Full page view
HISTORY

The forward title card introduces the following information: “Tho this romance is of a time two and half centuries gone, ‘Lorna Doone’ triumphantly outlives more modern literature. Its story is never old—never new. By all tests, it stands today the best-liked and most widely read novel of great love and thrilling adventure. It has, in fact, become a literary heritage of Civilization.”
       The 21 Jan 1922 Exhibitors Herald reported, “For the past ten months, preparations have been under way for the screening of R. D. Blackmore’s classic. Many of the most spectacular scenes of the story have been filmed, several thousand feet for the prologue having been made early this summer.” Director Maurice Tourneur expected to finish the film “within the next two months.” A month later, the 18 Feb 1922 Exhibitors Herald ran an update, noting that photography “has reached the fifth week and it is expected the picture will be completed in about a month.” The 4 Mar 1922 FD reported that filming was still in progress at the Thomas M. Ince Studios in Culver City, CA, but would end in two weeks, after which, “Two months will probably be required in editing the production.” That same day, the 4 Mar 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review announced the construction of the production’s final, most demanding studio set, “one of the largest” ever built at the Ince complex: “The interior of Whitehall Chapel, London,” which occupied an entire stage, “and is unusually ornate in design decoration,” awaiting “several hundred” cast members. A full-page advertisement running in several trade magazines, including the 5 Apr 1922 FD, proclaimed that the “Magnificent ... More Less

The forward title card introduces the following information: “Tho this romance is of a time two and half centuries gone, ‘Lorna Doone’ triumphantly outlives more modern literature. Its story is never old—never new. By all tests, it stands today the best-liked and most widely read novel of great love and thrilling adventure. It has, in fact, become a literary heritage of Civilization.”
       The 21 Jan 1922 Exhibitors Herald reported, “For the past ten months, preparations have been under way for the screening of R. D. Blackmore’s classic. Many of the most spectacular scenes of the story have been filmed, several thousand feet for the prologue having been made early this summer.” Director Maurice Tourneur expected to finish the film “within the next two months.” A month later, the 18 Feb 1922 Exhibitors Herald ran an update, noting that photography “has reached the fifth week and it is expected the picture will be completed in about a month.” The 4 Mar 1922 FD reported that filming was still in progress at the Thomas M. Ince Studios in Culver City, CA, but would end in two weeks, after which, “Two months will probably be required in editing the production.” That same day, the 4 Mar 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review announced the construction of the production’s final, most demanding studio set, “one of the largest” ever built at the Ince complex: “The interior of Whitehall Chapel, London,” which occupied an entire stage, “and is unusually ornate in design decoration,” awaiting “several hundred” cast members. A full-page advertisement running in several trade magazines, including the 5 Apr 1922 FD, proclaimed that the “Magnificent Spectacle” of Lorna Doone, now completed, had been “Eight months in production!”
       The national “publication” date for Lorna Doone was 30 Oct 1922, according to the 14 Oct 1922 Exhibitors Herald, but the film did not open in Los Angeles, CA, until Saturday, 18 Nov 1922, the 25 Nov 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review noted, following a Friday night preview at the Ambassador Hotel.
       A review in the 11 Nov 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review pointed out that, although the film generally stayed true to R. D. Blackmore’s 1869 novel, Tourneur himself created the crucial scene in which “John Kidd” saved the infant prince from an assassin’s musket ball at Whitehall Chapel.
       Never given in the film, “Lorna Doone’s” family name was “Dugal.”
       The Thomas H. Ince Corporation made “elaborate preparations for exploitation tieups [tie-ins]” with national companies, according to the 4 Nov 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review and 2 Dec 1922 Exhibitors Herald. Milton Bradley Company published a new “Madge Bellamy edition” of the Lorna Doone novel, with a photograph of the actress on the dust jacket. The National Biscuit Company, maker of Lorna Doone cookies, linked with the production company to jointly advertise their products. In New York City, Tin Pan Alley music publisher M. Witmark & Sons introduced a new ballad titled “Lorna Doone,” and L’Aida Pearl Company distributed a new line of “Lorna Doone” pearls and bracelets. Dozens of clothing manufacturers and a doll maker also joined the branding bandwagon.
       For information on other film adaptations of Lorna Doone , please consult the entry for the 1951 Columbia film of the same title, directed by Phil Karlson and starring Barbara Hale and Richard Green.
       Lorna Doone was restored by Martin Scorsese's The Film Foundation with support from the George Eastman House and University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Exhibitors Herald
21 Jan 1922
p. 55.
Exhibitors Herald
18 Feb 1922
p. 58.
Exhibitors Herald
14 Oct 1922
p. 62.
Exhibitors Herald
21 Oct 1922
p. 63.
Exhibitors Herald
2 Dec 1922
p. 18.
Exhibitors Trade Review
4 Mar 1922
p. 962.
Exhibitors Trade Review
4 Nov 1922
p. 1473.
Exhibitors Trade Review
11 Nov 1922
p. 1545.
Exhibitors Trade Review
25 Nov 1922
p. 1640.
Film Daily
7 Feb 1922
p. 13.
Film Daily
4 Mar 1922
p. 3.
Film Daily
5 Apr 1922
p. 42.
Film Daily
10 Dec 1922
p. 2.
New York Times
4 Dec 1922
p. 20.
Variety
8 Dec 1922
p. 33.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Maurice Tourneur Presents
A screen version of R. D. Blackmore's famous story
A First National Attraction
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
Personally dir by
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog by
SET DECORATOR
Settings
COSTUMES
Cost by
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Lorna Doone, a Romance of Exmoor by Richard Doddridge Blackmore (London, 1869).
DETAILS
Release Date:
30 October 1922
Premiere Information:
Released nationally: 30 October 1922
Los Angeles opening: 18 November 1922
Production Date:
January - mid March 1922
Copyright Claimant:
Thomas H. Ince Corp.
Copyright Date:
12 May 1922
Copyright Number:
LP17697
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
85
Length(in feet):
6,200
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In 1671 England, the Countess of Lorne and her young daughter, Lady Lorna, stop briefly at the White Horse Inn near the coast of Devonshire. While waiting, Lorna meets John Ridd, son of a local farmer, who falls in love with the young noblewoman and gives her his knife with his name engraved in the handle. The girl in turn rewards him with her handkerchief. When the countess leaves the village, a clan of cutthroat outlaws called the Doones, led by exiled nobleman Sir Charles Ensor Doone, drives her carriage into the surf and robs the passengers. When Lorna puts up a fight using John Ridd’s knife, Sir Ensor admires her spirit and abducts her as “a fine sweetheart for a Doone some day.” John, who has followed the carriage on his horse, rolls a rock down a cliff, and, unable to stop the kidnapping, vows to fight the Doones when he grows up. Over the next few years, as Lorna blossoms into womanhood in the Doone stronghold of Bagworthy Valley, Sir Ensor Doone grows fond of his charge. One day, one of Sir Ensor’s clansmen, called “Counsellor Doone” because of his conniving ways, informs the leader that his son, Carver Doone, desires Lorna and has “no objection to a legal marriage.” However, Sir Ensor knows that Carver is malevolent, and hopes to protect Lorna from marrying him. Lorna herself fears Carver and dismisses all young men of the Doone clan because they treat their wives and wenches badly. A mile upriver from the Doone village, John Ridd has become a strapping lad searching for adventure. His cousin, Ruth, loves him secretly, but he appears uninterested. One day, while ... +


In 1671 England, the Countess of Lorne and her young daughter, Lady Lorna, stop briefly at the White Horse Inn near the coast of Devonshire. While waiting, Lorna meets John Ridd, son of a local farmer, who falls in love with the young noblewoman and gives her his knife with his name engraved in the handle. The girl in turn rewards him with her handkerchief. When the countess leaves the village, a clan of cutthroat outlaws called the Doones, led by exiled nobleman Sir Charles Ensor Doone, drives her carriage into the surf and robs the passengers. When Lorna puts up a fight using John Ridd’s knife, Sir Ensor admires her spirit and abducts her as “a fine sweetheart for a Doone some day.” John, who has followed the carriage on his horse, rolls a rock down a cliff, and, unable to stop the kidnapping, vows to fight the Doones when he grows up. Over the next few years, as Lorna blossoms into womanhood in the Doone stronghold of Bagworthy Valley, Sir Ensor Doone grows fond of his charge. One day, one of Sir Ensor’s clansmen, called “Counsellor Doone” because of his conniving ways, informs the leader that his son, Carver Doone, desires Lorna and has “no objection to a legal marriage.” However, Sir Ensor knows that Carver is malevolent, and hopes to protect Lorna from marrying him. Lorna herself fears Carver and dismisses all young men of the Doone clan because they treat their wives and wenches badly. A mile upriver from the Doone village, John Ridd has become a strapping lad searching for adventure. His cousin, Ruth, loves him secretly, but he appears uninterested. One day, while freeing a log in the rapids of the river, John is caught in a current and carried over a waterfall. As he awakens on the riverbank, he sees Lorna leaning over him, and is smitten. Recognizing him, Lorna shows John the knife he gave her years earlier, and explains that even though she does not know her real name, she is certainly not a Doone. Seeing Carver nearby carrying a musket, Lorna leads John toward the moor, the safest way back to his village. Pointing to a large promontory nearby, he tells her to climb to the top and wave a cloth if she should ever need him. Later, as Sir Ensor grows fatally ill, he gives Lorna her mother’s stolen necklace and asks forgiveness for abducting her. Privately, he signs a scroll revealing her true identity and sends it away by courier. When Carver Doone tries to force Lorna into marriage, she sends a girl to signal John from the rock, and by luck he sees her from his father’s field. Retracing his journey downriver and over the waterfall, John sneaks into the Doone village and rescues Lorna from a forced wedding. He is able to escape because Sir Ensor, with his dying breath, stops Carver and other hooligans from capturing them. Later, Carver travels to John’s village to abduct his rightful bride, and sees the arrival of a royal carriage surrounded by mounted soldiers. Thanks to Sir Ensor’s document, the Countess of Brandir has come to take charge of Lady Lorna, and return her to her proper station. John misses Lorna and travels to London to find her. He is told that Lady Lorna will attend the “Christening of the Royal Infant,” the son of King James II, in the chapel of Whitehall Palace the following day. Joining the commoners in the chapel gallery, John stops a group of anarchists from shooting the royal heir and is acclaimed as a hero. When he lifts up the infant to play with him, however, the king and his court realize John is a rube and turn him away. Lorna denounces them by surrendering her title and returning to John’s village for their marriage. Dduring the ceremony, a vengeful Carter Doone, alerted by the jealous Ruth, shoots Lorna. Outraged, John leads local peasants in a victorious attack on Bagworthy Valley, and throws Carter into a quicksand pit. Returning home, John finds Lorna on her way to recovery.
+

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

TOP SEARCHES

CASABLANCA

During World War II, Casablanca, Morocco is a waiting point for throngs of desperate refugees fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe. Exit visas, which are necessary to leave the country, are at ... >>

CITIZEN KANE

Seventy-year-old newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane dies in his palatial Florida home, Xanadu, after uttering the single word “Rosebud.” While watching a newsreel summarizing the years during which Kane ... >>

REAR WINDOW

Laid up with a broken leg during the height of summer, renowned New York magazine photographer L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries enters his last week of home confinement, bored and ... >>

RAGING BULL

In 1941, at a boxing match in Cleveland, Ohio, pandemonium breaks out when Jake La Motta, an up-and-coming young boxer, loses a decision to Jimmy Reeves, suffering his first ... >>

CITY LIGHTS

At an outdoor dedication ceremony, a tramp is discovered sleeping in the arms of a statue as it is being unveiled before a crowd. He is chased into ... >>

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.