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The working title of this film was The Hong Kong Story. The film opens in Hawaii, with shots of an airport runway. In an airplane on the runway, suitcases of industrial diamonds are loaded into the cockpit, after which the character "Tony Dumont" boards the plane. The scene then shifts to the Hong Kong Police Colony Headquarters. There a police inspector is making the following statement, heard as voice-over narration, as the footage returns to scenes of the airplane in flight: "Throughout the world, the increase in shipment of illicit goods, often by a group of present-day pirates operating under the control of an international basis to combat this menace, has altered the forces of law in every land....The worldwide crime syndicate is a menace to every citizen of every country on Earth. It operates in a decentralized fashion making its detection more difficult, but fortunately not impossible. The film you are about to see concerns individuals and how their lives are affected, and how crime on the international level is fought and tracked down." The story then begins as the plane lands at Wake Island.
A February 7, 1955 pre-production Hollywood Reporter news item reported that Anthony Quinn had been cast as the lead, and that the film was to begin shooting in May 1955. By November 1955, as reported in Hollywood Reporter, Leo Townsend had been hired to polish the script, and Quinn was replaced by Rory Calhoun. A February 1956 Hollywood Reporter news item also reported that Joyce Winfield was to make her motion picture debut in Flight to Hong Kong, but her appearance in the final film has not been confirmed. The film's pressbook and Hollywood Reporter production charts list Ralph Dawson as film editor, but his name is crossed out in copyright records. The onscreen credits list only William W. Moore and George C. Shrader as film editors, and the extent of Dawson's contribution to the final film has not been determined.
According to Hollywood Reporter production charts and news items, some scenes were shot on location in Hong Kong and San Francisco in January 1956, but principal photography began at the Samuel Goldwyn Studios on February 14, 1956. The pressbook adds Macao, Tokyo, Japan and Honolulu, HI as locations. Modern sources add Wendy Wilde to the cast.