Before Hollywood There was Fort Lee, N.J.: Early Moviemaking in New Jersey

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Format:  DVD-R
item number:  6EA6V

DVD-R Details

  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Released: March 28, 2017
  • Originally Released: 2017
  • Label: Flicker Alley

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring , , &
Directed by , &

Entertainment Reviews:

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This enormously interesting DVD, produced in cooperation with the Fort Lee Film Commission, is perhaps the most detailed look we shall ever have at early Fort Lee film production, a center of the American film industry when Hollywood was still orange groves. Thomas Hanlon's 1964 documentary Before Hollywood There was Fort Lee, New Jersey uses rare still photographs, almost-complete versions of such films as Edisons Rescued from an Eagles Nest (1907) and Biographs The Curtain Pole (1909) and poignant footage from 1935 of the great glass studios in ruins to show the rise and fall of silent filmmaking in the village on the Hudson.

D.W. Griffith's location work in Fort Lee is represented by The New York Hat (1912), featuring Mary Pickford and Lionel Barrymore. Maurice Tourneur's 1917 feature A Girl's Folly, had not been rediscovered when Hanlon's film was produced, but its a movie about filmmaking in Fort Lee which uses the then Peerless Studio as background. The whole thing ties together with a pleasant little story co-authored by Tourneur and Frances Marion, then just starting her spectacular screenwriting career.

Director Maurice Tourneur is further represented by an enchanting hour-long feature of 1914, The Wishing Ring, taken in the village environs as well as in the Paragon Studio. What historian Kevin Brownlow has called its freshness and impish vitality is hardly diminished by nine decades, and artistically this may be the most accomplished film produced anywhere in the world by 1914. Variety wrote that the whole atmosphere of the tale is light and as graceful as a minuet and colored with the nicety of a pastel. The tinted print has a charming digital stereo score by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra.

Before Hollywood There was Fort Lee, New Jersey (Abridged for This Edition) Year: 1964 Length: 40 minutes Director: Thomas Hanlon

The New York Hat Year: 1912 Length: 16 minutes Starring: Mary Pickford, Lionel Barrymore Director: D.W. Griffith Story by: Anita Loos Produced by: Biograph Company Photographed by: G.W. Bitzer Music by: Robert Israel Film material courtesy of the Mary Pickford Foundation

A Girl's Folly (Abridged for This Edition) Year: 1917 Length: 30 minutes Starring: Doris Kenyon, Robert Warwick, Chester Barnett, Johnny Hones, and Maurice Tourneur (as himself) Director: Maurice Tourneur Scenario by: Tourneur and Francis Marion Produced by: World Film Corporation Photographed by: John van den Broek Music by: Robert Israel

The Wishing Ring Year: 1914 Length: 60 minutes Starring: Vivian Martin, Alec B. Francis, Chester Barnett Director: Maurice Tourneur A Shubert Feature, based upon the play by Owen Davis 146:00


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Product Info

  • Sales Rank: 43,476
  • UPC: 889290247988
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

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