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|Directed by||Roy Ward Baker|
|Written by||Val Guest|
|Music by||Robert Farnon|
Paper Orchid is a 1949 British crime film directed by Roy Ward Baker, with a script written by Val Guest. It featured Hugh Williams, Hy Hazell and Garry Marsh, and was based on a novel by Arthur La Burn. It featured an early film appearance by Sid James, who later found success through the Carry On series.
Despite feeling that women are unsuited to journalism, Fleet Street newspaper editor Frank McSweeney hires Stella Mason as a reporter at the Daily National. Stella starts a hugely popular gossip column, gaining the nickname 'Paper Orchid'.
When her husband dies, Lady Croup becomes the new proprietor of the Daily National. She fires Frank and another journalist, 'Johnny' Johnson - both of whom join rival newspaper the World Record. After offending Lady Croup, Stella also loses her job.
When Stella's tenant is murdered, circumstantial evidence builds up against her. She takes the story to Frank, hoping that the World Record will give her a job in return for the scoop. When he tries to force her to publish it under her own by-line she takes it to the Daily National, where its crime reporter Freddy Evans is asked to investigate it.
It emerges that Freddy actually committed the murder. He files his final newspaper report: a confession. After declaring his love for Stella, he kills himself at Charing Cross Station.
In the epilogue, Frank decides to publish Freddy's last story - pausing momentarily when he hears of his tormented colleague's death.
- Hugh Williams as Frank McSweeney
- Hy Hazell as Stella Mason
- Sid James as Freddy Evans
- Garry Marsh as Johnson
- Andrew Cruickshank as Detective-Inspector Clement Pill
- Ivor Barnard as Eustace Crabb
- Walter Hudd as Briggs
- Ella Retford as Lady Croup
- Hughie Green as Harold Croup
- Vida Hope as Jonquil Jones
- Frederick Leister as Walter Wibberley
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