|Directed by||Herbert Wilcox|
|Produced by|| Erich Pommer |
|Written by|| Giovanni Boccaccio (novel)|
|Starring|| Lionel Barrymore |
|Music by||Giuseppe Becce|
|Distributed by||Decla-Film |
|Country||Weimar Republic |
Decameron Nights is a 1924 British-German silent drama film directed by Herbert Wilcox and starring Lionel Barrymore, Ivy Duke and Werner Krauss.It is based on the novel Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio.
Herbert Wilcox had previously made Chu Chin Chow in Germany with Eric Pommer. Pommer invited Wilcox back to make another film. UFA would provide the story, screenplay and cast plus 50% of the finance. Wilcox would produce and direct, bring in American and British stars and 50% of the finance. Wilcox signed Ivy Duke from Britain and Lionel Barrymore from the US. They arrived in Berlin a few days before filming was to start. Wilcox loved the sets and the story but felt the script "stank to high heaven".Wilcox would only proceed if they could move forward without a script and write scenes from day to day.
Wilcox later wrote that "I got through the film on schedule, and whatever faults could be found with Decameron Nights they were not in the screenplay or continuity. The critical acclaim was extraordinary and in my view out of proportion to the merits of the film."
In The New York Times , Mordaunt Hall wrote, "Decameron Nights, as it comes to the screen, is a tedious pictorial story with some good scenic effects and at least two good performances. The whole subject, however, lacks any suggestion of dramatic value, and one may therefore find time to ponder on many things that are not in the least connected with the picture...Werner Krauss figures as the Soldan and Lionel Barrymore plays the Soldan's son, Saladin. The narrative includes a slothful account of the Soldan's wish, or, rather, his command, that Saladin marry the daughter of the King of Algrave. Saladin, who, although he is begemmed and turbaned, does very much the same thing that sons do in this day—he falls in love with another girl, Perdita, and the old Soldan is so furious that, after kissing his son, he stabs the young man. And that ends the yarn. Mr. Barrymore does what he is able in the circumstances, but his work is not brilliant. Mr. Krauss acts exceedingly well, but most of his manoeuvrings are far from interesting."
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Mark of the Vampire is a 1935 horror film, starring Lionel Barrymore, Elizabeth Allan, Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill, and Jean Hersholt, and directed by Tod Browning. It has been described as a talkie remake of Browning's silent London After Midnight (1927), though it does not credit the older film or its writers.
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Leo Birinski was a playwright, screenwriter and director. He worked in Austria-Hungary, Germany and in the United States. As a playwright in Europe he gained his biggest popularity in 1910 – 1917, then he was forgotten. From the 1920s to 1940s he worked mainly as a screenwriter, first in Germany, later in the United States, to which he emigrated in September 1927. In the United States he returned to writing the stage plays. He was writing in German and later on in the United States, in English. Until recently, only a minimal amount of information about his life was available. In addition there were many legends and rumours concerning Birinski's person, some of them even spread by himself. For example, the false report of his "suicide" in 1920 even found its way from the newspaper obituaries into encyclopedias.
The Decameron, subtitled Prince Galehaut and sometimes nicknamed l'Umana commedia, is a collection of novellas by the 14th-century Italian author Giovanni Boccaccio (1313–1375). The book is structured as a frame story containing 100 tales told by a group of seven young women and three young men sheltering in a secluded villa just outside Florence to escape the Black Death, which was afflicting the city. Boccaccio probably conceived of The Decameron after the epidemic of 1348, and completed it by 1353. The various tales of love in The Decameron range from the erotic to the tragic. Tales of wit, practical jokes, and life lessons contribute to the mosaic. In addition to its literary value and widespread influence, it provides a document of life at the time. Written in the vernacular of the Florentine language, it is considered a masterpiece of classical early Italian prose.
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Nell Gwyn is a 1926 British romance film directed by Herbert Wilcox and starring Dorothy Gish, Randle Ayrton and Juliette Compton. It was based on the 1926 novel Mistress Nell Gwyn by Marjorie Bowen and follows the life of Nell Gwynne, the mistress of Charles II. Wilcox later made a second version of the film in 1934, Nell Gwynn which starred Anna Neagle.
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Lionel Barrymore was an American actor of stage, screen, and radio. He also directed several films, wrote scripts, created etchings, sketches, and composed music. He was the eldest child of the actors Maurice Barrymore and Georgie Drew Barrymore, and his two siblings were John and Ethel; these and other family members were part of an acting dynasty. Reluctant to follow his parents' career, Barrymore appeared together with his grandmother Louisa Lane Drew in a stage production of The Rivals at the age of 15. He soon found success on stage in character roles. Although he took a break from acting in 1906–1909 to train in Paris as a painter, he was not successful as an artist, and returned to the US and acting. He also joined his family troupe, from 1910, in their vaudeville act.
Lilacs in the Spring is a 1954 British musical film starring Anna Neagle and Errol Flynn. It was the first of two movies the stars made together, the other being King's Rhapsody. It was released in the US as Let's Make Up. It was the feature film debut of Sean Connery.
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Astra Films was a British film production and distribution company of the silent era. It was set up in Leeds following the First World War by the film director Herbert Wilcox, his younger brother Charles Wilcox and H.W. Thompson, a leading figure in film distribution in the North of England. After the company's initial success, Wilcox left the firm to set up on his own and rose to become one of the most successful independent producer-directors in the world. After a merger the company released films under the name Astra-National.
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