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Although an August 1943 Hollywood Reporter news item noted that RKO producer Casey Robinson was signed to write the screenplay, his contribution to the realesed film has not been confirmed. The news item also noted that actor Brian Donlevy was originally set to play legendary Dempster McMurphy, the real-life Chicago utilities and newspaper executive who founded a charitable organization in the name of St. Dismas. McMurphy's life appears to have been the basis for the character of "Terry O'Neill." According to an unidentified, contemporary news item in the file on the film at the AMPAS Library, Father Edward Dowling, a close friend of Dempster MacMurphy, was hired as an advisor on the picture and assisted in the preparation of the screen story. The extent of Dowling's contribution to the script has not been determined. M-G-M studio records indicate that Doreen Tryden dubbed all of Angela Lansbury's songs in the film. The Hoodlum Saint marked the screen debut of nine-year-old Jerry Laskoe, Jr., the nephew of director Norman Taurog. The picture was also Rags Ragland's last film before his death.