Sins of the Fathers (1928)

73 mins | Drama | 29 December 1928

Full page view
HISTORY

Although the Sep 1928 issue of Motion Picture stated that Olga Baclanova was set to play the leading lady opposite German star Emil Jannings, Ruth Chatterton was ultimately cast in the role. Sins of the Fathers was said to be Jannings’s fifth American-made picture. Production began on 7 Jul 1928 at Paramount Famous Lasky Corp.’s studio in Hollywood, CA, according to a directory chart in the 11 Aug 1928 Exhibitors Herald and Moving Picture World and an item in the 28 Jul 1928 Motion Picture News. The silent version was filmed first, followed by “production of the audible sequences…on the soundproof stage by Roy J. Pomeroy, director of sound effects at the Paramount Studios in Hollywood,” as stated in the 1 Sep 1928 issue of Paramount Around the World.
       Prior to the film’s general release on 29 Dec 1928, it opened at the Ambassador Theatre in St. Louis, MO, according to that day’s St. Louis Star and Times. ...

More Less

Although the Sep 1928 issue of Motion Picture stated that Olga Baclanova was set to play the leading lady opposite German star Emil Jannings, Ruth Chatterton was ultimately cast in the role. Sins of the Fathers was said to be Jannings’s fifth American-made picture. Production began on 7 Jul 1928 at Paramount Famous Lasky Corp.’s studio in Hollywood, CA, according to a directory chart in the 11 Aug 1928 Exhibitors Herald and Moving Picture World and an item in the 28 Jul 1928 Motion Picture News. The silent version was filmed first, followed by “production of the audible sequences…on the soundproof stage by Roy J. Pomeroy, director of sound effects at the Paramount Studios in Hollywood,” as stated in the 1 Sep 1928 issue of Paramount Around the World.
       Prior to the film’s general release on 29 Dec 1928, it opened at the Ambassador Theatre in St. Louis, MO, according to that day’s St. Louis Star and Times.

Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Evening News [Harrisburg, PA]
27 Dec 1928
p. 18
Exhibitors Herald and Moving Picture World
11 Aug 1928
p. 77
Film Daily
3 Feb 1929
---
Harrison's Reports
1 Dec 1928
---
Joplin Globe [Joplin, MO]
16 Dec 1928
p. 17
Motion Picture
Jan 1929
p. 62
Motion Picture
Sep 1928
pp. 34-35
Motion Picture Classic
Sep 1928
---
Motion Picture Classic
Oct 1928
p. 8
Motion Picture Magazine
Oct 1928
p. 14
Motion Picture News
21 Jul 1928
p. 237
Motion Picture News
28 Jul 1928
p. 284
Motion Picture News
4 Aug 1928
---
Motion Picture News
11 Aug 1928
---
Motion Picture News
25 Aug 1928
---
Motion Picture News
15 Sep 1928
---
Motion Picture News
29 Sep 1928
---
New York Times
28 Jan 1929
p. 21
Paramount Around the World
1 Jul 1928
---
Paramount Around the World
1 Sep 1928
---
Philadelphia Inquirer
28 Dec 1928
p. 8
Salt Lake Telegram [Salt Lake City, UT]
28 Dec 1928
p. 6
St. Louis Globe-Democrat
16 Dec 1928
p. 40
St. Louis Star and Times [St. Louis, MO]
15 Dec 1928
---
Variety
30 Jan 1929
p. 26
DETAILS
Release Date:
29 December 1928
Premiere Information:
St. Louis, MO, opening: 15 Dec 1928
Production Date:
began 7 Jul 1928
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Paramount Famous Lasky Corp.
28 December 1928
LP25953
Physical Properties:
Silent with sound sequences
Singing seq, sd eff, and mus score by Movietone
Black and White
Sound, also silent
Also si; 7,724 ft.
Duration(in mins):
73
Length(in feet):
7,845
Length(in reels):
10
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Wilhelm Spengler, a German-American restaurateur, falls for Gretta, an unprincipled adventuress, and Wilhelm's wife, already sick from overwork, dies of a broken heart. With the advent of Prohibition, Gretta persuades Wilhelm to become a bootlegger; he amasses a fortune, sending his son, Tom, to the best schools. Upon graduation from college, Tom, who celebrates by getting drunk, goes blind drinking his father's bootleg whiskey. Wilhelm is arrested in a raid, and Gretta runs off with his money and another man. His fortune gone, his son blind, and himself serving a prison term, Wilhelm's spirit is broken. He wins an early release for good behavior and becomes a waiter in a beer garden. One day he comes across his son, cured of blindness, and they are happily ...

More Less

Wilhelm Spengler, a German-American restaurateur, falls for Gretta, an unprincipled adventuress, and Wilhelm's wife, already sick from overwork, dies of a broken heart. With the advent of Prohibition, Gretta persuades Wilhelm to become a bootlegger; he amasses a fortune, sending his son, Tom, to the best schools. Upon graduation from college, Tom, who celebrates by getting drunk, goes blind drinking his father's bootleg whiskey. Wilhelm is arrested in a raid, and Gretta runs off with his money and another man. His fortune gone, his son blind, and himself serving a prison term, Wilhelm's spirit is broken. He wins an early release for good behavior and becomes a waiter in a beer garden. One day he comes across his son, cured of blindness, and they are happily reunited.

Less

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.