IMDb > Topper Returns (1941)
Topper Returns
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Topper Returns (1941) More at IMDbPro »

Videos (see all 2)
Topper Returns -- Topper is once again tormented by a fun-loving spirit. This time, it's Joan Blondell, who was accidentally murdered while vacationing at the home of her wealthy friend...

Overview

User Rating:
7.0/10   1,483 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Thorne Smith (based on: the fictional characters conceived by the late)
Jonathan Latimer (original screen play by) ...
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Contact:
View company contact information for Topper Returns on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
21 March 1941 (USA) See more »
Tagline:
Topper's having girl trouble again!
Plot:
A sassy girl finds herself dead after trading bedrooms with her heiress friend. Her ghost seeks aid from banker Cosmo Topper to find out why and by whom. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more »
User Reviews:
Possibly the best in the Topper trilogy See more (38 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Joan Blondell ... Gail Richards

Roland Young ... Cosmo Topper

Carole Landis ... Ann Carrington

Billie Burke ... Mrs. Topper
Dennis O'Keefe ... Bob

Patsy Kelly ... Maid

H.B. Warner ... Mr. Carrington

Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson ... Chauffeur
George Zucco ... Dr. Jeris
Donald MacBride ... Sgt. Roberts
Rafaela Ottiano ... Lillian
Trevor Bardette ... Rama
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Eddy Chandler ... Jim - Police Sergeant (uncredited)
John Kelly ... Engine Room Sailor-Henchman in Striped Shirt (uncredited)
George Lloyd ... Boat Captain (uncredited)
William H. O'Brien ... Second Butler (uncredited)
Slicker the Seal ... Slicker the Seal (uncredited)
Brick Sullivan ... Darryl - Police Officer (uncredited)
Duke York ... Engine Room Sailor-Henchman in Black (uncredited)
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Directed by
Roy Del Ruth 
 
Writing credits
Thorne Smith (based on: the fictional characters conceived by the late)

Jonathan Latimer (original screen play by) &
Gordon Douglas (original screen play by)

Paul Girard Smith (additional dialogue) (as Paul Gerard Smith)

Produced by
Hal Roach .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Werner R. Heymann (musical score by)
 
Cinematography by
Norbert Brodine (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
James E. Newcom (film editor) (as James Newcom)
 
Art Direction by
Nicolai Remisoff 
 
Set Decoration by
William Stevens (set decorations) (as W.L. Stevens)
 
Costume Design by
Royer (gowns)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Bernard Carr .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
William Randall .... sound recordist
Elmer Raguse .... sound recordist (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Roy Seawright .... photographic effects
 
Music Department
Irvin Talbot .... orchestra conducted by
 
Other crew
Hal Roach .... presents
Irene Martin .... stand-in: Joan Blondell (uncredited)
H.W. Winston .... animal trainer: Slicker the seal (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
88 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
In the film, Eddie (played by Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson) says that he's going back to "Mr. Benny", an in-joke reference to the fact that Anderson played Rochester, the valet, on Jack Benny's radio program and later TV show.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: After falling into the water numerous times, Eddie should be soaked to the skin. Yet, even with his full length fur coat and chauffeurs uniform, he's often dry a few scenes later.See more »
Quotes:
Sgt. Roberts:There's a pickpocket in the joint! Whoever stole that witness, put her back!See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in 100 Years of Horror: Phantoms (1996) (V)See more »

FAQ

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25 out of 27 people found the following review useful.
Possibly the best in the Topper trilogy, 22 February 2006
Author: krorie from Van Buren, Arkansas

Thorne Smith is just now beginning to be taken seriously as a writer. Often brushed off as just another pulp fiction fabricator, Smith's works are filled with satirical, humorous jibes at American culture concealed in well-written stories of fantasy. Though all three Hollywood versions of one of his best character creations leave out much of the satire they are each highly entertaining romantic comedies with many sexual innuendos considered bawdy when released in the late 30's and early 40's. This third film adds an element of mystery, suspense and chills to the comedy. Even the humor comes faster than in the first two Topper's. Billie Burke as Mrs. Cosmo Topper is given more clever lines this go around. Being one of the best actresses around, she knows exactly how to use the lines for ultimate comedic effect.

Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson was one of the funniest men around at the time. Mainly a radio comedian and sidekick to the inimitable Jack Benny, he stands out in every movie role he was given. He was one of the few African-Americans of his day who was able through sheer talent to rise above the racist Hollywood stereotyping rampant in the media at the time. Later during the civil rights movement Jack Benny told Rochester to do an errand for him. He replied, "Mr. Benny, we don't do that anymore." There's one scene in "Topper Returns" involving Rochester that's a gem when the raven flies to his shoulder and he gives a double take. Don't miss it. I don't know whose idea it was to have him wear a fur coat but that one prop adds tremendously to the fun.

So much has already been said by IMDb reviewers about the sensational Joan Blondell who deservedly got top billing in this film. She was a multi-talented actress who could play any role given her better than anyone else. She was also a topnotch comedienne as she shows in this outing when she somewhat assumes the role played by Constance Bennett in the first two outings. Donald MacBride as the police sergeant in charge of investigating the murders plays the part of a dumb policeman (typical for Hollywood in those days) in such a lofty comic manner than his stupidity is actually believable and this time funny. Adding to the creepiness of this truly scary comedy is the performance of Rafaela Ottiano as the housekeeper. She would frighten the pants off Boris Karloff and Peter Lorre. The rest of the cast made in heaven is just as effective.

Special note should be given to the special effects which were nominated for an Oscar. The man behind them, Roy Seawright, had also been in charge of the special effects for the first two Topper's. I've read that he had a hand in doing the special effects for the 1933 horror classic "The Invisible Man," although he is not credited with that in his profile.

Roland Young is for many viewers the definitive Topper but the later TV Topper, Leo G. Carroll, did a fine job too. Plus the later TV series added a ghost St. Bernard named Neil who just happened to be an alcoholic. Except for this the three movie versions are superior. The made for TV "Topper Returns" actually deals with Cosmo Topper Jr. and though OK is nowhere near the caliber of this "Topper Returns."

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Message Boards

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Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Topper's car jbrown25711
A fun movie Bflogal11
Film Location and/or Beach Scenes maliakapalena
what's the third movie in trilogy? rennogsd1996
Cosmo's House is Tara! oliverboren
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