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HISTORY

According to a 15 Oct 1920 Var item, American director Paul Powell’s first film for Famous Players-Lasky British Producers, Ltd., was set to be The Mystery Road, based on a “specially written story” by British novelist E. Phillips Oppenheim. Shortly after, a 3 Dec 1920 Film Daily news brief noted that Powell had just returned from a location scouting trip in the French Riviera. The Jul—Aug 1921 Motion Picture News review stated that location filming took place in Nice, France, while a Paramount Pictures advertisement in the same publication also listed Monte Carlo, Monaco, as a location. The bulk of filming took place at the newly built Famous Players-Lasky British Producers studio in the Islington borough of London, England, according to a May 1921 Moving Picture World article. Beginning in Oct 1919, the studio had been converted from a power station on Poole Street, and The Mystery Road was said to be the fifth film shot there.
       The Dec 1920 issue of Moving Picture World announced that principal photography had begun. In its Feb—Apr 1921 issue, Motion Picture News noted that filming at the Islington studio had concluded, and, as of May 1921, the picture was said to be “past the cutting stage.”
       Several contemporary sources, including the Feb 1921 issue of Moving Picture World, noted that ballerina Phyllis Bedells, dancer M. Espinosa, and the Tiller Girls dance troupe were hired to perform in a café scene. Although a May—Jun 1921 Motion Picture News brief named Warburton Gamble, Minna Grey, and Harry Ham as cast members, they ... More Less

According to a 15 Oct 1920 Var item, American director Paul Powell’s first film for Famous Players-Lasky British Producers, Ltd., was set to be The Mystery Road, based on a “specially written story” by British novelist E. Phillips Oppenheim. Shortly after, a 3 Dec 1920 Film Daily news brief noted that Powell had just returned from a location scouting trip in the French Riviera. The Jul—Aug 1921 Motion Picture News review stated that location filming took place in Nice, France, while a Paramount Pictures advertisement in the same publication also listed Monte Carlo, Monaco, as a location. The bulk of filming took place at the newly built Famous Players-Lasky British Producers studio in the Islington borough of London, England, according to a May 1921 Moving Picture World article. Beginning in Oct 1919, the studio had been converted from a power station on Poole Street, and The Mystery Road was said to be the fifth film shot there.
       The Dec 1920 issue of Moving Picture World announced that principal photography had begun. In its Feb—Apr 1921 issue, Motion Picture News noted that filming at the Islington studio had concluded, and, as of May 1921, the picture was said to be “past the cutting stage.”
       Several contemporary sources, including the Feb 1921 issue of Moving Picture World, noted that ballerina Phyllis Bedells, dancer M. Espinosa, and the Tiller Girls dance troupe were hired to perform in a café scene. Although a May—Jun 1921 Motion Picture News brief named Warburton Gamble, Minna Grey, and Harry Ham as cast members, they were not credited in contemporary reviews.
       The Jul—Sep 1921 issue of Exhibitors Herald and Jul—Aug 1921 Motion Picture News announced a U.S. release date of 10 Jul 1921.
       E. Phillips Oppenheim later adapted the story into a novel of the same name, published in Boston, MA, in 1923 by Little, Brown and Company.
More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Exhibitors Herald
Jul--Sep 1921.
---
Film Daily
3 Dec 1920.
---
Motion Picture News
Feb--Apr 1921.
---
Motion Picture News
May--Jun 1921.
---
Motion Picture News
Jul--Aug 1921.
---
Motion Picture News
Jul--Aug 1921
p. 335.
Moving Picture World
Dec 1920.
---
Moving Picture World
Feb 1921.
---
Moving Picture World
May 1921.
---
Variety
15 Oct 1920.
---
Wid's Daily
3 Dec 1920.
---
DETAILS
Release Date:
10 July 1921
Production Date:
late 1920--early 1921
Copyright Claimant:
Famous Players-Lasky British Producers
Copyright Date:
14 July 1921
Copyright Number:
LP16761
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
4,965
Length(in reels):
5
Countries:
United Kingdom, United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Gerald Dombey confesses to his fiancée, Lady Susan Farrington, that while in southern England he has had an affair with a peasant girl, Vera Lypasht. Later, while motoring to Nice accompanied by his friend Christopher Went, he encounters Myrtile Sargot, a girl who has left home to escape parental abuse; eventually he persuades Lady Susan to give her refuge, though Susan is mistrustful of the arrangement. One night in a cafe, Gerald again meets Vera with her "brother" Luigi, and thereafter he continues to see her. When Gerald discovers that Luigi is her lover and that Christopher has fallen in love with Susan, he attempts suicide; but he is deterred when he realizes that he is in love with ... +


Gerald Dombey confesses to his fiancée, Lady Susan Farrington, that while in southern England he has had an affair with a peasant girl, Vera Lypasht. Later, while motoring to Nice accompanied by his friend Christopher Went, he encounters Myrtile Sargot, a girl who has left home to escape parental abuse; eventually he persuades Lady Susan to give her refuge, though Susan is mistrustful of the arrangement. One night in a cafe, Gerald again meets Vera with her "brother" Luigi, and thereafter he continues to see her. When Gerald discovers that Luigi is her lover and that Christopher has fallen in love with Susan, he attempts suicide; but he is deterred when he realizes that he is in love with Myrtile. +

GENRE
Genre:
Sub-genre:
Society


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.