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Payment Deferred (film)

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Director  Lothar Mendes
Music director  William Axt
Language  English
7/10 IMDb

Genre  Crime, Drama
Country  United States
Payment Deferred (film) movie poster
Writer  Jeffrey Dell, C. S. Forester, Ernest Vajda, Claudine West
Release date  November 7, 1932 (1932-11-07)
Screenplay  Ernest Vajda, Claudine West
Story by  C. S. Forester, Jeffrey Dell
Cast  Charles Laughton (William Marble), Maureen O'Sullivan (Winnie Marble), Dorothy Peterson (Annie Marble), Verree Teasdale (Marguerite Collins), Ray Milland (James Medland), Billy Bevan (Charlie Hammond)
Similar movies  I Spit on Your Grave III: Vengeance is Mine, Bloody Moon, The Case of the Scorpion's Tail, W Delta Z, Mad Max: Fury Road, Irreversible

Payment deferred

Payment Deferred is a 1932 American pre-Code crime drama film, starring Charles Laughton as a man so desperate for money, he resorts to murder. It was based on the play of the same name by Jeffrey Dell, which was in turn based on the novel of the same name by C. S. Forester. Laughton also played the lead role in the play, which opened on Broadway on September 30, 1931 and ran for 70 performances.


Payment Deferred (film) movie scenes

Cbs studio one payment deferred charles laughton old time radio


London bank clerk William Marble (Charles Laughton) is deeply in debt. When his boss learns of a lawsuit for an overdue bill, he warns Marble that he will be dismissed if he cannot settle the matter quickly. Then, Marble is visited by a rich nephew whom he has not seen in many years, James Medland (Ray Milland). All night, Marble tries to borrow money from him, having received a financial tip that could solve all his financial troubles. However, Medland is not interested. Driven to desperation, Marble poisons his nephew and buries the body in the back yard.

With the dead man's money, Marble speculates on margin and makes £30,000, a large sum that enables him to retire. However, fear of his crime being discovered makes him consistently nervous and irritable. His wife Annie (Dorothy Peterson) knows something is wrong, but wrongly guesses he has embezzled from the bank. To relieve his nervous tension, he sends Annie and their daughter Winnie (Maureen O'Sullivan) away on a three-week vacation. While they are gone, he has an affair with Madame Collins (Verree Teasdale), a local shopowner. Winnie finds out when she returns a day early and discovers Collins in the house, but keeps quiet about it.

Despite their new financial wealth, troubles continue to grow for the Marble family. Annie finally figures out what her husband has done, but stands by him. Winnie becomes a bit of a snob, consorting with a higher social class of people and sneering at her parents. When she runs away one night, Annie chases after her in the rain and becomes very ill. However, under Marble's loving care, she begins to recover. Then Madame Collins shows up and blackmails Marble into giving her some money. Annie overhears and commits suicide with some of the same cyanide used to kill Medland. Marble is convicted for her murder. When Winnie visits on the day of his execution, Marble reassures her that he did not kill Annie, but says that he is nonetheless at peace with his fate. He is convinced he is paying a bill that was only deferred.

Cast (in credits order)

  • Charles Laughton as William Marble
  • Maureen O'Sullivan as Winnie Marble
  • Dorothy Peterson as Annie Marble
  • Verree Teasdale as Marguerite Collins
  • Ray Milland as James Medland
  • Billy Bevan as Charlie Hammond
  • Halliwell Hobbes as Prospective Tenant
  • Box office

    The film grossed a total (domestic and foreign) of $304,000: $169,000 from the US and Canada and $135,000 elsewhere resulting in a loss of $32,000.

    Preservation status

    On December 14, 2011, Turner Classic Movies aired a print of this film which restored the five cuts in the film made for the 1939 re-release to satisfy the Production Code. Some local censorship boards had objected to the use of the word "cyanide" in its original 1932 release.


    Payment Deferred (film) Wikipedia
    Payment Deferred (film) IMDbPayment Deferred (film)