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Nancy Drew 1930's Movie Collectibles

In 1938, Warner Brothers released the first of four Nancy Drew movies-- Nancy Drew...Detective. This movie, and subsequent movies, starred Bonita Granville as Nancy Drew, Frankie Thomas as "Ted"(instead of Ned), and John Litel as Carson Drew. This movie was the second half of a double bill and its popularity sparked the last 3 movies.

The movies in order are: (click links for IMDb pages)

The four Warner Brothers Nancy Drew 1930s movies were released in June 2007 on DVD.

The movies are quite campy and humorous--very unlike serious-minded Nancy from the stories we have come to know. Frankie Thomas' "Ted" is the straight man to Bonita Granville's Nancy. They are a classic for any Nancy Drew fan and collector!

A popular expression from the movie is "I'll bet you 23.80..." It's slang from the 1930s--23.80 was the weekly paycheck amount given to WPA workers during the Depression. It became an amount used when betting someone or an expression of joking or emphasizing a large amount.

Collectibles for the movies can be quite pricey and seldom come up for sale or auction. They include posters, lobby cards, press kits, photos, and the movies themselves. The movies are not pricey, however, and can be found often at eBay for sale or can be ordered through video sources online. They are also shown on classic movie networks often late at night such as Turner Classic Movies.

Visit the Nancy Drew Revealed section of this website for an article about the 1930s movies.

For fan pages with images of Bonita Granville and information on these movies, visit these fan websites on the four films:

Classic Film Fan: Detective
Classic Film Fan: Reporter
Classic Film Fan: Troubleshooter
Classic Film Fan: Hidden Staircase

Bonita Granville has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for her contributions to Motion Pictures, at 6607 Hollywood Boulevard. She passed away in 1988 and is buried in Culver City, CA at Holy Cross Cemetery. Frankie Thomas passed away in 2006 and is buried in Hollywood Hills, CA at Forest Lawn Cemetery.

Currently, I am writing a book which focuses on the history of Nancy Drew. A biography on the original "Carolyn Keene," Mildred Wirt Benson, is in the works. While this website is a good introduction into the world of Nancy Drew, you will find in depth analysis of all things Drew in my upcoming book.

Brief Synopsis:

Nancy Drew, Detective (1938)--Nancy investigates a wealthy woman's disappearance. Starring Bonita Granville, John Litel, James Stephenson, Frankie Thomas. Direected by William Clemens. B/W 66 minutes.

Nancy Drew-Reporter (1938)--Nancy sets out to prove a young girl innocent of murder charges. Starring Bonita Granville, John Litel, Frankie Thomas. Directed by William Clemens. B/W 68 minutes.

Nancy Drew-Troubleshooter (1939)--Nancy tries to clear one of her father's friends of a murder charge . Starring Bonita Granville, John Litel, Frankie Thomas. Directed by William Clemens. B/W 69 minutes.

Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase (1939)--Nancy helps two old ladies deal with the "haunting" of their mansion. Starring Bonita Granville, Frankie Thomas, John Litel. Directed by William Clemens. B/W 60 minutes.

Two of the movies were based on the books. Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase was based on volume #2, The Hidden Staircase. Nancy Drew...Detective was based on volume #10, The Password to Larkspur Lane. Shown above and to the left is a very hard to fine collectible intact. Both Hidden Staircase and Larkspur Lane for one particular printing came with a movie wrapper around the dust jacket that was removable. Only some books had these special advertising wrappers and only a few exist in the hands of collectors.

The two scans shown of Larkspur Lane were generously donated by one such collector.

The wrapper for Nancy Drew...Detective stated,

"THIS IS THE BOOK from which the WARNER BROS. photoplay--NANCY DREW: DETECTIVE was made."

There were three photos from the movie on it. These movie wrappers are a true Nancy Drew rarity!

Nancy Drew Lobby Cards Gallery

Check out all 8 lobby cards for each of the 4 movies: Nancy Drew Lobby Card Gallery! Thanks to Nancy Drew collector Victoria Broadhurst for putting together this project!

Nancy Drew...Detective Lobby Cards

Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase Lobby Cards

Nancy Drew, Reporter Poster

Nancy Drew, Reporter Stills

Nancy Drew, Troubleshooter Stills

Nancy Drew...Detective Movie Flyer

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