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Go Into The Story with Noir Classic 'Double Indemnity,' From Script to Screen [Video]

Photo of Beth Hanna By Beth Hanna | Thompson on Hollywood January 2, 2013 at 2:32PM

Go Into the Story, the screenwriting blog of the Blacklist, features a fascinating script-to-screen installment today on Billy Wilder's 1944 film noir classic "Double Indemnity." The blog looks at a key scene from the film, comparing the screenplay pages to the filmed finished product.
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"Double Indemnity"
"Double Indemnity"

Go Into the Story, the screenwriting blog of the Blacklist, features a fascinating script-to-screen installment today on Billy Wilder's 1944 film noir classic "Double Indemnity." The blog looks at a key scene from the film, comparing the screenplay pages to the filmed finished product.

In the scene, Edward G. Robinson's insurance investigator Keyes arrives unannounced at the apartment of Walter Neff (Fred MacMurray), to discuss a client who purchased life insurance suspiciously near the time of his "accidental" death. Whip-smart Keyes famously refers to "the little man" living inside his stomach, who acts up when a case smells fishy.

Watch the scene below, and check out the screenplay pages here. Wilder made a few smart directorial changes to the sequence -- most notably in the final moments, when Keyes wanders down the hall to have Neff light his cigar (while Barbara Stanwyck's Phyllis Dietrichson is hidden behind Neff's front door).

Keyes Smells a Murder
Double Indemnity at MOVIECLIPS.com

This article is related to: Video, Classics, The Blacklist, Double Indemnity


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.