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The Man in the White Suit (1951)

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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.

Writers:

Roger MacDougall (play), Roger MacDougall (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

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alec Guinness ... Sidney Stratton
Joan Greenwood ... Daphne Birnley
Cecil Parker ... Alan Birnley
Michael Gough ... Michael Corland
Ernest Thesiger ... Sir John Kierlaw
Howard Marion-Crawford ... Cranford (as Howard Marion Crawford)
Henry Mollison ... Hoskins
Vida Hope Vida Hope ... Bertha
Patric Doonan Patric Doonan ... Frank
Duncan Lamont ... Harry
Harold Goodwin ... Wilkins
Colin Gordon ... Hill
Joan Harben Joan Harben ... Miss Johnson
Arthur Howard Arthur Howard ... Roberts
Roddy Hughes Roddy Hughes ... Green
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Storyline

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 <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Should they let him play...or should they put him away? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

April 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El hombre del traje blanco See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,874, 18 November 2012, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$8,265, 27 January 2013
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Ealing Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System) (Gaumont-Kalee)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Alec Guinness performed the stunt of climbing down the side of the mansion. He was convinced by a technician, that the piano wire holding him up would not break, since only piano wire with kinks in it would be prone to breaking. As he got to about four feet from the ground, the wire did in fact break. See more »

Goofs

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

Quotes

[first lines]
Alan Birnley: Now that calm and sanity have returned to the textile industry, I feel it my duty reveal something of the true story behind the recent crisis, a story which we were able, happily, to keep out of the newspapers at the time.
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User Reviews

 
another Ealing Studios gem!
4 February 2000 | by rupieSee all my reviews

I can't say whether the post-WWII British comedies produced at the Ealing Studios are an acquired taste or not, but I am completely addicted, and The Man in the White Suit is one of the best. No need to go into the well-known plot about the threat posed to both the textile industry and the textile unions by an indestructible, dirt-resistant fiber. Suffice it to say that the slings and arrows suffered by the naively idealistic Sidney Stratton in pursuing his polymer vision make for a comedic delight. Many of the well-known faces from the world of British character actors - the nervous Cecil Parker, the suavely devious Michael Gough, and the bluntly ruthless Ernest Thesinger - put in wonderful performances. Guinness - as always and forever - is superb, and Joan Greenwood is delectable as Daphne (just the way she enunciates the word "Daddy", makes the entire movie worth seeing).

"Knudsen!!!!!!!"


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