The newly constructed Paramount sound stages were used as a backdrop for the Pirandellian thriller The Studio Murder Mystery. Fredric March stars as Richard Hardell, a silent-screen idol whose transition to talkies is threatened by his inability to remember his lines. Driven to distraction, Hardell's director Richard Borka (Warner Oland) wonders if his star will be able to get through the all-important "murder scene" in his current picture. The thin line between fantasy and reality is blurred when several actual attempts are made on Hardell's life. The suspects include Hardell's far-from-loyal wife Blanche (played by March's real-life wife Florence Eldredge) and sour-pussed studio "gag writer" Tony White (Neil Hamilton).
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