Topper Returns

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Topper Returns
Topper Returns VideoCover.jpeg
theatrical release poster
Directed byRoy Del Ruth
Produced byHal Roach
Written byJonathan Latimer
Based onCharacters created by Thorne Smith
StarringJoan Blondell
Roland Young
Carole Landis
Billie Burke
Music byWerner R. Heymann
CinematographyNorbert Brodine
Edited byJames Newcom
Distributed byUnited Artists
Release date
  • March 21, 1941 (1941-03-21) (US)
Running time
88 minutes
CountryUnited States

Topper Returns is a 1941 film directed by Roy Del Ruth. It is the third and final entry in the initial series of supernatural comedy films inspired by the novels of Thorne Smith. It followed Topper (1937) and Topper Takes a Trip (1938).

As in the prior films, Roland Young plays Cosmo Topper, a mousy banker who gets into trouble because of his ability to see and speak with ghosts, and Billie Burke plays his wife, who's constantly befuddled by his strange antics. The plot revolves around a murder mystery. Joan Blondell portrays a slain woman who seeks out the reluctant Topper and enlists his help in identifying her killer and saving her friend, played by Carole Landis. Most of the action takes place in a spooky mansion filled with eccentric characters, trapdoors and secret passages.

The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Special Effects (Roy Seawright and Elmer Raguse) and Best Sound Recording (Elmer Raguse).[1]

A TV series of Topper premiered in 1953 and ran for two seasons.[2] A pilot called Topper Returns (1973)[3] was later made for a proposed TV series. There was also a made-for-TV remake of the original film Topper in 1979.[4]

In 1969, "Topper Returns" entered the public domain in the United States because the claimants did not renew its copyright registration in the 28th year after publication.[5]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The 14th Academy Awards (1942) Nominees and Winners". Retrieved 2011-08-13.
  2. ^ Topper (1953 TV series) at IMDB
  3. ^ Topper Returns (1973 pilot for proposed TV series) at IMDB
  4. ^ Topper (1979 TV Movie) at IMDB
  5. ^ Pierce, David (June 2007). "Forgotten Faces: Why Some of Our Cinema Heritage Is Part of the Public Domain". Film History: An International Journal. 19 (2): 125–43. doi:10.2979/FIL.2007.19.2.125. ISSN 0892-2160. JSTOR 25165419. OCLC 15122313.

External links[edit]