The Whispering Shadow

The Whispering Shadow is a 1933 American pre-Code serial film directed by Colbert Clark and Albert Herman and starring Béla Lugosi in his first of five serial roles. Lugosi received $10,000, the highest known salary of his career, for this film. The serial was filmed in 12 days and was the last role for actor Karl Dane.

The Whispering Shadow
The Whispering Shadow.png
Directed byColbert Clark
Albert Herman
Music byLee Zahler (uncredited)
CinematographyEdgar Lyons
Ernest Miller
Distributed byMascot Pictures
Release date
  • 1933 (1933)
Running time
12 chapters (225 minutes)
CountryUnited States


The Shadow in The Whispering Shadow is an underworld mastermind. He has invented a device that allows him to kill by radio control.[1] He, along with several other persons, seeks the Czar's jewels. The series is notable for the constant false clues and decoy actions that make nearly everybody a suspect.[2]



The cinematography mimicked that of Karl Freund in Universal's Dracula - for example, using close ups of the actors' eyes - in order to take advantage of Bela Lugosi's fame as the star of that film.[2] The shadow of The Shadow is not real; It was drawn in later by animators.[2] Harmon and Glut comment on that "If Street & Smith, owners of the original [The] Shadow of magazine and radio fame, had found out about the owner of the whisper, they might have sued."[2] The serial was later edited down to a feature-length edition (as was common in those days).

Chapter titlesEdit

Poster for Chapter 7
  1. The Master Magician
  2. The Collapsing Room
  3. The All-seeing Eye
  4. The Shadow Strikes
  5. Wanted for Murder
  6. The Man Who Was Czar
  7. The Double Doom
  8. The Red Circle
  9. The Fatal Secret
  10. The Death Warrant
  11. The Trap
  12. King of the WorldSource:[3]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Rovin, Jeff (1987). The Encyclopedia of Supervillains. New York: Facts on File. p. 371. ISBN 0-8160-1356-X.
  2. ^ a b c d Harmon, Jim; Donald F. Glut (1973). "14. The Villains: "All Bad, All Mad"". The Great Movie Serials: Their Sound and Fury. Routledge. pp. 341–344. ISBN 978-0-7130-0097-9.
  3. ^ Cline, William C. (1984). "Filmography". In the Nick of Time. McFarland & Company, Inc. p. 209. ISBN 0-7864-0471-X.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
The Devil Horse (1932)
Mascot Serial
The Whispering Shadow (1933)
Succeeded by
The Three Musketeers (1933)