The Thin Man – Not So Secret Obsession

thin man

The Thin Man (1934)

The pale apartment of dapper detective Nick Charles (William Powell) and his heiress wife, Nora (Myrna Loy), is a template for sleek, sophisticated midcentury-modern decor. Ironically, however, the sets—the work of MGM supervising art director Cedric Gibbons, with David Townsend and Edwin B. Willis—were streamlined due to budget constraints, not a devotion to style.  It worked in everyone’s favor, making the set design of The Thin Man series of films some of the stylistically beautiful films of the era.


The Thin Man is an American comedy-mystery film directed by W.S. Van Dyke, based on the novel of the same name by Dashiell Hammett. The film stars William Powell and Myrna Loy as Nick and Nora Charles; Nick is a hard-drinking, retired private detective and Nora is a wealthy heiress. Their wire-haired fox terrier Asta was played by canine actor Skippy.

The film’s screenplay was written by Albert Hackett and Frances Goodrich, a married couple. In 1934, the film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture.


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