Great Actresses – Great Scenes: #3 Barbara Stanwyck in ‘Double Indemnity’

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Barbara Stanwyck made her screen debut in 1927 and her strong screen presence established her as a favourite of many great directors, including Cecil B. De Mille, Fritz Lang, and Frank Capra. She went on to appear in over 80 films, often portraying strong-willed, independent women, was nominated for the Academy Award four times, and won three Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe. Perhaps her most famous role was that of Phyllis Dietrichson in Billy Wilder’s 1940 film noir, Double Indemnity. Adapted from a James M. Cain novel by Wilder and Raymond Chandler, Double Indemnity represents the high-water mark of 1940s film noir urban crime dramas and Barbara Stanwyck’s finest hour. Here she is, opposite Fred MacMurray as one of cinema’s most devilish femme fatals.

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1 Comment
  1. Susannah says

    The most charismatic ankles in the history of cinema. Great scene, but I also like the later encounter where they discuss a little accident that might be advantageous: “I think you’re swell. So long as I’m not your husband.”

    BEST. SCREENPLAY. EVER.

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