Margaret Withers as Mrs. Hawkes
Norman Pierce as Coroner
Wilfrid Caithness as Clerk of Court
James Dale as Judge
Cecil Ramage as Prosecuting Counsel
David Ward as First Clerk
Sidney Benson as Second Clerk
M.E. Clifton James as Prison Governor
Michael Brennan as Farmer
Charles Saynor as Second Farmer
Alexander Field as Third Farmer
Marie Ault as Old Gypsy
Arthur Wontner as Lord Rudford
Maurice Denham as Maj. Fraser
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