Killer McCoy

Killer McCoy is a 1947 American film about a boxer. It is a remake of The Crowd Roars (1938).

Killer McCoy
Directed byRoy Rowland
Produced bySam Zimbalist
Written byFrederick Hazlitt Brennan
George Bruce
Thomas Lennon
George Oppenheimer
StarringMickey Rooney
Brian Donlevy
Ann Blyth
Music byDavid Snell
CinematographyJoseph Ruttenberg
Edited byRalph E. Winters
Release date
December 1947
Running time
104 min.
CountryUnited States
Box office$3,191,000[1]

Plot summary

Tommy McCoy is a tough New York City boy, close to his dad, Brian, a performer in vaudeville. One night while his dad's doing a song and dance for the audience as part of a boxing event, Tommy accepts a challenge to step into the ring. He knocks out his opponent.

Lightweight champ Johnny Martin is impressed. He takes the McCoys on the road, letting Brian perform and showing Tommy the ropes of the boxing business. Tommy wins several fights and gains popularity, but kills a man in the ring and wants to quit. Then he discovers that his dad is heavily in debt to racketeer Jim Caighn and has gambled away Tommy's earnings.

Tommy begins a romantic relationship with the gangster's daughter, Sheila. He is expected to throw a big fight so that Caighn can collect a big payoff from his gambling rivals, and to ensure his dive in the eighth round, Sheila is taken hostage. But she manages to escape, inspiring Tommy to knock out his foe.



MGM announced the film in March 1947. Mickey Rooney had intended to appear in a biopic of jockey Tod Sloan but when that was postponed MGM put him in this. Cyril Hume wrote the script and Sam Zimablist was assigned to produce.[2] It was a conscious decision on MGM's part to try him in a different sort of role.[3] Eizabeth Taylor was announced as his costar.[4] In May Frederick Hazlitt Brennan signed to write the script.[5] By June Taylor had been replaced by Ann Blyth due to the fact script revisions changed the age of her character.[6]


Box Office

The film was a hit, earning $2,201,000 in the US and Canada and $990,000 elsewhere[1] making a profit of $768,000.[7][8]


  1. The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study.
  2. FELDMAN, REPUBLIC IN NEW FILM DEAL: Producer and Studio Sign Pact for Two Pictures--Hecht and Steinbeck Stories Involved By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES. 6 Mar 1947: 36.
  3. 'Caballero' McCarthy Follows Truman South of Border By Louella O. Parsons. The Washington Post 16 Mar 1947: S5.
  4. Looking at Hollywood Hopper, Hedda. Chicago Daily Tribune (1923-1963); Chicago, Ill. [Chicago, Ill]09 Apr 1947: 26.
  5. LEWIS, CLARK FILM SCHEDULED BY RKO: Studio Plans Production on Expedition to Oregon in 1805 -- Pascal Author By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES. 2 May 1947: 28.
  6. U-I WILL DO FILM OF 'ALL MY SONS': Studio Acquires Rights to Play by Arthur Miller -- Erskine Writing Screen Story By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES. ]19 June 1947: 27.
  7. Scott Eyman, Lion of Hollywood: The Life and Legend of Louis B. Mayer, Robson, 2005 p 401
  8. "Top Grossers of 1948", Variety 5 January 1949 p 46

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