Ray Lissner

Last updated
Ray Lissner
Born(1903-01-10)January 10, 1903
New York, New York, United States
DiedApril 28, 1944(1944-04-28) (aged 41)
Woodland Hills, California, United States
Years active1926–37

Ray Lissner (January 10, 1903 – April 28, 1944) was an American filmmaker who worked during the end of the silent era into the beginning of sound films. He spent his entire career as an assistant director, working with such directors such as Herbert Brenon, Charles Vidor, George Archainbaud, and Otto Brower.


Life and career

Born in New York City in 1903, [1] he began his career in movies with the 1926 silent classic, The Great Gatsby, assisting Herbert Brenon. He would work with Brenon more than any other director, collaborating with him on twelve films. Some other notable films Lissner worked on were: the original Beau Geste in 1926 (again with Brenon); Flying Down to Rio, the first film teaming Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire; and The Gay Divorcee, again with Astaire and Rogers. [2]

Lissner would die in 1944 at the age of 41. [1]


(as per AFI's database) [2]

YearTitleRoleSilent (S)/Talkie (T)Notes
1926 The Great Gatsby Assistant DirectorS
1926 Beau Geste Assistant DirectorS
1927 God Gave Me Twenty Cents Assistant DirectorS
1927 The Potters Assistant DirectorS
1927 Sorrell and Son Assistant DirectorS
1928 Laugh, Clown, Laugh Assistant DirectorS
1929 The Rescue Assistant DirectorS & T
1930 The Case of Sergeant Grischa Assistant DirectorS & T
1930 Lummox Assistant DirectorT
1931 Beau Ideal Assistant DirectorT
1931 Transgression Assistant DirectorT
1931 The Gay Diplomat Assistant DirectorT
1932 Girl of the Rio Assistant DirectorT
1932 Penguin Pool Murder Assistant DirectorT
1933 Headline Shooter Assistant DirectorT
1933 Cross Fire Assistant DirectorT
1933 Flying Down to Rio Assistant DirectorT
1934 Red Morning Assistant DirectorT
1934 The Meanest Gal in Town Assistant DirectorT
1934 George White's Scandals Assistant DirectorT
1934 Wednesday's Child Assistant DirectorT
1934 Where Sinners Meet Assistant DirectorT
1934 The Gay Divorcee Second Unit DirectorT
1935 Peter Ibbetson Second Unit DirectorT
1936 The Return of Sophie Lang Assistant DirectorT
1936 Lady Be Careful Assistant DirectorT
1936 Wedding Present Assistant DirectorT
1937 Her Husband Lies Assistant DirectorT
1937 She's No Lady Assistant DirectorT
1937 The Great Gambini Assistant DirectorT
1937 John Meade's Woman Assistant DirectorT
1937 A Doctor's Diary Assistant DirectorT

Related Research Articles

Ginger Rogers American actress and dancer

Ginger Rogers was an American actress, dancer, and singer during the "Golden Age" of Hollywood and is often considered an American icon. She won an Academy Award for Best Actress for her starring role in Kitty Foyle (1940), but is best remembered for performing during the 1930s in RKO's musical films with Fred Astaire. Her career continued on stage, radio and television throughout much of the 20th century.

Fred Astaire American actor, dancer, singer, choreographer and television presenter

Fred Astaire was an American actor, dancer, singer, choreographer, and television presenter. He is widely considered the most influential dancer in the history of film.

Herbert Brenon Irish film director

Herbert Brenon was an Irish film director, actor and screenwriter during the era of silent movies through the 1930s.

Hermes Pan

Hermes Pan was an American dancer and choreographer, principally remembered as Fred Astaire's choreographic collaborator on the famous 1930s movie musicals starring Astaire and Ginger Rogers. He worked on nearly two dozen films and TV shows with Astaire. He won both an Oscar and an Emmy for his dance direction.

Mary Brian American actress

Mary Brian was an American actress, who made the transition from silent films to sound films.

<i>Shall We Dance</i> (1937 film) 1937 film by Mark Sandrich

Shall We Dance, released in 1937, is the seventh of the ten Astaire-Rogers musical comedy films. The idea for the film originated in the studio's desire to exploit the successful formula created by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart with their 1936 Broadway hit On Your Toes. The musical featured an American dancer getting involved with a touring Russian ballet company. In a major coup for RKO, Pandro Berman managed to attract the Gershwins – George Gershwin who wrote the symphonic underscore and Ira Gershwin the lyrics – to score this, their second Hollywood musical after Delicious in 1931.

<i>A Daughter of the Gods</i> 1916 film by Herbert Brenon

A Daughter of the Gods was a 1916 American silent fantasy drama film written and directed by Herbert Brenon. The film was controversial because of the sequences of what was regarded as superfluous nudity by the character Anitia, played by Australian swimming star Annette Kellermann. The scene is regarded as the first complete nude scene by a major star, which occurred during a waterfall sequence, though most of Kellerman's body is covered by her long hair. It was filmed by Fox Film Corporation in Kingston, Jamaica, where huge sets were constructed, and directed by Herbert Brenon.

Mark Sandrich

Mark Sandrich was an American film director, writer, and producer.

<i>The Great Gatsby</i> (1926 film) 1926 film by Herbert Brenon

The Great Gatsby is a 1926 American silent drama film directed by Herbert Brenon. It is the first film adaptation of the 1925 novel of the same name by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Warner Baxter portrayed Jay Gatsby and Lois Wilson as Daisy Buchanan.

Pauline Curley American actress

Pauline Curley was a vaudeville and silent film actress from Holyoke, Massachusetts. Her film career spanned much of the silent era, from 1915-1928.

<i>Beau Ideal</i> 1931 film by Herbert Brenon

Beau Ideal is a 1931 American pre-Code adventure film directed by Herbert Brenon and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The film was based on the 1927 adventure novel Beau Ideal by P. C. Wren, the third novel in a series of five novels based around the same characters. Brenon had directed the first in the series, Beau Geste, which was a very successful silent film in 1926. The screenplay was adapted from Wren's novel by Paul Schofield, who had also written the screenplay for the 1926 Beau Geste, with contributions from Elizabeth Meehan and Marie Halvey.

<i>The Song and Dance Man</i> 1926 film

The Song and Dance Man is a 1926 American silent comedy-drama film produced by Famous Players-Lasky and released through Paramount Pictures. It is based on a play by George M. Cohan and was directed by Herbert Brenon. A copy of the film is housed in the Library of Congress collection. Of its original seven reels, only the final five survive.

Lummox is a 1930 American pre-Code sound film directed by Herbert Brenon and starring Winifred Westover. It was released through United Artists, and based on a 1923 novel by Fannie Hurst.

Charles R. Rogers, also known as Chas. R. Rogers, was an American film producer whose career spanned both the silent and sound film eras. He should not be confused with Charles "Buddy" Rogers, who was an actor and film producer, as well as being married to Mary Pickford. Rogers began his career on the 1924 silent film, A Cafe in Cairo, produced by the short-lived Hunt Stromberg Productions. After Stromberg ceased productions in 1925, Rogers would found his own independent company, Charles R. Rogers Productions. He would also produce for major studios such as RKO Radio Pictures, Universal, and United Artists. The pinnacle of his career would be from 1936 to 1938 when he was chosen as the vice-president in charge of production for Universal Pictures. He died as the result of injuries sustained in a car accident in 1957.

Agostino Borgato, sometimes known as Al Borgato, was an Italian actor and director, before moving to Hollywood in the mid-1920s. Borgato acted and/or directed about fifteen films in his native Italy between 1915 and 1922. In the 1920s, he also acted on the stage in both Italy and England. In 1925 Borgato immigrated to the United States, where he began his American acting career in Herbert Brenon's silent film, The Street of Forgotten Men.

John W. Boyle American cinematographer

John W. Boyle, also credited as John Boyle, was an American cinematographer whose career spanned from the silent era through the 1950s. Over his career he would photograph more than 150 films, including features, shorts and documentaries. He would also work on several British films over the course of his career.

Harry Bowen was an American character actor of the silent and sound film eras. Born on October 4, 1888 in Brooklyn, New York, he broke into the film industry doing film shorts during the silent era. His work on shorts continued into talking pictures, and it was in 1929 that he made his first appearance in a full-length feature, with a small role in Red Hot Rhythm, directed by Leo McCarey. During his 20-year career, Bowen appeared in over 150 films, most of them film shorts. Other notable films in which he appeared include: the 1933 classic King Kong; Flying Down to Rio (1933), which was the first on-screen pairing of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers; John Ford's 1935 comedy, The Whole Town's Talking, starring Edward G. Robinson; and Next Time We Love (1936), starring Margaret Sullavan, James Stewart, and Ray Milland. His final screen performance, according to AFI, was the 1939 film, The Day the Bookies Wept, starring Joe Penner and Betty Grable.

George Nicholls Jr., also known as George Nichols Jr., was an American director and editor during the 1930s. Born to show business parents, and son of prolific actor and director George Nichols, he entered the film industry at the tail end of the silent film era, working as an editor for the Paramount Famous Lasky Corporation. After moving to RKO Pictures in 1933, Nicholls shortly began directing films by the end of the year. His career was cut short when he died in a car accident while driving to the location of his final film.

Edward Killy was an American director, assistant director and production manager in films and television. He was one of the few individuals to be nominated for the short-lived Academy Award for Best Assistant Director. During his 30-year career he worked on over 75 films and television shows.

William P. S. Earle American film director

William Pitt Striker Earle was an American director of the silent film era. He attended Columbia University and worked for a time as a photographer before breaking into the movie business by sneaking onto the lot of Vitagraph Company of America to observe how directors worked. After a few days of this, Earle approached the studio president and was given his first movie to direct, For the Honor of the Crew, a short about a crew race at Columbia University. He subsequently directed a number of features and shorts for Vitagraph. Later he worked with producer David O. Selznick.


  1. 1 2 "Ray Lissner". Find a Grave. Archived from the original on September 30, 2014. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
  2. 1 2 Ray Lissner&SortType=ASC&SortCol=RELEASE_YEAR "Ray Lissner" Check |url= value (help). American Film Institute. Retrieved September 30, 2014.