MovieChat Forums > The Snow Creature Discussion > Sticking it to Billy Wilder?

Sticking it to Billy Wilder?

The Snow Creature was directed and produced by W. Lee Wilder, older brother of Billy Wilder. Billy, as one of the most successful and sought-after filmmakers in Hollywood, was embarrassed when his brother Willy sold his business, moved to California, started calling himself the more distinguished-sounding "W. Lee", and began making grade-B (and lower) movies. As time went on relations between the brothers deteriorated as Billy found his brother's work increasingly embarrassing.

W. Lee, however, got his revenge, a little bit, by poking a stick in Billy's eye on this one. Have you noticed that the police detective played by William Phipps in this film has the same name (and rank) as the prisoner of war in Billy's hugely successful film Stalag 17, released just the year before?

I refer, of course, to "Lt. Dunbar", played by Don Taylor in Stalag 17. Quite the coincidence, no?

After all, W. Lee had just poached Peter Graves, the traitor in Stalag, for his previous opus, Killers From Space, so I guess this was a one-two punch for him. Wilder family gatherings must have been a riot.

I sent some of this information in to IMDb just now as a Trivia entry but in case they don't accept it, here it is for posterity.


Oh, Magoo -- you've done it again! That's a riot! That's great.


As Peter Graves had to avoid saying all through Stalag 17, Danke schoen.

Or do you think that's what he replied when W. Lee called him up and started off by saying, "I just saw you in Billy's movie and I want you for the lead in my next picture!"