The Devil to Pay!

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Devil to Pay!
Directed by George Fitzmaurice
Produced by Samuel Goldwyn
Screenplay by Frederick Lonsdale
Benjamin Glazer
Starring Ronald Colman
Loretta Young
Frederick Kerr
Myrna Loy
Music by Alfred Newman
Cinematography George Barnes
Gregg Toland
Edited by Grant Whytock
Distributed by United Artists
Release dates
  • December 18, 1930 (1930-12-18)
Running time 97 min.

The Devil to Pay! is a 1930 American drama film directed by George Fitzmaurice and starring Ronald Colman, Loretta Young and Frederick Kerr. It was written by Frederick Lonsdale and Benjamin Glazer.


Samuel Goldwyn recruited the playwright Frederick Lonsdale to write a British-set story after meeting him on a visit to London for the première of the Colman film Bulldog Drummond.[1] Goldwyn saw it as ideal vehicle for Colman to follow up his success in the previous film. Constance Cummings was originally cast in the female lead, but was replaced because her American accent was too strong for the British setting. Goldwyn also replaced the original director Irving Cummings after two weeks because he was unhappy with the standard of production.[2]


After selling his house and belongings in East Africa, upper-class black sheep Willie Hale (Colman) returns home to England, where he buys a dog and charms his rich father, Lord Leeland (Kerr), into giving him more money.

After reuniting with his old girlfriend, actress Mary Crayle (Loy), he meets and falls in love with heiress Dorothy Hope (Young). Dorothy then breaks her engagement to Grand Duke Paul (Cavanagh) because she finds bankrupt Willie far more charming. He also makes Willie agree to stop seeing Mary.

Mistakenly thinking he has breached this agreement, Dorothy pays Willie off. He sends the money to destitute Paul, who gladly accepts it, showing both Willie's and Paul's true characters to Dorothy. When Dorothy and Willie make up, Lord Leeland laughingly informs them that Dorothy's father is making them a wedding present of a sheep farm in Australia. At least if Willie goes broke this time, Dorothy's father is footing the bill, not him.[3]



  1. ^ Berg p.193
  2. ^ Berg p.193-194
  3. ^ Frank, Sam, Ronald Colman, A Bio-Bibliography (1997) p. 89


  • Berg, A. Scott Goldwyn: A Biography. Pan Books, 1999.

External links[edit]