The Invisible Man Returns is a 1940 American horror science fiction film from Universal. It was written as a sequel to the 1933 film The Invisible Man, which was based on the novel The Invisible Man by H. G. Wells. The studio had signed a multi-picture contract with Wells, and they were hoping that this film would do as well as the first. It would be followed by the comedic The Invisible Woman later the same year.
The screen play for the film was written by Lester Cole and Curt Siodmak (as Kurt Siodmak). The film director was Joe May, who had previously directed The House of the Seven Gables. (May's native language was German, and he spoke little English.) The cast of the film included Vincent Price (in his first horror film role), Cecil Kellaway, Sir Cedric Hardwicke, Nan Grey, Alan Napier and John Sutton.
The film ran for 81 minutes in black-and-white with mono sound and holds an 89% at Rotten Tomatoes. The production ran slightly over budget, costing $270,000, but it returned good box office revenues. The special effects by John P. Fulton, Bernard B. Brown and William Hedgcock received an Oscar nomination in the category Best Special Effects.
In the chronology styled documentary, Ted Newson's 100 Years of Horror (1996), Price recalls that the undressing of the scarecrow scene took several hours to shoot, for only three minutes of on screen time. The transparent effect was done with black velvet covering the actor.