“Killer Diller” is a 1948 musical film directed by Josh Binney and starring Nat King Cole and Sheila Guyse.
The story follows “Killer” Diller (Cole), a talented pianist who is falsely accused of a crime and sent to prison. While in jail, he meets a young woman named Georgia (Guyse), who is also a musician. Together, they form a band with other inmates, performing for the rest of the prison population and gaining popularity.
After being released from prison, Diller and Georgia attempt to make a living as musicians, facing numerous obstacles and setbacks along the way. They encounter a ruthless nightclub owner named Harry (Jester Hairston), who tries to exploit their talent for his own gain. However, Diller and Georgia are determined to succeed on their own terms, refusing to compromise their music or integrity.
As they continue to perform and gain recognition, Diller and Georgia also develop a romantic relationship. However, their success is threatened when Diller is accused of another crime and must clear his name.
In the end, Diller and Georgia are able to prove his innocence and are welcomed back into the music scene with open arms. They perform a final, triumphant concert together, showcasing their love for each other and their music.
“Killer Diller” is notable for featuring an all-black cast and for its representation of the post-war jazz scene. It also tackles issues of injustice and perseverance, highlighting the power of music as a means of overcoming adversity.
Dusty Fletcher, George Wiltshire, Butterfly McQueen