Double Wedding

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Double Wedding
theatrical release poster
Directed by Richard Thorpe
Produced by Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Screenplay by Jo Swerling
Based on Nagy Szerelem ("Great Love", play) 
by Ferenc Molnár
Starring William Powell
Myrna Loy
Music by Edward Ward
Cinematography William H. Daniels
Harold Rosson
Edited by Frank Sullivan
Release dates
  • October 15, 1937 (1937-10-15) (US)
Running time 85–87 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $678,000 (est.)
Box office $2,041,000 (worldwide est.)

Double Wedding is a 1937 romantic comedy film starring William Powell and Myrna Loy, and featuring Florence Rice, John Beal, Jessie Ralph and Edgar Kennedy. This was the seventh pairing of Powell and Loy, with another seven to go. It was directed by Richard Thorpe from a screenplay by Jo Swerling based on the unpublished play[1] Nagy szerelem ("Great Love") by Ferenc Molnár.

William Powell's fiancée Jean Harlow died during production, halting filming. Powell later described finishing the film as "very difficult under the circumstances".[2] Myrna Loy, who had been good friends with Harlow, wrote in her autobiography that she disliked the film because of Harlow's death and that it was "the scapegoat for concurrent despair".[3]


Charles Lodge (William Powell), a freewheeling film director who lives in a cluttered car trailer, interrupts the well-ordered life of Margit Agnew (Myrna Loy) when he convinces her younger sister Irene (Florence Rice) that she should become an actress. However, Margit is determined that Irene will marry her fiancé of four years, the pliable Waldo (John Beal). Fed up with Waldo's timidity, Irene decides that she is infatuated with Charles. Charles pretends to return her feelings so he can stay close to Margit. He agrees to give up Irene if Margit will let him paint her portrait. However, Irene comes unexpectedly to his trailer and Margit, believing he lied about giving Irene up, angrily destroys the painting. Charles arranges for a wedding, ostensibly to marry Irene, but actually it is a ploy to simultaneously reconcile Irene and Waldo and for him to win Margit's hand.



Double Wedding had the working title of "Three's Company". Originally, Robert Young and Robert Benchley were to have roles in the film,[4] which was the seventh pairing of Powell and Loy. Loy's previous film, Parnell (1937) did not do well at the box office, so MGM paired her with Powell again to rehabilitate her career. The move was a success, as Double Wedding was a box office success.[5]

When Jean Harlow, William Powell's girlfriend of three years and fiancee, died suddenly on June 28, 1937 three weeks after falling ill with uremic poisoning caused by kidney failure, production on the film was partially shut down. Her death was a blow to both Powell and Loy, a good friend of Harlow, and Powell's grief was such that he asked the studio for some time to recover. Although filming was completed on schedule, neither Powell nor Loy felt they were at their best.[4][5]

Film locations included Carmel-by-the-Sea and the estate of C. A. Noble, a banker and manufacturer from Milwaukee.[4]



  1. ^ "Screenplay info" on
  2. ^ Bryant, Roger (2006). William Powell: the life and films. McFarland. p. 126. ISBN 0-7864-2602-0. 
  3. ^ Loy, Myrna (1987). Myrna Loy: Being and Becoming. Knopf. p. 164. ISBN 0-394-55593-7. 
  4. ^ a b c "Notes" on
  5. ^ a b Passafiume, Andrea. "Double Wedding" (article) on

External links[edit]