Monthly Archives: May 2013

You Can’t Take It With You vs Arsenic and Old Lace

Last night we watched You Can’t Take it With You (1938) with Jimmy Stewart, Jean Arthur, Lionel Barrymore and more directed by Frank Capra.  It is based on a Pulitzer Prize winning stage play.  What fun to watch the craziness … Continue reading

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The first feature made in the US was The Squaw Man

This first screen version of the story was the legendary DeMille’s first movie assignment. It also holds the distinction of being the first feature-length movie filmed specifically in Hollywood. It was not the first to be made in the Los … Continue reading

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Stan Laurel

Stan laughed heartily. He told me he learned early on in directing Babe to save his “burns” — that great, full-screen, exasperated, direct-to-camera stare of Hardy’s — until the end of the day, “when he couldn’t wait to get out … Continue reading

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The first feature length film was made in Australia . . . Not Hollywood

Just as Fritz Lang’s Metropolis (1927) is testimony to German silent film art, The Story of the Kelly Gang (1906) symbolizes both the birth of the Australian film industry and the emergence of an Australian identity. Even more significantly it … Continue reading

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The Latham Loop – it prevented film from breaking – one of the most influential technical film developments of the 20th Century

Every now and then a seemingly small discovery changes an entire industry. So it was with the “Latham Loop”, the small, slack-forming loop that the film’s path takes just before it passes in back of a camera’s, or in front … Continue reading

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ever hear of Garrett Brown? – he invented the Steadycam

Rocky Balboa’s sprint up the stairs of the Philadelphia Art Museum in Rocky is a scene that would have once been impossible to film. Camera innovator Garrett Brown made it possible when he invented the Steadicam, a body-mounted camera that … Continue reading

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The “Star System” – Florence Lawrence was the first

Carl Laemmle was responsible for creating the ‘star system.’ In the earliest productions, actors’ identities were kept anonymous and unknown in order to give preference to the pictures themselves, to prevent performers from overvaluing themselves, and because the profession of … Continue reading

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