CONTEXT

July 6, 2011

Tipping point

A very small, very bad movie premiered on this date in 1928 – the only nice thing the critics had to say was that the three musical numbers weren’t too bad.  Curiously, it was a crime film, so singing and dancing seemed a little out of place.

But the audience didn’t really care much about the plot or the acting or the directing – which were all panned – and they stood in lines around the block to see it.

What people cared about was the sound.  Lights of New York was the very first all-talking picture.  It cost about 25 grand to make and earned $1.3 million after it opened nationwide.  And in a few short months, every set of a silent was shut down and studios made only talkies.

Here is what was reportedly one of the high points:

***

Many happy returns to the absolutely fabulous Jennifer Saunders and happy birthday wishes as well to His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, who celebrates his 76th today.

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5 Comments »

  1. After seeing her first talkie, my grandmother, Minnie Allene Gilliland, was sure that talkies would not catch on. Her question was, “How would you follow the story without reading it on the screen?”

    Comment by Celia Carroll — July 6, 2011 @ 7:08 am | Reply

  2. Fantastic for the first. Hard to believe. Also, amazing this was saved when we have lost so many great films.

    Comment by Carol — July 6, 2011 @ 9:47 am | Reply

  3. Too Good thank you.

    Comment by avery — July 8, 2011 @ 2:45 pm | Reply

  4. thats neat! 😉 p.s. I ❤ jennifer saunders! happy b-day Edina! =)

    Comment by ninachat — July 8, 2011 @ 8:52 pm | Reply


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