The Leopard Man (1943)
A seemingly tame leopard used for a publicity stunt escapes and kills a young girl, spreading panic throughout a sleepy New Mexico town.
At the encouragement of her manager, a nightclub performer in New Mexico (Kiki Walker) takes a leashed leopard into the club as a publicity gimmick. But her rival, angered by the attempt to upstage, scares the animal and it bolts. In the days that follow, people are mauled and the countryside is combed for the loose creature. But Kiki and her manager begin to wonder if maybe the leopard is not responsible for the killings.
- To drum up interest Jerry Manning (Dennis O'Keefe), a public relations man working with stage performer Kiki Walker (Jean Brooks), rents a black leopard from local huckster Charlie How-Come (Abner Biberman) but when Kiki brings the animal onto the stage for her performance, another performer, castanets virtuoso Clo-Clo (Margo) frightens it off. A search ensues by the police and other authorities managed by Dr. Galbraith (James Bell) who tells the others that the cat has probably headed for the local countryside to get away from people, but when young women begin being killed and black fur is found at the sites, suspicions arise that the leopard is responsible. Jerry doesn't think so but he needs proof so he and Kiki begin investigating and get a little too close to the truth for their own good.