The Adventures of Ellery Queen

The Adventures of Ellery Queen is the title of a radio series and four separate television series made from the 1950s through the 1970s. They were based on the fictional detective and pseudonymous writer Ellery Queen and the cases he solved with his father, Inspector Richard Queen.


  • The Spanish Cape Mystery (1935) Donald Cook as Ellery Queen, Guy Usher as Inspector Queen (based on The Spanish Cape Mystery)
  • The Mandarin Mystery (1936) Eddie Quillan as Ellery Queen, Wade Boteler as Inspector Queen (loosely based on The Chinese Orange Mystery); this film is now in the public domain[1]
  • Ellery Queen, Master Detective (1940) Ralph Bellamy as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen (very loosely based on The Door Between)[2]
  • Ellery Queen's Penthouse Mystery (1941) Ralph Bellamy as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen
  • Ellery Queen and the Perfect Crime (1941) Ralph Bellamy as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen (loosely based on The Devil To Pay)[2]
  • Ellery Queen and the Murder Ring (1941) Ralph Bellamy as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen (loosely based on The Dutch Shoe Mystery)[2]
  • A Close Call for Ellery Queen (1942) William Gargan as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen
  • A Desperate Chance for Ellery Queen (1942) William Gargan as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen
  • Enemy Agents Meet Ellery Queen (1942) Ralph Bellamy as Ellery Queen, Margaret Lindsay as Nikki Porter, Charley Grapewin as Inspector Queen
  • La Décade prodigieuse (1971) (English title, Ten Days' Wonder) directed by Claude Chabrol and starring Anthony Perkins, Orson Welles. There is no character named Ellery Queen but Michel Piccoli plays "Paul Regis", the investigator. (Based on Ten Days' Wonder)
  • Haitatsu sarenai santsu no tegami (1979) (English title, The Three Undelivered Letters) a Japanese movie directed by Yoshitaro Nomura (based on Calamity Town but apparently not containing Ellery Queen or any detective character)


With Hugh Marlowe in the title role, Ellery Queen was introduced in The Adventures of Ellery Queen on CBS Radio on June 18, 1939, running until September 22, 1940. In 1942, the series moved to NBC radio, airing until 1944. From 1945 to 1947, it was heard once again on CBS, returning to NBC in 1947 and then moved to ABC radio (1947–1948). The premise was that a mystery would be dramatized, but then interrupted when a panel of celebrities would attempt to solve it.

During the 1970s, syndicated radio fillers, Ellery Queen's Minute Mysteries, began with an announcer saying, "This is Ellery Queen ..." and then outlining a case in one minute. The radio station encouraged callers to solve the mystery and win a sponsor's prize. Once they had a winner, the solution part of the spot would be played as confirmation.


  • The first television series, The Adventures of Ellery Queen, was produced by the DuMont Television Network. It ran on DuMont from October 14, 1950, to December 6, 1951 (50 episodes), then moved to ABC from December 16, 1951, to November 26, 1952 (43 episodes).
  • The second series, Mystery Is My Business, ran for 32 episodes and was produced by ITC Entertainment. It ran from 1954 to 1956.
  • The third series, The Further Adventures of Ellery Queen, ran for 33 episodes from 1958 to 1959 on NBC.
  • The final series, known simply as Ellery Queen, ran from 1975 until 1976 and was a Universal Television production for NBC.

First TV Series (DuMont and ABC)

The first series was telecast on the DuMont Television Network from October 19, 1950, to December 6, 1951[3] and then on ABC from December 16, 1951, to November 26, 1952. This series starred Richard Hart as Ellery Queen in the first season and Lee Bowman in the role in later seasons. (Hart died suddenly of a heart attack in January 1951.) Florenz Ames played Inspector Richard Queen. Irving Pincus did his first work as a producer in two segments of this version of Ellery Queen. Guest stars included Anne Bancroft, John Carradine, and Eva Gabor. The series, produced by Irving and Norman Pincus and directed by Donald Richardson, featured writing by Helene Hanff, later famous as the author of 84, Charing Cross Road (Bancroft later played Hanff in the film version of 84 Charing Cross Road).

Episode List

First Season - DuMont Network

  1. The Bad Boy
  2. The Mad Tea Party
  3. The Invisible Lover
  4. The Long Count
  5. The Three Lame Men
  6. The Human Weapon
  7. The Crooked Man
  8. The Adventure of the Blind Bullet
  9. Two Pieces of Silver
  10. The Hanging Acrobat (A film clip episode aired on December 21, 1950 is available at the Internet Archive)
  11. The Star of India
  12. The Adventures of the Survivors' Club
  13. Prescription For Treason
  14. The House of Terror
  15. Murder in Hollywood
  16. The Adventure of the Man who Killed Cops
  17. The Hanging Patient
  18. The Adventure of the Jewel-Handled Knife
  19. The Case of the Falling Corpse
  20. The Adventure of the Strange Voyage
  21. The Madcap Robbery
  22. The Adventure of the Manhunt
  23. Murder at the Museum
  24. The Adventures of the Man who Enjoyed Death
  25. The Case of the Frightened Lady
  26. The Baseball Murder Case
  27. Murder for Twelve Cents
  28. The Key to Murder
  29. Death Spins a Wheel
  30. Dissolve to Death
  31. The Frame-Up
  32. The Happiness Club
  33. The Chinese Mummer Mystery
  34. Murder in the Zoo
  35. Death in a Capsule
  36. The Case of the Upright Man
  37. The Adventure of the Frightened Child
  38. The Adventure of the Ballet Murder

Second Season - Dumont Network

  1. The Adventure of the Twilight Zone
  2. The Dead Man who Walked
  3. Murder in the Death House
  4. The Garden of Death
  5. The Gridiron Murder
  6. The Coffee House Murder
  7. Death in a Ghost Town
  8. Murder to Music
  9. The Inside Man
  10. Pavanne for a Dead Princess
  11. The Adventure of the Shape-Up
  12. Death at the Opera

Second Season - ABC Network

  1. Ticket to Nowhere
  2. A Christmas Story
  3. The Long Shot
  4. The Unhung Jury
  5. Death In the Sorority House
  6. The Feminine Touch
  7. Dance of Death
  8. One Week to Live
  9. Mr. Big
  10. Left-Cross
  11. The Red Hook Murder
  12. King Size Death
  13. The File of Death
  14. The Bar Peaceful Murder
  15. Doodle of Death
  16. The Men Without Faces
  17. Death of a Wax Doll
  18. Cat and Mouse
  19. Coroner's Inquest
  20. The Not So Private Eye
  21. Rehearsal for Murder
  22. Prize Catch
  23. The Case of the Heartbroken Men
  24. The Third Room
  25. The Pool of Death
  26. Dead Secret
  27. Case of the Canvas Shroud
  28. A Frame for a Chair
  29. The Winner was Death
  30. Confidential Agent

Third Season - ABC Network

  1. The Ten Dollar Bill
  2. The Case of the Wise Man
  3. Ready For Hanging
  4. Legacy of Death
  5. Buck Fever
  6. Custom Made
  7. The Case of the Two-Faced Man
  8. A Touch of Death
  9. A Close-Up of Murder
  10. The Destructive Angel
  11. The High Executioner
  12. Companion to a Killer
  13. Double Exposure

Second TV Series

ITC's series Mystery Is My Business (1954–56) starred Hugh Marlowe as Ellery (reprising his role from the radio series) but returned Florenz Ames to the role of Richard Queen. Guest stars included Elisha Cook Jr., Celia Lovsky and Peter van Eyck.

Episode List

  1. Dark Corridor
  2. Custom Made
  3. Double Exposure
  4. Mission for Murder
  5. Comeback (also known as The Last Payoff)
  6. Death in a Ghost Town
  7. Close-up of Murder
  8. Star of Kashmir
  9. Letter from the Dead
  10. Once a Killer
  11. The Recluse
  12. Doodle OF Death
  13. The Moll
  14. Mask of Roselli
  15. Woman in the Chair
  16. Trigger Man
  17. Mardi Gras
  18. The Vicious Circle
  19. One Week to Live
  20. Backfire
  21. The Fix
  22. Blackjack
  23. Woman on the Wire
  24. Night Visitors
  25. Death of a Wax Doll
  26. The White Orchid
  27. Stranger in the Dark
  28. Design for Revenge
  29. The Golden Snow
  30. The Fatal Signal
  31. Mister Big
  32. Memoirs Unwritten

The Further Adventures of Ellery Queen

This version featured George Nader as Ellery Queen in twenty episodes, then Lee Philips for the remainder of the season. Les Tremayne took the role of Richard Queen. Guest appearances were made by, among numerous others, film star and Oscar-nominee Nancy Carroll and stage actress Marian Seldes.

Episode List

  1. The Glass Village
  2. The King is Dead
  3. Ten Days of Wonder
  4. The Door Between
  5. The 8th Mrs Bluebeard
  6. Cat of Many Tails
  7. Death Before Bedtime
  8. Double, Double
  9. So Rich, So Lovely, So Dead
  10. Diamond-studded Typewriter
  11. Four and Twenty to Live
  12. Paint the Town Black
  13. The Hollow Man
  14. Bury Me Deep
  15. The Hinnolity Story
  16. The Jinn City Story
  17. Revolution
  18. The Murder of Whistler's Brother
  19. Death likes it Hot
  20. Margin of Terror
  21. Chauffeur Disguise
  22. Shadow of the Past
  23. The Chemistry Set
  24. Cartel for Murder
  25. A Girl Named Daisy
  26. The Paper Tigers
  27. The Lecture
  28. Confession of Murder
  29. Castaway on a Nearby Island
  30. The Curse of Aden
  31. Dance into Death
  32. Body of the Crime
  33. This Murder Comes to you Live

Ellery Queen

Universal/NBC's 1970s version featured Jim Hutton as Ellery and David Wayne as Richard. The stories took place in 1947. Guest stars included Don Ameche, Eve Arden, Jim Backus, Tom Bosley, George Burns, Joan Collins, William Demarest, Howard Duff, Ida Lupino, Roddy McDowall, Vincent Price, Pernell Roberts, Cesar Romero, Rudy Vallée, Ray Walston, and Betty White. The series was cancelled after one season of 22 episodes.

Episode List

Ellery Queen two-hour pilot TV-movie, later retitled Too Many Suspects for syndication. This version also appears on the DVD.

  1. The Adventure of Auld Lang Syne
  2. The Adventure of the Lover's Leap
  3. The Adventure of the Chinese Dog
  4. The Adventure of the Comic Book Crusader
  5. The Adventure of the 12th Floor Express
  6. The Adventure of Miss Aggie's Farewell Performance
  7. The Adventure of Colonel Niven's Memoirs
  8. The Adventure of the Mad Tea Party
  9. The Adventure of Veronica's Veils
  10. The Adventure of the Pharaoh's Curse
  11. The Adventure of the Blunt Instrument
  12. The Adventure of the Black Falcon
  13. The Adventure of the Sunday Punch
  14. The Adventure of the Eccentric Engineer
  15. The Adventure of the Wary Witness
  16. The Adventure of the Judas Tree
  17. The Adventure of the Sinister Scenario
  18. The Adventure of the Two-Faced Woman
  19. The Adventure of the Tyrant of Tin Pan Alley
  20. The Adventure of Caesar's Last Sleep
  21. The Adventure of the Hard-Hearted Huckster
  22. The Adventure of the Disappearing Dagger

See also


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