The Awful Truth is a 1937 American screwball comedy directed by Leo McCarey and starring Irene Dunne and Cary Grant. Based on the 1923 play by Arthur Richman, the film tells how a distrustful rich couple begins divorce proceedings, only to interfere in one another's romances. This was McCarey's first film for Columbia Pictures, and the dialogue and comic bits were largely improvised by the director and actors. The film was Irene Dunne's second hit comedy. Although Grant tried to leave the production due to McCarey's directorial style, The Awful Truth marked the emergence of Cary Grant as an A-list star and proponent of on-the-set improvisation. Dunne's costumes by Robert Kalloch are considered some of the most elegant of the 1930s.