CAUGHT SHORT (update)

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Harold Aherne

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CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostFri Nov 20, 2009 9:14 pm

I’ve long wondered about the status of Caught Short (1930), a Marie Dressler-Polly Moran comedy that’s one of the most elusive of all early MGM talkies. There’s no record of it airing on TCM and even the author of a Dressler biography mentions in his book that he was only able to listen to the soundtrack. Aside from any possible print-related problems, I think I’ve figured out why it's so difficult to see: the property was remade by Republic in 1936 under the title Doughnuts and Society, this time featuring Louise Fazenda and Ann Rutherford and presuambly any intellectual rights would have gone to them and their corporate successors. Can anyone comment on whether the copyright of either picture was renewed and whether any prints remain of the 1930 version?

-Harold
Last edited by Harold Aherne on Wed Nov 30, 2011 3:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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drednm

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PostSat Nov 21, 2009 9:13 am

Harold a quick search shows 8 sound disks residing at UCLA with the video status unknown. The film ran 75 minutes and also features Anita Page.

This would be a great find but it seems the film is likely lost.
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josemas

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Re: Copyright status question

PostMon Nov 23, 2009 4:10 am

Harold Aherne wrote:I’ve long wondered about the status of Caught Short (1930), a Marie Dressler-Polly Moran comedy that’s one of the most elusive of all early MGM talkies. There’s no record of it airing on TCM and even the author of a Dressler biography mentions in his book that he was only able to listen to the soundtrack. Aside from any possible print-related problems, I think I’ve figured out why it's so difficult to see: the property was remade by Republic in 1936 under the title Doughnuts and Society, this time featuring Louise Fazenda and Ann Rutherford and presuambly any intellectual rights would have gone to them and their corporate successors. Can anyone comment on whether the copyright of either picture was renewed and whether any prints remain of the 1930 version?

-Harold


CAUGHT SHORT (1930) was a Cosmopolitan film released by MGM. The copyright was renewed on the film.
DOUGHNUTS AND SOCIETY (1936) was copyrighted by Mascot but the copyright was not renewed.

Joe Moore
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Harold Aherne

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostWed Nov 30, 2011 3:35 pm

I asked about a trio of early MGM talkies on the Warner Archive Facebook page and got this reply (the thread has since gone into hiding but never mind):

"Nothing to report on THIS MAD WORLD, but there is far brighter news on the other two. There is no rights issue on CAUGHT SHORT. The issue was that there was thought to be no surviving sound track. The key word being 'was', as we have now located an audio source, although there may be quality issues. Lastly, we have cleared A TAILOR-MADE MAN, and will soon be mastering it for eventual release."

-HA
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colbyco82

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostWed Nov 30, 2011 9:29 pm

Looking forward to these titles very much.
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drednm

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostThu Dec 01, 2011 6:20 am

Good news indeed, Harold, as I'm a huge fan of William Haines and Marie Dressler.
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Danny Burk

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostThu Dec 01, 2011 9:12 am

Excellent report...very good to hear. If they're going to the trouble of clearing rights for an admittedly obscure film, it gives me hope that they'll work to get CHRISTOPHER BEAN and IT'S A WISE CHILD resolved.
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colbyco82

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostFri Dec 02, 2011 8:04 am

To me, films like ITS A WISE CHILD, CAUGHT SHORT, A TAILOR-MADE MAN etc. are what the WA is all about. I don't usually care much about the films that TCM shows regularly...its these rare films that really make it a special program.
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drednm

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostFri Dec 02, 2011 8:17 am

Is It's a Wise Child even a complete film?
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The Blackbird

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostFri Dec 02, 2011 9:03 am

I look forward to the day I can see Marie Dressler in CAUGHT SHORT and CHRISTOPHER BEAN. As far as I'm concerned, the fact Anita Page is in the former makes it an automatic must-see. Meanwhile, will THE CALLAHANS AND THE MURPHYS ever see the light of day (I've read it may still exist after all)?
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The Blackbird

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostTue Nov 28, 2017 10:54 am

Are there any updates on these films?
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moviepas

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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostSat Dec 02, 2017 2:53 am

2011 is a long time ago and nothing but at least a few 1935-1930 have recently comer to WAC and I got a few this week in a large shipment. I often have to wait because Amazon often, intially, offers them for $21.99.

Whilst one wonders about those films, there are still many that were in Warner/First National TV packages pre-1935 yet to come to disc. The wonder is extra bits and pieces that have survived(so much lost, though) with the change of ownership to aap then UA TV way back when. I am still waiting to see Joe E Brown in Six Day Bike Rider that I saw over 50 years ago on TV, and, Three on a Horse that was on NTSC VHS. That one had a small early section of nitrate deterioration but was a good, funny film I like. The 1930 New Moon, Broadway to Hollywood, Meet the Baron, Student Tour, Sequoia-all MGM come to mind as only having seen clips in compilations.
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Re: CAUGHT SHORT (update)

PostWed Dec 06, 2017 2:06 pm

So does anyone understand how something like The Man and The Moment (1929) which was lost for ages can come out through the Warner Archives collection in record time after a copy surfaced in Europe while something that was restored in the 1990s like Sweethearts and Wives (1990) is still missing in action? I am still surprised that such 1931 First National films as The Bargain (based on a Philip Barry play) and Honor of the Family (based on a Balzac novel) could remain lost.

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