Midweek Matinee


Here’s a strange fact about cinema. More than half the films every made no longer exist.

 Buster Keaton 1

Studios churned out product in the early days, with little thought of preservation. Most films had no future before television. Every few years a previous hit would go on general re-release, but these were always monster hits like Gone With The Wind. Other films just took up room.

English: Buster Keaton wearing his trademark p...

English: Buster Keaton wearing his trademark porkpie hat in the 1922 film The Blacksmith Available at http://us.imdb.com/gallery/mptv/1301/Mptv/1301/20676_0002.jpg?path=gallery&path_key=0012945 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The highly combustible celluloid was a fire hazard too, so the prudent producer would strip the film for re-usable minerals and destroy the waste. The fact that some of that waste contained the life work of a Buster Keaton or a Rex Ingram didn’t really register. How many people archive their newspapers, or their Facebook page?

Every so often, happily, something is plucked from the maw of time. The latest rediscovery is five new minutes of Keaton’s 1922 comedy The Blacksmith. You can read about the rediscovery, and catch a glimpse of the footage, in this excellent article from the (other) Guardian: Here

Posted by Kevin McGee

A Quote on Thursday

Laurel & HardyLaurel & Hardy
The Laurel-Hardy Murder Case (1930): Ollie (To Stan): “Where were you born?”Stan (To Ollie): “I don’t know

Ollie (To Stan): “Fancy not knowing where you were born

Stan (To Ollie): “Well I was too young to remember“​​​​​​​​

Daniel Day LewisDaniel Day Lewis
Daniel Day Lewis:
You don’t merely give over your creativity to making a film, you give over your life in theatre, by contrast, you live these two rather strange lives simultaneously you have no option but to confront the mould on last night’s washing-up.”
Marcel Archard
Marcel Archard:
Women like silent men. They think they’re listening.”

Abraham LincolnAbraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln:

Tis better to be silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt.”

Irish Proverb

Irish Proverb:
A silent mouth is sweet to hear.”

Samuel GoldwynSamuel Goldwyn

Samuel Goldwyn:

A wide screen just makes a bad film twice as bad.”

Alfred HitchcockAlfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock:
“The length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder.”

Quentin TarantinoQuentin Tarantino

Quentin Tarantino:

When people ask me if I went to film school I tell them, ‘No, I went to films.”

Posted by “Michael ‘Charlie’ McGee

Friday Facts


Some facts I found online about silent film that were published on www.oldmagazinearticles.com/silent_movie_history_article in 1947 by journalist Richard G. Hubler.

The Jungle

Film production companies were fierce busy back in the silent era, how about averaging three movies per week.

Tom Hanks

With that sort of work, what type of salary were some of the early film production crews on, well how about a good pay for a Hollywood film executive which would be around $50.00 per week.

Silent Film Extras

And then there were the film extras who were on about $1.50 per day. (Did they get their meals provided for as well I wonder)

Silent Film Director

Film directors did a bit better though, they were on about $150.00 per week. (No wonder they all lived in luxury)


And sure Cameramen were also well thought of with a salary of $80.00 per week.


Scriptwriters had to be very prolific, since they were averaging about $25 per script – must have been very heavy work on an old type-writer though.

Money Behind the Movies

And finally, Money must have really stretched far back then: About $500.00 for a big-budget production back in the silent-era – no wonder they could afford to squeeze out three movies per week. More next week. Log in and find out what new facts I have to reveal.

Posted by Michael ‘Charlie’ McGee

Charlie’s Sunday Quote


All I need to make a comedy is a park, a policeman and a pretty girl.~ Charlie Chaplin

A Charlie Snippet

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