Monday, July 21, 2014

Compelled to Race With Death -- July 21, 2014

Motography, 11-July-1914.

The Perils of Pauline was a big hit in 1914. The 20 chapter serial was not the first movie serial, but it was one of the big ones. It starred Pearl White, the first serial queen. The Eclectic Film Company distributed Pathé movies in the United States. The film exists only in a mutilated form, based on a copy exported to France. The subtitles has been translated into French, then translated back into English. I like the large image from the 11-July-1914 Motography.

Motography, 04-July-1914.
During the 1913-1914 offseason, the National League Champion New York Giants, led by manager John McGraw, toured the world with members of the Chicago White Sox, led by manager Jimmy Callahan. The Giants roster included Christy Mathewson, Jim Thorpe and Turkey Mike Donlin. As seen in the list above, they visited and played exhibition games in, among other places, Japan, Hong Kong, Manilla, Shanghai, Australia, Ceylon, Egypt, Naples and Rome. In 1914, the Eclectic Film Company released a movie about the tour.

Motography, 04-July-1914.

Motography, 11-July-1914.
"Pauline Escapes Unharmed" sort of gives away the conclusion. 

Motography, 18-July-1914.
"Pauline Pulls People.  She's a Gold Mine." 

Motography, 25-July-1914.
Motography, 25-July-1914.
Click on the images to see larger versions.

Motography, 20-June-1914.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Tom Mix and Will Rogers -- July 20, 2014

Tom Mix had been a big star for the Fox Film Corporation.  Humorist Will Rogers joined Fox in 1930.  Here they pose on the Fox lot.  I'll bet they got along well.  From the March, 1930 Photoplay

Saturday, July 19, 2014

John Barleycorn -- July 19, 2014

Motography - 11-July-1914

Jack London published John Barleycorn in 1913.  The autobiographical novel told the story of the effects of alcohol on London at different points in his life, starting when he was a boy.  "The Lad Himself -- Age Seven -- DRUNK -- Strongest Plea for Temperance Ever Pictured."  The book became popular with the growing Prohibition movement. 

Actor Hobart Bosworth admired Jack London's writing and formed a company to produce movies based on London's stories and novels. After The Sea Wolf, Bosworth produced John Barleycorn, which was release through Paramount.

Motography - 18-July-1914

Moving Picture World - 04-July-1914
This ad claims that "Wets" (people opposed to Prohibition) tried to pay $25,000 to stop the distribution of the movie.  It reflects the change in distribution from WW Hodkinson to Paramount. 

Moving Picture World - 18-July-1914
Moving Picture World - 18-July-1914

Friday, July 18, 2014

It Ain't No Sin -- July 18, 2014

Film Daily, 06-June-1934.

We just got back from a wonderful vacation in New Orleans.  Mae West wrote a movie called It Ain't No Sin, which was set in New Orleans.  The newly enforced Production Code forced a change of title, to Belle of the Nineties and a reduction, but not elimination, of double entrendres. 

Duke Ellington and his Famous Orchestra played the house band at the Sensation House in New Orleans. 

Film Daily, 21-September-1934.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Erle Stanley Gardner 125 -- July 17, 2014

125 years ago today, 17-July-1889, author Erle Stanley Gardner was born in Massachusetts.  He went to Palo Alto High School in California.  He got thrown out of law school, so he taught himself the law and passed the California Bar.  He practiced law, but spent much of his time writing for the pulp magazines like Black Mask.  When he created attorney Perry Mason, Gardner could stop practicing the law.  Mason appeared in a series of movies with Warren William in the 1930s, and then the television show with Raymond Burr in the 1950s.  The television show is still in syndication. 

The image is from

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Fantômas -- The Iron Man -- July 16, 2014

Moving Picture World 04-July-1912

Fantômas was a popular criminal character who first appeared in a series of French thriller novels by Marcel Allain and Pierre Souvestre.  In 1913-1914, Louis Feuillade created a 5-part movie serial which was released by the Gaumont Company.  Each episode, was 54-90 minutes, longer than episodes of a typical American serial.  The serial/series was very popular.  Be sure to click on the image to see a larger version. 

Moving Picture World 13-April-1912

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Villa is Getting More Famous Every Day! -- July 15, 2014

Moving Picture World, 18-July-1914

Pancho Villa was a general during the Mexican Revolution.  In 1916 Villa and his troops raided Columbus, New Mexico.  The US Army spent nine months trying to catch him, but never succeeded. 

Before that, Villa had been popular with many in the United States.  The Mutual Film Corporation released The Life of General Villa, a movie that combined documentary footage with reenactments of General Villa's life.  DW Griffth produced from a distance.  Christy Cabanne directed.  Future director Raoul Walsh played Villa as a young man.  Villa received a nice chunk of American money to finance his fight against General Victoriano Huerta, who had staged a military coup, deposing and murdering President Francisco Madero. 

The movie was a success, but is probably lost. 

Moving Picture World, 04-July-1914
"Villa is getting more famous every day!"  "The Mexican War Pictures -- the only authentic ones actually taken under fire -- are in seven full reels, filled with thrilling, throbbing excitement from start to finish." 

In 2003, HBO made a movie about the production of this movie, And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself.  Antonio Banderas played General Villa. 

Moving Picture World, 20-June-1914