Page 10 - Catalog 46 | 2020
P. 10

3. Raymond Chandler (screenwriter) Billy Wilder (co-screenwriter, director)
[Hollywood: Paramount Pictures, 1944]. Quarto, self-wrappers, brad bound, mimeograph, stains to title page, otherwise just about fine, in a quarter morocco clamshell box. Signed by Billy Wilder on title page, 117 pp., with two blank leaves.Title page is undated. Each of the five sequences of which the script is composed acknowledge Wilder and Chandler as writers.
The screenplay of DOUBLE INDEMNITY melds the talents of two of America’s leading practi- tioners of literary noir, James M. Cain (1892-1977), who wrote the novella on which it was based, and Raymond Chandler (1888-1959), who adapted it to the screen in collaboration with Austrian-born writer/director BillyWilder (1906-2002).As filmed byWilder, DOUBLE INDEMNITY became the definitive American film noir – specifically, Los Angeles noir.
Cain’s novella, Double Indemnity, appeared originally as an 8-part serial in Liberty magazine in 1936. It was a follow-up to Cain’s highly successful first novel, The Postman Always Rings Twice, published in 1934, and reworks some of the same plot elements – a femme fatale, an inconve- nient older husband, and the sucker she persuades to murder him.
Although both of these properties immediately attracted the attention of Hollywood producers, neither of them made it onto American screens until the mid-1940s – DOUBLE INDEMNITY in 1944,THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGSTWICE in 1946 – after the Hollywood Production Code had loosened enough to accommodate the stories’ more sordid aspects relating to adultery and sexually motivated homicide.
For further details, see listing on website.

   8   9   10   11   12