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The Spider Woman (1943) Poster

Trivia

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Shooting lasted from May 10-early June, 1943, released January 21, 1944 (copyright 1943) .
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At one point Holmes says to Watson, "If you ever see me getting too sure again, fancying myself more clever then Adrea Spedding, just whisper one word to me: pygmy." This line was inspired by the short story "The Adventure of the Yellow Face," in which Holmes tells Watson, "If it should ever strike you that I am getting a little over-confident in my powers, or giving less pains to a case than it deserves, kindly whisper 'Norbury' in my ear, and I shall be infinitely obliged to you."
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The seventh of fourteen films based on Arthur Conan Doyle's fictional consulting detective Sherlock Holmes starring Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Doctor Watson.
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A follow-up, The Spider Woman Strikes Back (1946), has no relation to the HOLMES feature, as Gale Sondergaard plays a completely different character.
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The uncredited actor who played the pygmy was an achondroplastic dwarf in blackface makeup. A real pygmy would have been taller and better-proportioned.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

References five original Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes short stories and novels.
  • The death of Sherlock Holmes from 'The Adventure of the Final Problem'.


  • A bust of Sherlock Holmes from The Adventure of the Empty House.


  • A poisonous creature enters a room through an air shaft from The Adventure of the Speckled Band.


  • The murderous pygmy and the footprint of a child from The Sign of Four (the "footprint of a child" is the pygmy's footprint)


  • And a poisonous substance burnt in a fire from The Adventure of the Devil's Foot.


Gale Sondergaard plays Adrea Spedding, the main antagonist of the film. It's not only the first woman villain of the Holmes' movies starred by Basil Rathbone, but a foreshadowing of Irene Adler, a Holmes' antagonist on the Arthur Conan Doyle's books and short stories.
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