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HISTORY

Referring to the picture as Scraps, the 13 Jun 1925 Exhibitors Trade Review announced that William Beaudine would be directing Mary Pickford in their second film together, following the completion of their first picture, Little Annie Rooney (1925, see entry), within the next two weeks. The 20 Jun 1925 Motion Picture News reported that Little Annie Rooney had wrapped production, and most of the crew were retained by Pickford to assist in Scraps. Pickford stated: “I have never found a director who better understood the type of picture I want to make than Mr. Beaudine.”
       On 12 Aug 1925, Var announced that filming on Scraps would begin that week. Locations were to take place at the Pickford-Fairbanks Studios in Hollywood, CA. The 14 Oct 1925 Var reported that production was underway. During one scene, Mary Pickford slipped from a hammock while holding an infant in her arms, and fell into a man-made swamp. Several crewmembers reportedly pulled them from the three-foot depth, but no injuries were noted.
       Both the 11 Oct 1925 FD and the Dec 1925 Photoplay referred to the picture as The Baby Farm.
       The 19 Dec 1925 Moving Picture World stated that production had completed, and Pickford was about to begin several weeks of supervising the cutting and titling of Scraps. However, several additional scenes were filmed in the following weeks, in conjunction with the new title, Sparrows, which was announced in the 22 Jan 1926 FD. One month later, the 28 Feb 1926 ... More Less

Referring to the picture as Scraps, the 13 Jun 1925 Exhibitors Trade Review announced that William Beaudine would be directing Mary Pickford in their second film together, following the completion of their first picture, Little Annie Rooney (1925, see entry), within the next two weeks. The 20 Jun 1925 Motion Picture News reported that Little Annie Rooney had wrapped production, and most of the crew were retained by Pickford to assist in Scraps. Pickford stated: “I have never found a director who better understood the type of picture I want to make than Mr. Beaudine.”
       On 12 Aug 1925, Var announced that filming on Scraps would begin that week. Locations were to take place at the Pickford-Fairbanks Studios in Hollywood, CA. The 14 Oct 1925 Var reported that production was underway. During one scene, Mary Pickford slipped from a hammock while holding an infant in her arms, and fell into a man-made swamp. Several crewmembers reportedly pulled them from the three-foot depth, but no injuries were noted.
       Both the 11 Oct 1925 FD and the Dec 1925 Photoplay referred to the picture as The Baby Farm.
       The 19 Dec 1925 Moving Picture World stated that production had completed, and Pickford was about to begin several weeks of supervising the cutting and titling of Scraps. However, several additional scenes were filmed in the following weeks, in conjunction with the new title, Sparrows, which was announced in the 22 Jan 1926 FD. One month later, the 28 Feb 1926 FD reported the second round of photography had ended. The 6 Mar 1926 Moving Picture World. noted the seven-month long production, which was currently in the editing phase.
       Sparrows premiered on 14 May 1926 at Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. It was advertised as part of a “unique double-feature” with Black Pirate (1926, see entry), starring Pickford’s husband, Douglas Fairbanks, and also marking that film’s West Coast debut, as announced in the 29 May 1926 Moving Picture World. Nearly five months later, Sparrows was released by United Artists in New York City at the Mark Strand Theatre to rave reviews, according to the 9 Oct 1926 Moving Picture World. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Exhibitors Trade Review
13 Jun 1925
p. 34.
Film Daily
11 Oct 1925
p. 8.
Film Daily
22 Jan 1926
p. 1.
Film Daily
28 Feb 1926
p. 1.
Film Daily
26 Sep 1926
p. 6.
Motion Picture News
20 Jun 1925.
---
Moving Picture World
19 Dec 1925
p. 661.
Moving Picture World
13 Feb 1926
p. 534.
Moving Picture World
6 Mar 1926
p. 30.
Moving Picture World
29 May 1926
p. 395.
Moving Picture World
9 Oct 1926
p. 370.
New York Times
7 Sep 1926
p. 21.
Photoplay
Dec 1925
p. 104.
Photoplay
Aug 1926
p. 55.
Variety
12 Aug 1925
p. 26.
Variety
14 Oct 1925
p. 12.
Variety
22 Sep 1926
p. 14.
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
The Baby Farm
Scraps
Release Date:
19 September 1926
Premiere Information:
Hollywood premiere: 14 May 1926 at Grauman's Egyptian Theatre
New York opening: 19 September 1926
Production Date:
mid August--December 1925
Copyright Claimant:
The Pickford Corp.
Copyright Date:
30 April 1926
Copyright Number:
LP22664
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
7,763
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In a corner of the southern swamplands, Grimes and his sullen, halfwitted wife and brutal son, Ambrose, maintain a farm for unwanted children, who are mistreated, nearly starved, and virtually imprisoned by their evil guardians. Mama Mollie, the oldest of the children, protects the others as best she can and bolsters their courage by having them believe that God will care for them as He does for the sparrows. A child (Doris) is kidnaped from the city, and Grimes tells his son to throw her into the swamp to keep the police off his trail; Mollie rescues her from Ambrose and battles Grimes with a pitchfork, then plans an escape with her band of "sparrows." After miles of dangers through the alligator-ridden swamp, the children find the police trailing Grimes; his wife and son are arrested, but the kidnapers escape and are pursued by motorboat and end in watery deaths. Mollie finds happiness at last when her entire brood is adopted by a ... +


In a corner of the southern swamplands, Grimes and his sullen, halfwitted wife and brutal son, Ambrose, maintain a farm for unwanted children, who are mistreated, nearly starved, and virtually imprisoned by their evil guardians. Mama Mollie, the oldest of the children, protects the others as best she can and bolsters their courage by having them believe that God will care for them as He does for the sparrows. A child (Doris) is kidnaped from the city, and Grimes tells his son to throw her into the swamp to keep the police off his trail; Mollie rescues her from Ambrose and battles Grimes with a pitchfork, then plans an escape with her band of "sparrows." After miles of dangers through the alligator-ridden swamp, the children find the police trailing Grimes; his wife and son are arrested, but the kidnapers escape and are pursued by motorboat and end in watery deaths. Mollie finds happiness at last when her entire brood is adopted by a millionaire. +

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.