Back to Back Issues Page
New Thorne Smith DVD !!!
September 12, 2013

Thank you for being a loyal reader of the Thorne Smith Newsletter!!!

Some exciting news about a new Thorne Smith DVD, some movies to catch on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) this month, and some special dates to remember.

Did somebody say “Let’s get to it!”

Issue 006 September 2013


Most of us have seen TOPPER (1937) the classic comedy film based on the popular novel by our beloved Thorne Smith. But most of us have had to put up with poor quality videotapes (remember that dreadful colorized version?) or just so-so looking DVD versions. Come September 20th at 6:30am EST (that’s 3:30am for us on the west coast) you’ll have the opportunity to catch TOPPER as you’ve never seen it before. Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is airing the completely restored print of TOPPER, starring Cary Grant, Constance Bennett, Roland Young and Billie Burke.

You may recall I mentioned seeing it in March on TCM and that’s what I believe to be the first time it’s aired publicly. So, set your DVD recorder, DVR, VCR, or whatever you use to record TV because you are in for an absolute delight.

TCM is also airing a few other fun treats.

Also on September 20th at 5:00am EST (I wish they’d air these later in the day!) TCM brings us THE AWFUL TRUTH (1937) starring Cary Grant and Irene Dunne. Now this isn’t connected to Thorne Smith but it’s a terrific screwball comedy that I’m certain you’ll enjoy.

On September 19th at 8:00pm EST is 1958’s BELL, BOOK AND CANDLE starring Jack Lemmon, Kim Novak and Jimmy Stewart. Based on the book by John D. MacDonald. The author admitted he was inspired by Thorne’s THE PASSIONATE WITCH.

Lastly, on September 21st at 7:45am EST there’s THE MAN WHO COULD WORK MIRACLES (1936) starring Roland Young. Granted, the only Thorne connection here is the good friendship between Thorne and Roland Young, but I thought I’d include it because it is an entertaining movie.


Here’s the big news I couldn’t wait to tell you:

Criterion, the film folks who make super high quality DVDs of classic films, have announced they are releasing a regular DVD and a Blu-Ray edition of I MARRIED A WITCH, which was adapted from Thorne Smith’s last novel, THE PASSIONATE WITCH.

Starring Veronica Lake, Fredric March, Robert Benchley & Susan Hayward, I MARRIED A WITCH (1942) has never had an official DVD release in the U.S. Many people sell bootleg copies of it on DVD but it's not worth your hard earned cash. Wait until you see how the Criterion DVD looks. I'd be shocked if you aren't astonished.

The DVDs are coming out in October, just in time for Halloween. The other great news is that right now you can pre-order your copy of the DVD at a significant savings over the normal price of a Criterion Collection DVD.

Normally Criterion Collection DVDs sell in the range of $35 and upwards because they are regarded as the highest quality DVDs made of the movie. Criterion does an amazing job working with the filmmakers to produce the best transfer of the film onto DVD. A lot of times they include essays, commentaries and other supplementary materials.

But right now you can order your DVD at far less than $35. The regular DVD is only $13.99 while the Blu-Ray DVD is just $19.99. That’s a steal! I just ordered my copy because I couldn't pass up such a bargain and I don’t know when the prices will go back up to their normal cost.

Here’s some quick links I made for you to save you time.



I say this every issue of this newsletter but it’s still a passion for me. I still keep hoping one day we can get them to release nice new DVDs of all the Thorne Smith based films. I've even written Criterion and Turner Classic Movies offering to do the bonus materials, liner notes and documentaries. Here’s hoping they’ll ask me to contribute in the future.


September 17, 1928 Roddy MacDowall was born in Herne Hill, London, England UK. Best known for his Planet of the Apes film appearances, he also played Cosmo Topper, Jr in the 1973 NBC TV movie TOPPER RETURNS.

September 18, 1920 Jack Warden was born in Newark, New Jersey. He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Navy, Merchant Marines, and U.S. Army. Incredible! Probably best known for his acting in THE BAD NEWS BEARS, 12 ANGRY MEN, and FROM HERE TO ETERNITY, Warden played Cosmo Topper in the 1979 TV pilot of TOPPER on ABC.

September 20, 1898 Norman Z. McLeod was born in Grayville, Michigan. He directed many movies, most notably TOPPER (1937), it’s sequel TOPPER TAKES A TRIP (1939), as well as The Marx Brothers’ MONKEY BUSINESS (1931) and HORSE FEATHERS (1932). Not surprisingly, he also directed W.C. Fields in IF I HAD A MILLION (1932) and IT’S A GIFT (1934).

So, that wraps up the this issue of the Thorne Smith Newsletter for September 2013.

Oh, in case you missed it last issue: I've created a blog for Thorne Smith fans to complement this newsletter and the Thorne Smith website.

Feel free to visit and leave your comments and questions. Hopefully it'll be a good way for us Thorne Smith fans to interact.

Go visit the Thorne Smith Blog at:



P.S. If you like this e-zine, please do a friend and me a big favor and "pay it forward."

If a friend DID forward this to you and if you like what you read, please subscribe by visiting...

Thorne Smith

Comments? Ideas? Feedback? I'd love to hear from you. Just reply to this zine and tell me what you think!

Thorne Smith Newsletter copyright 2007-2013 by Michael D. Walker

Back to Back Issues Page