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MR. SUICIDE: HENRY "PATHE" LEHRMAN (ebook)
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MR. SUICIDE: HENRY "PATHE" LEHRMAN AND THE BIRTH OF SILENT COMEDY (EBOOK EDITION) by Thomas Reeder
Comedy is no laughing matter, as the true story of film pioneer Henry “Pathe” Lehrman proves.
Today’s television sitcoms and $100 million comedy feature films owe everything to the daring film pioneers that blazed a bawdy trail before them. Henry Lehrman began working at the influential Biograph in 1908 as an actor-for-hire, idea man, and sometime consultant along with legendary director D. W. Griffith. Lehrman advanced from a vibrant stint making Kinemacolor films to an interval at IMP before joining Mack Sennett and Mable Normand making Keystone comedies. Lehrman even directed Charlie Chaplin in his first film, Making a Living (1914). The roughhouse, knockabout style of many of Lehrman's early silent movie comedies earned him the nickname “Mr. Suicide.”
By 1919, Lehrman’s meteoric rise led to the realization of his dreams: full independence and artistic control . . . and then it all collapsed. His involvement in the notorious scandal surrounding Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle and the alleged rape and subsequent death of Lehrman’s fiancé, Virginia Rappe, silenced the laughter Hollywood once loved.
Film historian Thomas Reeder dispels some of film history’s oldest myths in this meticulously researched biography and filmography that revisits the lives and careers of Gloria Swanson, Laurel and Hardy, Mabel Normand, Mack Sennett, Mack Swain, Mary Pickford, Tom Mix, and others from silent movies to the first sound films.
Lavishly illustrated with 339 images discovered in archives and personal collections. Foreword by Sam Gill. Introduction by Steve Massa. Filmography featuring casts, credits, synopses, and contemporary reviews for all of Lehrman’s films. Bibliography. Index. Appendices include the first a detailed history of the Sterling Motion Picture Company after Lehrman’s departure, and a detailed history of the L-Ko Comedy Company after Lehrman’s departure.
About the author: Thomas Reeder contributed numerous film-related articles for Silent Film Quarterly, Filmfax, and The Galitzianer. He is also author of Stop Yellin’: Ben Pivar and the Horror, Mystery and Action-Adventure Films of His Universal B-Unit, and Poetic Justice.