The Luck of Geraldine Laird (1920)

Drama | 1 February 1920

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HISTORY

The working title for this film was Woman and Wife. A title change to The Luck of Geraldine Laird, after the Kathleen Norris novel upon which it was based, was announced in the 23 January 1920 Wid’s Daily. This marked the third Kathleen Norris story in which Bessie Barriscale starred. An item in the 30 May 1919 Variety reported that screen rights to The Luck of Geraldine Laird, which first ran in serialized form in Pictorial Review between October 1918 and January 1919 and was later published in novel form, had been purchased for Barriscale.
       On 13 December 1919, Motion Picture News stated that filming was set to begin after Barriscale finished work on Beckoning Roads (1919, see entry). The following month, a 3 January 1920 Camera item announced that production on The Luck of Geraldine Laird had been completed. Soon after, Barriscale hosted a preview screening for Kathleen Norris, as reported in the 17 January 1920 Camera. The 7 February 1920 Motion Picture News quoted Norris as saying: “Of all my stories which have been put on the screen, this is the best.” Around the time of the film’s theatrical release on 1 February 1920, Norris’s serialized novel was published in newspapers as a tie-in with the film’s opening, according to a 14 February 1920 Moving Picture World item.
       The National Film Preservation Board (NFPB) included this film on its list of Lost U.S. Silent Feature Films as of February 2021. ...

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The working title for this film was Woman and Wife. A title change to The Luck of Geraldine Laird, after the Kathleen Norris novel upon which it was based, was announced in the 23 January 1920 Wid’s Daily. This marked the third Kathleen Norris story in which Bessie Barriscale starred. An item in the 30 May 1919 Variety reported that screen rights to The Luck of Geraldine Laird, which first ran in serialized form in Pictorial Review between October 1918 and January 1919 and was later published in novel form, had been purchased for Barriscale.
       On 13 December 1919, Motion Picture News stated that filming was set to begin after Barriscale finished work on Beckoning Roads (1919, see entry). The following month, a 3 January 1920 Camera item announced that production on The Luck of Geraldine Laird had been completed. Soon after, Barriscale hosted a preview screening for Kathleen Norris, as reported in the 17 January 1920 Camera. The 7 February 1920 Motion Picture News quoted Norris as saying: “Of all my stories which have been put on the screen, this is the best.” Around the time of the film’s theatrical release on 1 February 1920, Norris’s serialized novel was published in newspapers as a tie-in with the film’s opening, according to a 14 February 1920 Moving Picture World item.
       The National Film Preservation Board (NFPB) included this film on its list of Lost U.S. Silent Feature Films as of February 2021.

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Camera
3 Jan 1920
p. 3
Camera
17 Jan 1920
p. 5
Exhibitors Herald
6 Dec 1919
p. 71
Motion Picture News
13 Dec 1919
p. 4286
Motion Picture News
24 Jan 1920
p. 1061, 1066
Motion Picture News
7 Feb 1920
p. 1502
Motion Picture News
14 Feb 1920
p. 1753, 1910
Moving Picture World
24 Jan 1920
p. 556
Moving Picture World
7 Feb 1920
p. 919
Moving Picture World
14 Feb 1920
p. 1098
Moving Picture World
5 Jun 1920
p. 4691
Variety
30 May 1919
p. 73
Wid's Daily
23 Jan 1920
p. 2
Wid's Daily
27 Jan 1920
p. 6
Wid's Daily
1 Feb 1920
p. 23
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel The Luck of Geraldine Laird by Kathleen Norris in Pictorial Review (Oct 1918-Jan 1919).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHOR
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Woman and Wife
Release Date:
1 February 1920
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 30 Jan 1920
Production Date:
ca. Dec 1919
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
5,000
Length(in reels):
5
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Although she is married, Geraldine Laird insists upon living with her mother, much to the disgust of her husband Dean, who would prefer a smaller house where he would see more of his family and less of his in-laws and uninvited guests. Laird has an ambition to write plays, so when Kennedy Bond, a literary agent, visits the village and tells him he has talent, Laird accompanies her back to New York. Geraldine, determined to save her husband, follows him to the city. There she accepts a job as a saleswoman and is discovered by a theatrical manager who sees her impersonations of actress Sarah Bernhardt and offers her a job. Becoming a theatrical star, Geraldine encounters her husband, the failed playwright, at a banquet given in her honor. After denouncing him in front of the guests, Geraldine later forgets her anger and they are ...

More Less

Although she is married, Geraldine Laird insists upon living with her mother, much to the disgust of her husband Dean, who would prefer a smaller house where he would see more of his family and less of his in-laws and uninvited guests. Laird has an ambition to write plays, so when Kennedy Bond, a literary agent, visits the village and tells him he has talent, Laird accompanies her back to New York. Geraldine, determined to save her husband, follows him to the city. There she accepts a job as a saleswoman and is discovered by a theatrical manager who sees her impersonations of actress Sarah Bernhardt and offers her a job. Becoming a theatrical star, Geraldine encounters her husband, the failed playwright, at a banquet given in her honor. After denouncing him in front of the guests, Geraldine later forgets her anger and they are reconciled.

Less

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.