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THE BLUE DAHLIA

Director: GEORGE MARSHALL

U.S.A. • 1946 • BLACK AND WHITE • 35MM • 96 MIN


A tough murder mystery thriller set against the backdrop of Hollywood’s nightclub scene, The Blue Dahlia continued the teaming of noir stars Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake following their success in This Gun for Hire and The Glass Key. A suitably hardboiled affair about a war veteran whose homecoming coincides with the murder of his unfaithful wife, this is the only original script Chandler wrote for the movies and was made under unusual circumstances. A ridiculously tight shooting schedule had to be devised to allow Ladd to complete his military service. In order to meet these demands, the alcoholic Chandler did a deal with producer John Houseman whereby he was supported by a retinue of secretaries and nurses so he could write and drink at the same time! Amazingly, the script was completed as planned, the film got made and its success further enhanced Chandler’s aura as one of the greatest scriptwriters in Hollywood. The author kept working on movie scripts for another three years, but The Blue Dahlia was really his last great screenplay and thus his last hoorah in Tinseltown.

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