Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

Open, general discussion of silent films, personalities and history.
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Frame Rate

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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostSun Jun 24, 2018 12:32 pm

While on a visit with David Bradley I noticed something oddly oblong, enclosed in a thick layer of transparent but heavily scuffed plastic wrap, sitting atop his barbecue grill on the patio.

"What's that?" I enquired.

"Oh, that's the submarine from the 1929 MYSTERIOUS ISLAND," he casually replied.

"I got it from Forrie Ackerman." :roll:
If only our opinions were as variable as the pre-talkie cranking speed...
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bobfells

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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostSun Jun 24, 2018 1:18 pm

wich2 wrote:
bobfells wrote:I am the proud proprietor of the Arliss Archives that may well be the world's largest collection of George Arliss Memorabilia.


Bob, as I've mentioned here before, I'm a long-time member of an organization that Arliss was the first President of, the Episcopal Actors' Guild.

I'm sitting in Guild Hall typing this as I House Manage a production of THE GLASS MENAGERIE, and I'd bet there's paper material relating to his tenure in the "attic" archives upstairs (the one beneath the "secret" upper attic, which was a stop on the Underground Railroad.)

And pertinent to this thread, as I spoke the Invite to the house tonight, I pointed out to them the desk owned by Richard Mansfield, the landscape painted by Joe Jefferson, and Margaret Hamilton's curio cabinet.

- Craig


Craig, I believe Mr. A was president from 1921 through 1938, which may be a record since subsequent presidents served for a year or two. You might not know that when he died in 1946, Walter Winchell excoriated Arliss in a column because he left no bequest to the EAG in his will. Winchell was apparently unaware that at the time it was against the law for Brits to take or send money out of the UK so such a bequest would have been illegal. Unfortunately, Arliss learned this lesson the hard way when he was brought up on charges of violating this new law in 1941. He had to pay a stiff fine but the real punishment was the public humiliation the government put him through. But only a few weeks later he found himself in good company - Noel Coward was charged with a similar violation.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostSun Jun 24, 2018 3:08 pm

bobfells wrote:Craig, I believe Mr. A was president from 1921 through 1938, which may be a record since subsequent presidents served for a year or two.


(re: EAG)

Bob, I mean this as no offense to Arliss's estimable record (and you're right - several tenures have been short.)

But a cursory look at notes finds that Vinton Freedley held the office from 1943 -1968, Ray Heatherton from 1974 - 1986, and our current Prez, Elowyn Castle, has served since 2008.

Best,
- Craig

P.S. - As far as contributions, one Freddie Austerlitz gave us money every year - after we paid for the train ticket that got him to his first screentest!
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostMon Jun 25, 2018 8:35 am

I was visiting LA one year when there was a pop up film history museum at The Grove. I think it was TCM. On loan was Sam's Piano from Casablanca and one of the Maltese Falcons from The Maltese Falcon. On another visit I took the Ackermansion tour hosed by Forrest Ackerman and saw original Dracula items. Saw the house from Double Indemnity and the stairs from The Music Box. Had the pleasure of meeting Debbie Reynolds at her Julian's auction that pre-dated the huge final auctions. On display were some great pieces. Endless good times in LA over the years.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostMon Jun 25, 2018 11:08 am

silentstar5 wrote:On another visit I took the Ackermansion tour hosed by Forrest Ackerman and saw original Dracula items.


(Silent, in the interest of history, I would direct you to the Classic Horror Film Board thread on Forry, too...)
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostMon Jun 25, 2018 6:26 pm

Walking up "The Music Box" steps in Silver Lake was pretty good.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostMon Jun 25, 2018 9:48 pm

I suppose this is as good a place to announce the most recent acquisition of the Arliss Archives: one of the actual costumes worn by George Arliss in portraying Nathan Rothschild in THE HOUSE OF ROTHSCHILD (1934). The photos tell it all:

The auction description:
Image

The vest - notice it widens to fit Nathan's "girth":
Image

Mr. A wearing the vest:
Image

A close up of the same still:
Image

The breeches:
Image

The complete ensemble minus the jacket:
Image
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostTue Jun 26, 2018 9:42 am

luciano wrote:
siriami wrote:The Cinematheque Franćaise in Paris has the original "Mrs Bates" head from "Psycho" on display - apparently donated by Mr Hitchcock. Now that's what I call an artefact!

I tried to sneak a photo of that but their quite strict!

I got to see the Mrs. Bates head when the Cinematheque collaborated with Montreal's Musee des Beaux Arts on a Hitchcock exhibit that included artifacts that Hitchcock had donated, some of his personally collected art pieces (he had a real thing for Rodin) and production sketches and paintings that Salvador Dali had created for his sequence in Spellbound. Because I saw it in Montreal, there was an added part of the exhibit about the making of I Confess in nearby Quebec City, that was exclusive to the Musee version of the exhibition. There was also a collection of assorted props from other Hitchcock films, like the pair of glasses from Strangers on a Train, the scissors from Dial M for Murder and so on. The very last room of the exhibit was covered in Hitchcock movie posters from around the world, and in the middle of the room was a set of monkey bars just like the ones in The Birds, with several fake crows attached (and sound effects from the film playing on a loop).

Also, here's that Melies costume from the Cinematheque:

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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostTue Jun 26, 2018 5:32 pm

bobfells wrote:I suppose this is as good a place to announce the most recent acquisition of the Arliss Archives: one of the actual costumes worn by George Arliss in portraying Nathan Rothschild in THE HOUSE OF ROTHSCHILD (1934).


That waistcoat seems extraordinarily small Bob, almost like a child's. How tall would Mr. Arliss have been?
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostTue Jun 26, 2018 6:15 pm

My wife is 5’7” and slender. She fit easily into the vest. Mr. A was also 5’7” and slender so I’m satisfied that it’s a good fit. Also, there’s a Western Costume label inside the vest and also the breeches with “Arliss” written in ink.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostTue Jun 26, 2018 8:22 pm

I have rarely had opportunities to see significant film props, but I was delighted to see the Captain Nemo's organ console from 20000 Leagues Under The Sea (1954) now cobwebbed up in Disneyland's haunted mansion. It has had an unusually long life as a living prop- considering it's still being used to entertain after all these years.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostWed Jun 27, 2018 6:13 am

Isn't the correct spelling "ARTIFACT"?
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostWed Jun 27, 2018 6:15 am

Marr&Colton wrote:Isn't the correct spelling "ARTIFACT"?


Depends on where you are: "artifact" is more common in the US, while "artefact" (closer to the Latin roots) is widely used elsewhere.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostWed Jun 27, 2018 6:48 am

Marr&Colton wrote:Isn't the correct spelling "ARTIFACT"?


If you google the definition, you get:

1: an object made by a human being, typically an item of cultural or historical interest.
"gold and silver artifacts"
synonyms: relic, article; handiwork
"hundreds of unidentified artifacts are stored in numerous rooms beneath the museum"
2.something observed in a scientific investigation or experiment that is not naturally present but occurs as a result of the preparative or investigative procedure.


I try to use "artifact" for the first sense and "artefact" for the second. I believe it a useful distinction.

Bob
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostWed Jun 27, 2018 6:55 am

That waistcoat seems extraordinarily small Bob, almost like a child's. How tall would Mr. Arliss have been?


At the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland they have David Byrne's big suit...



Looks about my size. They also have Ringo Starr's Sgt. Pepper jacket; it looks like he could have ridden a horse in the Preakness in it.

In any case, very cool acquisition.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostThu Jun 28, 2018 6:49 am

Frame Rate wrote:While on a visit with David Bradley I noticed something oddly oblong, enclosed in a thick layer of transparent but heavily scuffed plastic wrap, sitting atop his barbecue grill on the patio.

"What's that?" I enquired.

"Oh, that's the submarine from the 1929 MYSTERIOUS ISLAND," he casually replied.

"I got it from Forrie Ackerman." :roll:


Hey, I have a submarine on my BBQ grill, too! Mine is chicken teriyaki -- what's David's?

Jim
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostFri Jun 29, 2018 8:23 am

Jim Roots wrote:
Frame Rate wrote:While on a visit with David Bradley I noticed something oddly oblong, enclosed in a thick layer of transparent but heavily scuffed plastic wrap, sitting atop his barbecue grill on the patio.

"What's that?" I enquired.

"Oh, that's the submarine from the 1929 MYSTERIOUS ISLAND," he casually replied.

"I got it from Forrie Ackerman." :roll:

Hey, I have a submarine on my BBQ grill, too! Mine is chicken teriyaki -- what's David's?

If he got it from Ackerman, I'm guessing ham, with lots of extra cheese.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostFri Jun 29, 2018 10:51 am

Hopefully someone can confirm my memory on this one because I'm now doubting myself on it:

In the summer of 1989 I went on a film studies trip to Paris and we went to some museum where my memory is that they had some of the actual sets from The Cabinet of Dr Caligari. The place was run by a Madame Defarge type woman who spent most of her time making sure no one tried to take a picture of anything.

Our film prof had made a point of telling us to be there on time because there would be no admittance if late even by a minute. This turned out to be true because I remember the woman opening the door, ushering us in, and then closing one of those gates behind us like the kind used on an elevator where you can see thru it, even stick an arm thru it if you want, but is a barrier. Seconds after she closed the gate some guy rushed up breathless and she refused to let him in.

Now at this point my memory is even foggier, we may have been handed off for the tour from Madame Defarge to a friendly old Gus Leonard type, say from Mush and Milk. And he proceeded to show us all sorts of amazing things, the only one I remember clearly now (no pics allowed!) was what I remember to be wooden painted Caligari sets.

Can anyone confirm this experience? I half believe it was a dream now.
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Re: Extraordinary Film Artefacts You've Seen

PostFri Jun 29, 2018 11:40 am

s.w.a.c. wrote:If he got it from Ackerman, I'm guessing ham, with lots of extra cheese.


...and a big slice of baloney!
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