Society Theatre, Seattle, Washington, USA - March 9, 1914
Vitagraph G. Melies
SOCIETY THEATRE, BROADWAY AND JOHN
Difficult, one might almost say impossible, is it to predicate the measures of success of an untried play, it is sometimes quite as onerous a task to decide upon the factors to which a long-established and successful drama is indebted for its superior popularity. For example, why is it that "The Count of Monte Cristo," a play which our fathers saw almost in their youth, is still extant? It has been played for more than a quarter of a century, and for fifteen years or more has been a vahicle which one of America's foremost actors, James O'Neill, has continually interpreted. It is simple to theorize about it, to point out this and that characteristic of the play, the righteous development of retribution, or the attractive glimpse of a Croesus that it gives, but the fact remains that few plays have ever achieved the success attained by "The Count of Monte Cristo."
It is not surprising that the Famous Players Film Co., notable for releasing the most pretentious productions in the film world, should have given this subject such lavish settings. Superb is the only adjective that can du justice to the pictorial triumphs of the presentation. Adequate description of its beauties would require an observant eye, a retentive memory and more space than the possibilities now permit. The play is so strong in its peculiar appeal that the beauty and magnitude of its setting never dwarf it.
James O'Neill's art is subtly emphasized by the camera, and he renders what may without resorting to exaggeration he termed an inspired portrayal.
Aside fro the extraordinary uses of camera effects, the production is one of magnificence, and its pictorial aspects are striking and impressive. The escape from the Chateau D'lf, the raging sea and the fearsome play of the elements unite to form a picture that takes on some likeness to the subline. The realism of the horbor of Marseilles, with the incoming of Pharon; the Reserve inn, where the wedding feast is so cruelly broken in upon; the inn of the Pont du Card; the brilliant scene in the conservatory and ballroom of the Hotel
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CIRCULATION 3000 COPIES EACH WEEK
WHAT ABOUT FEATURES?
The management of the Society have been supplying a good many feature productions during the past few months, and it is our opinion that they have been far superior to the ordinary one and two-reel releases. We have a contract with the "Famous Players Productions" that gives us exclusive use to all their plays in the Broadway and Madison Street districts. We have already presented some of their plays, such as "Sea Wolf," "Lea Kleschna," Mary Pickford in "Caprice," and "Chelsea 7750," with may other of equally good quality to follow.
Now, we have signed another exclusive contrct with the General Film Company for their big feature productions which include "Thor, Lorf of the Jungles," an animal production; "The Third Degree," "The Lion and the Mouse," "Judith of Bethulia," "Germinal" and many others. Our "Famous Players" are shown each Monday and Tuesday, while the "General Features" will be shown each Friday and Saturday.
"On Wednesday and Thursday and Sunday changes we will continue to show selected plays from the General Film Company's program, which consist of Lubin, Essanay, Biograph, Kalem, Edison, Pathe, Melies and Vitagraph. We also have exclusive righs to these prictures for this neighborhood.
We sincerely hope this arrangement will meet with popular approval as we believe the people of this section particularly want photoplays of more mert, better subjects, and better acting.
PROGRAM FOR WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY, MARCH 11 AND 12.
The feature for this program is a two-part Vitagraph special called "Local Color." It si a picture that gives Ned Finley -- leading man and producer -- an excellent chance to portrayone of his characters --- an actor amound the rough mountain folk of North Carolina to get local color for a Broadway show. He happens on a village where there is a feud and falls into the hospitable hands of one of the leading families. Ann, daughter of the cabin, falls in love with him. Catherine Carr, who wrote the script, has woven her plot skillfully, bringing another lover of Ann from the opposite side of the feud and using the mountaineers' hatred of the revenue man as the weapon used by this jealous youth to brind about a tragic ending, after which the actor finds that he too has fallen in love with Ann, who dies in his arms, self-sacrifeed (sic) to save him from the gun of his fival. It will be liked: there is good action, interesting local color and it is well acted.
"Vaccinating a Village" is a Kalem Comedy that is breezy and will be acceptable. "Marrying Sue" is another comedy by the Vitagraph studios, and feature that pleasing little actress, Miss Dorothy Kelly.
"The Winner Wins" is a dandy auto race story with plenty of excitement. A pleasing program.
FAMOUS PLAYERS SECURE ARNOLD DALY.
Arnold Daly, one of the most prominent actors of the American stage, famed as an exponent of the "intellectual" drama, has joined the gallery of Famous Players. Dr. Daly will be presented to the motion picture public in "The Port of Missing Men," by the famous novelist, Meredith Nicholson. Mr. Daly's delineation of character and his delicate artistry have stamped him as one of the foremost actors of the modern stage. Those who remember his polished and precise portrayal of Napoleon in Shaw's "Man of Destiny" will quickly recognize his special fitness for the role of John Armitage, the clever Austrian-American who is the hero of "The Port of Missing Men," and who outwits the spies of Austria's enemy, does great service for the Empire, yet remains loyal to his adopted country, America.
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"A Lady of Quality"
Even at this time, when so many legitimate actors and actresses of note are appearing in motion pictures, due to the policy inaugurated by the Famous Players Film Company, the announcement of Cecilia Loftus in a film version of Frances Hodgson Burnett's famous romantic drama, "A Lady of Quality," is significant.
This popular play of the days of knighthood, with its many stirring scenes and thrilling situations, appears to lend itself admirably to camera exploitation. Its picturesque qualities, its rapidly moving plot, and the delicate delineations of its various characterizations form a continuously appealing panorama of emotions.
With a wealth of dramatic incidents and episode, "A Lady of Quality" reaches the heart by the quickest route known to human art, a crushing grief heroically borne, a nobility in suffering that cannot fail to receive a spontaneous response from all who have known sorrow, who have yearned in vain, who have reached for the things just beyond their grasp.
The story itself is human, appealing, impressive. Aided by the colorful characterization of Cecilia Loftus, the tale attains a dramatic power as impossible to describe in words as the tense realism of the silent play.
Elaborated with massive setting and scenic splendor, the production carries us out of ourselves, into the realm of the play, in the picturesque and romantic days of knighthood.
PROGRAM FOR SUNDAY, MARCH 15th.
"A Sword of Damocles" is a powerfully worked out two-reel number, with Eleanor Woodruff, Irving Cummings and Gerald Harcourt in the case. In the story the successful operatic composer, who has lost his touch, buys the rights of a score from a broken down composer. This he brings out as his own composition, but the real writer of the score comes in during the performance and exposes the miscreant, who kills himself with the hanging sword. This is finely photographed and sincerely presented; it carries conviction in every scene. A good offering.
Pathe Weekly No. 14 of Current Events is shown.
An American Kind, in two reels, is s film story, following along the lines laid by "The Prisoner of Zenda" and other novels of the best selling class. The young American, played by Benj. F. Wilson, comes of royal blood and is called to the throne of Balkia. He appoints his chum as aide and some amusing situations occur. The story is well handled and nicely staged.
The photography is smooth and attractive, and is bound to please. A fine program.
James O'Neil in "Count of Monte Cristo" Monday and Tuesday, March 9 and
"The Lion and the Mouse" in 6 parts. Coming latrr (sic).
Friday and Saturday, March 13 and 14
A notable Thanhauser production in four parts.
This Week's Attractions
MONDAY and TUESDAY -- James O'Neil in "Count of Monte Cristo"
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Morcerf, and the pastoral beauty of the forest of Fontainbleu are not to be measured by ordinary standars of stage embellishment. There is nothing to which they can be compared, and they redound to the art and indifference to expense of the Famous Players, who are sufficiently enterprising to set so notable an example in film production.
The fact that voices can be photographed is the principle of the latest machine for talking moving pictures. As is generally known, the real difficulty about talking moving pictures is to reproduce them so that the action of the actors on the screen and the words they speak will come together at exactly the same time -- to synchronize the pictures and the sounds. The new device attacks this problem from a new standpoint.
The film for the moving picture is really two strips side by side, one side used for the pictures photographing the action and the other side for photographing the voices. In taking the pictures a delicate microphone catches the voices and operates a little mirror placed in a beam of light. The voice vibrations vibrate the mirror and on the film and on the film are recorded the oscillations of the beam of light. In reproducing the picture, while one side of the film throws the pictures on the screen, the other side throws vibrating light on a delicate electric instrument which turns the light vibrations into electric vibrations, which in turn are translated into sound by an instrument similar to a telephone receiver. In this way sound and pictures are reproduced in perfect synchronism.
Little Willie, the son of a German-town woman, was playing one day with the girl next door, when the latter exclaimed:
"Don't you hear your mother calling you? That's three times she's done so. Aren't you going in?"
"Not yet," responded Willie, imperturbably.
"Won't she whip you?" demanded the little girl, awed.
"Naw!" exclaimed Willie, in disgust. "She ain't going to whip nobody! She's got company. So, when I go in she'll just say, 'The poor little man has been so deaf since he's had the measles!'" -- Lippincott's
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This early theater program is interesting for several reasons.
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Last Modified October 16, 2022