Dial M for Murder (1954) Poster

Anthony Dawson: Charles Swann



  • Tony Wendice : It's funny to think that just a year ago, I sat in that Knightsbridge Pub actually planning to murder her. And I might have done it, if I hadn't seen something that changed my mind.

    C.A. Swan : Well? What did you see?

    Tony Wendice : I saw you.

  • Tony Wendice : At exactly three minutes to eleven, you'll enter the house through the street door. You'll find the key to this door under the stair carpet here.

    C.A. Swan : The fifth step?

    Tony Wendice : That's the one. Go straight to the window, and hide behind the curtains. At exactly eleven o'clock, I shall go to the telephone in the hotel to call my boss. I shall dial the wrong number. This number. That's all I shall do.

  • Tony Wendice : By the way does Mrs. Van Dorn know about "Mr. Adams" or "Mr. Wilson" and Miss Wallace? You were planning to marry Mrs. Van Dorn, weren't you?

    C.A. Swan : Smart, aren't you?

    Tony Wendice : No, not really. I've just had time to think things out. Put myself in your position. That's why I know you're going to agree.

    C.A. Swan : What makes you think I'll agree?

    Tony Wendice : For the same reason that a donkey with a stick behind him and a carrot in front always goes forwards and not backwards.

    C.A. Swan : Tell me about the carrot.

  • C.A. Swan : [looking at an old photograph]  Well, that's the first and last reunion I ever went to. What a murderous thug I look.

    Tony Wendice : Yes, you do, rather.

  • C.A. Swan : [referring to the bribe money Tony is offering him to kill Margot]  You know the police would only have to trace one of these notes back to you to hang us both from the same rope?

    Tony Wendice : They won't. For a whole year I've been cashing an extra twenty pounds a week, always in fivers. I then change them for those at my leisure.

    C.A. Swan : Let me see your bank statement.

    Tony Wendice : By all means. Don't touch.

    [Tony opens up his checkbook for Swan, so as not to leave fingerprints] 

    C.A. Swan : [as he reads]  Turn back a page.

    [Tony complies] 

    C.A. Swan : Ah, your balance has dropped by over a thousand pounds during the year. Suppose the police ask you about that?

    Tony Wendice : I go dog-racing twice a week.

    C.A. Swan : They'll check your bookmaker!

    Tony Wendice : Like you, I always bet on the "Tote." Satisfied?

  • C.A. Swan : You know, I think I must have seen you somewhere since we left Cambridge.

    Tony Wendice : Ever been to Wimbledon?

    C.A. Swan : That's it! Wendice. Tony Wendice. What's all this about "Fisher"?

    Tony Wendice : What's all this about "Lesgate"?

    [embarrassed, Swan doesn't respond] 

    Tony Wendice : Would you like a cigar?

  • C.A. Swan : Where's the nearest police station?

    Tony Wendice : Opposite the church, two minutes walk.

    C.A. Swan : Suppose I walk there now.

    Tony Wendice : What would you tell them?

    C.A. Swan : Everything.

    Tony Wendice : Everything? All about "Mr. Adams" and "Mr. Wilson"?

    C.A. Swan : I should simply tell them that you're trying to blackmail me into...

    Tony Wendice : ...Into?

    C.A. Swan : ...murdering your wife.

    Tony Wendice : [chuckles]  I almost wish you would. When she heard that we'd have the biggest laugh of our lives.

    C.A. Swan : Aren't you forgetting something?

    Tony Wendice : Am I?

    C.A. Swan : You've told me quite a lot tonight.

    Tony Wendice : [scoffs]  What of it?

    C.A. Swan : Suppose I tell them how you followed her to that studio in Chelsea and watched them cooking spaghetti and all that rubbish. Wouldn't that ring a bell?

    Tony Wendice : Oh, it certainly would. They'd assume you followed her there yourself.

    C.A. Swan : Me? Why should I?

    Tony Wendice : Why should you steal her handbag? Why should you write her all those blackmail notes? Can you prove you didn't? You certainly can't prove I did. It'll be a straight case of your word against mine.

    C.A. Swan : That'd puzzle them, wouldn't it? What could you say?

    Tony Wendice : I should simply say that you came here tonight, half-drunk, and tried to borrow money on the strength that we were at college together. When I refused, you mentioned something about a letter belonging to my wife. As far as I could make out, you were trying to sell it to me. I gave you what money I had, and you gave me the letter. It has your fingerprints on it, remember? Then you said if I went to the police you'd tell some crazy story about my wanting you to murder my wife. Before you go any further, old boy, do consider the inconvenience. You see, I'm quite well known, and there'd be pictures of you as well. And sooner or later there'd be a deputation of landladies and lodgers who would step forward and testify as to your character. And someone is almost certain to have seen you with Miss Wallace. You were careful not to be seen around with her, I noticed. You usually met in out-of-the-way places where you wouldn't be recognized.

  • C.A. Swan : When would this take place?

    Tony Wendice : Tomorrow night.

    C.A. Swan : Tomorrow? Not a chance! I've got to think this over.

    Tony Wendice : It has to be tomorrow. I've arranged things that way.

    C.A. Swan : Where?

    Tony Wendice : Approximately where you're standing now.

  • Tony Wendice : I've been following you ever since.

    C.A. Swan : Why?

    Tony Wendice : Well, I was hoping that sooner or later I might catch you at something and be able to, ah...

    C.A. Swan : Blackmail me?

    Tony Wendice : Influence you.

  • Tony Wendice : One thousand pounds in cash.

    C.A. Swan : For a murder?

    Tony Wendice : For a few minutes work, that's all it is. And no risk, I guarantee. That ought to appeal to you. You've been skating on pretty thin ice.

    C.A. Swan : I don't know what you're talking about.

    Tony Wendice : You ought to know. It's in all the papers. Middle aged woman found dead due to an overdose of something. Apparently, she'd been taking the stuff for quite some time, and nobody knows where she got it. But we know, don't we? Poor Miss Wallace.

    C.A. Swan : This thousand pounds. Where is it?

    Tony Wendice : It's in a small attaché case in a check room.

    C.A. Swan : Where?

    Tony Wendice : Somewhere in London. Of course we don't meet again. As soon as you've delivered the goods, I shall mail you the checkroom ticket and the key to the case. You take this hundred pounds on account.

  • Tony Wendice : [concerned tone; into the phone]  Oh, by the way, will you be bringing the car with you?

    C.A. Swan : [on the phone]  Uh... I'm afraid I can't tonight, it's...

    Tony Wendice : [relieved tone; into the phone]  That doesn't matter. I had a good look at it anyway. Oh, you might want to bring the registration book and any necessary papers.

    C.A. Swan : [on the phone]  Yes, of course.

    Tony Wendice : [on the phone]  I don't see why we can't settle this whole thing here and now, provided you drop the price.

    C.A. Swan : [on the phone]  I'm afraid that's quite out of the question.

    Tony Wendice : [on the phone]  Well, we'll see what a couple of drinks can do. Goodbye.

    C.A. Swan : [on the phone]  Goodbye.

  • C.A. Swan : Just a minute. I'm supposed to have come in through these windows. Suppose they'd been locked?

    Tony Wendice : It wouldn't matter. You see, she often takes a walk around the garden before she goes to bed, and she usually forgets to lock up when she gets back. That's what I shall tell the police.

    C.A. Swan : Yes, but she may say that...

    Tony Wendice : But she isn't going to say anything, is she?

  • C.A. Swan : By the way, how do you know my car is for sale?

    Tony Wendice : The mechanic at your garage told me.

    C.A. Swan : That's odd. I don't think I mentioned it to anyone there.

    Tony Wendice : Well, I stopped there one day for a fill up and told him that I was looking for a new American car to buy and he gave me your phone number. It is for sale, isn't it?

    C.A. Swan : Yes, of course.

    Tony Wendice : Well, I refuse to discuss the price until you've had at least three brady's.

    C.A. Swan : Hey, I warn you. I drive a hard bargain, drunk or sober.

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