4. Comes the Revolution
It was in the late summer that the blow fell. A new
contraption had been peddled around the studios, a
device for producing pictures that talked, by means
of a wax recording of the actors' voices, synchronized
with the film projector. But the well-established producers did not fall for any such newfangled nonsense; besides, the cost of wiring all the theaters
for sound would be prohibitive. It remained for the
comparatively obscure and financially worried Warner Brothers to take a chance on the new process,
which they named the Vitaphone. They hired Al
Jolson, one of the most musical stars of the
day, selected a maudlin play entitled The Jazz
Singer, cast movie-tried-and-true May McAvoy as leading lady, and went to work. This was not the
first time that Warner Brothers had experimented
with this process, for as early as 1926 they had produced a silent film--Don Juan (see page 193) --with
a synchronized musical score. And in May, 1927,
Fox launched the Movietone Newsreel, using sound.
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: A Pictorial History of the Movies.
Contributors: Deems Taylor - Author, Marcelene Peterson - Author, Bryant Hale - Author.
Publisher: Simom and Schuster.
Place of publication: New York.
Publication year: 1943.
Page number: 201.
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