Sunday, January 6, 2013

Pandora's Box plays in Latvia - Louise Brooks stars

The 1929 Louise Brooks film, Pandora's Box, played in just about every country in Europe. Some of the recent posts here on the Louise Brooks Society blog show as much. Pandora's Box also played in Latvia, one of the Baltic states.

Recently, while doing some research, I came across a number of clippings in the German-language Latvian newspaper, Rigasche Rundschau, which was published in Riga, the capital and largest city of the then newly formed nation. Apparently, Pandora's Box, a German film production, was something of a big deal in this small country, which included a sizable German-speaking population. I found this feature photo in Rigasche Rundschau. It dates from March, 1929 and notes that Brooks - a junior Paramount star - is featured in Pandora's Box. The film had premiered in Berlin only the month before.

To me, what's interesting about this clip is that it shows just how far and wide Brooks' films were distributed. [I also found clippings and advertisements for a few of her American silent films, as well as the German made Diary of a Lost Girl.] Also, I don't think I had ever seen the image on the left, of Brooks leading a German Shepard. It is, in all likelihood, a rare German publicity photo.

Pandora's Box debuted in Latvia in March, 1929 at the Splendid Palace theater in Riga. It debuted as Die Büchse der Pandora  (from Wedekind's Lulu), as can be seen in this newspaper listing of movies playing in town.

However, two-and-a-half months later it returned to Riga under a different title, Die Gottin der Sunde, which translates as The Goddess of Sunday. This is new to me! I have never seen Pandora's Box promoted under any other name, except for Lulu. Perhaps alluding to the mythological under-pinnings of Wedekind's story, The Goddess of Sunday may refer to the Greek Goddess Aphrodite, or to a well known Romanian folk tale. Does anyone know anything more about this alternative title?

[ 01/09/13 Addendum: I have been told that Die Gottin der Sunde may translate as The Goddess of Sin, which makes sense.]

1 comment:

  1. wow-
    great photo from rigasche rundschau- have never seen that before. really like how louise is dressed in that photo, too... timeless cool.


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