JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

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BenModel

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JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 3:59 pm

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MoMA has just posted the 1911 Biograph comedy JOSH'S SUICIDE on its website. The film was directed by Mack Sennett and stars Fred Mace. The upload is a sharp new scan off MoMA's preservation 35mm, and has a new musical score. You can watch this extremely rare split-reeler at mo.ma/joshssuicide.

Ben
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 4:23 pm

Thanks for the heads up, Ben! The IMDB credits Lehrman as co-director. Any thoughts on that?

Bob
Film is not the art of scholars, but of illiterates.

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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 6:02 pm

I have no idea. Tom Reeder or Steve Massa would know better about whether or not Mr. Lehrman was at Biograph in 1911.

Ben
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 6:08 pm

The credits for JOSH'S SUICIDE are as follows:

Director: Mack Sennett
Scenario: J. Harry Cannon (submitted as "The Dead Return")
Camera: Percy Higginson
Filmed: August 23 & 24, 1911
Locations: Leonia, NJ; Studio; New York City
Released: October 12, 1911
Length: 469 feet
Copyright: October 16, 1911 (J161682)

These credits come from the Biograph Company documents on deposit at The Museum of Modern Art, which make no mention of Lehrmann as co-director. When we were researching D.W. Griffith and the Biograph Company thirty (!!) years ago, my co-authors and I did not have access to the film materials at MoMA, as they has not yet been preserved in viewable form, and there is no material on this title in the Paper Print Collection at LoC; thus, we were unable to make any cast identifications. Clearly, the lead is played by Fred Mace, and Eddie Dillon is also in the cast. More identifications, anyone?

Steven Higgins
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 6:19 pm

Thanks for the info, Steven!

Ben
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JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 6:36 pm

1. Between Josh's demise & his widow's recovery, this kid really had trouble finding a ride:
Image[img].....[/img]Image
2. Josh- using an alias- takes a side trip to Chicago:
Image
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David Denton

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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 7:11 pm

Isn't Mabel one of the girls on the bus? Thought I saw Claire McDowell, Charles West and Charles Avery. Jeanne MacPherson as the other girl?
Last edited by David Denton on Fri Jul 14, 2017 7:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 7:16 pm

Hi guys - not Mabel, but definitely Charles West and Claire McDowell at the opening party. Wish we knew who plays the wife's would-be suitor - Brent Walker didn't recognize him either. He's funny.
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 7:32 pm

Yes, Charles West is in the opening scene, as well as inside the bus at the end, when everyone is laughing at the wife's suitor/friend as he is being tossed by Mace. As for your other possible ID's, sorry to say, none of them are here. McDowell and Mailes were working for Griffith on THE ADVENTURES OF BILLY on these very same days, but on different locations, and neither MacPherson or Normand are in the film, although one of the young women with Mace is most definitely Normand-like, in both appearance and performance. I would also note that the waiters in the cafe are J. Jiquel Lanoe and W.C. "Spike" Robinson. One of the problems in determining the casts of Sennett films in 1911 is the simple fact that, until now, they have been almost completely unavailable for research, and so many of these actors are being seen for the first time in over 100 years.

Steven
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 7:39 pm

Hi Steve Massa! I see who you think may be Claire McDowell in the opening party scene (she's the one with the tray of food), and you may be right. I do remember an actress at Biograph in 1910/11 who looked very much like McDowell - dark hair and strong features - who we could never ID. I think this is that "unknown" actress, but you may very well be correct, and Claire was somehow doing double-duty for Biograph that day.

Steven

(BTW, Bravo! on Slapstick Divas. I loved every bit of it!)
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David Denton

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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 7:40 pm

Steven,

I treasure the Griffith/Biograph book. Use it frequently. In the opening scene, it certainly looks like Claire M. with the tray.
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostFri Jul 14, 2017 7:42 pm

Thanks David! As I said, you and Steve Massa may be right about Claire. I certainly wouldn't fight you guys on it!

Steven
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostSat Jul 15, 2017 7:49 am

I think that Lehrman was with Carl Laemmle's IMP at this time. There's a gap in Lehrman's known roles in front of the camera at Biograph from THE BLIND PRINCESS AND THE POET (08/17/1911) and IOLA'S PROMISE (03/14/1912) when it appears that he was directing at IMP. His one known film there, BEAT AT HIS OWN GAME, was released on March 2, 1912.

Tom Reeder
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Re: JOSH'S SUICIDE (1911) now streaming on MoMA

PostSat Jul 15, 2017 11:23 am

Thanks!

Fun to see the ol' neighborhood so well, a century ago.

-Craig

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