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Entries in silent films (58)

Saturday
Dec152018

New to the National Film Registry: Brokeback Mountain, Hud, etc...

by Nathaniel R

Each year in the thick of precursor awards season we are momentarily (and pleasantly!) asked to think about the entire history of motion pictures. Each December the Library of Congress adds 25 new movies to their list of American titles worthy of preservation. The criteria is "cultural, historic and aesthetic importance to the nation’s film heritage."

The most recent inductee this year is Ang Lee's neo western gay classic Brokeback Mountain (2005) which is about as deserving as titles get for this honor. And we're personally thrilled to see the best movie of 1963, Hud, added. Here's the whole list chronologically...

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Tuesday
Oct302018

Showbiz History: The Sheik, Never Cry Wolf, Wicked

9 random things that happened on this day (October 30th) in showbiz history

Rudolph Valentino cheekily decides you can't watch him undress in behind the scenes footage about his Sheik movies (he made two of them)1821 Novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky born in Moscow. His work, particularly the Brothers Karamazov and Crime and Punishment, has been adapted to film and television many time.

1921 The Sheik starring Rudolph Valentino premieres, inventing the male movie star sex symbol. The world swoons. Women faint.

1938 Orson Welles radio broadcast of HG Wells "The War of the Worlds" causes mass panic when people are convinced it's real...

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Monday
Oct292018

Showbiz History: A Child Star, A Funny Girl, a Winged Serpent, and Noni Ryder

5 random things that happened on this day (October 29th) in showbiz history...

Fanny Brice

1891 Fanny Brice born in New York City. The comic actress, radio star, and Ziegfeld Girl who was immortalized by the Oscar-winning biopic Funny Girl. Brice is name-checked a few times in the new wonderful film Can You Ever Forgive Me?

1918 Happy 100th birthday today to Baby Peggy (aka Diana Serra Carey), the silent film child star who is still alive today! (See our list: 200 Oldest Living Screen Stars of Note). According to a THR report from January she's doing well and recently published her first fiction novel (!!!) having previously written a memoir and a biography 

1943 Flesh and Fantasy, an anthology movie of occult-related stories opens in movie theaters starring Barbara Stanwyck among other stars. Y

ou have to click on this poster after the jump which asks "WHICH IS YOU?" So, dear reader, tell us... which is you?

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Wednesday
Oct032018

Showbiz History: Lost in Translation, Eyes of the Mummy, and Clive Owen

10 random things that happened on this day, October 3rd, in showbiz history

1918 CENTENNIAL ALERT: Ernst Lubitsch's The Eyes of the Mummy, starring Pola Negri and future Oscar winner Emil Jannings, premieres in Germany. It will take four years to make it to the US. You can watch this early horror film in its entirety on YouTube. It's not very good but Lubitsch would go on to a brilliant career directing screwball comedies. Negri plays a girl rescued from captivity in an ancient Egyptian temple but her nightmare is only just beginning!

1929 Actress Jeanne Eagels, the star of The Letter that year, dies of a drug overdose at 39, after which she becomes the first (and still only) actress ever Oscar-nominated posthumously...

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Thursday
Sep062018

Showbiz History: La Strada, It Chapter Two, The King's Speech

7 random things that happened on this day, september 6th, in showbiz history...

←   1879 Max Schreck born in Berlin. He is immortalized by playing undead Orlok in Nosferatu. Later Willem Dafoe will be Oscar-nominated for playing him in all his creepy eccentric possibly actually vampiric glory in Shadow of the Vampire (2000).

1928 How's this for a weird bit of history? Warner Bros second talkie was released on this day (well, some accounts say August 15th... dates are so iffy the further back you go) and it was a horror film called The Terror. In '28 many theaters had yet to convert to sound so a silent version of the same picture was released the following month. The film is one of many lost films from the era. 

1954 Federico Fellini's La Strada premieres at the tail end of the 15th annual Venice Film Festival...

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Wednesday
Sep052018

Showbiz History: Intolerance, Pee Wee, and Nightcrawler

9 random things that happened on this day, September 5th, in showbiz history...

1847 Outlaw Jesse James is born. 160 years later he'll be assassinated by Oscar nominated "supporting" actor Casey Affleck on the big screen.

 1914 Stellar makeup artist Stuart Freeborn born in Leystone, London. You can thank him for the iconic looks of the original Star Wars trilogy (hello Chewbacca and Yoda) and the original Superman quadrilogy, and Peter Sellers transformations in Dr. Strangelove. He also worked on classics like 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Bridge on the River Kwai and Murder on the Orient Express. He was never Oscar nominated so how did he not even get an Honorary Oscar?

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