Reminiscent of Mae West asking Beulah to peel her a grape, Richard Widmark , as the psychotic hoodlum, ‘Tommy Udo’ in KISS OF DEATH(1947), sneers at assistant D.A. Brian Donlevy who tries to get some information from him:
I wouldn’t give you the skin off a grape.”
What a debut film for Widmark as the cackling killer. He later said, “That damned laugh of mine. For two years after that picture, you couldn’t get me to smile!”
Fortunately Richard managed to evade gangster typecasting in the rest of his career.
The film is remembered for the horrific scene where Udo pushed a wheelchair bound elderly woman down a flight of stairs. ( how it passed the censors, I don’t know.)
That’s some hairstyle .
Richard Widmark (1914-2008) went to Princeton High School in Princeton, Illinois. The newspaper highlights Widmark being a local. ( The film was only screened in his home town after he had been Oscar-nominated).
I was interested to read that Patricia Morison played Victor Mature’s suicide driven first wife in the film, but her scenes were cut from the final print.