Within the last week or so (of April 2013), I uploaded at YouTube a copy of the 1914 version of Mary Pickford's "Tess of the Storm Country" (and not to be confused with the remake of the identical name she did in 1922), and directed by Edwin S. Porter -- of "The Great Train Robbery" (1903) fame. The print I have is pretty lack luster, but it was a long time before I could locate even this. On this topic of a "good" print of "Tess," silent film historian Gene Zonarich informed Marilyn Slater and myself: "The only 35mm material for the 1914 Tess of the Storm Country appears to be at UCLA where they have 6 reels each of a 35mm nitrate positive and 35mm acetate negative, both from the Paramount Collection. Pickford donated 16mm material from her collection to the Library of Congress and Geo Eastman House in the 1950s." Until then one sees a screening of what UCLA has or if the same comes out on DVD, this on YouTube (or similar) will have to do.
Of itself, "Tess" is, of course, a period masterpiece, in most part due to Pickford's performance. Of special interest as well to Mabel Normand fans is that Mary was a huge influence on Mabel in the latter's feature films, and in watching "Tess" you will see many of the same mannerisms and expressions Mabel uses in "Mickey" (1918). Moreover, Mary in this is fairly hilarious and acquits herself wonderfully as a comedienne in her own right.
["TESS OF THE STORM COUNTRY (1914) -- Mary Pickford, dir. by Edwin S. Porter"]
The indefatigable Bruce Long, it also so happens of late, found this article by Mary (or else by Mary and a ghost-writer) that appeared in the 1915-1917 syndicated series "Mary Pickford Talks;" discussing Mabel at Biograph. The two, as you probably know, appeared together in D.W. Griffith's "The Mender of Nets" (1911); and to which reference is made in the article.
BEN TURPIN ALERT!
Thanks to the ever vigilant Steve Rydzewski, master of Turpiniana, some rare snippets of Ben Turpin have come up on the YouTube radar -- from Czechoslovakia of all places -- and brought to our notice. As Steve (on Face Book) describes it himself: "WOW! Some RARE Ben Turpin CLIPS have been posted at YouTube! Love & Doughnuts; She Sighed by the Seaside; Asleep at the Switch; MARRIED LIFE; and The Shriek of Araby! WOW! Some of this stuff I never saw before!"
As they say -- enjoy!
["TV Archive 1989 - CST (Czechoslovakia) - Komik a jeho svet - Part 1 - Ben Turpin"]
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