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scottman1932

Douglas Fairbanks Sr. in Beverly Hills

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I just received the latest events booklet from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for March, and the Academy will be presenting THE THIEF OF BAGDAD (1924), on Friday, March 20, at 7:30pm, at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills. The print is a Kevin Brownlow restoration with musical score by Carl Davis.

Also on Monday, March 23, at 7:30 pm the Academy will present THE IRON MASK (1929) also a Photoplay restoration with Carl Davis score. Kevin Brownlow will be there on Monday to introduce the film. So if you are in the L.A. area, I recommend catching one or both of these films.

The Carl Davis score for THE THIEF OF BAGDAD is one of my all time favorite silent film scores.

Admission for either day is $5.00, which I must say is quite the bargain, considering what is being presented.

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Scottman,

 

I agree that this is by far the finest version, and Carl Davis score is superior. Unfortunately, the last I heard the Thames/Photoplay print of THIEF was not in the best of shape. Maybe something has since been done, but there was another screening just a few months ago in New York where the print was described as being "somewhat battered looking" It is from the early 80's, and has been screened many times over the years. Here is one of two threads on Nitrateville. I will try to find the other one.

 

 

http://nitrateville.com/viewtopic.php?t=2496

 

 

I have a newer Laser-disc transfer of this though I got from Kyle that blows away the previous two that I had before. To bad they can't get this version re-mastered and on TCM? Far as I know THE IRON MASK print from Photoplay which was produced in 1999 has never been on TCM either?

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Scottman,

 

The big concern was that there appeared to be only one 35 Millimeter print of the Photoplay version around. Hopefully, that is not accurate? Sorry that the link was not working before. It is now though. So you can go back and take a look.

 

Ther BFI is releasing different versions of SEVENTH HEAVEN, and LUCKY STAR in May. With any luck LUCKY STAR will have a greatly improved score over the version in the Murna-Borzage set. And just maybe we will finally see the missing 15 minutes from the MoMA Road Show print of SEVENTH HEAVEN. Which is also supposed to be in much better condition too.

 

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Seventh-Heaven-DVD-Frank-Borzage/dp/B001TQROBC/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=dvd&qid=1235669554&sr=1-2

 

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lucky-Star-DVD-Frank-Borzage/dp/B001TQROB2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=dvd&qid=1235669554&sr=1-1

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*I do hope that the print is not in a battered condition, as this is such a visually stunning film.*

 

Battered or not, I'll be there.

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Hi Liz,

I agree with you, I'm looking forward to seeing this film.

I really like the score that Carl Davis composed for this film it is one of my favorites among silent film scores. Hope to see you there!

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Scott,

 

Are you going to see "Man in the Iron Mask" as well? I hope you are as I just got tickets for that.

 

I have to rework my schedule in order to see *Thief of Bagdad* but am working on it.

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Liz.

I have scheduling problems as well, however, mine are on Monday, so, I don't know If I'll make it to see THE IRON MASK. I do have my ticket for Friday's film though.

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Scottman,

 

Any chance you were able to work out your scheduling conflict on Monday?

 

I can't make the screening tonight but am hoping you can on Monday.

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I have school on Monday night, so I won't be able to make Monday's show. I am planning on going to see a couple of the pre-code films and Vitaphone shorts at UCLA in April.

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Scottman,

 

Keep me posted on the UCLA movies you are attending in April as I have a couple of them circled on my calendar as well. I think the Vitaphones are part of my list because I was happy to see them listed as I just finished reading Eyman's The Speed of Sound .

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> {quote:title=lzcutter wrote:}{quote}

>I think the Vitaphones are part of my list because I was happy to see them listed as I just finished reading Eyman's The Speed of Sound .

I'm going to have to get that book, that is a very interesting period in film history.

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Scottman,

 

Eyman did a terrific job on the book utilizing many of the interviews that Kevin Brownlow collected for *Hollywood* . He gives a great out shout-out to Brownlow in the Thanks chapter.

 

Hope to see you next month but in the meantime, I'm hoping you will post about the screening tonight!

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I went to the Samuel Goldwyn theater Friday night to see THE THIEF OF BAGDAD (1924).

It was everything that I expected. The event was well attended. The print looked really nice.

This movie never fails to impress me, and seeing it in 35mm on the big screen was such a delight. Kevin Brownlow was there to speak briefly about the film. I was able to meet Mr. Brownlow and he was kind enough to sign my program. The film was introduced by Jeffrey Vance and Tony Maietta, who wrote the book Douglas Fairbanks. I purchased a copy of the book while I was there last night, which both authors signed. I hope to start it as soon as I finish the biography I am now reading of Rudolph Valentino. After attending Friday night's screening, I really wish that I were able to attend Monday night to see THE IRON MASK.

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Scottman,

 

Thanks for report about Friday night. I've had my ticket for Monday's screening for weeks. I'll do a write-up on it.

 

Isn't Kevin Brownlow the best? I met him about four years ago at a screening at the Egyptian in Hollywood. He and Patrick Stansbury were on a panel and then they showed a number of DeMille films including *The Cheat*. I met Mr. Brownlow that night and found him to be just as gracious as I dreamed he would be.

 

It's been over twenty five years since I've seen Doug, Sr on the big screen (the last time was a screening of *The Black Pirate* at the Silent Movie Theater years ago) so I am really looking forward to this!

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That sounds like a wonderful event and I'm glad you had a good time Scott.

 

Someone from my board gave me the new Doug Fairbanks DVD set for the holidays as a gift and I STILL haven't started on it. I feel badly, I just have SO MANY movies backlogged. There's never enough time in the day. I STILL haven't watched more than 2 films in the Murnau / Borzage set.

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Reposted here because it should be:

 

Anyways, on Monday evening I went to the Academy to see the *The Iron Mask*. It was part of the Academy's salute to one it's founders, Doug Fairbanks, Sr. (calling him Douglas just sounds way too formal). The previous Friday they had shown a restored version of *Thief of Bagdad*. The print they showed was the version that Kevin Brownlow had restored and had a Carl Davis score. The speakers that night were the authors of the latest bio on Doug, Jeffrey Vance and Tony Maietta.

 

Previous plans kept me from that screening. But I was determined to see *Iron Mask* and had scored tickets weeks earlier. I hadn't seen the film in almost twenty five years. The last time I saw it was on a double bill with *The Black Pirate* at the Silent Movie Theater here in the City of Angels. But more importantly, well just as importantly, it was another Browlow restoration, another Carl Davis score and best of all (well next to Doug), Kevin Brownlow would be introducing the film!

 

I had the honor of meeting Mr. Brownlow back in 2005 when he was here for screening of his *DeMille* documentary. Having been a big fan of his and his fabulous documentary *Hollywood* having had such an impact on me, I now try to see Mr. Brownlow whenever the opportunity arises.

 

Before Mr. Brownlow there was a promo for the Academy's upcoming salute to 1939 and a wonderful montage tribute to Doug.

 

Mr. Brownlow (after the standing ovation that greeted him taking the stage) talked about getting his first 9.5 projector when he was young and one of the films he collected over the years was a Fairbanks one but the title was missing. Since this was before the days of the internet, he went down to the local public library and found a book that had a still photo from the movie. The film was *The Black Pirate*. He also learned who the director was, Albert Parker.

 

When he was in his early twenties, he found out that the Parker was living in London and rang him up. Parker immediately invited him over. They talked and Parker was thrilled to hear that Brownlow had a copy of the film. He arranged for Brownlow to return with his projector and film and screen it. Brownlow thought it would just for Parker but quickly discovered that Parker had invited the cream of London film actors (and Hardy Kruger, though he's not sure why Kruger was included he said with a smile).

 

From there, Brownlow, like many of us, was smitten with Doug and wanted to know more about the man who seemed to enjoy making movies like no one else. He reminded us that Fairbanks had written the movie under a pseudonym and he concluded his talk with the story that concludes Hollywood, "The romance of movie making ends here."

 

He thanked us all and the lights went down and *The Iron Mask* began. I have to preface this by saying I've not seen the classic MGM versions of the *Musketeers* or *The Iron Mask*. But I have seen Fairbanks' versions, Richard Lester's versions and the most recent *Man in the Iron Mask*.

 

I had forgotten how much of Lester's *Four Musketeers* pays homage to this film. From some of the scenes to the costumes to even some of the staging, Lester went all the way back to this version. Lester's' versions of the *Musketeers* are two of my favorite films and many of those scenes came rushing back to me last night.

 

Likewise, I was surprised to see that even Randall Wallace paid homage to Fairbanks with his version.

 

The score by Carl Davis was wonderful. Allan Dwan, as always, brought out the best in Fairbanks. And though, he was 45 at the time. Fairbanks still retained that charm and daredevil attitude that make watching his films so much fun.

 

Without Fairbanks would Errol Flynn have had the career he had?

 

It was a wonderful evening of film and film history. It reminded me of how much we owe to the silent era, how well Fairbanks seemed to understand the changing times and how much we owe to one of the pioneers of film. No one seemed to enjoy making movies as Doug Fairbanks but once talkies really started to make their mark, he truly seems to have understood how much the business would change.

 

And, as always, Kevin Brownlow *ROCKS*

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Scottman,

 

One of the real pleasures of the evening was seeing how many young people were there. They were there with their parents, they were with their grandparents and there was an entire row of young college students sitting behind me.

 

I was heartened to see how much all of them were into listening to Kevin Brownlow and into the movie.

 

Gives me hope that the love of cinema will be passed to the next generation, just as it always has.

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