Directed by Howard Hawks, starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall and with a writing cast that included William Faulkner, The Big Sleep could be nothing short of remarkable.

Bacall as Vivian Sternwood Rutledge looks on while Bogart as Philip Marlowe checks if the coast is clear in The Big Sleep.

Bogie wasn't the first Hollywood A-lister to bring Marlowe to life on the big screen. Dick Powell actually did it two years earlier in 1944 in Murder, My Sweet, which was based on the 1940 Chandler novel Farewell, My Lovely. Now considered a pinnacle in the film noir genre, Powell was a controversial choice at the time to play Marlowe, as he was known as a lighter and more comedic actor. The New York Times called the film "pulse-quickening entertainment."

Publicity material introducing the public to "The New Dick Powell"


Miles Mander as Mr. Grayle and Anne Shirley as Ann Grayle look on anxiously while Dick Powell as Philip Marlowe figures it all out in Murder, My Sweet.

Raymond Chandler passed away in 1959, but the character of Philip Marlowe continued to live on. A new generation of fans got to know the private eye when James Garner took on the mantle of the moody detective in 1969's Marlowe. The film also boasts supporting co-stars Bruce Lee, Carroll O'Connor, Jackie Coogan and Rita Moreno.


James Garner as Marlowe.

What did it matter where you lay once you were dead? In a dirty sump or in a marble tower on top of a high hill? You were dead, you were sleeping the big sleep, you were not bothered by things like that. Oil and water were the same as wind and air to you. You just slept the big sleep, not caring about the nastiness of how you died or where you fell. — Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep

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