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Cross-Up (1954)

Tiger by the Tail (original title)
On the first night of his London assignment, news agency reporter John Desmond becomes heavily involved with enigmatic Anna Ray. The affair ends when she is shot struggling for a gun she ... See full summary »


John Gilling


John Gilling (screenplay), Willis Goldbeck (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Larry Parks ... John Desmond
Constance Smith ... Jane Claymore
Lisa Daniely ... Anna Ray
Cyril Chamberlain Cyril Chamberlain ... Foster
Donald Stewart ... Macaulay
Thora Hird ... Mary
Joan Heal Joan Heal ... Annabella
Alexander Gauge Alexander Gauge ... Fitzgerald
Ronan O'Casey ... Nick
Marie Bryant Marie Bryant ... Singer
Doris Hare ... Nurse Brady
Ronald Leigh-Hunt ... Dr. Scott
Robert Moore Robert Moore ... Clarke
John Watson John Watson ... Truscott
Hal Osmond Hal Osmond ... Electrical Inspector


On the first night of his London assignment, news agency reporter John Desmond becomes heavily involved with enigmatic Anna Ray. The affair ends when she is shot struggling for a gun she has pulled on him. This is only the start of his troubles, as Anna worked for a criminal organisation who know Desmond has now got her valuable contacts list. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Walls of a Whole City Were Closing In...And Now He Was Running For His Life!


Crime | Drama


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Release Date:

January 1958 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cross-Up See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tempean Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In March 1958 United Artists distributed this (under the title "Cross-Up") in the US on a double bill with Run Silent Run Deep (1958) starring Clark Gable and Burt Lancaster. See more »


John Desmond: I guess I caught a tiger by the tail and I couldn't let go!
See more »


Version of Never Come Back (1990) See more »


I Know Love
Lyric by Sid Colin
Music by Stanley Black
Sung by Marie Bryant (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

Well-paced chase thriller
25 August 2016 | by Leofwine_dracaSee all my reviews

I thought TIGER BY THE TAIL was one of the better Tempean Films movies I've watched, something which has a kind of Hitchcockian 'wronged man' thriller flavour to it. It stars the Kansas-born imported American star Larry Parks as a journalist who arrives in London and immediately falls for the charms of a femme fatale, played well by Lisa Daniely. Unfortunately she's also involved with a criminal gang, who soon have Parks in their sights.

This is a short and snappy chase thriller with plenty of tension to recommend it. There's also a surprising amount of atmosphere and funny moments, like when Parks visits Thora Hird's house which is straight out of a Hitchcock movie like SABOTEUR. Parks and Constance Smith aren't the most exciting of leads but they're not bad and you get supporting players like Alexander Gauge and Ronald Leigh-Hunt who can be relied upon to give professional performances. The interlude in the hospital is very well done. John Gilling once again directed, from his own script.

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