Meet Danny Wilson (film)

Meet Danny Wilson is a 1952 drama musical film starring Frank Sinatra and Shelley Winters. The movie was directed by Joseph Pevney and written by Don McGuire.

Meet Danny Wilson
Directed byJoseph Pevney
Produced byLeonard Goldstein
Written byDon McGuire
StarringFrank Sinatra
Shelley Winters
Alex Nicol
Raymond Burr
CinematographyMaury Gertsman
Edited byVirgil W. Vogel
Universal Pictures
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • April 1, 1952 (1952-04-01)
Running time
88 minutes
CountryUnited States

Sinatra, during his famous career slump between his bobby-soxer heyday and From Here to Eternity (1953), plays a small-time singer, who vaults to the top of his profession, only to be threatened by a gangster (Raymond Burr).

The circumstances of the making of this film are legendary, as Shelley Winters and Frank Sinatra hated each other. Winters, according to Kitty Kelley's "His Way," at one point in a pique of anger slugged Sinatra. He did not retaliate.


Hot-tempered singer Danny Wilson and easy-going pianist pal Mike Ryan get acquainted with Joy Carroll, also a singer. Danny slugs a cop and is thrown in jail, but Joy arranges his bail and a job at mobster Nick Driscoll's club.

Danny's got double trouble because Nick not only demands 50% of all earnings, past and future, but also jealously loves Joy. The cops are keeping an eye on Nick, a suspect in a murder.

Joy eventually realizes that she truly loves Mike, but he is reluctant to steal his best friend's girl. Danny brashly announces his engagement to Joy without first consulting her. Danny catches her with Mike, gets drunk, and punches Nick, who pulls a gun. Mike intercepts the bullet meant for his friend.

Cops follow Danny to a park, where he intends to get even with Nick. At the last second, the police save him. Danny comes to accept the romance of Joy and Mike, who happily come to see him at his next big engagement on stage.



The film features cameos from Tony Curtis and Jeff Chandler.[1]

Sinatra had gone through a painful divorce to first wife Nancy Sr. before the filming. Due to a major career slump, money issues and his volatile marriage to current spouse Ava Gardner, Sinatra began to lose weight from his already thin frame. Co-star Shelley Winters, already in a contentious feud with the star, began to get concerned because she was looking increasingly bulky by comparison.[2]


The song, "A Good Man Is Hard to Find", is performed by Shelley Winters and Frank Sinatra.


  1. LADD, PARAMOUNT DISCUSS CONTRACT: Actor Seeks Picture-a-Year Deal on Long-Term Basis After Current Pact Ends Youngster Gets Role By THOMAS M. PRYOR Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES.. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 14 Sep 1951: 22.
  2. O'Brien, Daniel (1998). The Frank Sinatra Film Guide. BT Batsford. pp. 54–55. ISBN 0-7134-8418-7.
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