The Mysterious Dr. Fu Manchu (1929)

80 mins | Drama | 10 August 1929

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HISTORY

The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu was a working title for the film. According to a production directory in the 20 Apr 1929 Exhibitors Herald-World, shooting began on 1 Mar 1929.
       Var reviewed the picture under the title Dr. Fu Manchu. The 1913 novel by Sax Rohmer, which was published the same year in the U.S. under the title The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu, was the first book featuring the Chinese physician. Some modern sources state that the novel incorporated material from short stories previously published by Rohmer in popular magazines.
       The Mysterious Dr. Fu Manchu was the first film to feature Rohmer's character. Warner Oland, Neil Hamilton and Jean Arthur reprised their respective roles in the 1930 Paramount production The Return of Dr. Fu Manchu (see entry), which also was directed by Rowland V. Lee. For additional information on the many films featuring Fu Manchu, please consult the entry for the 1932 M-G-M production, The Mask of Dr. Fu Manchu, directed by Charles Brabin and starring Boris Karloff as the title ... More Less

The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu was a working title for the film. According to a production directory in the 20 Apr 1929 Exhibitors Herald-World, shooting began on 1 Mar 1929.
       Var reviewed the picture under the title Dr. Fu Manchu. The 1913 novel by Sax Rohmer, which was published the same year in the U.S. under the title The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu, was the first book featuring the Chinese physician. Some modern sources state that the novel incorporated material from short stories previously published by Rohmer in popular magazines.
       The Mysterious Dr. Fu Manchu was the first film to feature Rohmer's character. Warner Oland, Neil Hamilton and Jean Arthur reprised their respective roles in the 1930 Paramount production The Return of Dr. Fu Manchu (see entry), which also was directed by Rowland V. Lee. For additional information on the many films featuring Fu Manchu, please consult the entry for the 1932 M-G-M production, The Mask of Dr. Fu Manchu, directed by Charles Brabin and starring Boris Karloff as the title character. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Exhibitors Herald-World
20 Apr 1929
p. 50.
Variety
24 Jul 1929.
---
DETAILS
Series:
Alternate Titles:
Dr. Fu Manchu
The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu
Release Date:
10 August 1929
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 20 July 1929
Production Date:
began 1 March 1929
Copyright Claimant:
Paramount Famous Lasky Corp.
Copyright Date:
9 August 1929
Copyright Number:
LP595
Physical Properties:
Sound
Movietone
Black and White
Sound, also silent
Also si; 7,695 ft.
Duration(in mins):
80
Length(in feet):
7,663
Length(in reels):
8-9
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

During the Boxer Rebellion, benevolent scientist Dr. Fu Manchu saves the life of little Lia Eltham; but soon after, his own wife and child are killed by the allied troops. Still in shock, he vows to kill an allied officer for each bloodstain on the sacred tapestry-dragon and proceeds in his plan by hypnotizing the now grown Lia to do his bidding. Under Fu's spell, Lia meets and falls in love with Jack Petrie, grandson of an officer whom Fu is determined to kill. The grandfather is mysteriously murdered, and Jack and his father go to their country home, where Fu finds them and kills the elder Petrie. In the meantime, Jack has warned Lia of Fu's nefarious deeds, and both are saved from the doctor's treacherous hands by Lia's kindly Chinese ... +


During the Boxer Rebellion, benevolent scientist Dr. Fu Manchu saves the life of little Lia Eltham; but soon after, his own wife and child are killed by the allied troops. Still in shock, he vows to kill an allied officer for each bloodstain on the sacred tapestry-dragon and proceeds in his plan by hypnotizing the now grown Lia to do his bidding. Under Fu's spell, Lia meets and falls in love with Jack Petrie, grandson of an officer whom Fu is determined to kill. The grandfather is mysteriously murdered, and Jack and his father go to their country home, where Fu finds them and kills the elder Petrie. In the meantime, Jack has warned Lia of Fu's nefarious deeds, and both are saved from the doctor's treacherous hands by Lia's kindly Chinese servant. +

GENRE
Genre:
Sub-genre:
Suspense


Subject

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.