A Thousand Faces: Lon Chaney's Unique Artistry in Motion Pictures

A Thousand Faces: Lon Chaney's Unique Artistry in Motion Pictures

Michael F. Blake

Language: English

Pages: 398

ISBN: 1879511215

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

For the first time, you can put conjecture aside and read definitive proof about the roles Chaney had behind the scenes as well as in front of the camera.

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Sedgwick, does manage to build suspense just before the climatic death of the Phantom. As for the unmasking scene, one can’t help but speculate that Chaney may have had a forceful hand in directing it especially if he felt that Julian wasn’t grasping the emotional impact. But despite the shortcomings of Julian’s direction and Universal’s lack of leadership, Chaney’s performance was what people came to see. It’s hard to imagine another actor who could have played this role with equal amounts of

low ceiling hung wrought iron lamps giving forth an eerie glow. Above the entrance, lying in a niche, was the full length figure of the “Phantom,” robed in the red silk of the Bal Masque scene. His skeleton face grinning at the throng below sent cold shivers up and down the spines of those who caught sight of him for the first time. . . . The curtain rose upon a group of ballet dancers, trained by the internationally famous Albertina Rasch. . . . As the ballet came to an end the lights were

popularity at the box office. Unlike other celebrities, Lon Chaney did not behave like a typical movie star. He refused to grant many interviews and rarely signed autographs or attended movie premières. Some of this can be attributed to his reticent attitude, but a good deal of it was Chaney’s shrewd business sense. The public wanted Chaney, and if he carefully apportioned his appearances and interviews, he would be in greater demand; hence, his films would be even more successful. In the 1925

search for snow because the Chicago area was experiencing an early spring. On February 22, 1929, Jerry Mayer, who was staying in Chicago, wired Cohn that “as far east as North Platte there is no snow.” 342 Cohn replied the following day that “Omaha had snow extending as far as Denver. It could be the heaviest of the season.” Cohn dispatched two camera crews, one headed by Charles Levin and the other by Charles Marshall, to obtain footage of trains plowing through snow and scenes of wintry

Lon, Loretta Young, and Nils Asther are seen. Popular songs tied to movie releases are nothing new. Here are two copies of sheet music from two Chaney films. The song Laugh, Clown, Laugh was one of 1928’s biggest hits, although there is no record that Ching, Ching, Chinaman shared a similar spotlight in 1922. This scene is missing from the existing print of While the City Sleeps, where Dan (Lon) requests that an officer be stationed outside his apartment to protect Myrtle, as his landlady

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