Sunday, April 23, 2017

Tenth and newest of the Mutual-Chaplin Specials -- April 23, 2017

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
"Tenth and newest of the Mutual-Chaplin Specials Depicting Charlie's visit to a health resort."  I remember a local Public Television station, KQED-Channel 9, playing "The Cure" during the 1970s.  I don't remember why they showed it, but I loved it. 

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
An ad from Mutual says "The public is eagerly waiting for its screening, as newspapers all over the country have mentioned its coming."

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
"The theater man needs no special 'stunt' to attract the crowds when Charlie is the headliner -- all he needs is to make a big display of the name Charlie Chaplin to let the people know the time and the place they will all be there.  Chaplin's name is sufficient -- the people themselves will do the rest." 

Moving Picture World, 14-April-1917
A capsule biography repeats the rumor that Chaplin was born in France.  He was not. 

Moving Picture World, 07-April-1917
An ad for Globe Ventilators uses Chaplin's image.  "Even Chas. Chaplin, Esq., cannot fill your Theatre this summer if it is close, hot and stuffy." 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Surpasses Anything Yet Produced in Serials -- April 21, 2017

Moving Picture World, 07-April-1917
The Wharton Brothers produced Patria, a fifteen-chapter serial starring Irene Castle, for William Randolph Hearst.  Warner Oland, who made a career out of playing Asian parts, was a Japanese spy.  Baron Huroki and his spy ring wants to destroy American munitions plants, many of which are owned by Patria Channing, who was played by Irene Castle.  Milton Sills is a Secret Service agent who is after the spy ring.  At one point in the serial, the Japanese ally with Mexico to attack the United States.  While the film was being released, President Woodrow Wilson learned about the themes of the film and asked the producers to change the nationalities of many of the characters.

Irene Castle had become famous, with her husband Vernon, as a ballroom dancer.  He left the act in early 1916 to return to his native Britain, where he joined the Royal Flying Corps.  He was a successful pilot, earning the Croix de Guerre.  He was sent to Canada and then the United States to train new pilots.  He died in a flying accident in 1918.

Moving Picture World, 07-April-1917
 Patria gets a Japanese villain out of her airplane by performing a volplane, a steep, downward dive. 

Moving Picture World, 14-April-1917
Some of Irene Castle's portraits look very modern. 

Moving Picture World, 14-April-1917
"Modern warfare in its every phase with the use of armored 'tanks,' dirigible balloons, aeroplanes, big guns, trenches, gas masks, as (gas? -- JT) attacks, liquid fire, barbed wire entanglements, etc." 

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
In this portrait, she looks more of her time.  It must be the silly hat. 

Moving Picture World, 28-April-1917
Here she looks contemporary. 

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Every Woman in the World Will Demand to See It -- April 19, 2017

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917

In light of recent Congressional efforts to destroy Planned Parenthood, I thought it would be interesting to mention Birth Control, a feature film starring  the lady who popularized the term, Margaret Sanger.  She made a tour of the US in support of the film.

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
"The remaining portion of the picture tells the story of the persecution of Mrs Margaret Sanger, including scenes at the clinic where she presided, and where mothers of the poor quarters might apply and be helped..." 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Hell Morgan's Girl -- April 18, 2017

Moving Picture World, 03-February-1917

Hell Morgan's Girl was a 1917 film produced by Bluebird Photoplays, a subsidiary of Universal.  The film is set in San Francisco's Barbary Coast, where a young man from a rich family is hired by to play piano in a saloon.  The owner, Hell Morgan, has a daughter, Lola, played by Dorothy Phillips.  The young man and Hell Morgan's Girl fall in love, but Lon Chaney's character, Sleter Noble, wants the girl.  The 1906 fire and earthquake cleans things up at the end.  The film is probably lost.

Moving Picture World, 10-February-1917
"Lavishly produced; thrilling scenes of the great San Francisco earthquake; life in the resorts in the famous Barbary Coast District of the city by the Golden Date."  The movie was released on a State's Rights basis, selling the rights to each region of the country to local distributors.

Moving Picture World, 17-February-1917
"This is
'Hell Morgan's
You Doubt Her
You Accuse Her
You Pity Her
You Condemn Her
You Hate Her
You Love Her
She's Wonderful

Moving Picture World, 24-February-1917
"After selling valuable state rights territory on this unusual production all negotions were withdrawn owing to the insistent demands of BLUEBIRD exchange managers, who will release it as a BLUEBIRD special release."  Universal withdrew the movie from State's Right distribution and released through the Bluebird distribution channels as a special.

Moving Picture World, 03-March-1917
"'Hell Morgan's Girl' ... Now a Bluebird."

Moving Picture World, 24-March-1917
A late reference to the movie.  I like the Bluebird in the cage.

The movie appears to be lost. 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Great Electric Sign on the Ince Studios -- April 17, 2017

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
I used to read a lot about Thomas Ince in film history books.  He was known for having a big ego, even by Hollywood standards.  He deserved to be proud of his accomplishments as a writer, a director and a producer.  He was one of the principals of the Triangle Film Corporation.  The electric sign towered over his studio, Inceville. 

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter, 2017 -- April 16, 2017
Happy Easter, everyone. Lillian Roth acted and sang on Broadway and in movies.  She appeared in The Love Parade with Maurice Chevalier and Jeanette MacDonald and Animal Crackers with the Marx Brothers.  Alcoholism ruined her career.  She wrote a memoir, I'll Cry Tomorrow, which was made into a popular movie. 

Saturday, April 15, 2017

An All Doll Cast -- April 15, 2017

Moving Picture World, 28-April-1917
I have not been able to find out much about the Peter Pan Film Corporation and its Mo-Toy Comedies, but the movies appear to use object animation.  I was never very good at drawing, so I have always been partial to object animation. 

Moving Picture World, 24-February-1917
Two months earlier, the producer is identified as Toyland Films, Inc. 

Moving Picture World, 24-February-1917
They are certainly the same movies.  "In the Jungle" is listed in the April ad.  A scene in the February ad must be from "Jimmy Gets the Pennant." 

Thursday, April 13, 2017

She Stood in the Path of the Man She Loved -- April 13, 2017

Moving Picture World, 21-April-1917
Viola Dana was a popular star who appeared in her first movie in 1910, when she was 13.  "She stood in the path of the man she loved and sought the wrong way out" was the tagline for God's Law and Man's.  She played Amela, an Anglo-Indian girl who gets married to an Englishman. 

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Grauman's Chinese -- Shirley Temple -- April 11, 2017

In July, 2012 we paid a return visit to Hollywood and Grauman's Chinese Theater.  Sid Grauman was a San Francisco showman who came to Los Angeles and built three major houses, the Million Dollar, the Egyptian, and the Chinese. The theater has hosted many film premieres, but is most famous for the hand and footprints (and hoofprints and nose prints and other types of prints) in the forecourt.

Child actress Shirley Temple left her hand and footprints on 14-March-1935.  The next month she would turn  seven.  Immediately above her is fellow child star Freddie Bartholomew and to his left is Jane Withers, who also acted when she was a child.  Shirley Temple went on to serve as a diplomat.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Should Husbands Pay? -- April 9, 2017

Film Daily, 22-August-1926

"Should Husbands Pay?" was a short comedy produced by Hal Roach, directed by F Richard Jones and Stan Laurel, and released by Pathé.  The film starred James Finlayson, who is best-remembered for supporting Laurel and Hardy. 

A note at the bottom of this ad says that it is a cornerblock provided to theaters to use in newspaper advertising.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Don Rickles, RIP -- April 7, 2017
I was sad to learn of the passing of Mr Warmth, Don Rickles.  He enlisted in the Navy straight out of high school in 1944 and served on a PT boat tender, USS Cyrene (AGP-13).  After he was discharged in 1946, he attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.  He couldn't find much work, so he started to perform stand up comedy.  People enjoyed his put-downs of hecklers, so he became an insult comic.

His dramatic training came in handy when he began to get supporting parts in movies.
Appropriately for a Navy man, his first movie was Run Silent, Run Deep with Clark Gable and Burt Lancaster.  Good movie.
I remember when he starred in the television series CPO Sharkey.  Also appropriate for a Navy man.
 He made new generations of fans as Mr Potato Head in Toy Story and its plethora of sequels. 

Can You Find the 20 Mistakes In This Story? -- The Answers -- April 6, 2017

Photoplay, October, 1930

I didn't get #10.  #11 was interesting. 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Why Our Film Capital is Air-Minded -- April 5, 2017

The International Photographer, June, 1930
This article, from the June, 1930 International Photographer, talks about the popularity of aviation in Southern California.  The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and Motion Picture Machine Operators were having a convention in the area. 

Why Our Film Capital is Air-Minded
Delegates to the I. A. T. S. E. Take Notice) 
Written for The International Photographer by WILLIAM WAGNER, 
Curtis Wright Flying Service 

In no section of the country has aviation development been more marked than in Southern California.

So often has this statement been made that it seems unnecessary to repeat it again here, but in spite of the wide publicity given aeronautical progress in this section, the great majority has not yet been fully appraised of the rapid strides made here.

With pride California points to the fact that this state is easily the leader in number of pilots, mechanics and licensed aircraft, but with greater pride does Los Angeles County remind the rest of the world that more than two-thirds of the state's aviation activity is concentrated in this area.

Of the state's 2076 licensed pilots, 1461 licensed mechanics and 1476 licensed aircraft, approximately 70 per cent are in Los Angeles County.

By no means has this section's rapid growth been wholly in the actual opertion of aircraft, for last year a total of $5,500,000 in aeronautical products were produced in the county. At the present time there are 18 airplane and 11 aircraft engine manufacturing companies engaged in business here.

In the transportation of passengers, mail and express by air, Southern California has fully contributed its share in developing this phase of the industry. Every day 19 scheduled commercial runs are made in and out of Los Angeles. The planes used on these airlines are flown 21,000 miles daily, bringing into and taking out of this section a steady stream of rapidly growing air commerce.

Due to climatic conditions principally we have been able to accomplish much which would not be possible to undertake in any other section of the country.

Particularly has this advantage been shown in the development of our splendid airports and in the training of students. In this line have our own organizations -- Curtiss-Wright Flying Service and Grand Central Air Terminal -- been unusually active.

Of the county's 67 airports and landing fields, none is better equipped or more active than Grand Central, which is ideally situated with relation to downtown Los Angeles. Due to a great extent to the operation from this field of T. A. T.-Maddux Air Lines, this airport now handles approximately one-fourth of all scheduled air transport operation in the country.

This modern air terminal, owned by the Curtiss-Wright Airports Corps., is also the headquarters in Southern California of Curtiss-Wright Flying Service, the world's oldest flying organization, which operates 42 bases throughout the country.

During 1929, Los Angeles county's five leading airports spent in excess of $1,500,000 each on new developments. Grand Central during February of this year celebrated the opening of its new $150,000 terminal station on the airport.

At Los Angeles Airport, the municipal field, Curtis-Wright Flying Service conducts its flying school, which holds the government's highest approved rating. This school has just been approved by federal immigration authorities as an institution of learning for alien students, placing it on the same level with leading universities and colleges. This is the first aviation school in the country to receive this sanction.

In Los Angeles County there are now more than 1600 registered aviation students, with every indication pointing to a rapid increase in this number during the summer months. Due to its excellent climatic conditions and geographical location, Southern California bids fair to become an international aviation training ground.

Already a steady flow of aviation students are coming to this section for advanced flight training from Central and South America, Mexico and Canada, as well as from Japan and China across the Pacific.

One of the most novel and successful experiments in stimulating the use of air travel was recently put into effect by Curtiss-Wright Flying Service at Grand Central Air Terminal.

This new idea, credited to the fertile brain of Major C. C. Moseley, vice-president and general manager in the west for Curtiss-Wright, is now the much-talked of "Penny-a-Pound" flights.

Knowing that once people have made an initial flight in an airplane they are almost certain to be won over to this newest and most rapid method of transportation, Curtiss-Wright put into effect new low rates of "penny-a-pound" for men and a flat $1 for women and children for short scenic flights.

During a single month nearly 5000 persons were carried at these novel low rates, without the slightest mishap of any nature, nor a single report of air-sickness.

Due principally to the interest shown by Col. Charles A. Lindbergh during his and Mrs. Lindbergh's recent visit to Southern California, glider flying has shown rapid progress during the past few months. Today the county boasts more than a dozen glider clubs, composed of from 10 to 30 active members in each club.

Not only is this section favored with a semi-tropical climate, which makes flying and student training throughout the year possible, but high winds that prevail in other states are almost unknown. Records of the local weather bureau reveal that the highest wind ever recorded here was 48 miles per hour, and that in January forty-seven years ago.

Aviation in Southern California is now represented in all of its phases by four of the dominant groups in the industry -- Curtiss-Wright, Western Air Express, United Aircraft and Detroit Aircraft. In addition there are a great many smaller concerns who are doing their share to see that this state maintains its impressive leadership of America's Fastest Growing Industry.

The International Photographer, June, 1930

Monday, April 3, 2017

Can You Find the 20 Mistakes In This Story? -- April 3, 2017

Photoplay, October, 1930
I used the photo from this article for this year's April Fool's Day post:

I will post the answers another day.  

Can You Find the 20 Mistakes In This Story? 
By Michael Woodward

 MR. CHAPLIN," began the interviewer, who had gone up to Charlie's home to interrogate the comedian about his life and work, "I wish you'd tell me some things about your new picture." "Ah, yes; my new picture, 'The Lights of the City,' " replied Chaplin, in that deep bass voice that goes so oddly with his diminutiveness of stature. He paused a moment or two, as though thinking of how to begin. Repeatedly he stroked a hand over his dark red hair, and occasionally tweaked nervously at that famous moustache of his.

"Well, with what shall I begin?" he resumed. "Shall I tell you, first, that I am hopeful that it will be by far the best thing I have ever done -- even finer than my last picture, 'The Kid '?"

"Yes, I remember that," said the interviewer, "that grand comedy that made little Davey Lee so famous. And tell me, are you using some child actor extensively, as you did in 'The Kid,' in this new film of yours?"

No. No. The action in my new story revolves principally around three characters -- myself, a millionaire played by Harry Myers, and the blind flower girl played by Georgia Hale."

THE interviewer recalled, as Chaplin talked, that Miss Hale was the leading lady, too, in "The Gold Rush" -- and also that Charlie has been seen with her quite frequently, and has admitted he hopes to marry her as his second matrimonial venture.

Charlie flipped another cigarette into the fireplace -- he had been lighting one from the other -- and went on:

"You know, this new picture of mine will be a very interesting experiment, in these talkie days. I do not like talkies. You know that. And so this new picture will be completely voiceless. There will be not a word! I am anxious to see what the public reaction will be -- and I know several big men of the picture industry are watching also. If the picture is as good, though, as the script reads, I can ask nothing more."

"You mean," interrupted the interviewer, "that there will be no sound whatever with the film?"

"Oh, yes -- there will be synchronized music, vou understand. With the orchestra-less theaters of today, we have had to synchronize a musical soundtrack on the film. The music has been written by Sergei Stenvich, the Russian."

CHARLIE paused again, and then his brown eyes twinkled as his thoughts turned, in one of those mental acrobaticisms of his, from his picture and its possibilities to the relaxation he contemplates.

"I'm going abroad this fall, after the picture is released." In his exhilaration, that slight French accent of his was intensified. He was born in Paris, you know -- Paris, where he has always been known as Chariot. "I've never been abroad since I came to America, and I'm anxious to see Europe again."

"I suppose you'll visit your old school?"

"Yes. I was educated at the Sorbonne, and I want to visit it again to see how my present reactions compare with my memories of the old days there," explained Chaplin.

And at this point, the pretty little maid came in to announce that Jim Tully, that famous author-friend of Charlie's, was calling again. And knowing that the intimacies of conversation between these two would preclude any further interviewing, the interviewer bade the comedian good-bye, and called it a day.

It developed later that Tully called on his old friend for the purpose of getting some lessons in acting. Tully is now working in one of Jack Gilbert's films, playing the part of a rough and ready sailor man. One of the property boys on the lot told me that Chaplin spent three hours throwing custard pies at Tully's face, teaching him to register astonishment.

READ this through, and see if you can tell all the errors of fact in this imaginative yarn about a Chaplin interview. There are just twenty errors, so you can keep your own score by crediting yourself with five points for each misstatement you recognize. That would make 100 points a perfect score. When you're stumped, turn to the list on page 143 of this issue, and see which mistakes you've missed, if any.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Charles Chaplin and Mary Pickford in a Scene From Their Famous Co-Starring Picture -- April 1, 2017

Photoplay, October, 1930
"Charles Chaplin and Mary Pickford in a scene from rheir famous co-starring picture, 'Dust and Ashes of Embers of Dreams," one of the earlier film productions of Amos Wark Griffith."