So Is this for Real?

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Gagman 66

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So Is this for Real?

PostWed May 11, 2011 8:25 pm

:? The reason I ask is that no one has said anything about this here, and I have only read about it on one forum. That was Saturday or Sunday. Does the footage even show Theda Barra? And if so, is it from CLEOPATRA? What is the story?


New Fragment of legendary 'lost' film CLEOPATRA (1917) Found in Coney Island.

The hosts (Jack Garcia & Rev. Hal Shaw) of the popular alternative media program God Rock Radio stumbled across the historical clip at a local book exchange on a mislabeled video tape.

Unlike the 30 second fragment shown on TURNER CLASSIC MOVIES this newly unearthed footage features fluid camera movement and classic silent screen pantomime acting. Theda Bara was the screen's first sex symbol and made over 40 films, sadly only 2 complete features are known to exist.

"We contacted over a dozen film archives" said Writer/Director Jack Garcia, "but they didn't bother to return our phone calls or e-mails. I don't think they believed us, so we decided to make it available to the public".

The clip is available to the public @

http://www.archive.org/details/Cleopatra1917
And
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Scoundrel

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PostWed May 11, 2011 9:01 pm

Count me as unsure.

It may be someone's CLEOPATRA...but I'm not sure it's Theda Bara.
" You can't take life too seriously...you'll never get out of it alive."


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silentfilm

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PostWed May 11, 2011 9:25 pm

That's not Theda Bara.
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LouieD

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PostWed May 11, 2011 9:32 pm

Sounds like total BS to me as this film is ALWAYS on the lists of most wanted lost films so the whole part about "archives contacted not interested" sounds bogus. Oh and that's not Theda Bara.
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Gagman 66

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PostWed May 11, 2011 9:33 pm

Bruce,

I didn't think so either. Could the clip be from Michael Curtiz SODOM AND GOMORRA (1922) or something? Or possibly the 1923 SAMSON AND DELILAH or the 1924 QUO VADIS? Any chance that it's from THE QUEEN OF SHEBA (1921) with Betty Blythe???
Last edited by Gagman 66 on Wed May 11, 2011 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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syd

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PostWed May 11, 2011 10:32 pm

The short clip and and the
repeat function on the video
player would have been better
than a looooong clip that repeats.
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Penfold

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PostThu May 12, 2011 12:26 am

Gagman 66 wrote:Bruce,

I didn't think so either. Could the clip be from Michael Curtiz SODOM AND GOMORRA (1922) or something? Or possibly the 1923 SAMSON AND DELILAH or the 1924 QUO VADIS? Any chance that it's from THE QUEEN OF SHEBA (1921) with Betty Blythe???


Could be earlier, and Italian....
I could use some digital restoration myself...
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ymmv

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PostThu May 12, 2011 1:40 am

Gagman 66 wrote:Bruce,

I didn't think so either. Could the clip be from Michael Curtiz SODOM AND GOMORRA (1922) or something? Or possibly the 1923 SAMSON AND DELILAH or the 1924 QUO VADIS? Any chance that it's from THE QUEEN OF SHEBA (1921) with Betty Blythe???


It's not Sodom and Gomorra. See this shot:

Image

You can find a whole bunch of short Italian silent epics on Youtube, maybe someone can compare those.

BTW The whole thing could be fake. Since when were lost films rediscovered on video?
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Gagman 66

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PostThu May 12, 2011 9:53 pm

ymmv,

:? I received this message from someone tonight about the alleged Theda Barra CLEOPATRA clip. Strange. I do believe that they obviously think it's from the movie, but none of it makes any sense. I mean tell the Museum of Modern Art, not me! They reside just a hop-skip and a jump from where these people live. Shouldn't be that difficult to get in touch.


"Hello Gagmann66. I am Rev. Hal Shaw of God Rock Radio. I have had some excellent verification that this is indeed Miss Theda Bara and Mr. Thurston Hall (Mark Anthony) on this clip. We are pretty sure this is Cleopatra and believe this clip to be from late in the film after the big battle scene."
Last edited by Gagman 66 on Thu May 12, 2011 10:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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CoffeeDan

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PostThu May 12, 2011 10:50 pm

Nope -- not CLEOPATRA, not Theda Bara. Considering it was found on videotape, I'm suspicious. I'd like to know what was on the rest of the tape.
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Brooksie

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PostFri May 13, 2011 12:50 am

I'll bet you a million bucks it's from Helen Gardner's 1912 version. Someone started a Helen Gardner website a while back, and uploaded some clips of the film to YouTube. I thought at the time that the superficial resemblance to the Theda Bara version was sufficiently strong for someone to mistake one film for the other if they were hoping hard enough for it to be true. There's a clip of the Gardner version at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jC4201V91Js.
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ymmv

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PostFri May 13, 2011 1:08 am

If you search for "Cleopatra 1912" on Youtube, you can find the complete movie. It shouldn't be difficult to check your idea that the clip is from that version.
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PostFri May 13, 2011 2:43 am

I don't recall any night scenes in the Gardiner version- very much a daylight & outdoor sets affair. Seeing the wind flutter the draperies in what is supposedly a tomb is a bit amusing.
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PostFri May 13, 2011 9:35 am

It's not Helen Gardner, I can assure you. And it certainly isn't Theda Bara, even though they want you to think it is with the publicity still from Cleopatra at the end.

I agree the whole thing is too fishy - anybody with even the slightest interest in silent films knows if an archive was contacted by anybody who claimed (and seemed legitimate) to have a copy of Cleopatra, they'd get a return call almost before they'd hung up.

Oh well - we can still keep looking and hoping, though. . .
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Rick Lanham

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PostFri May 13, 2011 10:22 am

Am I the only one who doesn't think that the costumes
look Roman or Egyptian?

Rick
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Christopher Jacobs

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PostFri May 13, 2011 10:30 am

There's a possibility the clip is from the 1913 Italian film MARCANTONIO E CLEOPATRA, but it's been so long since I've watched my old 16mm print that I'd have to dig it out to be sure. That clip does look like its from some silent production of the teens, however, rather than an amateur recreation. It may have been found as a clip within some retrospective compilation (and it is within the realm of possibility that there may yet be some of those 1930s-40s compilations of silent clips with lost films that include a bit of Bara's CLEOPATRA that no one has yet identified or realized was there).

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missdupont

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PostFri May 13, 2011 11:21 am

I just looked at a still from the 1913 ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA, as well as the two images in Blum's "Pictorial History of the Silent Screen," and it looks more likely to be this film.
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Kelly

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PostSun May 15, 2011 4:21 pm

Yeah like how many time somebody claim they found copy of London at Midnight Greed and Divine woman with Greta Garbo LOL! :lol:
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Gagman 66

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PostSun May 15, 2011 4:23 pm

:? I'm still getting E-mails from these guys insisting that it is from CLEOPATRA (1917). They simply will not budge from that notion.
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Kelly

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PostSun May 15, 2011 4:27 pm

MAN seriously it remind me few years ago some dude claim he found copy of London at Midnight :lol:
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Rodney

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PostMon May 16, 2011 7:56 am

Gagman 66 wrote::? I'm still getting E-mails from these guys insisting that it is from CLEOPATRA (1917). They simply will not budge from that notion.


To misquote Richard Roberts, just because someone says the same stupid thing 500 times doesn't mean that it isn't a stupid thing.

They got attention for their website. Mission accomplished.
Rodney Sauer
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salus

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PostMon May 16, 2011 3:22 pm

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Nancy Kauffman

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PostTue May 17, 2011 9:40 am

I believe the clip is from THE QUEEN OF SHEBA (1921, Fox Film Corporation), with Betty Blythe and Fritz Leiber. We have a handful of stills from the film at Eastman House, and one of them shows Blythe and Leiber in the same costumes that are in the clip.

I don't know yet how to display a photo here, so I scanned it and uploaded it to a public album on my facebook page. Please follow this link:
http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150182950458300.315151.569773299&l=fdaba0cd6d

Although not as famously sought after as CLEOPATRA, THE QUEEN OF SHEBA is also a lost film and so the clip is still a significant find. Too bad it isn't longer! Unless there's more to it than what was posted on YouTube?

Nancy
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ymmv

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PostTue May 17, 2011 10:01 am

Ladies and gentlemen, we've got a winner!

Image
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Rodney

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PostTue May 17, 2011 10:03 am

Nancy Kauffman wrote:I believe the clip is from THE QUEEN OF SHEBA (1921, Fox Film Corporation), with Betty Blythe and Fritz Leiber. We have a handful of stills from the film at Eastman House, and one of them shows Blythe and Leiber in the same costumes that are in the clip.

I don't know yet how to display a photo here, so I scanned it and uploaded it to a public album on my facebook page. Please follow this link:
http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150182950458300.315151.569773299&l=fdaba0cd6d

Although not as famously sought after as CLEOPATRA, THE QUEEN OF SHEBA is also a lost film and so the clip is still a significant find. Too bad it isn't longer! Unless there's more to it than what was posted on YouTube?

Nancy


Excellent detective work. That looks like exactly the same costume on the man, presumably that would be King Solomon -- anyone here know Fritz Leiber well enough to ID him? I would love to see more of Betty Blythe's Queen of Sheba -- I think I'd rather see that than Bara's Cleopatra, based on what ephemera survive.
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ymmv

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PostTue May 17, 2011 10:54 am

Rodney wrote:Excellent detective work. That looks like exactly the same costume on the man, presumably that would be King Solomon -- anyone here know Fritz Leiber well enough to ID him?


This is Fritz Leiber a couple of years earlier in the 1917 version of Cleopatra:

Image

Here's a quote from the Wikipedia article on Fritz Leiber Sr:

In the film Champagne Waltz, Leiber portrayed an orchestra maestro; the role required him to play classical music on a violin and jazz on a clarinet. In a 1979 interview with journalist F. Gwynplaine MacIntyre, Fritz Leiber Jr. stated that these scenes were not dubbed, and that his father played several instruments expertly.


Both Leibers have been dead for a couple of decades, so there's now to ascertain whether Leiber was indeed an accomplished musician or not.
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Gagman 66

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PostTue May 17, 2011 12:09 pm

:? With respect, I was the first person in this thread to ask if it could possibly be from THE QUEEN OF SHEBA or not? I hope there is more footage then they showed us, as this would be a significant find.
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Christopher Jacobs

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PostTue May 17, 2011 1:53 pm

Yes, now that you mention it, that certainly does look like Betty Blythe, and I agree that THE QUEEN OF SHEBA is just as if not more desirable a putatively lost Fox silent as Bara's CLEOPATRA (especially after reading Brownlow's chapter on it in "The Parade's Gone By"). But if this was "discovered" on an old videotape, it still seems likely to me that it's simply a brief excerpt from one of the many compilations of silent movies assembled in the 30s, 40s, or 50s with some sort of narration that would be either waxing nostalgic about or condescendingly deriding what is happening on screen.

I guess all we can do is wait and see what if any more information about the clip's source is revealed.

--Christopher Jacobs
http://www.und.edu/instruct/cjacobs/Old ... BluRay.htm
http://www.und.edu/instruct/cjacobs
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Rick Lanham

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PostTue May 17, 2011 5:24 pm

Terrific work Nancy and everyone!!
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revhal714

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PostWed May 18, 2011 11:26 pm

It could be “Queen of Sheba” (1921), this is very plausible. As you know both ‘Queen of Sheba’ and ‘Cleopatra’ were both directed for Fox by J. Gordon Edwards. Both films had the same craftsmen and technicians as well. Also, Betty Blythe looked very much like Theda Bara. Betty was the much younger hand chosen replacement for her when Theda was released by Fox Studio.

J. Gordon Edwards is a forgotten man in film history. Not only did he direct ‘Queen of Sheba’ and ‘Cleopatra’, he directed ‘Salome’ as well. If the clip we discovered and shared is indeed ‘Queen of Sheba’ then this is the only other glimpse of Mr. Edwards’ work. currently available. Whatever we found is quite exciting in any case.

Sincerely.
God Rock Radio/ Mysterious Angel Archives
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Rev. Hal Shaw Jack (The Agnostic) Garcia
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