The World Wouldn’t Be the Same Without Them
Silent film is every film without any audio recording. Silent movies were extremely popular during the 20th century. Public performance of this movies was followed by music. Silent film originates from 19th century in the USA and West Europe. With appearance of the silent film the first mega movie stars are appearing as well, which were extremely valuated and admired by the majority of the people who appreciated this newborn art. That’s when big movie stars are arising, such as Greta Garbo, John Crawford, Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy and many more and without them cinematography wouldn’t be conceived.
Even today in the 21th century people are amazed by the actors and their movies from the era of the silent movies. The person who will definitely won’t be forgotten is Charlie Chaplin, who is imitated with the admire and worship by the people. Silent movie era lasted until the 1927. year, when the first movie with sound was shown in public. Unfortunately today, after many years, most of the actors from this era are completely forgotten, rarely anyone knows about them and they were equally important for the world cinematography. Some of them are still known, but some of them are completely forgotten.
1. Alla Nazimova (1879-1945)
Alla Nazimova was a Russian American actress, a screenwriter and film producer. She is perhaps best known as Nazimova. She was born in Crimea on Yalta in Russian empire(now Ukraine). As a teenager she began to pursue an interest in the theater and took acting lessons in Moscow before joining Stanislavsky’s Moscow Art Theatre as Alla Nazimova. She quickly became mayor actress in Russia. In 1905 she moved to New York and next year she had debut in this city. She quickly became extremely popular. 1915 she made her silent film debut in “War Brides”. Then they are followed: “Eye For Eye”, “The Red Lantern”, “Madame Peacock”, “Salome”… She died at age of 66, in Los Angeles, California. She has star on Hollywood walk of fame.
2. Monte Blue (1887-1963)
Monte Blue was a movie actor who began his career as a leading man in the romantic silent films. He was born as Gerard Montgomery Bluefeather in Indianapolis, Indiana. He started as a stuntman in the “Birth Of a Nation” (1915). In the next film “Intolerance” (1916) he had a small role. The movie that broke him in Hollywood is “Orphans Of the Storm” with Lillian Gish and Dorothy Gish. His most successful movies are: “The Romance of Tarzan”, “Something To Think About”, “Mademoiselle Midnight”, “Main Street”… Monte Blue has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at Hollywood Boulevard. He died 1963. in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
3. Theda Bara (1985-1955)
Theda Bara (Theodosia Burr Goodman) was popular an American silent film actress. She was the first sex symbol of Hollywood. She had the nickname “The Vamp”. Theodosia Burr Goodman was born in Cincinnati, Ohio. In Hollywood she became Theda Bara, Studio publicists noted that the name was an anagram of “Arab Death”, and her agents its have placed the story that she was the daughter of an Arab sheik and a French woman. Theda Bara made more than 40 films between 1914 and 1926. Bara is often cited as the first sex symbol of the movies because she was wearing very revealing costumes in her films,which was very brave to start the 20th century. Her unknown films are: “Cleopatra”, “The Two Orphans”, “The Lure Of Ambition”, “The Unchastened Woman”… Many films in which Theda Bara appeared were lost in a fire at Fox Studios. Bara died in 1955 in Los Angeles, California. Although it took a long time ago and today she is one of the most original and memorable personalities of Hollywood. Theda Bara has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
4. Roscoe Arbuckle(1887-1933)
Roscoe Conkling “Fatty” Arbuckle was famous American silent film actor, director, and screenwriter. He was born in Smith center in Kansas. As a young he showed a gift for music and acting. Despite his massive physical size, Arbuckle was remarkably agile and acrobatic. He was one of the highest paid actors of Hollywood. His specialty was the antics associated with a cake in the face, which eventually became one of the standards of visual comedy in film. He was actually the first major comedian off Hollywood. He was an actor who taught Charlie Chaplin and discovered Buster Keaton and Bob Hope. His most successful movies are: “A Noise From the Deep”, “Miss Fatty’s Seaside Lovers”, “The Butcher Boy”… He died of a heart attack, aged 46, in 1933. He has a star on Hollywood walk of fame.
5. John Barrymore (1882-1942)
Barrymore was born in the Philadelphia. First gained fame like stage actor in comedies, then high drama and culminating in Shakespearean plays (Hamlet and Richard III). Then begins his successful film career. Today John Barrymore is mostly known for his roles in movies like: “Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde” (1920), “Sherlock Holmes” (1922), “Grand Hotel” (1932), “Dinner at Eight” (1933), “Twentieth Century” (1934), and “Don Juan” (1926) the first ever movie to use a Vitaphone soundtrack. John Barrymore has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He died, age 60, in Los Angeles, California.
6. Madge Kennedy(1891-1987)
Madge Kennedy was a movie and stage actress, born in Chicago, Illinois. Kennedy first started out on Broadway with the show, Little Miss Brown. After the huge success on Broadway begins her film career. She starred in movies such as “Baby Mine” (1917), “Our Little Wife” (1918), “Perfect Lady” (1918), “Dollars and Sense” (1920)… After a few years she left the film and returned to New York and its stage. However, to the film she returns to the fifties. She was out of motion pictures until she resumed her career in “The Marrying Kind” (1952) and “Main Street to Broadway” (1953). After that, she had roles in “The Catered Affair” (1956), “Lust for Life” (1956), “Houseboat” (1958), “A Nice Little Bank That Should Be Robbed” (1958)… She has a small role as a secretary in the Marilyn Monroe film “Let’s Make Love” (1960). Madge Kennedy died in Woodland Hills, California in 1987. She has a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
7. Louise Brooks (1906-1985)
Mary Louise Brooks, known like Louise Brooks, was an American silent film actress. She was known for his hairstyle. She was born in Cherryvale, Kansas. Brooks began her entertainment career as a dancer in modern dance company in 1922. Two years after that she got fired from that troupe, but immediately after that she got a new job as a chorus girl in “George White’s Scandals” on Broadway. Soon people from Paramount Pictures noticed her and her movie career begins. Brooks made her screen debut in the silent “The Street of Forgotten Men” in 1925. After that she made the next films “American Venus”, “The show off”, “Now We’re in the Air”, “Windy Riley Goes Hollywood”, “Pandora Box”… ,,Pandora box” was recorded in Germany, where film was described as shocking. When she returned from Germany she was ignored and blacklisted. She died ,age 78, in Rochester, New York.
8. Norma Talmadge (1894-1957)
Norma Talmadge was an American actress and film producer of the silent era. She had great success in films of the twenties. She was one of the biggest movie idols and one of the most elegant and glamorous film stars of the twenties. Norma Talmadge was born Jersey city, New Jersey. Her younger sisters Constance Talmadge and Natalie Talmadge were also movie stars. Her most famous film was “Smilin’ Through” (1922), “Secrets” (1924) and “The Lady” (1925).Her movie career ended in 30’s, with the beginning of movies with sound (talkies). She died, age 63, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Norma Talmadge has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame .
9. Buster Keaton (1895-1966)
Joseph Frank “Buster” Keaton was an American comic actor, producer and writer. He is remembered by his nickname “The Great Stone Face” for his method acting. In addition to Charlie Chaplin is considered one of the best comedians ever. Keaton was born Joseph Frank Keaton in Piqua, Kansas. First appeared in the film, “The Butcher Boy” which is starring Roscoe Arbuckle famous that he was fed helped in his career. He has made many films, most notably: “One Week” (1920), “The Playhouse” (1921), “Cops” (1922), “Our Hospitality” (1923), “The Navigator” (1924), “The Cameraman” (1928), “The General”(1927)… His career did not stop with the advent of sound film. He was successful and on television. In 1950, Keaton had a successful television series, “The Buster Keaton Buster Show”. He was active until his death in 1966. Interesting to him is that he designed and modified his own “pork pie hats” during his career. That hat was one of his trademarks. He died, age 70, in Woodlands Hills, California. Keaton has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for motion pictures and for television.
10. Pola Negri (1897-1987)
Pola Negri was a Polish stage and film actress who gained international fame from the 1910’s through the 1940’s during the Golden Era of Hollywood film. She is actually the first European to penetrate the actress in Hollywood and became an American actress. She was equally successful in silent and sound films. Negri was born Barbara Apolonia Chalupiec in Lipno, Poland. She began her career as a ballerina. She was accepted into the Imperial Ballet of Warsaw. However, due to illness she had to leave the ballet… After recovery she successfully auditioned for the Warsaw Imperial Academy of Dramatic Arts.
After that begins her successful acting career. She was very successful in Poland. She soon got a chance to move to Berlin. In Germany she starred in many silent films: “Mania”, “Der Gelbe Schein”, “Komtesse Doddy”… Soon she was noticed in Hollywood where her career started to rise. She made a lot of movies in Hollywood: “The Spanish Dancer” (1923), “Forbidden Paradise” (1924), “A Woman of the World” (1925), “Hi Diddle Diddle” (1943)… Negri retired from films and moved from Los Angeles to San Antonio, Texas, in 1957. She died, age 90, in San Antonio. Her death was caused by pneumonia and brain tumor. Pola Negri has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She is 11th actress who has left his footprints in front of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.