Thomas Ince: Hollywood's Independent Pioneer

By Brian Taves | Go to book overview

13
The Studio Resumes Production,
1922–1923

After four months of idleness, the Ince studio was ready to begin operating again.1The Silver Sheet tried to make the most of it: “A brief lull in production work had given every one on the Ince lot a new supply of pep and enthusiasm for the business of picture-making.”2

Under the new contract, Ince’s first release was in September 1922: Skin Deep. The story was inspired by the notorious East Side gangster “Monk” Eastman, whose real name was William Delaney. The law was on his trail when he joined the army in 1917, but he earned the Croix de Guerre and other decorations that won him a restoration of full citizenship. His gang was unable to lure him back into a criminal life after his demobilization, and Delaney was murdered on Christmas night by an unknown assailant. Buried as a private in his uniform, Delaney was honored as one who had been redeemed by the war.3Skin Deep took this theme in new directions.

The surviving version of Skin Deep, the Netherlands release cut, De Man Met Het Dubbele Gelaat (The Man with the Double Face), appears to be just over a full reel shorter than what American audiences saw. The beginning is entirely eliminated; in the American version, veteran “Bud” Doyle (Milton Sills) tries to put his criminal past behind him when he returns from heroic service. Quickly forgotten by the crowds that acclaimed his battlefield valor, he drifts toward his old tenement haunts.

-199-

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Thomas Ince: Hollywood's Independent Pioneer
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Screen Classics ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Illustrations vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Introduction 1
  • Part 1 - Beginnings, 1880–1912 15
  • 1 - Stage Apprenticeship 17
  • 2 - Starting in Films 23
  • Part 2 - Making a Reputation, 1912–1915 39
  • 3 - The Job of a Producer 41
  • 4 - Establishing a Studio 53
  • Part 3 - Innovations, 1914–1917 73
  • 5 - Generic Experimentation 75
  • 6 - The Prescient Failure 89
  • Part 4 - Paramount, 1917–1921 109
  • 7 - A Fresh Start 111
  • 8 - The Star Series 119
  • 9 - World War I and Specials 143
  • Part 5 - The Perils of An Independent, 1919–1924 159
  • 10 - Associated Producers, 1919–1921 161
  • 11 - The Inevitable Merger, 1921–1922 177
  • 12 - War with First National, 1922 189
  • 13 - The Studio Resumes Production, 1922–1923 199
  • 14 - Case Study of a Production and Its Personnel- Her Reputation, 1922–1923 211
  • 15 - Initial Distribution beyond First National, 1923 231
  • 16 - At the Crossroads, 1923–1924 247
  • 17 - The Steady Hum of Independent Production, 1924 255
  • Epilogue 271
  • Notes 283
  • Bibliography 343
  • Index 355
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