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The working titles of this film were Mischief and Night Without Sleep, the latter of which was the release title of another 1952 Twentieth Century-Fox film (see below). Charlotte Armstrong's novel was serialized in Good Housekeeping (7 April-7 May 1950). According to late 1949 Los Angeles Times news items, Dorothy McGuire was originally cast as the picture's star, with Jules Dassin set to direct. Donna Corcoran was borrowed from M-G-M for the production. Don't Bother to Knock marked the film debut of Anne Bancroft (1931-2005) and the Hollywood film debut of British director Roy Baker. The picture also marked Marilyn Monroe's first leading dramatic role.