WAPAKONETA —There were plenty of classic films released in 1940. “Third Finger, Left Hand” isn’t one of them.
Even so, this little-known screwball comedy starring Myrna Loy and Melvyn Douglas is getting a special showing in Wapakoneta on Sunday, the 75th anniversary of its release, because of the film’s connection to the town.
Loy plays Margot Sherwood “Merrick,” a magazine editor who invents a husband in order to safeguard her career. Douglas is Jeff Thompson, an artist who ends up masquarading as the fictional Mr. Merrick. Thompson is from Wapak.
In an early scene that takes place in New York, Jeff orders the butler to buy him a train ticket to Wapakoneta.
“Are you kidding me, sir?” the butler says, surprised at the outlandish name.
“No, I’m not kidding,” Jeff says, a hint of pride in his voice. “Wapakoneta, O-HI-O!”
“Long before Americans connected Neil Armstrong with Wapakoneta, they knew about our community through this movie,” said Rachel Barber with the Auglaize County Historical Society, which organized the event. She said she’s grateful to the management of Wapa Theatre for “immediately agreeing” to host the free screening.
Reach Amy Eddings at 567-292-0379 or Twitter, @lima_eddings.