H.F. Maltby was a prolific stage actor, director and playwright long before his 1933 film debut. Many of Maltby's stage plays, notably The Rotters and The Right Age to Marry, were successfully adapted to the screen. As a film actor, he excelled in roles calling for brusque pomposity: magistrates, politicians, and the like. As a screenwriter, he turned out several Todd Slaughter melodramas of the 1930s, as well as such lighter fare as 1944's Over the Garden Wall. Busy though he was in films, he managed to find time to write for radio during the war years. In 1950, H. F. Maltby published his autobiography, Ring Up the Curtain.