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October 2002, Week 4


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Leo Enticknap <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Sat, 26 Oct 2002 19:09:47 +0100
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Jeremy Butler writes:

>I'd say that the zippy HIS GIRL FRIDAY (1939) is an artistically superior
>film to the rather creaky, early-sound THE FRONT PAGE (1931)

I'm not sure that I agree that this comparison is valid.  'The Front Page'
was a 'straight' filming of a social problem piece; 'His Girl Friday' was a
satirical adaptation.  I don't think you could really call the latter a
remake of the former, as the two films adapt the original play in very
different ways.  I'd also say that given the user-unfriendliness of
Vitaphone technology in production, 'The Front Page' is in many ways quite
a remarkable film in terms of its soundtrack.

>Come to think of it, weren't there a few silent and early-sound films made
>circa 1924-29 that were remade just a few years later, after sound
>technology arrived and then improved?  Titles are escaping me just now.

'Hindle Wakes' (UK 1927, dir. Maurice Elvey, then remade in the late '30s I
'Dawn' (UK 1928, dir. Herbert Wilcox, remade as 'Nurse Edith Cavell' by the
same director in 1939)
'M' (Germany 1931, dir. Fritz Lang, remade by Joseph Losey in 1951; both
films were produced by Seymour Nebenzal)


Dr. Leo Enticknap
Director, Northern Region Film and Television Archive
School of Arts and Media
University of Teesside
Middlesbrough  TS1 3BA
United Kingdom
Tel. +44-(0)1642 384022
Fax. +44-(0)1642 384099
Brainfryer: +44-(0)7710 417383

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