A once-popular stage melodrama by Gordon Sherry was the source for the 1938 British film Black Limelight. Raymond Massey plays Peter Charrington, who early in the proceedings is charged with murder. Escaping from the authorities, Peter desperately tries to keep in touch with his distraught wife Mary (Joan Marion), who believes in his innocence. Meanwhile, an overly unctuous fellow named Lawrence Crawford (Walter Hudd) watches from the sidelines as Peter eludes the police. Crawford has a vested interest in the outcome of the chase; he is, after all, the real murderer. Reviewers in 1938 enjoyed Black Limelight, but carped over the fact that neither Raymond Massey nor Joan Marion seemed inclined to scale down their stage characterizations for the more intimate demands of the screen.
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