The Man in the White Suit (1951)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Sci-Fi, Drama  |  April 1952 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 6,374 users  
Reviews: 67 user | 52 critic

An altruistic chemist invents a fabric which resists wear and stain as a boon to humanity, but both big business and labor realize it must be suppressed for economic reasons.


(play), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sidney Stratton
Daphne Birnley
Cecil Parker ...
Alan Birnley
Michael Corland
Sir John Kierlaw
Howard Marion-Crawford ...
Cranford (as Howard Marion Crawford)
Henry Mollison ...
Vida Hope ...
Patric Doonan ...
Duncan Lamont ...
Harold Goodwin ...
Colin Gordon ...
Joan Harben ...
Miss Johnson
Arthur Howard ...
Roddy Hughes ...


Sidney Stratton, a humble inventor, develops a fabric which never gets dirty or wears out. This would seem to be a boon for mankind, but the established garment manufacturers don't see it that way; they try to suppress it. Written by John Oswalt <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


First...Explosions! Then Success! Then Chaos! See more »


Comedy | Sci-Fi | Drama


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

April 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'homme au complet blanc  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,874 (USA) (16 November 2012)


$8,265 (USA) (25 January 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System) (Gaumont-Kalee)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The strange noises made by the laboratory apparatus were created by uncredited sound editor Mary Habberfield and produced for the sound track by a tuba and a bassoon. See more »


When Hill disturbs Michael Corland at the table, he holds a piece of paper. The paper swaps hands between shots. See more »


[Daphne laughs at Sidney's suit]
Sidney Stratton: What's funny about it?
Daphne Birnley, Alan Birnley's daughter: It's just the suit. It looks as if it's wearing you.
Sidney Stratton: It's still a bit luminous but it'll wear off.
Daphne Birnley, Alan Birnley's daughter: Oh, no!
Sidney Stratton: No?
Sidney Stratton: No. Makes you look like a knight in shining armour.
See more »


Referenced in Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

11 August 2000 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

When I learned of Sir Alec Guinness' death, this was the first of his many films I thought of re-seeing. What a wonderful droll commentary the film provides even after all these years. And Guinness helps to weave the charm into every frame. His eyes and face are as luminous as that white suit he wears. Both he and the film have to be considered lifetime favorites.

21 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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