The Johnstown Flood (1926)

Open, general discussion of silent films, personalities and history.
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

donwc1996

  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2010 3:09 pm

The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostSun Mar 04, 2018 5:25 pm

I'm amazed that this film hasn't been released on DVD as yet. It starred George O'Brien and Janet Gaynor. It's based on a natural disaster and those type of films are generally liked. It occasionally plays at festivals. So why no DVD release? I know it's a Fox film and , no doubt, thats the reason.Other than The Iron Horse, I don't think any of Fox films from this period have had much airing.
Offline
User avatar

Javier

  • Posts: 189
  • Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2012 2:06 pm

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostSun Mar 04, 2018 8:55 pm

I have read so much about this film, but seems there has been no interest about it being released on video so far. One would think George O'Brien and Janet Gaynor be enough on being the lead Actors, to make it to a Blu-ray or DVD release.
"it's a Kafka high, you feel like a bug"
Offline
User avatar

Harlett O'Dowd

  • Posts: 2094
  • Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:57 am

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 8:54 am

Javier wrote:I have read so much about this film, but seems there has been no interest about it being released on video so far. One would think George O'Brien and Janet Gaynor be enough on being the lead Actors, to make it to a Blu-ray or DVD release.


It ran at Cinecon 25 or so years ago. It is at the top of silents I wish would get a video release. (But then, I would love to see ALL George O'Brien silents get a video release.)
Offline
User avatar

drednm

  • Posts: 7460
  • Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 9:41 pm
  • Location: Belgrade Lakes, ME

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 9:54 am

On my "want to see" list also.....
Ed Lorusso
Writer/Historian
-------------
https://wordpress.com/view/silentroomdo ... dpress.com
Offline
User avatar

Agnes

  • Posts: 309
  • Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2007 10:03 am
  • Location: Philadelphia, PA (Western Suburbs)

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 2:34 pm

Who played at capitolfest in Rome New York in August of 2011. I went up and my husband came he wanted to go see the Baseball Hall of Fame some things in the area so he said he drive me and leave me at the festival. He wanted to get play jump on getting home Sunday night and asked if I could leave early Sunday and I screeched.

I said that was probably the film I wanted to see the most. So he said okay but he said say goodbye to your friends the intermission before and as soon as you find out if Jenna king or makes it or not you're out the door. I held to that say goodbye to everyone beforehand and as soon as the film was over I ran out the door. I know he give me grief about going back to Capitolfest if I didn't hold her agreement. But come on I really want to see that movie and it was worth it.

And I'm with you guys I don't know why that has never come out on DVD. Famous stars famous story famous real life happening I can't figure out why it hasn't gotten release on disc
Agnes McFadden

I know it's good - I wrote it myself!
Offline
User avatar

Jim Roots

  • Posts: 2818
  • Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:45 pm
  • Location: Ottawa, ON

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 3:05 pm

drednm wrote:On my "want to see" list also.....


Moi aussi...

Jim
Offline

wich2

  • Posts: 1544
  • Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 11:11 am

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 4:57 pm

For those who have seen it:

The big question with a film about such an event is, do the "money shots" make it?

Is the scope of those sequences, and are the effects, up to the task?
Offline
User avatar

George O'Brien

  • Posts: 591
  • Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:10 pm
  • Location: An Atoll in the Pacific

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 5:12 pm

wich2 wrote:For those who have seen it:

The big question with a film about such an event is, do the "money shots" make it?

Is the scope of those sequences, and are the effects, up to the task?



Who cares? Janet and George are all the special effects I would require.
"This bar of likker is now a bar of justice!"
Offline

donwc1996

  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2010 3:09 pm

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Mar 05, 2018 7:43 pm

George O' Brien and Janet Gaynor were in 3 films together and The Johnstown Flood was the first. Later came The Blue Eagle and their most famous coupling in Sunrise.
Offline
User avatar

drednm

  • Posts: 7460
  • Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 9:41 pm
  • Location: Belgrade Lakes, ME

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostTue Mar 06, 2018 9:23 am

Since the film resides at Eastman, that's likely the main reason it's seen no kind of release. I contacted the Johnstown Museum years ago and THEY didn't even have a copy of the film.
Ed Lorusso
Writer/Historian
-------------
https://wordpress.com/view/silentroomdo ... dpress.com
Offline

wich2

  • Posts: 1544
  • Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 11:11 am

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostTue Mar 06, 2018 11:30 am

George O'Brien wrote:
wich2 wrote:
Is the scope of those sequences, and are the effects, up to the task?



Who cares? Janet and George are all the special effects I would require.


I kinda get that, from your screen name!

Still curious about a little more than just that though, thanks.

-Craig
Offline
User avatar

Harlett O'Dowd

  • Posts: 2094
  • Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:57 am

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostTue Mar 06, 2018 1:46 pm

wich2 wrote:For those who have seen it:

The big question with a film about such an event is, do the "money shots" make it?

Is the scope of those sequences, and are the effects, up to the task?


I remember being impressed by the special effects - at least as screened on a medium-sized screen. Prolly not up to NOAH'S ARK levels, but respectable for the time period.
Offline

robluvthebeach

  • Posts: 16
  • Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:00 am
  • Location: california

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostWed Mar 07, 2018 2:52 am

I viewed The Johnstown Flood at Eastman Film Museum and they have a GREAT print and it is really well done and the special effects are surprisingly well done. Janet Gaynor is the second lead, but she definitely has the star making performance.
Offline
User avatar

Agnes

  • Posts: 309
  • Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2007 10:03 am
  • Location: Philadelphia, PA (Western Suburbs)

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostWed Mar 07, 2018 8:16 am

If Eastman House has a nice print.....do they have the rights? Could they be waiting a few years for the film to roll out if rights issues & into public domain?

In 2022 would the copyright disappear?

Agnes
Agnes McFadden

I know it's good - I wrote it myself!
Offline
User avatar

Harold Aherne

  • Posts: 1730
  • Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 1:08 pm
  • Location: North Dakota

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostWed Mar 07, 2018 4:35 pm

Agnes wrote:If Eastman House has a nice print.....do they have the rights? Could they be waiting a few years for the film to roll out if rights issues & into public domain?

In 2022 would the copyright disappear?

Agnes


The copyright was renewed by 20th Century-Fox Film Corporation with a filing date of 9 March 1953. The film would have to be licensed from Fox for a video release to take place, and even if it eventually falls into the public domain, a license may still be necessary to access donated materials for commercial use.

--HA
Offline

hammerglenn

  • Posts: 3
  • Joined: Fri Nov 01, 2013 3:15 pm

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostWed Mar 07, 2018 4:42 pm

About 12 years ago at the Johnstown Flood museum they showed a documentary that featured scenes from the silent.
Offline

donwc1996

  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2010 3:09 pm

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostWed Mar 07, 2018 6:30 pm

Harold Aherne wrote:
Agnes wrote:If Eastman House has a nice print.....do they have the rights? Could they be waiting a few years for the film to roll out if rights issues & into public domain?

In 2022 would the copyright disappear?

Agnes


The copyright was renewed by 20th Century-Fox Film Corporation with a filing date of 9 March 1953. The film would have to be licensed from Fox for a video release to take place, and even if it eventually falls into the public domain, a license may still be necessary to access donated materials for commercial use.

--HA
I think that you just got to the core of things- Fox has the copyright! I guess the only hope for a release would be if some video company offered fox the right price, it just could get license rights to release a video. Or maybe Fox will see the light and release it. Anyhow, thanks for that info-----
Offline
User avatar

s.w.a.c.

  • Posts: 1984
  • Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2008 2:27 pm
  • Location: The Land of Evangeline

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostSun Mar 11, 2018 9:57 am

I also got to see this at Eastman House, and it was thoroughly engaging and exciting.

A short while later, I interviewed Canadian folk singer Oh Susanna, who wrote a song inspired by the story of the flood, and it became the title track on one of her albums, and she was jealous because she'd been dying to see the film for years and could never find a copy. It'd be great if she could see it one of these days, without having to make a trip to Eastman House.

Twinkletoes wrote:Oh, ya big blister!
Offline

donwc1996

  • Posts: 45
  • Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2010 3:09 pm

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostThu Apr 26, 2018 12:13 pm

My understanding is that Gary Cooper, Clark Gable and Carole Lombard all have uncredited parts in this film. Is this true? IMDb is not always accurate in their cast lists, but i assume they are on this one. Anyone know for sure?
Offline

Dave Pitts

  • Posts: 195
  • Joined: Sat Nov 30, 2013 9:55 am

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostFri Apr 27, 2018 2:48 pm

Lombard has a nice showy part as one of Gaynor's friends -- she's very visible and looks the way she looks in all her circulating silents. Cooper supposedly was one of the flood victims, in other words, an extra when the deluge is happening -- who knows? Gable is supposedly in the saloon that gets flooded, as a customer standing at the end of the bar. Might be an urban legend for both actors. At Capitolfest, we all knew to look for them, and it was a good sharp print. The consensus, at the end of the film: if they were in it, they can't be distinguished in the film we have today. (I think in the saloon there were several standing customers, but good luck picking up facial features.)
BTW, if you read any standard book on the flood (my favorite is by McCullough, I believe, if I'm spelling that right -- a terrific and compact read, with very muscular writing), the film is ludicrously inaccurate and the flood makes no sense. In reality, the 1889 flood was preceded by two days of the heaviest, steamrolling rainstorms the area had ever seen. All the mountain streams were roaring over their banks, and they filled up the lake above the town, forcing the old, inadequate dam to burst. In the film, Gaynor, on horseback in the sunshine, riding a perfectly dry road on which her horse kicks up clouds of dust, spies a cloudburst moving in on the horizon and somehow knows that the coming storm will cause a flood. She gallops toward town to raise the alarm, leaving dust clouds in the still-dry air. If Johnstown residents saw this, they had to shake their heads. (It also seems a stupid production decision, as heavy rain can be used dramatically in film, and without it, the events make no sense on any earthlike planet.)
Some of the flood shots are pretty cool -- the most famous one, which I first saw on a tape loop at the Flood Museum in Johnstown, is a shot apparently done with optical printing of some sort, with two giant waves sweeping into the frame from the left and right, engulfing some storefronts in the town.
As a personal note, the night I saw the film at Capfest (Rome, New York), my hometown back in Ohio was hit with a phenomenal rain shower. My basement flooded as I watched the film, killing off my water heater, furnace, washer, and dryer (I know -- Johnstowners thought they had it bad...). Two days later I drove back to a trashed basement and over $10,000 in replacements. Why this could not be turned into a Hollywood feature, I have no idea -- you'd have to ask the executives.
Offline
User avatar

Jim Roots

  • Posts: 2818
  • Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:45 pm
  • Location: Ottawa, ON

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostSat Apr 28, 2018 6:14 am

Dave Pitts wrote:Lombard has a nice showy part as one of Gaynor's friends -- she's very visible and looks the way she looks in all her circulating silents. Cooper supposedly was one of the flood victims, in other words, an extra when the deluge is happening -- who knows? Gable is supposedly in the saloon that gets flooded, as a customer standing at the end of the bar. Might be an urban legend for both actors. At Capitolfest, we all knew to look for them, and it was a good sharp print. The consensus, at the end of the film: if they were in it, they can't be distinguished in the film we have today. (I think in the saloon there were several standing customers, but good luck picking up facial features.)
BTW, if you read any standard book on the flood (my favorite is by McCullough, I believe, if I'm spelling that right -- a terrific and compact read, with very muscular writing), the film is ludicrously inaccurate and the flood makes no sense. In reality, the 1889 flood was preceded by two days of the heaviest, steamrolling rainstorms the area had ever seen. All the mountain streams were roaring over their banks, and they filled up the lake above the town, forcing the old, inadequate dam to burst. In the film, Gaynor, on horseback in the sunshine, riding a perfectly dry road on which her horse kicks up clouds of dust, spies a cloudburst moving in on the horizon and somehow knows that the coming storm will cause a flood. She gallops toward town to raise the alarm, leaving dust clouds in the still-dry air. If Johnstown residents saw this, they had to shake their heads. (It also seems a stupid production decision, as heavy rain can be used dramatically in film, and without it, the events make no sense on any earthlike planet.)
Some of the flood shots are pretty cool -- the most famous one, which I first saw on a tape loop at the Flood Museum in Johnstown, is a shot apparently done with optical printing of some sort, with two giant waves sweeping into the frame from the left and right, engulfing some storefronts in the town.
As a personal note, the night I saw the film at Capfest (Rome, New York), my hometown back in Ohio was hit with a phenomenal rain shower. My basement flooded as I watched the film, killing off my water heater, furnace, washer, and dryer (I know -- Johnstowners thought they had it bad...). Two days later I drove back to a trashed basement and over $10,000 in replacements. Why this could not be turned into a Hollywood feature, I have no idea -- you'd have to ask the executives.


Surely Brad Pitt would have grabbed the chance to play you as the hero, if only because of the similarity of names. You'd think the Hollywood suits woulda thunka that.

Jim
Offline

Dave Pitts

  • Posts: 195
  • Joined: Sat Nov 30, 2013 9:55 am

Re: The Johnstown Flood (1926)

PostMon Apr 30, 2018 11:49 am

Thanks for the Brad Pitt suggestion. That would be a prestige upgrade. Actually, the primo picks to portray me would be Wally Cox or Don Knotts, and they've both moved on to the immortal pantheon.

Return to Talking About Silents

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 16 guests