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Wim Wenders

Writing Credits
Joe Gores
Dennis O'Flaherty Thomas Pope
Ross Thomas

Directors of Photography:
Joseph F. Biroc
Philip H. Lathrop

Marc Laub
Robert Q. Lovett
Barry Malkin
Randy Roberts

Original Music:
John Barry

Frederic Forrest
Peter Boyle
Marilu Henner
Roy Kinnear
Elisha Cook Jr.
Lydia Lei
R.G. Armstrong
Richard Bradford I Michael Chow I
David Patrick Kelly
Sylvia Sidney
Jack Nance
Elmer L. Kline
Royal Dano Samuel Fuller

Ronald Colby I
Francis Ford Coppola
(executive prod.)
Don Guest
Fred Roos

Zoetrope Studios

Production Design:
Eugene Lee II
Dean Tavoularis

Costume Design:
Ruth Morley

Art Direction:
Leon Ericksen Angelo
P. Graham

Set Decoration:
George R. Nelson Steven Potter

128 min.

35 mm

Original Language:


production sketch

San Francisco, 1928. Dashiell Hammett, a former detective of the Pinkerton Agency, in his thirties, is a tuberculous drunkard who barely survives writing detective stories. An old colleague, Jimmy Ryan comes to visit him -- he needs Dashiell's help to solve the case of Crystal Ling. A Chinese girl who has mysteriously disappeared. Hammett finds himself once more in the streets of Chinatown, on a complicated job involving politicians, corrupt police officers, false friends and false corpses. Only his detective instinct will enable him to survive -- all the more disillusioned, he will go back to his typewriter.

Wim Wenders:

"Hammett: detective, writer - this aspect of the character fascinated me. And it was this aspect that blocked the shooting of the film for so long. I wanted to find a balance between the detective story and the story of the writer who begins to confuse reality with fiction. The core of the screenplay was constructed of various levels upon which the story and the final solution of these levels had to develop."

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