Flesh and the Devil (1926)

Romance | 25 December 1926

Director:

Clarence Brown

Cinematographer:

William Daniels

Editor:

Lloyd Nosler

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
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HISTORY

Referring to the picture as The Flesh and the Devil, the 23 May 1925 Motion Picture News announced the film as one of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s (M-G-M) forthcoming “Quality 52” pictures for their next season. Based on the 1893 German novel by Hermann Sudermann, the picture was billed as a “Victor Seastrom-John Gilbert Special.” The 6 Jun 1925 Motion Picture News listed Carmel Myers as the female lead. However, over ten months later, the 23 Apr 1926 FD reported that Seastrom was replaced by director Clarence Brown, and actress Greta Garbo would be co-starring with John Gilbert. The picture marked her first pairing with Gilbert.
       Frederica Sagor was listed as adapting the novel in the 24 Nov 1925 FD, but she did not receive a writing credit in contemporary reviews.
       According to the 4 Sep 1926 Motion Picture News, principal photography began the previous week at M-G-M’s Culver City, CA, studios. Two months later, the 7 Nov 1926 FD announced that production had recently completed.
       An article in the 25 Jan 1927 FD reported that Flesh and the Devil had been held over at New York City’s Capitol Theatre for a third week, marking the first picture to ever be granted such a long run in the theater’s seven-year history. The film’s popularity was indicated on its opening day at the Capitol, when police were called in to handle the large crowds.
...

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Referring to the picture as The Flesh and the Devil, the 23 May 1925 Motion Picture News announced the film as one of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s (M-G-M) forthcoming “Quality 52” pictures for their next season. Based on the 1893 German novel by Hermann Sudermann, the picture was billed as a “Victor Seastrom-John Gilbert Special.” The 6 Jun 1925 Motion Picture News listed Carmel Myers as the female lead. However, over ten months later, the 23 Apr 1926 FD reported that Seastrom was replaced by director Clarence Brown, and actress Greta Garbo would be co-starring with John Gilbert. The picture marked her first pairing with Gilbert.
       Frederica Sagor was listed as adapting the novel in the 24 Nov 1925 FD, but she did not receive a writing credit in contemporary reviews.
       According to the 4 Sep 1926 Motion Picture News, principal photography began the previous week at M-G-M’s Culver City, CA, studios. Two months later, the 7 Nov 1926 FD announced that production had recently completed.
       An article in the 25 Jan 1927 FD reported that Flesh and the Devil had been held over at New York City’s Capitol Theatre for a third week, marking the first picture to ever be granted such a long run in the theater’s seven-year history. The film’s popularity was indicated on its opening day at the Capitol, when police were called in to handle the large crowds.

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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
24 Nov 1925
p. 5
Film Daily
23 Apr 1926
p. 2
Film Daily
7 Nov 1926
p
Film Daily
16 Jan 1927
p. 6
Film Daily
25 Jan 1927
p. 3
Film Daily
7 Feb 1930
p. 8
Motion Picture News
23 May 1925
---
Motion Picture News
6 Jun 1925
---
Motion Picture News
4 Sep 1926
---
Moving Picture World
15 Jan 1927
---
New York Times
10 Jan 1927
p. 20
Photoplay
27 Feb 1927
p. 52
Variety
12 Jan 1927
p. 14
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
Clarence Brown's Production
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Settings
Frederic Hope
Settings
COSTUMES
Ward
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Es war; Roman in zwei Bänden by Hermann Sudermann (Stuttgart, 1893), and the English language translation by Beatrice Marshall, The Undying Past (London, 1906).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHORS
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
The Flesh and the Devil
Release Date:
25 December 1926
Production Date:
late Aug--early Nov 1926
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
10 January 1927
LP23514
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
8,759
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Leo von Harden and Ulrich von Eltz, two boys who have grown up together, swear eternal friendship through a blood bond. They attend military school together, and at home on annual holiday, Leo meets the entrancing Felicitas at a ball. When her husband discovers Leo with her in her boudoir, a duel is called and the husband is killed. Forced into foreign service, Leo asks his friend Ulrich to console the widow. Three years later, Leo is pardoned by the emperor and returns to find that Felicitas has married Ulrich. Vainly, he seeks to escape her attempts to revive their former affair. Ultimately, the two men resort to a duel, each unable to fire the fatal shot. Hurrying to the scene of the duel, Felicitas falls through an ice floe to her death, removing the spell cast upon their lives and reuniting the ...

More Less

Leo von Harden and Ulrich von Eltz, two boys who have grown up together, swear eternal friendship through a blood bond. They attend military school together, and at home on annual holiday, Leo meets the entrancing Felicitas at a ball. When her husband discovers Leo with her in her boudoir, a duel is called and the husband is killed. Forced into foreign service, Leo asks his friend Ulrich to console the widow. Three years later, Leo is pardoned by the emperor and returns to find that Felicitas has married Ulrich. Vainly, he seeks to escape her attempts to revive their former affair. Ultimately, the two men resort to a duel, each unable to fire the fatal shot. Hurrying to the scene of the duel, Felicitas falls through an ice floe to her death, removing the spell cast upon their lives and reuniting the friends.

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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.