Legendary crime writer Dashiell Hammett introduced ex-detective Nick Charles and his ex-debutante wife Nora in the 1934 novel The Thin Man. William Powell and Myrna Loy cemented the couple’s place in American culture in MGM’s beloved six-film Thin Man franchise. Hammett later called his characters “insufferably smug,” but he had been persuaded nonetheless to craft screen stories for two of the five Thin Man sequels, both produced by Hunt Stromberg and directed by W.S. Van Dyke. Like many early screenwriters, Hammett struggled to reconcile his private life and ambitions to Hollywood’s temptations and expectations.
Julie M. Rivett is a Hammett scholar and granddaughter and co-editor of three books by or about Dashiell Hammett. The most recent, 'Return Of The Thin Man' (Mysterious Press, Nov. 2012, co-edited with Richard Layman), includes Hammett’s original screen stories for AFTER THE THIN MAN and ANOTHER THIN MAN. Rivett will discuss Hammett, his experiences in Hollywood, and his uneasy involvement with Thin Man films.
A book signing and screening of AFTER THE THIN MAN will follow the lecture. The Hammett inspired feature AFTER THE THIN MAN will play at approximately 3:15 PM. William Powell and Myrna Loy reprise their roles as husband and wife detectives Nick and Nora, in AFTER THE THIN MAN, the 1936 sequel to THE THIN MAN.