The Whistler

The Whistler is an American radio mystery drama which ran from May 16, 1942, until September 22, 1955, on the west-coast regional CBS radio network. The show was also broadcast in Chicago and over Armed Forces Radio. On the west coast, it was sponsored by the Signal Oil Company: "That whistle is your signal for the Signal Oil program, The Whistler." There were also two short-lived attempts to form east-coast broadcast spurs: July 3 to September 25, 1946, sponsored by the Campbell Soup Company; and March 26, 1947, to September 29, 1948, sponsored by Household Finance. The program was also adapted into a film noir series by Columbia Pictures in 1944.

Characters and story the Whistler, and I know many things, for I walk by night. I know many strange tales, many secrets hidden in the hearts of men and women who have stepped into the shadows. Yes... I know the nameless terrors of which they dare not speak!

One opening to The Whistler

Each episode of The Whistler began with the sound of footsteps and a person whistling.[1] (The Saint radio series with Vincent Price used a similar opening.) The haunting signature theme tune was composed by Wilbur Hatch and featured Dorothy Roberts whistling with an orchestra.[2]

A character known only as the Whistler was the host and narrator of the tales, which focused on crime and fate. He often commented directly upon the action in the manner of a Greek chorus, taunting the characters, guilty or innocent, from an omniscient perspective. The stories followed a formula in which a person's criminal acts were typically undone either by an overlooked but important detail or by the criminal's own stupidity. An ironic ending, often grim, was a key feature of each episode. But on rare occasions, such as "Christmas Bonus" broadcast on Christmas Day 1944, the plot's twist of fate caused the story to end happily for the protagonist.

Bill Forman had the title role of the Whistler for the longest period of time. Others who portrayed the Whistler at various times were Gale Gordon, Joseph Kearns, Marvin Miller (announcer for The Whistler and The Bickersons and later the actor who portrayed Michael Anthony on TV's The Millionaire), Bill Johnstone (who had the title role on radio's The Shadow from 1938 to 1943) and Everett Clarke. Cast members included Betty Lou Gerson, Hans Conried,[1] Joseph Kearns,[1] Cathy Lewis,[3] Elliott Lewis,[1] Gerald Mohr,[1] Lurene Tuttle[1] and Jack Webb.[4]

Writer-producer J. Donald Wilson established the tone of the show during its first two years, and he was followed in 1944 by producer-director George Allen. Other directors included Sterling Tracy and Sherman Marks with final scripts by Joel Malone and Harold Swanton. Of the 692 episodes, over 200 no longer exist. In 1946, a local Chicago version of The Whistler with local actors aired Sundays on WBBM, sponsored by Meister Brau beer.

Films and television


The Whistler was adapted into a film noir series of eight films by Columbia Pictures.[5] The "Voice of the Whistler" was provided by an uncredited Otto Forrest. In the first seven films, veteran actor Richard Dix played the main character in the story—a different character in each film. In the eighth film, made after Dix's retirement, Michael Duane played the main character.


A syndicated TV version of The Whistler was produced and aired for a brief period in 1954. The Whistler was voiced by William Forman.[6]

Cultural references

In the 1990 film The Two Jakes, set in Los Angeles in the late 1940s, the opening narrative of The Whistler can be heard on the car radio as private detective J.J. Gittes (played by Jack Nicholson) cruises the streets.

See also



  • Dunning, John. On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old Time Radio. Oxford University Press, 1998. ISBN 0-19-507678-8.
  • Nachman, Gerald. Raised on Radio. University of California Press, 2000. ISBN 0-520-22303-9.
  • Pitts, Michael R. Famous Movie Detectives II. Rowman & Littlefield, 1991. ISBN 0-8108-2345-4.
  • Renzi, Thomas C. Cornell Woolrich: From Pulp Noir to Film Noir. McFarland Publishing, 2006. ISBN 0-7864-2351-X.
  • Van Neste, Dan. " The Whistler: Stepping Into the Shadows – A Columbia Film Series". BearManor Media, 2011. ISBN 1-59393-402-5.
  • Wilt, David E. Hardboiled in Hollywood. Popular Press, 1991. ISBN 0-87972-525-7.


  1. ^ a b c d e f Dunning (1998), 720.
  2. ^ Van Neste, Dan (Autumn 2011). "I ... am ... the Whistler!!". Nostalgia Digest. 37 (4): 20–24.
  3. ^ Dunning (1998), 513.
  4. ^ Dunning (1998), 209.
  5. ^ Selby, Spencer. Dark City: The Film Noir, the Whistler film series described and covered as film noir on page 203. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland Publishing, 1984. ISBN 0-89950-103-6.
  6. ^ The Whistler on IMDb .

External links

Arthur Pryor

Arthur Willard Pryor (September 22, 1869 – June 18, 1942) was a trombone virtuoso, bandleader, and soloist with the Sousa Band. He was a prolific composer of band music, his best-known composition being "The Whistler and His Dog". In later life, he became a Democratic Party politician from New Jersey, who served on the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders during the 1930s.

Blackcomb Peak

This article describes the geographical feature Blackcomb Peak, for the ski resort see Whistler Blackcomb.Blackcomb Peak is a mountain located east of Whistler, British Columbia and forms the boundary between the Whistler Blackcomb ski resort and Garibaldi Provincial Park. Like Whistler Mountain, it is located on the edge of Garibaldi Provincial Park and the ski lifts are often used to access the park, particularly for the Spearhead Traverse.

Several skiing runs are established on the mountain, with Whistler Village at the base of the mountain on the side facing Whistler Mountain, and Blackcomb Village on the face opposite. The 2010 Winter Olympics sliding sports took place on its slopes, with the Whistler Sliding Centre located on it.

Chicago Independent Radio Project

The Chicago Independent Radio Project (CHIRP) is a non-profit organization that operates a community radio station (CHIRP Radio) currently accessible via its web site and also on 107.1 FM, via a new low-powered transmitter located in the Uptown neighborhood. CHIRP is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization funded primarily through individual giving, special event revenues, and grant support.

Mount Currie (British Columbia)

Mount Currie, known as Ts'zil in the St'at'imcets (Lillooet) language, is the northernmost summit of the Garibaldi Ranges in southwestern British Columbia, Canada. Its north face dominates the "skyline" of the Pemberton Valley and is one of the peaks visible from the Whistler-Blackcomb Ski Area just southwest. Mount Currie is the namesake of Mount Currie, British Columbia and the adjoining Mount Currie Indian Reserve, home of the Lil'wat First Nation.

The mountain was named for John Currie, the first permanent non-indigenous settler in the Pemberton Valley, who homesteaded the Currie Ranch (a.k.a. "Currie's", later the name of a Pacific Great Eastern Railway stop) in what is now the area of the Mount Currie community/reserve in the 1870s and was the re-builder of the Pemberton Trail.

Nodar Kumaritashvili

Nodar Kumaritashvili (Georgian: ნოდარ ქუმარიტაშვილი; pronounced [nɔdar kʰumaritʼaʃvili]; 25 November 1988 – 12 February 2010) was a Georgian one-man luger who suffered a fatal crash during a training run for the 2010 Winter Olympics competition in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, on the day of the opening ceremony. He became the fourth athlete to die during preparations for a Winter Olympics, and the seventh athlete to die in either a Summer or Winter Olympic Games.

Kumaritashvili, who first began to participate in luge when he was 13, came from a family of seasoned lugers: his grandfather had introduced the sport to the Soviet republic of Georgia, and both his father and uncle had competed when they were younger, with his uncle later serving as the head of the Georgian Luge Federation. Kumaritashvili himself began competing in the 2008–09 Luge World Cup. He had also been a student at the Georgian Technical University, where he earned an economics degree in 2009.

Spearhead Glacier

The Spearhead Glacier is the largest glacier on the Spearhead Range, located on the opposite, northeast side of that range from the resort town of Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, and is serviced in part by the lift system of the Whistler Blackcomb ski resort. The glacier's apex is at the peak known as The Spearhead, which also lies at the head of the Blackcomb Glacier.

The Mark of the Whistler

The Mark of the Whistler is a 1944 American mystery film noir based on the radio drama The Whistler. Directed by William Castle, the production features Richard Dix, Porter Hall and Janis Carter. It is the second of Columbia Pictures' eight "Whistler" films produced in the 1940s, all but the last starring Dix.

The Return of the Whistler

The Return of the Whistler is a 1948 American mystery film noir based on the radio drama The Whistler. Directed by D. Ross Lederman, the production features Michael Duane, Lenore Aubert, and Dick Lane. This is the eighth and final entry in Columbia Pictures' "Whistler" series, produced in the 1940s. This was the only film in this series that did not star Richard Dix.

The Secret of the Whistler

The Secret of the Whistler is a 1946 American mystery film noir based on the radio drama The Whistler. Directed by George Sherman, the production features Richard Dix, Leslie Brooks and Michael Duane. It is the sixth of Columbia Pictures' eight "Whistler" films produced in the 1940s, all but the last starring Dix.

The Spearhead

The Spearhead 2,457 m (8,061 ft) is a peak in the Garibaldi Ranges of British Columbia, Canada, and is one of the main summits of the Blackcomb Mountain portion of the Whistler Blackcomb ski resort, located at the apex of the Blackcomb and Spearhead Glaciers, which is named for it. It also is the namesake of the Spearhead Range, which is the short range flanking the north side of Fitzsimmons Creek and ending on its northwest end at Blackcomb Mountain.

The Whistler (1944 film)

The Whistler is a 1944 American mystery film noir based on the radio drama The Whistler. Directed by William Castle, the production features Richard Dix, Gloria Stuart and J. Carrol Naish. It was the first of Columbia Pictures' eight "Whistler" films starring Richard Dix produced in the 1940s.

The Whistler (novel)

The Whistler is a novel written by American author John Grisham. It was released in hardcover, large print paperback, e-book, compact disc audiobook and downloadable audiobook on October 25, 2016. It is a legal thriller about Florida Board on Judicial Conduct investigator Lacy Stoltz.The plot centers on the legal and moral problems involved in Native American gaming. The Tappacola Nation, a small Native American tribe located in the northern part of Florida, starts a casino in their reservation,giving the tribe members an unprecedented economic affluence and a measure of compensation for their sufferings during the centuries of European settlement, but also opening wide the potential for corruption and involvement with organized crime, up to and including outright murder.

Venues of the 2010 Winter Olympics

For the 2010 Winter Olympics, a total of ten sports venues were used, seven in Vancouver (including BC Place), and three in Whistler.

The 2010 Winter Olympic Games and Paralympic Games were held in Vancouver and Whistler, British Columbia, Canada. The Olympics ran from February 12 to February 28, 2010, and the Paralympics from March 12 to March 21, during which nine competition venues were used, spread across Vancouver, Whistler, and the neighbouring areas of West Vancouver and Richmond. The majority of ice sport events were held in Vancouver, while Whistler, which normally serves as a ski resort, hosted the snow events. Six non-competition venues, three each in Vancouver and Whistler, provided athlete housing, space for media, and locations for ceremonies associated with the Games.In its 2002 evaluation of Vancouver's bid during the bidding process for the 2010 Games, the Evaluation Commission of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) highlighted the number and quality of existing competition and training facilities as one of the bid's strengths. Of the competition venues that the bid proposed for use during the Games, six required new construction, with the remainder already built in Vancouver and Whistler. The Vancouver Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (VANOC), which is responsible for the construction and maintenance of facilities for the Games, pledged that all new construction of permanent facilities, whether on public or private land, would be funded by the government.According to CEO John Furlong, VANOC "started our venue construction as early as possible". Construction on Cypress Mountain, the first new competition venue to be completed, began in March 2006 and was completed only eight months later, three years ahead of the start of the Games. By December 2007, all three competition venues at Whistler were completed and open for training and testing. Final construction was completed in February 2009, and sporting events were scheduled at the venues to ensure that they would be adequately tested before hosting the Olympic events. In total, six new competition venues were constructed: Cypress Mountain, Richmond Olympic Oval, UBC Thunderbird Arena, Vancouver Olympic/Paralympic Centre, Whistler Olympic Park, and The Whistler Sliding Centre.The Whistler Sliding Centre was promoted as being one of the fastest sliding tracks in the world, which caused a number of concerns about safety. On February 12, 2010, hours before the opening ceremony, Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili suffered a fatal crash during a training run when he was thrown off his sled and collided with a steel pole. He was travelling 143.3 km/h (89.0 mph) at the time. His accident came after a series of incidents in the week and reignited concerns about the track's safety. Investigations were conducted the same day, concluding that the accident was not caused by deficiencies in the track. As a preventative measure, an extra 100 ft (30 m) of wall was added after the end of Turn 16, and the ice profile was changed.

Voice of the Whistler

Voice of the Whistler is a 1945 American mystery film noir directed by William Castle and starring Richard Dix, Lynn Merrick, and Rhys Williams. Based on the radio drama The Whistler, it is the fourth of Columbia Pictures' eight "Whistler" films produced in the 1940s, the first seven of which star Dix.

Wedge Pass

Wedge Pass, also known as Billygoat Pass, 1430 m (4692 ft), is a mountain pass in the northern Garibaldi Ranges, the southwesternmost subdivisions of the Pacific Ranges of the Coast Mountains in British Columbia, Canada. Located immediately on the southern flank of Wedge Mountain and to the immediate north of the Spearhead Range, site of the Blackcomb half of the Whistler Blackcomb Ski Area, it connects the head of Wedge Creek (W), a tributary of the Green River with those of Billgoat Creek (E), a tributary of the Lillooet River (as is the Green River). The pass is within Garibaldi Provincial Park and has no road access.

Whistler, British Columbia

Whistler (Squamish language: Sḵwiḵw) is a resort municipality in the southern Pacific Ranges of the Coast Mountains in the province of British Columbia, Canada, approximately 125 km (78 mi) north of Vancouver and 36 km (22 mi) south of the town of Pemberton. Incorporated as the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW), it has a permanent population of approximately 11,854, plus a larger but rotating population of seasonal workers, typically younger people from beyond British Columbia, notably from Australia and Europe.

Over two million people visit Whistler annually, primarily for alpine skiing and snowboarding and, in summer, mountain biking at Whistler Blackcomb. Its pedestrian village has won numerous design awards and Whistler has been voted among the top destinations in North America by major ski magazines since the mid-1990s. During the 2010 Winter Olympics, Whistler hosted most of the alpine, Nordic, luge, skeleton, and bobsled events.

Whistler Blackcomb

Whistler Blackcomb is a ski resort located in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada. By many measures it is the largest ski resort in North America and has the greatest uphill lift capacity. It features the Peak 2 Peak Gondola for moving between Whistler and Blackcomb mountains at the top. With all of this capacity, Whistler Blackcomb is also often the busiest ski resort, often besting 2 million visitors a year.

Whistler was originally conceived as part of a bid to win the 1968 Winter Olympics. Although the bid failed, construction started anyway and the resort opened for the first time in January 1966. Blackcomb mountain, originally a separate entity, opened for business in December 1980. The two resorts underwent a period of intense rivalry through the 1980s and 90s, with constant upgrades and improvements that were unseen at other resorts. By the mid-1990s the area was repeatedly named the best resort in many skiing magazines. Intrawest, the BC real estate firm that developed Blackcomb, purchased Whistler in 1997 and fully merged their operations in 2003.

Whistler Blackcomb was the centrepiece of a renewed bid on the part of nearby Vancouver for the 2010 Winter Olympics, which they won in July 2003. Whistler Blackcomb hosted the alpine skiing events, including the men's and women's Olympic and Paralympic alpine skiing disciplines of downhill, Super-G, slalom, giant slalom and super combined. In contrast with Cypress Mountain - which hosted the freestyle skiing and all snowboard events, and was plagued with a lack of fresh, natural snow during the Olympics leading to many complaints over hill quality - Whistler Blackcomb had the second-highest snowfall on record with 1,432 cm (over 14 metres) by the end of the 2009/10 season.Over the next decade, Intrawest expanded by purchasing additional ski resorts across North America, before expanding into golf and other resorts as well. Whistler Village, widely recognized for its livable design, formed the basis of similar Tyrolian-inspired developments at their expanding series of resorts, as well as other resorts that hired Intrawest to build similar developments on their behalf. In 2010 Intrawest sold off much of its 75% interest in Whistler Blackcomb Resort via a public share offering.

On August 8, 2016, American company Vail Resorts bought Whistler Blackcomb Holdings for C$1.39 billion. Nippon Cable minority interest in Whistler Blackcomb resort has continued throughout the ownership changes, by way of ownership of a 25% interest of the Whistler and Blackcomb partnerships.

Whistler Film Festival

The Whistler Film Festival (WFF) is an annual film festival held in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada. Established in 2001, the festival is held the first weekend of December and includes juried competitive sections, the Borsos Awards, and the Pandora Audience Award. A conference for the Canadian film industry, known as the Whistler Summit, is organised in connection with the film festival.

As of 2015, the Whistler Film Festival bills itself as "Canada's coolest film festival" and has been increasingly attracting more distributors and sales agents. The 2015 festival presented the Canadian premiere of Carol and the world premiere of Rehearsal among other world premieres. About half the films screened are Canadian and Paul Gratton, who became the festival's director of programming in June 2012, would like the Whistler Film Festival to become a "mini-Sundance" for Canadian films.The 15th edition of WFF hosted 89 films, 10 events, and 30 interactive industry sessions. The event attracted 450 filmmakers and industry guests, and had a total attendance of 13,233 attendees (representing an 18 percent increase over 2014). The 2015 Whistler Film Festival awarded $158,500 in cash prizes and commissions.

Whistler Sliding Centre

The Whistler Sliding Centre (French: Centre des sports de glisse de Whistler) is a Canadian bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton track located in Whistler, British Columbia, that is 125 km (78 mi) north of Vancouver. The centre is part of the Whistler Blackcomb resort, which comprises two ski mountains separated by Fitzsimmons Creek. Located on the lowermost slope of the northern mountain (Blackcomb Mountain), Whistler Sliding Centre hosted the bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton competitions for the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Design work started in late 2004 with construction taking place from June 2005 to December 2007. Bobsledders Pierre Lueders and Justin Kripps of Canada took the first run on the track on 19 December 2007. Certification took place in March 2008 with over 200 runs from six different start houses (the place where the sleds start their runs), and was approved both by the International Bobsleigh and Tobogganing Federation (FIBT) and the International Luge Federation (FIL). Training runs took place in late 2008 in preparation for the World Cup events in all three sports in early 2009. World Cup competitions were held in February 2009 for bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton. The top speed for all World Cup events set by German luger Felix Loch at 153.98 km/h (95.68 mph). In late 2009, more training took place in preparation for the Winter Olympics.

On 12 February 2010, the day of the Olympic opening ceremonies, Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili was killed during a training run while reportedly going 143.3 km/h (89.0 mph). This resulted in the men's singles event being moved to the women's singles and men's doubles start house while both the women's singles and men's doubles event were moved to the junior start house. During actual luge competition at the 2010 Winter Olympics, there were only two crashes, which resulted in one withdrawal. Skeleton races on 18–19 February had no crashes though two skeleton racers were disqualified for technical reasons. Bobsleigh competitions had crashes during all three events. This resulted in supplemental training for both the two-woman and the four-man event following crashes during the two-man event. Modifications were made to the track after the two-man event to lessen the frequency of crashes as well. A 20-page report was released by the FIL to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on 12 April 2010 and to the public on FIL's website on 19 April 2010 regarding Kumaritashvili's death. Safety concerns at Whistler affected the track design for the Sliding Center Sanki that was used for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. This included track simulation and mapping to reduce top speeds by 6 to 9 km/h (3.7 to 5.6 mph) for the Sochi track.

Constructed on part of First Nations spiritual grounds, the track won two provincial concrete construction awards in 2008 while the refrigeration plant earned Canada's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design "gold" certification two years later.

Films directed by William Castle

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