Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: Lux Radio Theater
Show: The Thin Man
Date: Jun 08 1936

Cast:
Melville Ruick (Announcer)
W.S.Van Dyke (Producer/Host)
Dorothy Wynant
Nick Charles
Asta The Dog
Nora Charles
Joe The Doorman
Andy Reade
Julia Wolf
Joe Morelli
Herbert Macaulay
Jean, A Young Actress
Laura, Jean's Friend
News Reporter
Mimi Wynant
Gilbert Wynant
Chris Jorgenson
Al Nunheim
Inspector Guild
Various Newsboys
Police Dispatcher
James Seymour, Hollywood Screenwriter
Cabdriver

KENNEDY:

Hollywood, California! Sunday, February 16th!

(MFX)

 

RUICK:

"The Lux Radio Theatre" presented from it's new home on Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood California! Lux presents Hollywood! Such great personalities as William Powell, Myrna Loy, W.S. Van Dyke, James Seymour, Minna Gombell, Porter Hall, and many others will take part in this presentation sent to you by the makers of Lux Toilet Soap, "The Beauty Soap Of the Stars"! Appearing before a distinguished Hollywood audience, Mr. Powell, Miss Loy and a cast of eighteen great players, present the play that has broken box office records from coast to coast, "The Thin Man"! And as producer tonight, we present the director who did "The Thin Man" on the screen, together with such triumphs as "Naughty Marietta", "Trader Horn", "Rose Marie", "I Live My Life", and countless other smash hit pictures, Mr. W.S. Van Dyke. Mr. Van Dyke.

SFX:

APPLAUSE

VAN DYKE:

Hello everybody! Well, it's a great scene at "The Lux Radio Theatre" tonight. In our audience, we have Bette Davis, Jimmy and Lucille Gleason, Bob Armstrong, Ollie Olson of "Olson and Johnson", Stu Irwin,: Mr. and Mrs. Leon Schlesinger? Maybe it would interest you to know a little inside information on the show we're doing tonight, "The Thin Man". And about William Powell and Myrna Loy, who are going to do it for you. As you know "The Thin Man" was a best selling novel by Dashiell Hammett. Hunt Stromberg down at the studio, MGM, got a hold of it and brought it to me. "Woody", he said, "If you'll make this picture, I'll buy the story!" Well, I read it. And while it was a good enough mystery story, there was something else about the book that struck me. Here was something new and fresh and very charming. A romance between a man and his wife. It's the story of a couple of kids that understood each other and had a blessed confidence in each other. Beneath all the casualness and all the wisecracking, there's a lovely, wholesome relationship. Something really deep and sweet, and inspiring. Well, we decided to make the picture. Albert Hackett and Frances Goodrich wrote a swell script. William Powell and Myrna Loy played the parts. And how! They played them beautifully! Because Powell was just Powell, and Loy was just Loy, both of them wisecracking all the time and clowning right through the picture! I suppose you know that plenty of motion pictures take from two months to a year to shoot. We did "The Thin Man" in sixteen days, retakes and all! Of course it wasn't a pretentious picture. : We didn't make it as one. I hate epics. But it was evident that people liked it. It has been very interesting to study out how they can tell this story on the radio. Bill and Myrna had a lot of fun getting it ready for you, just as they did making the picture. And from the original story, from the original motion picture cast, we have, and are fortunate in having, Minna Gombell, Porter Hall, William Henry, and Thomas Jackson here tonight. So here we go, with William Powell as Nick Charles and Myrna Loy as Nora in "The Thin Man"! Here they come, Bill Powell and Myrna Loy!

SFX:

APPLAUSE

(MFX)

 

VAN DYKE:

We're in a fashionable caf?, The Montmartre, in New York City. It's Christmas Eve and the well-appointed dining room is filling rapidly. From the bar comes a good-looking young fellow of about thirty-five. Tall casual and worldly-wise, he's Nick Charles, a well-known private detective, played by William Powell. And he's waiting for his charming wife Nora, played by Myrna Loy. As he takes his place at the table, a young girl on the other side of the room recognizes him and hurries over.

DOROTHY:

Aren't you Mr. Nick Charles? The detective?

NICK:

I am. Yes, I'm Nick Charles.

DOROTHY:

I thought I recognized you. My name is Dorothy Wynant.

NICK:

Oh yes? How do you do?

DOROTHY:

Do you mind if I sit down for awhile-

NICK:

No, but I expect my wife in a few minutes if you don't mind explaining your presence to her

DOROTHY:

Of course! That's my fianc? over there at the other table-

NICK:

-Oh, well that makes everything all right, doesn't it? Sit down!

DOROTHY:

Thank you.

NICK:

Err, your name is, err-

DOROTHY:

-Dorothy Wynant. I'm Clyde Wynant's daughter.

NICK:

Clyde Wynant, hm- oh yes! Of course. Your father was having some trouble with one of his inventions a few years ago. I handled the case for him.

DOROTHY:

Yes, I know. That's why I want to speak to you now.

NICK:

Well, I'm not practicing anymore Miss Wynant. You see I retired-

DOROTHY:

-Please Mr. Charles. I need you.

NICK:

Oh? what seems to be the trouble?

DOROTHY:

It's Dad. He went away about three months ago and I haven't heard from him. Not a word. I'm worried sick.

NICK:

Oh, I wouldn't if I were you. After all he's an inventor. When he gets an idea he wants to work on, it's only natural that he should hide away somewhere. He's done it before-

DOROTHY:

Yes, but never for three months!

NICK:

Did you see him before he left?

DOROTHY:

No. Mr. McCauley was the only one he spoke to. Well, Macaulay and Julia Wolf- she's Dad's secretary.

NICK:

Julia Wolf? oh yes, I believe I've met her. And Macaulay is your father's lawyer, isn't he?

DOROTHY:

Yes.

NICK:

His lawyer and his secretary both speak to him before he leaves, but no one knows where he went-

DOROTHY:

-He wouldn't tell them.

NICK:

What about your mother? He wouldn't tell her either?

DOROTHY:

No, and- Mother and Dad aren't- they haven't seen each other for sometime.

NICK:

Oh, I see. Well, I don't know just what I can do for you. Why don't you speak to Macaulay? Maybe he's heard from your father and forgotten to let you know-

DOROTHY:

-Oh. Well, I'll call him now.

NICK:

That's a girl. Let me know how it turns out, will you?

DOROTHY:

Of course! I'll be back in a few minutes!

NICK:

I'll be here.

SFX:

DOG BARKING.

NORA:

(from off mike) Asta! Come here! Come back here this instant!

JOE THE DOORMAN:

Madam, you can't bring that dog in here! Dogs aren't allowed! I'm sorry-

NICK:

I'll get him Asta! Asta, come here boy! Here! Down boy, down-

JOE THE DOORMAN:

Madam, it isn't only your dog! If we allowed everyone

NORA:

Oh, here you are

NICK:

Asta! Quiet, boy, quiet! Hello, Nora. I hear you brought the dog

NORA:

I didn't bring him, he brought me! I think the doorman's mad at me

JOE THE DOORMAN:

Madam, I'm afraid you have to take the dog outside!

NICK:

It's all right Joe, it's my dog? and it's my wife-

NORA:

You might have mentioned me first

JOE THE DOORMAN:

But Mr. Charles are you sure that

NICK:

-Of course I'm sure. He's well trained. He'll behave himself.

JOE THE DOORMAN:

I know, but he might bite someone-

NICK:

-No, only me, Joe, he only bites me.

NORA:

Yes, he's fussy about what he eats.

NICK:

Go ahead Joe; I'll be responsible for him.

JOE THE DOORMAN:

(walking away from the mike) Very well sir. If you say so, sir.

NICK:

There you are my dear. See what an influential husband you've got?

NORA:

You do have a certain standing with doormen-

DOROTHY:

(from off mike) Oh, Mr. Charles?

NICK:

Oh, uh, yes Dorothy?

DOROTHY:

May I introduce my fianc?? Andy Reade, Mr. Charles.

NICK:

How do you do?

ANDY :

How do you do sir?

NICK:

Any luck, Dorothy?

DOROTHY:

Yes! He's just around the corner-

NICK:

-Your father?

DOROTHY:

No, no. Mr. Macaulay.

ANDY:

We're going to see him now!

NICK:

Oh fine, fine-

NORA:

-Oh Nick?

NICK:

Yes, my dear? Oh, I beg your pardon, Miss Wynant, Mr. Reade, my wife-

NORA:

-How do you do?

DOROTHY:

How do you do? I'm sorry, we have to rush, but you'll excuse us Mrs. Charles?

NORA:

Of course-

NICK:

-We're staying at The Normandy for a couple of weeks. Why don't you drop around?

DOROTHY:

Thanks. We will. Goodbye.

NICK:

Goodbye.

ANDY:

Goodbye sir. Goodbye Mrs. Charles-

NORA:

-Goodbye.

(MFX)

 

NORA:

Pretty girl.

NICK:

If you like blondes.

NORA:

You've got a type?

NICK:

Only you darling. Lanky brunettes with wicked jaws.

NORA:

Who is she?

NICK:

I was hoping I wouldn't have to tell you. Dorothy is really my daughter. You see, it was spring in Venice, and I was so young. I didn't know what I was doing. We were all like that on my father's side.

NORA:

By the way, how is your father's side?

NICK:

Much better, thanks.

NORA:

So, who is she really Nicky?

NICK:

Dorothy Wynant. Daughter of Clyde Wynant. I was working on a case for her father. Some nut wanted to kill him.

NORA:

Charming. What's the matter now?

NICK:

Wynant's disappeared. Dorothy's afraid something happened to him.

NORA:

Has anything happened to him?

NICK:

My darling wife! How do I know? Funny though, that secretary of his ought to know something-

NORA:

Secretaries usually do. Who is she?

NICK:

Julia Wolf. Smart girl, Julia. Always suspected she had some kind of hold on Wynant. That's why he kept her on.

NORA:

Maybe you ought to give her a ring-

NICK:

-What for?

NORA:

Ohh, just to say hello.

NICK:

Mm, maybe.

NORA:

Want a nickel?

NICK:

(going away from mike) Hm? No-no, I've got one. I'll be right back.

SFX:

COIN DROPPING INTO PHONE/PHONE BEING DIALED

NICK:

(back on mike, then fading out again) Hello? I want SKYLER40962? no, no SKYLER. That's right. 40962?: SFX: PHONE RING/PHONE BEING PICKED UP

JULIA:

Hello? Yes, Julia Wolf speaking. Who? Oh. Well, hello Mr. Charles. Yes? Well, what was it you wanted to- Oh. Oh no, I don't. He didn't tell me. Not a word. I'm sorry. That's all right. Goodbye.

SFX:

PHONE HANGING UP

JULIA:

Morelli?

JOE MORELLI:

(from off mike) Coming. Well who was that?

JULIA:

Nick Charles.

JOE MORELLI:

The detective?

JULIA:

He wanted to know where Wynant was.

JOE MORELLI:

Oh yeah? Why?

JULIA:

He didn't say-

JOE MORELLI:

Did anyone see Wynant come here that night? The night you and him had the scrap

JULIA:

-I don't know.

JOE MORELLI:

Oh no? Well, I guess I'll scram-

JULIA:

-Wait a minute, Morelli! Where ya going?

JOE MORELLI:

Oh, taking a little stroll, that's all. If Nick Charles is going to pop up around here, I want to be far away when he does-

JULIA:

Oh, don't be a fool Morelli

JOE MORELLI:

Fool, huh? Hey listen sister, I got a record, and I ain't itchin' to come face to face with no dick

JULIA:

Sit down Morelli. You need money, doncha?

JOE MORELLI:

Sure. What about it? You got some?

JULIA:

Plenty. I'm Wynant's secretary!

JOE MORELLI:

Oh yeah? Whaddya mean by that?

JULIA:

(chuckling) Wouldn't you like to know! (chuckles again)

(MFX)

 

SFX:

CAF? SOUNDS

NORA:

Your friends here serve good dinners, Nick.

NICK:

(chewing) Um-hmm. They're all right.

NORA:

You still didn't tell me what Julia Wolf had to say-

NICK:

-Nothing. She didn't know where he was, that's all. Finished?

NORA:

Finished.

NICK:

Let's get out. We'll grab a cab and get back to the hotel.

NORA:

Uh-huh. How many drinks have you had?

NICK:

Six Martinis.

NORA:

(to the waiter, ordering) Waiter, six Martinis. (to NICK) You're not going to have anything on me.

(MFX)

 

NORA:

(hung over) Oooh, what hit me?

NICK:

The last Martini.

SFX:

PHONE RING/ASTA BARKS

NORA:

Hello? Hello? (to ASTA) Asta, be quiet! Stop it! (ASTA stops) Hello? Yes? Who is it? Oh he is? I see? thank you.

SFX:

PHONE HANGS UP

NICK:

Who is it?

NORA:

It's Mr. Macaulay ? he's on his way up.

NICK:

Macaulay? I wonder what he wants?

NORA:

Isn't he Wynant's lawyer?

NICK:

Yes?

NORA:

Maybe he's got some news-

NICK:

Well he ought say, you're worrying an awful lot about this business. Forget it!

SFX:

DOOR KNOCKS

NORA:

I'll open it.

SFX:

DOOR OPEN/CLOSE

MACAULAY:

Begging your pardon, m'aam, I was wondering-

NORA:

I'm Mrs. Charles. Come in, Mr. Macaulay.

NICK:

Hello Macaulay!

MACAULAY:

Hello Charles, how are you-

NICK:

Fine! Sit down

MACAULAY:

-Thanks. Eh, Dorothy told me you here. I took the liberty of coming to see you.

NICK:

Of course.

MACAULAY:

Eh, Charles, err, what's Mimi up to?

NICK:

Huh- Oh, Dorothy's mother? does she have to be up to something?

MACAULAY:

She usually is. Trying one way or another to get money out of Wynant. I wanted to find out if you were er - er ---sleuthing for her.

NICK:

I haven't been a detective for four years.

MACAULAY:

You don't say -

NICK:

My wife's father died and left her a lumber mill and a narrow gauge railroad and a couple of other things. And I'm looking after them.

MACAULAY:

I see. I see.

NICK:

What's all the fuss about? Is Wynant in hiding?

MACAULAY:

You know as much about it as I do. I haven't seen him in three months.: He sends word through Julia Wolf when he wants money... I give it to her and she gives it to him.

SFX:

PHONE RINGS

NORA:

Mine.

SFX:

PHONE PICKS UP

NORA:

Hello? Oh, just a moment. It's for you, Mr. Macaulay. Your office.

MACAULAY:

Oh, thank you. (to phone) Hello? What? He is?.... Well, where is he? Very well.

SFX:

PHONE HANGS UP

MACAULAY:

Well, he's back in town-

NORA:

-Mr. Wynant?-

MACAULAY:

-Yes, thank heaven. He's waiting for me now. Well, I've got to be off. It's no joke working for a man like that. Goodbye Mrs. Charles. Goodbye Charles!

NICK:

S' long!

MACAULAY:

(from off mike) Merry Christmas!

NORA:

Same to you!

(MFX)

 

SFX:

MANTLE/GRANDFATHER CLOCK CHIMES

NORA:

11:30. Almost Christmas, Darling.

NICK:

If that' s a hint, you can drop it. You get your present at breakfast and not a minute before!

NORA:

Cheat. You know Nick I've been thinking. It's funny the way Wynant popped up all of a sudden.

NICK:

Yes? wasn't it?

NORA:

You think there's anything behind it?

NICK:

Why should there be?

NORA:

Mmm-I don't know. Just strikes me as funny, that's all.

SFX:

PHONE RINGING

NORA:

You're nearer than I am darling.

SFX:

PHONE BEING PICKED UP

NICK:

Hello? Speaking?oh hello, Dorothy? What? Wha- when? Ohh, I see? well, yes, of course I'll be there.

SFX:

PHONE BEING HUNG UP

NORA:

What is it, darling? (pause) Darling, what is it?

NICK:

Julia Wolf has just been murdered.

(MFX)

 

SFX:

APPLAUSE

VAN DYKE:

You are listening to William Powell and Myrna Loy in the story of "The Thin Man" form the stage of "The Lux Radio Theatre" on Hollywood Boulevard. Before we go on with the story of Nick and Nora, we ought to take you on a quick tour of Hollywood.

(MFX)

 

KENNEDY:

The lobby of the Hotel Roosevelt, where stars and newcomers gather! A young actress just breaking into pictures is telling her friend of her success.

(MFX)

 

SFX:

HOTEL LOBBY CROWD NOISE

JEAN:

Laura, here's one thing. I've got one of the best managers in Hollywood and that means a lot! Oh, but the rules he's laid down for me-

LAURA:

-Jean, what do you mean, "rules"?

JEAN:

Well, you'd think I was going into training for the Olympics! I've got to lose five pounds. I've got to take lessons in singing and diction! And of course my complexion has got to be perfect! I've got to be more careful than ever not to get little blemishes or large pores? and something they call "cosmetic skin". Thank goodness I use Lux regularly. The way everyone around here does!

KENNEDY:

Nine out of ten beautiful Hollywood screen stars use Lux Toilet Soap and have for years! Here's what the famous Claudette Colbert had to say? "When I tell people how simple my complexion care is, they always seem surprised! I use cosmetics, of course. But I always use Lux Toilet Soap to guard against cosmetic skin. It's easy to keep skin lovely, my way!"

VAN DYKE:

And now on with the show of "The Thin Man"!

(MFX)

 

VAN DYKE:

An hour has gone by since Nick heard about the murder of Julia Wolf. In the living room of their suite at the hotel, Nick and Nora are listening to the radio. A news reporter is broadcasting the latest developments in the case-

NEWS REPORTER:

(through filter) And here's the latest news in the Julia Wolf murder! The police have found out that the beautiful blonde secretary was a gangster's girl and is spreading the dragnet for one "Joe Morelli" said to be hiding out somewhere in the city. In Paris today, the chamber of deputies

SFX:

RADIO SWITCHING OFF

NORA:

Never mind the chamber of deputies! Joe Morelli, that's what I want to know about! (pause) Well? Did you get any more information out of headquarters?

NICK:

As much as they had. Julia Wolf was shot and killed about nine or nine-thirty. Body discovered on the floor of the living room a little after eleven-

NORA:

-Who discovered it?

NICK:

That'll surprise you. Mimi Wynant.

NORA:

Dorothy's mother?

NICK:

Yeah.

NORA:

What was she doing there?

NICK:

I don't know.

NORA:

Where's Clyde Wynant-

NICK:

Still missing

NORA:

Missing? But Macaulay was going to see him. They had an appointment

NICK:

-I spoke to Macaulay. Wynant never showed up. Nobody knows where he is.

NORA:

It's going to be pretty tough on Dorothy, isn't it?

NICK:

Mm, why?

NORA:

It very nearly looks as if Clyde Wynant skipped one appointment to keep another? with Julia Wolf!

NICK:

You think he killed her?

NORA:

Oh, it's just a guess. Anyway, it sounds like an interesting case. Wouldn't you like to take it?

NICK:

I haven't the time. I'm much too busy seeing that you don't lose any of the money I married you for.

NORA:

Sounds like a good case. Girl mysteriously murdered. They haven't found any clues yet -- no gun -- no fingerprints -

NICK:

I wonder if they've -- I don't want to hear anything about it.

SFX:

GLASS WITH LIQUOR/ICE RATTLING AROUND

NORA:

Isn't that my drink?

NICK:

What are you drinking?

NORA:

Rye.

NICK:

(drains glass) Yeah -- that's yours.

SFX:

DOOR KNOCKING

NICK:

That's Dorothy. She said she wanted to see me.

SFX:

DOOR OPEN

NICK:

Well, come in Dorothy.

DOROTHY:

Thank you. Is anyone here?

NICK:

Just Nora. Have a seat.

NORA:

Hello, Dorothy.

DOROTHY:

I'm-I'm sorry for breaking in on you like this.

NORA:

That's all right. We're used to it.

NICK:

Anything wrong?

DOROTHY:

Just? Julia Wolf is dead.

NICK:

Yes, we know that.

SFX:

GUN BEING DROPPED ON A TABLE.

DOROTHY:

Here's the gun she was shot with.

NICK:

What are you trying to tell me? That you did it-

DOROTHY:

-Yes. She kept me from seeing my father. I went down there to ask her where he was. She wouldn't tell me? I shot her.

NICK:

Where did you hit her-?

DOROTHY:

- Why... in the heart-

NICK:

Pretty good shot you are. What did she do

DOROTHY:

She fell down

NICK:

Did she make any sound? Didn't scream

DOROTHY:

I don't know

NICK:

Which way did she fall

DOROTHY:

-She-she fell over backwards-

NICK:

-Oh, yeah? People fall toward a shot, you know... not back from it. I knew you were lying. (DOROTHY begins to cry) Come on now, straighten up? where did you get this gun?

DOROTHY:

(crying) I bought it in a pawnshop.

NICK:

I thought so. Why did you say you did it? Whom were you trying to shield?

DOROTHY:

(crying) Oh, please don't ask me?

NICK:

You've got to tell me-

NORA:

-Nick, let me handle this, will you? Dorothy, look at me? Nick is trying to help you? Why don't you help him? You were trying to shield your mother, weren't you?

DOROTHY:

(crying) N-no-

NORA:

-Your father then? Dorothy?

DOROTHY:

(quietly) Y-yes. My father.

NORA:

Why do you think he did it?

DOROTHY:

Mother was the first one to find Julia Wolf. She found something in Julia's hand and? she took it-

NORA:

-What was it?

DOROTHY:

A watch chain. It- it belonged to my father.

NORA:

So you think your father did it-

DOROTHY:

-I don't know, I don't know?

NORA:

Did your mother turn the chain over to the police?

DOROTHY:

No, she- she kept it. She didn't tell them anything about it-

NORA:

But she showed it to you

DOROTHY:

Yes

NICK:

-Why did your mother go to Julia Wolf's apartment in the first place?

DOROTHY:

She-she went to ask for money.

SFX:

PHONE RINGING/ GETTING PICKED UP

NICK:

Oh money again, huh? (into PHONE)Yes? Oh, er? have them come up please-

SFX:

PHONE HANGING UP

NORA:

-Who is it?

NICK:

Dorothy, I wonder if you wouldn't mind waiting in the bedroom-

DOROTHY:

Of course

NICK:

It'll only be a minute

SFX:

DOOR CLOSE

NORA:

Well Nick?

NICK:

It's Mimi Wynant.

NORA:

Alone?

NICK:

She's never alone. Dorothy's brother's with her. Screwy college kid. And, uh, some guy by the name of Chris Jorgenson-

NORA:

-Jorgensen? Who's he?

NICK:

Macaulay told me about him. Er- "Hanger-on" type. I think he's after Mimi's dough-

NORA:

But she hasn't any

NICK:

-Maybe that's why she wanted to get some from Julia.

SFX:

DOOR KNOCKING/OPENING/CLOSING

NICK:

I'll get it. Hello!

MIMI:

Nick, how are you!

NICK:

Fine. Come in Mimi-

MIMI:

Thank you. This is my son, Gilbert

NICK:

-How are you?

GILBERT:

Very well, thank you-

MIMI:

And this is Chris Jorgensen. He's an old friend of mine-

NICK:

How do you do

CHRIS JORGENSEN:

How do you do

NICK:

Sit down, sit down. My wife

NORA:

How do you do

NICK:

Mrs. Wynant, Gilbert Wynant and Mr. Jorgensen

NORA:

How do you do

NICK:

Well, Mimi

MIMI:

Nick, I've never been in such a state in my life! You know, of course, that I was the one who found Julia Wolf

NORA:

So we've heard

MIMI:

Oh my dear, it was terrible! I walked in and there she was, lying dead on the floor

GILBERT:

-I meant to ask you mother? was there much blood?

MIMI:

Gilbert! Don't be so morbid-

GILBERT:

But I'm interested in murder! You know Mr. Charles, I've formed a theory about this one already

NICK:

-That so?

GILBERT:

(breathlessly) In my opinion, the man who did it-

MIMI:

Gilbert, be quiet! You don't know anything about it

GILBERT:

Oh, but I do

MIMI:

-Be quiet!

NORA:

You were saying Mrs. Wynant?

MIMI:

About finding Julia Wolf? I was simply petrified. And such a mystery! Clyde Wynant's crazy... absolutely crazy to stay away at a time like this. No wonder the police think he has something to do with it.

NICK:

What do you think?

MIMI:

Oh, I know he didn't, but I wish I could find him... I have something very important to tell him. Macaulay won't help at all. He thinks I just want money.

NICK:

Well, don't you?

MIMI:

Oh Nick, you're always teasing-

NORA:

-Mrs. Wynant. Were you alone when you found Julia Wolf?

MIMI:

Why- of course I was!

NORA:

Wasn't Mr. Jorgensen with you?

CHRIS JORGENSEN:

I? Certainly not! I don't know anything about it! The first word I had that Julia Wolf was dead was when Mrs. Wynant called me at my club-

NORA:

-Oh, she called you!

CHRIS JORGENSEN:

Yes-

NORA:

-Why?

CHRIS JORGENSEN:

I beg your pardon-

MIMI:

-Oh, let's not even talk about it. The thing to do is to find Clyde. And that's why I've come for Nick. You will help me find Clyde -- won't you?

NICK:

I'm afraid I can't, Mimi.

MIMI:

Oh Nick, please-

NICK:

Now, Mimi, there are a thousand detectives in New York. Hire one of them.

MIMI:

But he knows you. All you have to do is get in touch with him, and tell him that Mimi says everything is all right... but that I've got to see him.

NICK:

I tell you again, I don't want any part of it.

MIMI:

Is that final-

NICK:

-Final.

MIMI:

Well. If that's the way you feel-

NICK:

-He'll turn up. You just help all you can. Give the police every possible assistance.

MIMI:

What do you mean by that?

NICK:

Oh, nothing in particular.

MIMI:

Oh. Well, we'll say goodnight.

NICK:

Goodnight. Sorry I can't help you, Mimi.

(MFX)

 

NUNHEIM:

(speaking into a phone) Hello?is this the Normandy hotel? I wanna speak to Mr. Charles? yeah, Nick Charles?Hello, Mr. Charles? Say, I'm sorry I woke you up?But Mr. Charles, I'd like to lay a lil' proposition before you? It's about the murder of Julia Wolf?Well, what's the diff'rence who I am?Wait a minute-all right, wait a min-don't hang up? I'll tell ya who I am?butcha gotta keep it under yer hat! I'm? Al Nunheim! Yeah, Nunheim! Now listen, I know who murdered Julia Wolf, see? Sure, I do? and I'll spill it to you for five grand! ?I'll tell ya how I know? because I was outside of her apartment when she was shot! And I saw the one who did it! And I'll spill it to you : when I get- hey! Wait a minute (begins to whisper), Hey, I can't talk now?I'll call ya again-

SFX:

PAYPHONE HANGING UP/PHONE CRADLE BEING JIGGLED

NICK:

Hello? Hello? Hello, you still there? Hello! Oh, for the-

SFX:

PHONE HANGING UP

NORA:

Now what darling?

NICK:

I don't know. Some crank, I guess. He hung up. Now you better get back to bed, get some sleep.

(MFX)

 

NORA:

Nick? Nick! Are you asleep?

NICK:

Yes.

NORA:

Good. I want to talk to you.

NICK:

That's jolly.

NORA:

Don't you think you'd like to go back to detecting once in a while, just for the fun of it?

NICK:

Can't you get to sleep?

NORA:

No.

NICK:

Maybe a drink would help you.

NORA:

No thanks.

NICK:

Maybe it would if I took it.

NORA:

Everybody says you were a grand detective.

NICK:

They were kidding you.

NORA:

I'd like to see you work.

NICK:

Tomorrow I'll buy you a whole lot of detective stories.

NORA:

That poor girl is in an awful spot.

NICK:

There's nothing I can do to help her.

NORA:

She thinks you can. It wouldn't hurt you to find out if you could, would it?:

NICK:

Darling, my guess is that Wynant killed Julia and Dorothy knows it. And the police'll catch him without my help.

NORA:

I think I would like that drink. I'll give you your Christmas present now if you'll give me mine.

NICK:

At breakfast.

NORA:

But it's Christmas now.

NICK:

Breakfast.

NORA:

What are you going to give me? I hope I don't like it.

NICK:

You'll have to keep them anyway. The man at the Aquarium said that he wouldn't take them back. Now please put out the light; I'm tired.

NORA:

Oh, all right. But I'm mad at you.

NICK:

Mm-hmm.

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

NORA:

Nick?

NICK:

Hmm?

NORA:

Did you hear a knock?

NICK:

Mm-hmm.

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK/DOG WHINING

NORA:

Shut up, Asta. You want to answer it Nick?

NICK:

Oh, Good Lord.

NORA:

All right, stay in bed. I'll do it myself.

SFX:

DOOR OPENING

NORA:

Well?

MORELLI:

Mr. Charles here?

NORA:

Yes.

MORELLI :

I gotta talk to him right away.

NORA:

What about-

NICK:

What's going on what's going on?

NORA:

There's someone to see you Nick-

NICK :

-That's great. I was afraid I'd have to go to sleep. Come in.

SFX:

DOOR CLOSING

MORELLI:

Yeah-

NORA:

How about a chair Mist-

MORELLI:

Stay where you are, both of ya! I gotcha covered so don't move!

NORA:

A stick up!

MORELLI:

Naw, it ain't a stick up- I gotta talk to you, Mr. Charles. I want you to tell me something and I want you to give it to me straight. Get me?

NICK:

Do you mind putting that gun away? My wife doesn't care, but I'm in a delicate condition? thank you. All right, shoot! I mean, what's on your mind?

MORELLI:

You don't need to tell me you're tough. I heard about you. I'm Joe Morelli.

NICK:

I've never heard about you.

MORELLI:

I didn't knock Julia off.

NICK :

All right - you didn't.

MORELLI:

I haven't seen her in three months. We were all washed up.

NICK:

Why tell me?

MORELLI:

I wouldn't have any reason to hurt her. She was always on the up and up with me. But that dirty little Nunheim -- he got sore cause I clicked with her and he didn't, so he put the finger on me.

NICK:

That's all swell. Only you're peddling your fish in the wrong market. I've got nothing to do with it.

MORELLI:

Listen. "Studsy" Burke told me you used to be O.K. That's why I'm here. Do they...

NICK:

How is Studsy? I didn't know he was out of the stir.

MORELLI:

He's all right. He'd like to see you. But listen... What's the law doing to me? Do they think I did it, or is it just something else to pin on me?:

NICK:

I'd tell you if I knew. But I'm not in this. Ask the police.

MORELLI:

That'd be very smart. That'd be the smartest thing I ever did. Me, that a police captain's been in a hospital three weeks on account we had an argument. The boys would like to have me come in and ask questions. They'd like it right down to the end of their blackjacks. Now I come to you on the level. Studsy says you're on the level. Be on the level.

NICK:

I am on the level. If I knew anything I'd....

SFX:

DOOR KNOCK

MORELLI:

What's that?

NICK:

I don't know; this is your party.

GUILD :

(through the door) Open up. Police.

MORELLI:

The Police? You dirty, two-timing --

NORA:

Nick- look out!

SFX:

STRUGGLE/PUNCH/BODY FALLS DOWN/GUNSHOT/DOOR BUSTS OPEN/MORE STRUGGLING

GUILD:

I'll take that gun-

NICK:

-Thanks officer. You almost had me.

GUILD:

Get some water, sergeant.

NICK:

Nora...Nora! Are you all right, Nora?

GUILD:

I'm Inspector Guild of the Homicide Bureau.

NICK:

You're in a good place, Inspector.

GUILD:

Who's that woman on the floor?

NICK:

My wife.

GUILD:

This guy shoot her?

NICK:

No, he tried to shoot me. I slapped her on the jaw to get her out of the line of fire. I guess I hit her too hard- Nora?

NORA:

Oooh?

NICK:

Look at me Nora? are you all right, darling?

NORA:

Oooh? you darn fool -- you didn't have to knock me out. I knew you'd take him, but I wanted to see you do it!

NICK:

She's all right.

GUILD:

There's a gal with hair on her chest. Okay Slattery, take Morelli downstairs.

MORELLI:

(going off mike) Don't push-

SLATTERY:

(off mike) C'mon

MORELLI:

(off mike) -I said, don't push?

NICK:

(to Guild) How'd you people happen to pop in?

GUILD:

We hear this is getting to be sort of a meeting place for the Wynant family, so we figure we'll stick around in case the old man himself shows: up. Then we seen Morelli sneak in and we decide to come up. And pretty lucky for you-

NICK:

-Yes. I might not have been shot.

GUILD:

Morelli a friend of yours?

NICK:

I never saw him before.

GUILD:

What's he want of you?

NICK:

Wanted to tell me he didn't kill Julia Wolf.

GUILD:

What's that to you?

NICK:

Nothing.

GUILD:

What'd he think it was to you?

NICK:

Ask him. I don't know.

GUILD:

I'm asking you.

NICK:

Keep on asking.

GUILD:

Oh, so yer gonna keep mum, huh? Awright, Mr. Charles, I won't bother you tonight. But I'll be in tomorrow morning. And I'll have plenty of things to ask. Goodnight!

NORA:

Thank you Inspector Guild?next time you come, try to stay longer!

SFX:

DOOR OPEN/CLOSE

NICK:

Where's Asta? Asta! Asta!

SFX:

DOG BARKING

NICK:

You're a fine watchdog.

NORA:

He's got more sense than you have. Thank Heaven you're not on this case.

NICK:

On it! I'm in it ... They think I did it!

NORA:

Well, didn't you?

NICK:

C'mere you?

(MFX)

 

NORA:

Nick! Wake up! It's Christmas!

NICK:

Oh yeah-

NORA:

-Look, here's a telegram for you? it just came?

NICK:

Open it, will you?

SFX:

ENVELOPE OPENING

NICK :

Probably a touch from somebody? well?

NORA:

Nick!

NICK:

What is it?

NORA:

It's from Clyde Wynant- listen! "Will you take charge of investigation on Julia Wolf murder. Communicate with Herbert Macaulay. Clyde Wynant".

NICK:

Where's it from?

NORA:

Philadelphia. Then he didn't do it, did he, Nick?

NICK:

I don't know. Communicate with Macauley, huh? All right we'll ask him up here this morning!

(MFX)

 

NICK:

There you are, Macaulay? what do you think?

MACAULAY:

Hmm? so he wants you to handle the case, huh? Well, what are the chances of getting you to do what he wants?

NICK :

Slim

NORA:

Oh, please, Nick-

NICK:

-Quiet, dear.

MACAULAY:

I wish you would, Mr. Charles. Would it help any if I could persuade him to meet you?

NICK :

It might.

MACAULAY :

I got word from Wynant myself last night. He gave me a code message to insert in the Times, in case I wanted to get in touch with him.

NICK:

It wouldn't hurt to put it in.

MACAULAY:

I'm sure you could clear this up. He should appear, you know. It doesn't look well... his staying away at a time like this.

SFX:

PHONE RINGING/BEING PICKED UP

NORA:

(into phone) Yes? Oh-oh?just a minute (to MACAULAY). It's for you Mr. Macaulay. Police department-

MACAULAY:

-Police department? Hello.... Where? In Allentown?Yes... When is the next train? Right - I'll get that.

SFX:

PHONE BEING HUNG UP

NICK:

Well?

MACAULAY:

Wynant's tried to commit suicide. They want me to come down and identify him. I guess this changes the whole story, doesn't it? That looks like an admission of guilt. And I had such hopes. I thought if you got on the case, you'd be able to clear him. I thought that Mimi.... the way she acted... I was sure that.... (Sighs) Oh, well, well... it's no use thinking of it now. I'm sorry to have wasted so much of your time. You'll excuse me, won't you?

NICK:

Of course.

MACAULAY:

Goodbye.

NICK:

Bye.

SFX:

DOOR CLOSE

NORA:

Well, that's that

NICK:

What's the matter with you?

NORA:

The mystery's all gone. And I wanted you to find out who did it.


NICK:

Maybe I will.

NORA:

But Wynant-

NICK:

-I don't believe he did it.

NORA:

Why don't you?

NICK:

No reason. Just a hunch. But I'm going to find out. Come on, Watson, we're going places. I want to talk to Inspector Guild.

(MFX)

 

GUILD:

Man to man, Mr. Charles, are you working on this case?

NICK:

Man to man, I'm not.

NORA:

But he's interested!

GUILD:

I don't mind telling you I'd rather have you working with us than against us.

NICK:

So would I.

GUILD:

It's a bargain then. Anything you want to know?

NICK:

What about the suicide?

GUILD:

Oh, that's a phony. The men didn't even have to go down.

NICK:

I thought it might be. From now on, they're going to think that every thin man over six feet with white hair is Wynant.

NORA:

Do you think that Wynant did it?

GUILD:

Looks like he planned, something. He shut up his apartment and his shop. But there's nothing yet to cinch it.

NICK:

Fifty will get you a hundred that he didn't do it.

GUILD:

Who's your candidate?

NICK:

I haven't got that far yet. But I don't think everything points to Wynant. What about the alibis?

GUILD:

They're all O.K. Mrs. Wynant, the boy, Dorothy, Macaulay... even Morelli... we had to let him go.

NICK:

What about Jorgensen?

GUILD:

I'll check on that. I'm afraid this is kinda dull for you, Mrs. Charles.

NORA:

Dull... I'm sitting on the edge of my chair!

GUILD:

Frankly, I'm stumped. I don't know what to do next. What about you Charles?

NICK:

Me? No, but, er, I've got a hunch.

GUILD:

What is it?

NICK:

I got a call last night. I thought it was from a crank. But I've changed my mind. Whoever he was, knew something. And I've got a feeling I'll hear from him again.

(MFX)

 

NICK:

What time is it?

NORA:

Almost ten. Still waiting to hear from the crank?

SFX:

PHONE RINGING/PHONE BEING PICKED UP

NICK:

And how! Here give me that, quick! (into phone) Hello? yes? yes, this is Nick Charles?Who? ?Can't hear you? I said, I can't hear you?you have to speak louder?

NUNHEIM:

(whispering) I-I can't speak any louder?this is Al Nunheim again?you know, I called you last night?hey listen, are you still interested in that proposition? You are, huh? All right then. Now, here's the dope- and get this straight- the man who killed Julia Wolf is-

SFX:

GUN SHOT/BODY FALLING TO FLOOR

(MFX)

 

SFX:

SIRENS

VARIOUS NEWSBOYS:

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Al Nunheim shot! Nunheim killed before giving clue to Julia Wolf Murder Case! Stoolie Nunheim murdered!

NICK:

What's this Guild? You think Wynant killed Julia Wolf and Nunheim-

GUILD:

Right

NICK:

Why

GUILD:

-Two reasons. First off, Mimi Wynant came across with the watch chain she plucked off Julia's body.

NICK:

Oh, she did, huh?

GUILD:

It belonged to Clyde Wynant.

NICK:

Yes. What's the second reason?

GUILD:

A pip! The bullet that killed Nunheim came from the same gun!

NICK:

(whistles) That's all right, Inspector.

GUILD:

-Just all right? It's perfect! Clyde Wynant is guilty of both of those murders.

NICK:

Maybe.

GUILD:

What?

NICK:

Fifty'll still get you a hundred. I say Wynant's innocent.

GUILD:

You can say what you want, but I'm spreading a dragnet for that guy over every town in these United States! And I'll get him, too!!

(MFX)

 

SFX:

SIRENS

POLICE DISPATCHER:

Calling all cars! Calling all cars! Cover all roads leaving the city, pick up tall thin man with white hair, last seen wearing dark black suit! Calling all cars! Calling all cars!

NORA:

You think they'll find him Nick? He must be in New York!

NICK:

Probably is.

NORA:

Oh, it's getting me down. I saw Dorothy today-

NICK:

-Yeah? What?

NORA:

She's broken off her engagement.

NICK:

What for?

NORA:

Don't ask me, she was a little hysterical. Something about not wanting to ruin her fianc?'s life? daughter of murderer and all that.

NICK:

Hmm, poor kid. Well, see you later darling!

NORA:

Where do you think you're going?

NICK:

I'm going to take Asta for a walk.

NORA:

He's just been for a walk.

SFX:

DOG BARKING

NICK:

We're going sightseeing -- aren't we, Asta?

NORA:

What are you up to?

NICK:

I've got hunch. I'm going down to look at Wynant's shop; I want to find out why it's closed.

NORA:

Why shouldn't be close it? He went away.

NICK:

He went away lots of times when I knew him - but he never closed his shop. I've got a hunch something is up.

NORA:

You mean, he might be hiding there?

NICK:

I don't know... This thing has got my goat. I've got find out.

NORA:

Nick - I won't have you going down there.

NICK:

Say you're the one who got me in this!

NORA:

I know but this is different. He's a crazy man. He might kill you.

NICK:

I'll be all right. I've got Asta to protect me.

NORA:

Go on - go on - see if I care. But it's a dirty trick bringing me all the way to New York just to make me a widow.

NICK:

You wouldn't be a widow long.

NORA:

You bet I wouldn't.

NICK:

Not with all your money!

NORA:

You dog!

NICK:

(kissing her) Goodbye, darling.

NORA:

Nicky, take care of yourself won't you?

NICK:

Sure I will.

NORA:

Don't say it that way. Say it as if you meant it.

NICK:

Why, I believe the little woman cares.

NORA:

I don't care - I'm just used to you, that's all.

NICK:

Sure. So long, darling! C'mon Asta!

SFX:

DOG BARKING

NORA:

Goodbye! And call me darling, please; I'll be waiting to hear from you! Asta! Asta, if you let anything happen to him, you'll never wag that tail again!

(MFX)

 

SFX:

APPLAUSE

VAN DYKE:

You're listening to "Lux Radio Theater's" production of "The Thin Man" starring William Powell and Myrna Loy, with the music under the direction of Lewis Silvers. This is W.S. Van Dyke speaking. We have here tonight the man who wrote the great picture "Lawyer Man" for Bill Powell here. He's a producer, too. But just on the writing end, he's done many great pictures. "42 Street", "Goldiggers Of 1933", "The King Of Burlesque" and lots of others, including an original musical "Ladies Of London", which you'll be seeing soon. And here he is, the man who's name you'll see on the screen before the picture starts? one of Hollywood's greatest picture writers? James Seymour! Jim?

SFX:

APPLAUSE

SEYMOUR:

Thanks Woody. I've been a movie writer for ten years? that's the first kind word anybody's ever said to me!

VAN DYKE:

Listen Jim, the average person thinks that a movie writer is a fella who sits by himself at a typewriter, hammers out a lot of dialogue and hands it in. Would you like to correct that impression-

SEYMOUR:

-I certainly would. Nobody works alone and by himself to make a picture! It's a matter of constant cooperation between producer, director, technician, actors and the writer. Some of the best story ideas come out of the conferences.

VAN DYKE:

Jim, how many writers would you say there are on an average picture?

SEYMOUR:

Plenty! Believe it or not, I've seen pictures where there were more writers than actors. If all the people who've contributed to the story, got screen credit, it would read like a page from the telephone directory!

VAN DYKE:

You've written for both the stage and screen, Jim. Tell the folks how they're different.

SEYMOUR:

Well, pictures have less talk, but they tell more in less time. Like concentrated foods, all the good and none of the waste. In the theatre, everything must be brought to the audience. On the screen, you take your audience wherever the camera can go. And here's another important point that comes right back to your "Lux Radio Theatre". On the stage, the star just enters. But on the screen, she's introduced with a big close up. A picture of the star's face, many times larger than life size. Everytime a movie star's complexion is mentioned in this "Lux Radio Theatre", I think of those close ups. Those stars just have to be beautiful! And they've found that Lux Toilet Soap helps them look their best! Producers know it, too! And that's why it's the official soap in all the great studios in Hollywood. Right Woody?

VAN DYKE:

Right on the nose, Jim! Thanks for coming over.

SEYMOUR:

Thanks for asking me. Goodnight!

VAN DYKE:

Goodnight!

SFX:

APPLAUSE

KENNEDY:

We pause for station identification. This is the Columbia Broadcasting System!

VAN DYKE:

The Thin Man!

(MFX)

 

VAN DYKE:

Nick is on his way to Clyde Wynant's deserted laboratory in a dark and desolate section of the city. His cab veers sharply around the corner and pulls up in front of a gloomy, old, rickety building.

SFX:

CAB PULLS UP/DOOR OPENS

CABDRIVER:

Say mister? Are you sure this is the place you wanted?

NICK:

Looks like it. Come on Asta, jump! How much do I owe you?

SFX:

DOG BARKING

CABDRIVER:

A dollar-twenty. You don't want me to wait, do you?

NICK:

No thanks.

CABDRIVER:

Oh, that's good! You know, this ain't no neighborhood to be in at 2 0'clock in the morning! I wanna get outta here!

NICK:

There you are.

CABDRIVER:

Thanks. Well.... good luck!

SFX:

CAB PULLS AWAY

NICK:

Come on Asta! Come on!

SFX:

FOOTSTEPS

NORA:

Hello!

NICK:

Nora! What are you doing here?

NORA:

I beat you down! I want to go with you, Nick-

NICK:

Now listen

NORA:

No. You're not going in that place alone and that settles it! Now get out that skeleton key of yours and open that door! I'm here to stay

NICK:

-All right, come on.

NORA :

Nice neighborhood Wynant's picked out for his laboratory. I can almost hear the chains rattling. You believe in ghosts, Nicky?

SFX:

KEY UNLOCKING DOOR/DOOR CREAKING OPEN

NICK:

Shh. There we are. Come in? be quiet.

NORA:

(whispering) Nick? it's awfully dark in here-

NICK:

I'll get a flashlight on, as soon as we close the door.

SFX:

DOG WHINING

NICK:

Asta, shut up! Go on Nora-

NORA :

-Which way?

NICK:

Straight ahead. We've got to get the layout of the place.

NORA:

Looks awfully big to me?you can't even see into the corners!

NICK:

Don't let the shadows frighten you-

NORA:

-Who's frightened?

NICK:

Hold it!

NORA:

What's the matter?

NICK:

It looks like Wynant's work table-

NORA:

More like a slab in a morgue

SFX:

DOG WHINING

NORA:

-Look Nick! There's a cement floor all around?

NICK:

Yeah. Come on.

NORA:

Where to now?

NICK:

There's an old desk up along that wall? I want to take a look at it-

NORA:

-What do you expect to find?

NICK:

Darling, if I knew what I'd find, I wouldn't be-

SFX:

CREAKING BOARD

NORA:

Nick!

NICK:

Shhh?

NORA:

What is it, Nick?

NICK:

Just a loose board, I guess.

NORA:

It sounds like- like somebody was walking over that way-

NICK:

-Naw, just your imagination. There's no one here but us.

NORA:

No? What about Wynant? It's his workshop. Why couldn't he be hiding out here?

SFX:

SCRATCHING ON CEMENT

NORA:

What's that?

NICK:

It's Asta. He's scratching on the cement around the worktable. C'mere boy? Asta! Stop it! Stop it!

SFX:

DOG WHINING

NICK:

Did you hear what I said, Asta?

NORA:

Nick, look at him! He's after something! I've seen him scratch the ground like that when-when he was looking for-

NICK:

-Shhh, Asta! Asta? No-no, look? look at this? new cement! Listen?

SFX:

FOOT TAPPING ON A HOLLOW FLOOR

NORA:

Nick

NICK:

-It's hollow! I wonder if I could find something to dig it up?

NORA:

There's an iron bar on the table. I just saw it.

NICK:

Ah, good. Now-

SFX:

DIGGING

NICK:

-If I can just dig a hole in that cement, we'll find out what's under there!

NORA:

Oh Nick, I'm scared!

SFX:

DOG WHINING

NICK:

Shhh, Asta, quiet! Try to keep him away, Nora-

NORA:

Asta come here

NICK:

(still digging) Once more?

SFX:

FLOOR BREAKING THROUGH

NICK:

?There she goes! I'm through the cement! Asta, get away from there! Get away! Whew?

NORA:

Nick, what is it? What's he after?

NICK:

?We must get Inspector Guild here?

NORA:

What's under there?

NICK:

A body? must have been there for weeks!

NORA:

Oh, Nick!

SFX:

SIRENS/CROWD (REPORTERS) NOISE

GUILD:

Wait a minute, wait a minute! Wait now you reporters! You'll get your story as soon as I can give it to ya?until then you gotta leave us alone! Come on now, get out!

SFX:

CROWD (REPORTERS) LEAVE/DOOR CLOSE

GUILD:

Those reporters are enough to drive a guy nuts! Well, you were right, Nick? it was a body! A skeleton, rather, buried in lime. I wonder what Wynant had against this one-

NICK:

Did you find any clothes

GUILD:

-Yeah, but no identification on them. Just a silver belt buckle with the initials "DWR"-

NICK:

-"DWR"? Who was that?

GUILD:

I got an idea? that case you worked on... the guy who threatened to kill Wynant... what was his name?

NICK:

Rosebreen-

GUILD:

-Yeah, Rosebreen. He said Wynant tried to steal an invention.

NICK:

Yes. But we figured it was just blackmail...

GUILD:

Just the same, Wynant wouldn't mind having him out of the way, would he? And according to the doc, the body's been here at least a couple of months.

NICK:

Hmm, that's just about the time Wynant closed the shop.

GUILD:

Right.

NICK:

Did you put the skeleton through the fluoroscope yet?

GUILD:

Half an hour ago? we found the bullet he was killed with, and something in the leg bone; an old piece of shrapnel-

NICK:

-Shrapnel!

GUILD:

Yeah? why?

NICK:

Shrapnel in the leg bone? he probably limped.

GUILD:

What do you mean?

NICK:

Oh? nothing. Well, so long Inspector. I'm going to pick up my wife, take her home. It's been a long night.

GUILD:

So long! Give her my best, would ya?

NICK:

Right!

SFX:

CAR RUNNING

NORA:

Where are we going, Nick?

NICK:

Back to the hotel, my sweet. Pack our bags and take a nice trip somewhere?

NORA:

A trip? Oh no!

NICK:

Bless my soul, woman! I give you three murders and you're not satisfied!

NORA:

I want you to stay and find Wynant!

NICK:

I did find him.

NORA:

What do you mean?

NICK:

He was down in the shop.

NORA:

Nick!

NICK:

It was his body that was buried there.

NORA:

Nick, you'd better lay off the liquor-

NICK:

-That's a fact.

NORA:

Wynant's body?

NICK:

Yup.

NORA:

But they all said it was Rosebreen's.

NICK:

That's what they think... Guild and all of them. They take it for granted that it's just another of Wynant's victims. Guild's hotfooting it around now, looking for Wynant. That's all that troubles him.

NORA:

What makes you so sure it's Wynant's body?

NICK:

Several things?

NORA:

Nick, you'll drive me crazy. What things?

NICK:

Huh?

NORA:

What things made you so sure?

NICK:

Oh. Well, the clothes for instance. They were carefully preserved, and the body was just as carefully destroyed. The person who killed him counted on one thing... that all skeletons look alike.

NORA:

Well, don't they?

NICK:

Sure. I remembered that Wynant had some shrapnel in his shin. It often bothered him. They found it under the fluoroscope.

NORA:

How long has he been dead?

NICK:

Couple of months anyway.

NORA:

Then he couldn't have committed those other murders.

NICK:

Smart gal.

NORA:

Wynant dead? Does Dorothy know?

NICK:

No. Nobody but you. I didn't even tell Guild.

NORA:

Why not?

NICK:

I want to lie low till I get the whole dope. I don't want to go off half-cocked.

NORA:

What are you going to do?

NICK:

I'm going to get the real murderer. I've got an idea. Want to see me take him?

NORA:

Yes!

NICK:

Got a nice evening dress?

NORA:

I've got a lulu -- why?

NICK:

I'm going to give a party, and invite all of the suspects.

NORA:

The suspects! They won't come.

NICK:

Oh, they'll come. I'll have Guild issue the invitations.

NORA:

Who do you think did it?

NICK:

Mimi...

NORA:

Mimi!

NICK:

Mimi, Jorgensen, Morelli? Tell me my dear, what were you doing on the ninth of June?

(MFX)

 

SFX:

CROWN (DINNER PARTY) NOISE

NICK:

Good evening everybody-

MIMI:

-Nick Charles, what is the meaning of this?

NICK:

The meaning of what, Mimi?

MIMI:

Why were we all bounded up like common criminals and brought to the city?

NICK:

To eat, Mimi and talk. Will everyone please be seated?Dorothy here-

DOROTHY:

Thank you

NICK:

Andy next to her please

ANDY:

Oh but Mr. Charles, we

NICK:

Please

ANDY:

-Very well.

NICK:

Mimi, on the other side of Andy-

MIMI:

(haughtily) Hm.

NICK:

Mr. Jorgensen over there, please-

CHRIS JORGENSEN:

You're very kind, Mr. Charles

NICK:

Not at all? Mr. Macaulay next

MACAULAY:

Of course

NICK:

-Morelli?

MORELLI:

What?

NICK:

Right where you are-

MORELLI:

Say listen-

NICK:

Sit down

MORELLI:

Awww

NICK:

-And, er-Gilbert? You can sit just opposite Mama-

GILBERT:

Mr. Charles, I have a theory

NICK:

-We'll listen to it later. Inspector Guild? You and your men will stand by the door, please.

GUILD:

Sure-

NICK:

-Fine. Now Nora, you'll sit here by me.

NORA:

You give such charming parties, Mr. Charles.

NICK:

Thank you, Mrs. Charles. Now we're all ready to begin-

NORA:

-Could you please pass the celery, Mrs. Wynant?

MIMI:

No I will not. I demand to know why we are here!

NICK:

Before dinner? All right, I've got some very important news - I've seen Wynant.

GUILD:

You did!

MIMI:

That's nothing. I saw him myself.

NICK:

You did... where?

MIMI:

Last night. He came to see me at my apartment.

NICK :

Oh, did he? What did he say?

MIMI:

He didn't say very much. Wanted to know how I was and how the children were.

NICK:

I'm afraid you're lying, Mimi. You see, I really did see Wynant last night.

GUILD:

Are you kidding?

NICK:

No.

GUILD:

Why didn't you tell me? .... Why didn't you hold him?

NICK:

Because I found out for certain that he didn't commit the murders.

SFX:

CROWD NOISE ("Huh? What? Wynant's innocent?")

GUILD:

Let him have his say.

NICK:

Thank you. Morelli, you knew Julia. Was she gypping Wynant? Taking dough on the sly?

MORELLI:

She don't say she is, but I figure she is? yeah.

NICK:

Thank you. Now I'll tell you why I know Wynant didn't commit those murders? Three months ago Wynant found out that Julia was cheating him and was splitting with some man. He went to find the man. And he did. That man was desperate! He knew that he was caught dead to rights? and with prison staring him in the face, he took the only way out. He killed Wynant. (to Dorothy) It's terrible to tell you this way, but your father's dead, Dorothy.

DOROTHY:

Dead?

NICK:

He's been dead for three months.

DOROTHY:

(breaking down and crying) Dead? ohhhh-

ANDY:

-Darling, don't cry. Please. I know it's terrible. But isn't it really better this way?

DOROTHY:

Oh, Andy, Andy!

NORA:

You'd better take her home, Andy.

ANDY:

Yes Mrs. Charles. Come on, darling.

NORA:

Let them out Inspector.

GUILD:

Open up.

ANDY:

(off mike) Don't cry, darling.

SFX:

DOOR OPEN/CLOSE

MIMI:

This is absurd! How can Clyde be dead? You said yourself you saw him last night.

NICK:

So I did. I saw him lying buried in his shop.

GUILD:

You mean that body-----?

NICK:

--was Wynant's.

MIMI:

Perfectly absurd.

NICK:

And the murderer is right here in this room tonight... he's sitting at this table.

GILBERT:

You're not going to keep us in the dark, are you? Tell us -- who is it?

NICK:

I don't know. But I thought if we all had a little get-together we might be able to find out. I'll tell you as much as I know. Go right on eating. This murderer is a very clever man. He studied this thing out very carefully. You'd understand that, wouldn't you, Gilbert?

GILBERT:

What? Yes - no -

NICK:

He planned the whole thing beautifully. After he killed Wynant he wired Macaulay, using Wynant's name and told him to shut up the shop. He destroyed all of Wynant's clothes, with the exception of his watch chain. He figured that some day that might come in handy. Then he took Wynant's body and buried it in the shop with another man's clothes to throw us off the track. He even put a belt buckle with an "R" on it, hoping that we'd think it was Rosebreen -- an old enemy of Wynant's who dropped out of sight years ago. (to Morelli) Morelli - would you mind holding your knife another way? You're worrying Gilbert.

NORA:

(whispering) If that knife is missing, I'll look for it in your back.

NICK:

After our hero had killed Wynant, he got a brilliant idea. He realized that he and Julia could still collect money. Wynant was supposed to be on a : trip - no one knew where - so our dinner guest wrote letters to Macaulay, signing Wynant's name, so that Macaulay would continue to send the money to Julia. He even telephoned Macaulay - (to Macaulay) Do you remember Macaulay?.... the first day that you came to see me... he telephoned that he was in town?

MACAULAY:

(puzzled) But it must have been Wynant. I should have known if it weren't his voice.

NICK:

Oh he was clever about that. He called when you were out. That same afternoon, Julia telephoned to him. She said that you were coming, Mimi, to ask about Wynant. He got terrified. He was afraid that Julia would break down and tell... so he went to Julia and killed her and left Wynant's watch chain in her hand.

NORA (whispering) :

Is that true?

NICK:

I don't know.

NORA:

Why are you saying it?

NICK:

It's the only way it makes sense.

NORA:

I hope you're well.

NICK:

His plan was still working beautifully. Wynant was established as being in town. The watch chain was handed over... with a slight delay...to the police. The only hitch was a man named Nunheim who had found out: something. Our hero paid Nunheim once to keep his mouth shut, and when Nunheim threatened him again, he bumped him off. But our hero had just one weak link in his chain. The telegrams, wires and telephones were all very well - but no one had seen Wynant. So he picked on poor Mimi here to strengthen his case. Mimi is the only one at the table who can tell us who the real murderer is. Mimi, who was it that told you to say you'd seen Wynant?

MIMI:

Nobody told me. I did see him!

NICK:

What did he pay you, Mimi, to stick to that story?

MIMI:

It isn't a story - it's true. I did see Wynant. He's not dead.

NICK:

You're lying, Mimi. But then, you'd do anything for money. You're getting a good price for saying you saw Wynant and you figure you won't get anything if he's dead.

MIMI:

I'm not going to stay here to be insulted -

NICK:

Sit down. You're getting a good price, Mimi. But don't forget this two other people were in with him on this deal... Julia and Nunheim. When he thought they might spill something he bumped them off. You ought to know darn well that he's not going to take any chances on you. What do you want to do? Be next on his list?

MIMI:

No- NO-

NICK:

Then who is he? Who paid you that money

MIMI:

-Macaulay!

SFX:

CROWD NOISE

MACAULAY:

Why you dirty little-

SFX:

PUNCH/BODY FALLING TO FLOOR

NICK:

I think that'll hold him.

GUILD:

Boy, oh boy? what a wallop! Hey, nice work Mr. Charles!

NICK:

There's your man, Inspector- Mr. Macaulay!

GUILD:

I can't believe it.

NICK:

What do you want me to do? Wrap him up in cellophane? Pick him up and get him out of here!

GUILD:

C'mon boys? grab him!

SFX:

CROWD NOISE (police moving body)

NORA:

Nick, you took him! I knew you would-

NICK:

Yeah, another case like this and I'd have thought I was in a prizefight-

NORA:

-Aw Nicky, you're grand! You're glorious!

NICK:

I bet you say that to all the boys?

(MFX)

 

SFX:

APPLAUSE

VAN DYKE:

Well, that's that. The story of "The Thin Man" with William Powell and Myrna Loy. I'm going to get them back out here, right now?Hi Bill? Myrna!

SFX:

APPLAUSE

VAN DYKE:

Kids, you did a great show! You were really marvelous-

POWELL:

-What, no retakes?

LOY:

No? no property man.

VAN DYKE:

Yeah Bill, I'll bet you're glad my property man wasn't here! Remember how he used to swat you with a broomstick when you weren't on the set fast enough?

POWELL:

Yes. He certainly was a great fellow. The most independent cuss in the whole picture business!

VAN DYKE:

Listen Bill, that fellow was with me in the Artic when we made "Eskimo"! He was with me in Africa, when we made "Trader Horn"! And after a man has handled crocodiles, sharks, pythons and polar bears, you can't expect him to be afraid of a mere actor!

POWELL:

There's only one thing I can never understand about that picture "Eskimo", Woody. How did they tell you from the Polar Bears?

LOY:

He wore rubbers-

VAN DYKE:

-I wore a hat!

LOY:

You must be pretty tough, Woody. When you have to plow through swamps, jungles, tropics and the Artic. I suppose when you call up and say you're going on location, your wife says "Oh yes, location. You want the snowshoes or the pith helmet?"

VAN DYKE:

Unfortunately, she doesn't say that. When I say I'm going on location, she just says, "You are not!" I thought all about that when the Lux Soap people asked me to do this broadcast. Isn't it funny? in the Artic, soap is something they like to eat! In the tropics, soap is used for money. And here in Hollywood, soap is something they use to keep the stars beautiful!

POWELL:

I can see that it keeps Myrna beautiful, Woody. But when are you going to start using it-

VAN DYKE:

-Nice talk, nice talk! Well, I do use it in the bath? and that's no kidding! Anyway, thanks for coming up kids!

POWELL:

Goodbye Woody-

LOY:

-Goodbye!

VAN DYKE:

Goodbye!

SFX:

APPLAUSE

VAN DYKE:

Before I tell you about next week's show, I'm going to ask our announcer Mr. Ruick to tell you more about the cast and about Hollywood studios who are cooperate with us.

RUICK:

Our cast of characters tonight: Nick/William Powell- Robin Jones, Nora/Myrna Loy- Mary Keefe O'Brien, Mimi-___________, Macaulay-_______, Dorothy-________, Gilbert-________, Chris Jorgensen-_________, Julia Wolf-___________, Inspector Guild-__________, Morelli-__________, Nunheim-________. Our director W.S. Van Dyke-___________ and our stars William Powell and Myrna Loy appear through the courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. And now here is your producer, Mr. W.S. Van Dyke!

VAN DYKE:

Thanks to all of you in the cast! You did a swell job! Next week, ladies and gentlemen, "The Lux Radio Theatre" is going to have a great show for you, and believe me? Al Jolson and Ruby Keeler are going to be here to appear in "Burlesque"! It was a smash hit on Broadway and then a great moving picture. And now it's going to make a marvelous radio vehicle for Al Jolson and Ruby Keeler! I think you'll like it.

(MFX)

 

VAN DYKE:

Mr. Cecil B. DeMille will return to "The Lux Radio Theatre" in time to produce "Burlesque"! And you know he'll give you a great show! I've enjoyed being with you all and goodnight!