Man of the Moment (1935 film)

Last updated

Man of the Moment
"Man of the Moment" (1935).jpg
Directed by Monty Banks
Written by
Based on"Water Nymph" by Yves Mirande
Produced by Irving Asher
Starring
Cinematography
Edited by Bert Bates
Production
company
Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
Release date
September 1935
Running time
82 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
LanguageEnglish

Man of the Moment is a 1935 British comedy film directed by Monty Banks and starring Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Laura La Plante and Margaret Lockwood. It was made at Teddington Studios by the British subsidiary of Warner Brothers. [1] The film's art direction was by Peter Proud.

Contents

This was the first film shown on BBC Television on 12 September 1938. [2]

Plot

Office worker Mary Briany (Laura La Plante) finds out she is being demoted by the boss she secretly loves in order to make room for his girlfriend. She tries to commit suicide by jumping into the river. Tony Woodward (Douglas Fairbanks Jr.) is driving by and rescues her, much to her annoyance.

He takes her back to his mansion, but he and his butler Godfrey (Donald Calthrop) have great difficulty getting her to behave. Meanwhile, Tony is to be married the next day to childish heiress Vera Barton (Margaret Lockwood). She reveals to Tony's friend Lord Rufus Paul (Claude Hulbert) that she plans to change Tony's lifestyle completely - no more smoking or drinking. Her millionaire father (Peter Gawthorne) promises his nearly penniless future son-in-law 5000 pounds to pay for a partnership in a company.

Later, Mary crashes Tony's bachelor party, dressed as a man in his younger brother's clothes. The next day, Vera and her father find Tony, Mary, and his friends passed out on the floor. As a result, Vera breaks off the wedding.

With only £300 and deeply in debt, Tony proposes a suicide pact to Mary. They will fly to Monte Carlo to try to win a fortune at the casino. If they lose, they will kill themselves. The first day does not go well. They are ready to jump off a cliff when a gentleman finds them and gives them £20 they did not know they had won. On their second chance, they split up to gamble. Tony loses, but Mary has an incredible lucky streak and wins a large amount of money.

Meanwhile, Vera decides she wants to marry Tony after all. Rufus brings news about Tony's whereabouts, and they go to Monte Carlo. Vera embraces Tony before Mary can tell him the good news. Heartbroken, Mary climbs out on the hotel ledge, but Tony finds her and tells her he loves her. (Annoyed at being jilted, Vera decides that she wants to marry a man that no other woman would desire; she picks Rufus.)

Cast

Production

The film was one of a number that Douglas Fairbanks Jr. made in England. It was produced by Irving Asher of Warner Brothers, who had a brief to make 20 films year under the British quota system. Asher had helped finance some films Fairbanks Jr. produced in England for his own company; in return for the loan, Fairbanks Jr. agreed to appear in the next film Asher produced, which turned out to be Man of the Moment. [3] His co-star, Laura La Plante, was married to Asher. [4] The films failed and Fairbanks was broke.

Fairbanks later wrote:

Professionally, Man of the Moment was not at all what I should have done in that period. But Irving hoped that with my name and Laura's, a good supporting cast and direction by an ex-Hollywood comedian whimsically named Monty Banks, Warners would overlook the picture's quota category and release it in the States and Canada. Although they never did, I had the best time imaginable making the movie. [5]

It was an early role for Margaret Lockwood. [6]

Reception

The film never was released in the U.S. [4]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Douglas Fairbanks Jr.</span> American actor and United States naval officer (1909–2000)

Douglas Elton Fairbanks Jr., was an American actor, producer and decorated naval officer of World War II. He is best known for starring in such films as The Prisoner of Zenda (1937), Gunga Din (1939) and The Corsican Brothers (1941). The son of Douglas Fairbanks and stepson of Mary Pickford, he was first married, briefly, to actress Joan Crawford.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Margaret Lockwood</span> British stage and film actress

Margaret Mary Day Lockwood, CBE, was an English actress. One of Britain's most popular film stars of the 1930s and 1940s, her film appearances included The Lady Vanishes (1938), Night Train to Munich (1940), The Man in Grey (1943), and The Wicked Lady (1945). She was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best British Actress for the 1955 film Cast a Dark Shadow. She also starred in the television series Justice (1971–74).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Laura La Plante</span> American actress

Laura La Plante was an American film actress, whose more notable performances were in the silent era.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Monty Banks</span> Italian comedian and director

Montague (Monty) Banks, born Mario Bianchi, was a 20th century Italian-born American comedian, film actor, director and producer who achieved success in the UK and the United States.

Irving Asher was an American film producer. Born in San Francisco in September 1903, he began his film production career in Hollywood in 1919. After joining the staff of Warner Brothers he was sent over to England as the managing director of their subsidiary Teddington Studios in Middlesex in the mid-1930s. Flynn played his first significant part as the lead in the now-lost Murder at Monte Carlo (1935), which was produced by Asher. Asher went on to join Alexander Korda's London Film Productions where he worked on the epic The Four Feathers (1939). Subsequently, he returned to Hollywood to work as a producer for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, where he earned his only Academy Award nomination for the 1941 Greer Garson film Blossoms in the Dust.

Man of the Moment may refer to:

<i>I Like Your Nerve</i> 1931 film

I Like Your Nerve is a 1931 American pre-Code romantic comedy film directed by William C. McGann, starring Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. and Loretta Young. Boris Karloff has a small role.

<i>The Church Mouse</i> 1934 film by Monty Banks

The Church Mouse is a 1934 British comedy film directed by Monty Banks and starring Laura La Plante, Ian Hunter and Edward Chapman. It was made by the British subsidiary of Warner Brothers at the company's Teddington Studios. It was made as a more expensive production than much of the studio's low-budget quota quickie output.

<i>Me and Marlborough</i> 1935 British film

Me and Marlborough is a 1935 British comedy film, directed by Victor Saville, and starring Cicely Courtneidge, Tom Walls, Barry MacKay, Peter Gawthorne, Henry Oscar and Cecil Parker.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Harold Huth</span> British actor and film producer

Harold Huth was a British actor, film director and producer.

<i>Scarlet Dawn</i> 1932 film

Scarlet Dawn is a 1932 American pre-Code romantic drama directed by William Dieterle and starring Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. and Nancy Carroll as refugees from the Russian Revolution. It is based on the novel Revolt by Mary C. McCall, Jr.

<i>Murder at Monte Carlo</i> 1934 film

Murder at Monte Carlo is a British 1934 mystery crime thriller film directed by Ralph Ince and starring Errol Flynn, Eve Gray, Paul Graetz and Molly Lamont, the production was Flynn's debut film in a lead role in England. The film is currently missing from the BFI National Archive, and is listed as one of the British Film Institute's "75 Most Wanted" lost films.

<i>Cardboard Cavalier</i> 1949 film by Walter Forde

Cardboard Cavalier is a 1948 British historical comedy film directed by Walter Forde and starring Sid Field, Margaret Lockwood and Jerry Desmonde.

<i>The Amateur Gentleman</i> (1936 film) 1936 film by Thornton Freeland

The Amateur Gentleman is a 1936 British drama film directed by Thornton Freeland and starring Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Elissa Landi, Gordon Harker and Margaret Lockwood, with music by Richard Addinsell. It is based on the 1913 novel The Amateur Gentleman by Jeffery Farnol. In an effort to prove his father's innocence of a charge of stealing, a young man disguises himself as a gentleman and travels to Regency London.

<i>Bedelia</i> (film) 1946 British film

Bedelia is a 1946 British melodrama film directed by Lance Comfort and starring Margaret Lockwood, Ian Hunter and Barry K. Barnes. It is an adaptation of the 1945 novel Bedelia by Vera Caspary with events relocated from the United States, first to England and then to Monaco.

The Girl in Possession is a 1934 British comedy film starring Laura La Plante and Henry Kendall and directed by Monty Banks, who also wrote the screenplay and featured in the film himself.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Douglas Fairbanks</span> American actor (1883–1939)

Douglas Elton Fairbanks Sr. was an American actor and filmmaker. He was best known for his swashbuckling roles in silent films including The Thief of Bagdad, Robin Hood, and The Mark of Zorro, but spent the early part of his career making comedies.

Widow's Might is a 1935 British comedy film directed by Cyril Gardner and starring Laura La Plante, Yvonne Arnaud and Garry Marsh. Produced by Irving Asher, it is based on a play by Frederick J. Jackson, adapted by Rowland Brown and Brock Williams and filmed by Warner Brothers at Teddington Studios.

<i>The Teaser</i> 1925 film

The Teaser is a 1925 American silent romantic comedy drama film written by Lewis Milestone, Edward T. Lowe Jr., and Jack Wagner based upon the play of the same name by Adelaide Matthews and Martha M. Stanley. The film was directed by William A. Seiter for Universal Pictures, and stars Laura La Plante, Pat O'Malley, Hedda Hopper, and Walter McGrail.

<i>Rulers of the Sea</i> 1939 film by Frank Lloyd

Rulers of the Sea is a 1939 American historical drama film directed by Frank Lloyd and starring Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Margaret Lockwood and Will Fyffe. The film's story is based on the voyage of the SS Savannah, the first steamship to cross the North Atlantic, from Britain to the United States. The film was made by Paramount Pictures, but featured Lockwood and Fyffe who were two of the leading stars of the British Gainsborough Pictures studios. The supporting cast features Alan Ladd.

References

  1. Wood p.86
  2. Mercer, Derrik, ed. (1989). Chronicle of the 20th Century. London: Chronicle Communications Ltd. p. 500. ISBN   978-0-582-03919-3.
  3. Stephanie Thames. "Man of the Moment". Turner Classic Movies.
  4. 1 2 Ronald Bergan (16 October 1996). "Silent comedy in the boudoir". The Guardian.
  5. A Special Relationship: Britain Comes to Hollywood and Hollywood Comes to Britain by Anthony Slide, Univ. Press of Mississippi, 15 June 2015
  6. Vagg, Stephen (29 January 2020). "Why Stars Stop Being Stars: Margaret Lockwood". Filmink.

Bibliography