Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Girls Will Be Boys in San Francisco

For many moviegoers, characters that cross-dress might seem like a more recent phenomenon—as far as mainstream films are concerned.

Some have proven popular, like Tootsie (1982), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), The Birdcage (1996), and even White Chicks (2004). Others, like the brilliant and more somber Albert Nobbs (2011), have taken time to find an audience.

Looking back, there’s Some Like It Hot, in which Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon dress as women and join an all-girl band in order to hide from the mob. That was released in 1959. And then there’s Psycho, in which Anthony Perkins plays a killer who wears his dead mother's clothes. That debuted in 1960.

The depiction of characters that cross dress, in fact, goes back to the beginnings of film. And what’s more, gender bending wasn’t always played for laughs, nor was it always meant to show the unsavory side of a character. It could mean many things.

A new book by Laura Horak from Rutgers University Press, Girls Will Be Boys: Cross-Dressed Women, Lesbians, and American Cinema 1908-1934, examines the history of gender-bending female characters in films made in the first decades of the 20th century. What’s surprising is that there were hundreds of such films, and that some of them included major stars we still know, like Katharine Hepburn, Marlene Dietrich, and Greta Garbo.

Marlene Dietrich in Morocco (1931)

Scouring film archives, as well as trade publications and old studio records, Horak uncovered 476 titles featuring cross-dressed women. Though many of these films no longer exist, as is the case with many early films, Horak was able to view nearly 200 surviving examples.

Girls Will Be Boys tells the story of what Horak found. The book takes its title from a line in a 1917 newspaper article about women who found freedom in acting like men in the movies, and how that gender mobility seeped into everyday life.

Surprisingly, Horak found that cross-dressed characters regularly appeared onscreen in the 1910s and were popularly regarded as wholesome. One-time superstar Marguerite Clark played both of the title roles in The Price and the Pauper (1915). There were also female Hamlets, Marie Doro in Oliver Twist (1916), female boys, and the “Thanhouser Kid” (Marie Eline, depicted on the cover of Girls Will be Boys).

As society began to change in the wake of the First World War, the perception of cross-dressed women also began to change. In the late 1920s and early 1930s, Garbo, Dietrich, and Hepburn all made strong impressions with their onscreen (and sometimes off screen) cross-dressing. These seemingly daring performances came at the end of a long wave of gender-bending films. And things would change again.

Girls Will Be Boys: Cross-Dressed Women, Lesbians, and American Cinema 1908-1934 is a good read. It is thoroughly researched, well argued, insightful and readable. Anyone interested in LGBT history, film studies, or the early 20th century will appreciate this recommended book.

Horak, a U.C. Berkeley grad, is now an assistant professor of film studies at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. On May 31, Horak returns to the Bay Area to speak about her book at the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco. Horak will discuss her work with Jenni Olson, filmmaker, author and LGBTQ cinema expert. Additional information on the event can be found on the GLBT Historical Society website.

And on June 5, Horak will introduce a special program at this year’s San Francisco Silent Film Festival. Inspired by her new book, this two-film thematic program includes two comedies that feature cross-dressing protagonists.

I Don’t Want to Be a Man (1918), courtesy of SFSFF
One of the films is Ernst Lubitsch’s 1918 German comedy I Don’t Want to Be a Man (Ich möchte kein Mann sein), in which a high-spirited teenage tomboy (played by German film star Ossi Oswalda) longs for the freedom to smoke and drink and carouse just like a man. As a result, she has herself fitted for a tuxedo. Trouble ensues.

Also on the bill is a restoration of the 1926 Hal Roach production What’s the World Coming To?, which takes place in a future “one hundred years from now—when men have become more like women and women more like men.” The film opens with the “blushing groom” approaching the altar where his tuxedoed bride awaits.

What’s the World Coming To? (1926), courtesy of SFSFF

The Festival’s opening night film also features a character who assumes a different gender. Beggars of Life (1928) is a terse drama about a girl (played by Louise Brooks) dressed as a boy who flees the law after killing her abusive stepfather. Though not discussed in her new book, Horak wrote about the film back in 2007, when the SFSFF first screened the William Wellman-directed silent.

Louise Brooks in Beggars of Life (1928)

A variant on this post first appeared in the Huffington Post

Monday, May 30, 2016

Silent Women: New Books on Pioneers of the Cinema

There are a handful of new books on the silent film era focusing on women. Each are worth a look. Follow the links for more information or to make a purchase.

Silent Women: Pioneers of Cinema (Aurora Metro Press)
edited by Cheryl Robson Melody Bridges 

From the publisher: "It now emerges that more women were working at every level in the first 20 years of the film industry in the USA than at any point since. Early pioneers, such as Alice Guy Blaché, directed hundreds of films, invented techniques, ran businesses and set up distribution but with the rise of the male-dominated studio system, their significant contribution to the dawn of the movies has long been forgotten.

With chapters on the writers, directors, producers, stars, film editors, designers and camera women of the silent era this book acknowledges and celebrates the many talented women who were significantly involved in the rise of the industry and explains why the coming of the talkies and big business led to the inequality which exists today."

I was drawn to this book because it includes Kevin Brownlow's never before published interview with Dorothy Arzner, which is highly recommended. There is also a piece by Shelley Stamp, an academic film historian who I find interesting. Sadly, the short passage on Louise Brooks in "Female Legends of the Silver Screen" contains four factual errors.

Girls Will Be Boys: Cross-Dressed Women, Lesbians, and American Cinema, 1908-1934 (Rutgers University Press)
by Laura Horak

From the publisher: "Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo, and Katharine Hepburn all made lasting impressions with the cinematic cross-dressing they performed onscreen. What few modern viewers realize, however, is that these seemingly daring performances of the 1930s actually came at the tail end of a long wave of gender-bending films that included more than 400 movies featuring women dressed as men.

Laura Horak spent a decade scouring film archives worldwide, looking at American films made between 1908 and 1934, and what she discovered could revolutionize our understanding of gender roles in the early twentieth century. Questioning the assumption that cross-dressing women were automatically viewed as transgressive, she finds that these figures were popularly regarded as wholesome and regularly appeared onscreen in the 1910s, thus lending greater respectability to the fledgling film industry. Horak also explores how and why this perception of cross-dressed women began to change in the 1920s and early 1930s, examining how cinema played a pivotal part in the representation of lesbian identity.

Girls Will Be Boys excavates a rich history of gender-bending film roles, enabling readers to appreciate the wide array of masculinities that these actresses performed—from sentimental boyhood to rugged virility to gentlemanly refinement. Taking us on a guided tour through a treasure-trove of vintage images, Girls Will Be Boys helps us view the histories of gender, sexuality, and film through fresh eyes."

I've written about this book elsewhere. Suffice to say, it is a revelation. It's thoroughly researched, well argued, insightful and readable. Anyone interested in LGBT history, film studies, or the early 20th century will appreciate this recommended book.

REELS & RIVALS: Sisters in Silent Films (BearManor Media)
by Jennifer Ann Redmond 

From the publisher: "Female silent film stars possessed beauty, persistence, flair, and probably a sister in the business. You may have seen Mae Marsh in The Birth of a Nation (1915), Constance Talmadge in Intolerance (1916), or Lillian Gish in Broken Blossoms (1919), but their sisters also starred in major motion pictures, such as Marguerite Marsh in The Master Mystery (1919), Norma Talmadge in The Battle Cry of Peace (1915), and Dorothy Gish in Orphans of the Storm (1921). These six appeared in countless movies. Most of their films are lost, but their legends remain. Few knew at the time that these extraordinary women were more than just faces on a screen; they were complex and human, with sometimes strange parents, body image issues, and relationship struggles. Their mistakes and triumphs often mirrored our own, though they were miles away in Hollywood. Their stories of violent marriages, heartbreaking tragedies, drastic surgeries, and secret identities are finally revealed in a candid exposé of the truth behind the tinsel.

Sister stars in Reels and Rivals that are profiled include: Norma and Constance Talmadge; Lillian and Dorothy Gish; Edna Flugrath and sisters Shirley Mason and Viola Dana; Helene and Dolores Costello; Poly Ann and Loretta Young with sister Sally Blane; Constance and Faire Binney; Priscilla and Marjorie Bonner; Grace and Mina Cunard; Alice and Marceline Day; Marion and Madeline Fairbanks; Laura and Violet La Plante; Mae and Marguerite Marsh; Ella, Ida Mae, and Fay McKenzie; Beatriz and Vera Michelena; Mary and Florence Nash; Sally O’Neil and sister Molly O’Day; Mabel and Edith Taliaferro; Olive and Alma Tell; and famous Vaudevillians The Duncan Sisters and The Dolly Sisters. Illustrated with 94 studio portraits, film stills, and candid photos that capture the glamour and excitement of Hollywood’s Golden Era. Indexed"

I found this book to be a lot of fun. It is illustrated, well researched, and full of fun facts about silent era personalities both famous and not so famous (though deserving of greater recognition). Heck, there is a whole chapter on Voilet and Laura La Plante.

Theda Bara, My Mentor: Under the Wing of Hollywood's First Femme Fatale (McFarland)
by Joan Craig with Beverly F Stout

From the publisher: "As movie patrons sat in darkened theaters in January 1914, they were mesmerized by an alluring temptress with long sable hair and kohl-rimmed eyes. Theda Bara--"the vamp," as she would come to be known--would soon be one of the highest paid film stars of the 1910s, earning an unheard of $4,000 per week, before retiring from the screen in 1926.

In 1946, at age five, the author met Bara--then 61--at her Beverly Hills home and the actress became her mentor. This memoir is the story of their friendship."

There have been a few biographies of Theda Bara published in the past, each of which I enjoyed. That's why I was drawn to this new title. This book is something different. I found the first half to be an assemblage of memories and anecdotes which together shed a light on the later years of one of the great stars of the early silent era. The second half looks at Bara's films, including A Fool There Was (1914) and Cleopatra (1917). [The latter is the subject of just announced reconstruction.]  There is also a chapter on Charles Bradin, the British-born American film director who Bara married in 1921.

Mabel Normand: The Life and Career of a Hollywood Madcap (McFarland)
by Timothy Dean Lefler 

From the publisher: "American silent film star Mabel Normand (1892-1930) appeared in a string of popular movies opposite the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Fatty Arbuckle during the 1910s and 1920s, before dying of tuberculosis at age 37. Her brief but remarkable career, which included director and writer credits as well as heading her own studio and production company, was marred by scandal--police connected her to the unsolved 1922 murder of director William Desmond Taylor--that defined her legacy. This book highlights Normand's substantial yet long overlooked contributions to film history and popular culture, tracing her life from humble beginnings on Staten Island to the heights of world superstardom."

As with Theda Bara, this new book is predated by an earlier biography from 1982 by Betty Fussell as well as the blog by Marilyn Slater. Nevertheless, this book proves its worth by bringing together these sources and others in what is, at this point, the best biography a silent film superstar.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

When Louise Brooks almost signed with Pathe

These two clippings tell a story I don't think has been previously reported --  of the time in 1929 when Louise Brooks almost signed a contract with the Pathe studio. (Are there any Pathe scholars out there with access to company records who might be able to track down a copy of this contract?)

Who knows how her career would have changed had she followed through with this opportunity?

One week later, it was reported . . . . 

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Louise Brooks first radio appearance, in 1926?

In the 1940s, Louise Brooks worked in radio. That's known. Her film career had come to an end, and she found work writing copy for Walter Winchell's broadcasts, and as well as voice work appearing on a small handful of CBS radio soaps. The question arises, where these her earliest radio appearances?

I am certain the answer is no. According to a letter to the editor published in Variety in 1937, Brooks appeared on the radio in the mid-1920, most likely in 1926 while she was still a resident of NYC. (It's possible she appeared on the radio in 1927, or even 1928, as she was known to criss-cross the country during that time.)

I feel claims of E.M. Orowitz can be believed. In the past, I have found radio listings and newspaper articles which corroborate his claim. One article I came across, for example, stated that while the Louise Brooks film, A Social Celebrity, was playing at the Rivoli in New York in April, 1926, Adolphe Menjou appeared on WGBS, the Gimbel Brothers radio station in NYC. According to this newspaper report, Menjou spoke about the film and the scenes shot locally on Long Island. 

This is a significant discovery, at least in terms of Louise Brooks biography. Should there be any surviving records, documents or even (unlikely) recordings, then its significance grows.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Beggars of Life - Comes the Revolution

Not the first, but one of the earliest mentions of Beggars of Life or any Louise Brooks film in a work of film history took place in 1943 with the publication A Pictorial History of the Movies, by Deems Taylor (who, incidentally, when he was working as a music critic in New York City in the early 1920 once reviewed a Denishawn performance and mentioned Brooks). This page from A Pictorial History of the Movies comes from the chapter "Comes the Revolution" concerning the coming of sound. The next page from the book pictures Al Jolson.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

When Beggars of Life came to Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Beggars of Life is the opening night presentation at this year's San Francisco Silent Film Festival! The acclaimed 1928 Louise Brooks film, directed by Oscar winner William Wellman and starring future Oscar winner Wallace Beery, will be shown on Thursday, June 2nd at 7:00 pm at the historic Castro Theater in San Francisco. The film will be shown with live musical accompaniment by the acclaimed Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. More information, including ticket availability, may be found at HERE.

Check out this fabulous page of movie advertisements from a late, 1920s Milwaukee, Wisconsin newspaper. The description of Beggars of Life is especially intriguing. It reads "A startlingly different kind of sound and voice drama . . . . the story of love-starved, romance-hungry men . . . and a girl, their prey . . . written by the exiled literary genius, Jim Tully."

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Beggars of Life: The Sounds of a Louise Brooks' Silent Film

Beggars of Life is the opening night presentation at this year's San Francisco Silent Film Festival! The acclaimed 1928 Louise Brooks film, directed by Oscar winner William Wellman and starring future Oscar winner Wallace Beery, will be shown on Thursday, June 2nd at 7:00 pm at the historic Castro Theater in San Francisco. The film will be shown with live musical accompaniment by the acclaimed Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. More information, including ticket availability, may be found at HERE. This special presentation is not-to-be-missed, as you never know which "different drummer" will show up.

Los Angeles, California – October 1928

Though shot as a silent and released in some markets in that format, Beggars of Life has the distinction of being Paramount’s first sound film: a synchronized musical score, sound effects, a few lines of dialogue, as well as a song sung or two were added to prints at the time of the film’s release.

The addition of sound to the film lends another, even more important distinction to Beggars of Life, as the film on which a "boom mic" may have first been used. According to David O. Selznick, "I was also present on the stage when a microphone was moved for the first time by Wellman, believe it or not. Sound was relatively new [this was Beggars of Life, 1928] and at that time the sound engineer insisted that the microphone be steady. Wellman, who had quite a temper in those days, got very angry, took the microphone himself, hung it on a boom, gave orders to record--and moved it."

In the annals of film history, others have been credited with first moving a microphone during the production of a film. Selznick's anecdote, which comes from Kevin Brownlow's The Parade's Gone By, is one of the earliest accounts.

Cincinnati, Ohio – September 1928

Though the sound elements for the film are lost, newspaper articles and advertisements of the time tell us a little about the nature of the sound version of Beggars of Life. Commenting on its New York City premiere at the Paramount Theater, Women's Wear Daily noted "All of these stars outdo themselves in this picture. Wallace Beery talks in this picture, sings a hobo song and ends with an observation about jungle rats in general." The New Yorker also commented on "the synchronized accompaniment of sentimental music."

Elsewhere, the New Orleans Item observed, "Vitaphone helps the story along with music that is fitting and well arranged. The 'Hallelujah I'm a Bum' rhythm helps the story's speed." Peggy Patton of the Wisconsin News wrote "Wallace Beery, Richard Arlen (also playing in Wings) and Louise Brooks play the featured roles. All do praiseworthy work. By the way it is a sound picture and Wallace Beery speaks a few lines and sings a song. His speaking voice is splendid." Frank Aston of the Cincinnati Post penned, "The direction is admirable. Vitaphonic sounds lend some extra force. Beery is heard singing." The San Diego Union added, "Accompanied by a synchronized musical score of more than average excellence, the picture provides an hour and a half of film entertainment radically out of line with the general run of cinema drama. It is pungent, powerful, appealing, masterfully directed and superbly acted."

Where the sound version of the film played, newspaper advertisements often proclaimed something along the lines of “Come hear Wallace Beery sing!” But what that song was is uncertain. The stout, gravel-voiced actor was not known as a crooner. Reliable sources, including the director's son, site one of two similar titles, “Hark the Bells” or “Don’t You Hear Them Bells?” While at least two newspaper advertisements for the film, including the NYC advertisement pictured above, mention the songs "I Wonder Where She Sits at Night" and "Beggars of Life."

At the time of the film's release, various 78 rpm recordings of  “Beggars of Life” (by J. Keirn Brennan and Karl Hajos) were released. The label on some of those recordings describe it as the “Theme Song of the Film." The best known and most popular of these recordings was by The Troubadours (pictured here); others recordings were issued by Scrappy Lambert, Seger Ellis, and other artists of the time.  

 Recordings of the theme song proved somewhat popular, and the availability of discs were advertised in newspapers in the United States, England and elsewhere. Below is a newspaper advertisement from Yorkshire, England which promotes the Troubadours' recording of the song.

Below is a video recording The Troubadours' version. It was issued as Victor 21683-B in 1928. Press play to listen. Otherwise, follow these links to hear versions by Scrappy Lambert or the Bar Harbor Society Orchestra. These versions and others can be heard as well on RadioLulu, the online radio station of the Louise Brooks Society.

Recordings of the "Beggars of Life" theme song are one of a small number of product tie-ins issued around the time of the film's release. Along with an illustrated photoplay edition of Jim Tully's book (the basis for the film), at least two different versions of the "Beggars of Life" sheet music were also issued, each with Wallace Beery on the cover.

There was even a music roll of "Beggars of Life" released at the time. A copy of this recording, by Harold Wansborough on the QRS label (# 4437), is in the archive of the Louise Brooks Society. However, since it meant for playback on player piano, the LBS doesn't have a way to play or record it! (To get some sense of what this obsolete technology would have sounded like, a piano roll of Wansborough playing "C'est Vous" can be seen and heard here.)

"Beggars of Life"  is a rather enjoyable song. The lyrics read:

"Beggars of life, beggars of life;
Gypsy hearts that are sighing
For skies of blue, sunlight and dew,
Out where swallows are flying.
Each one longing to be led
To a happy homestead,
Where love will cry,
'Don't pass me by!'
Beggars of life, come home!"

UPDATE Beggars of Life in the 21st century: According to Mark Kermode’s book, The Good, The Bad and the Multiplex (2012), The Dodge Brothers musical group once accompanied Beggars of Life at the inaugural New Forest Film Festival in 2010, where in accordance with the Festival theme of sustainability, the film projector at the event was powered by a bicycle! The musical group, which includes Kermode (a popular British film critic) and Neil Brand (a well known silent film accompaniest), has played to the  film all over England, including once in 2014 at a historic screening at the famed Glastonbury Music Festival.

UPDATE: It has just come to the attention of the Louise Brooks Society that a Vitaphone disk for reel 1 of "Beggars of Life" still exists, and is in the hands of a private collector.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Beggars of Life trivia and more

Beggars of Life is the opening night presentation at this year's San Francisco Silent Film Festival! The acclaimed 1928 film, directed by Oscar winner William Wellman and starring future Oscar winner Wallace Beery, will be shown on Thursday, June 2nd at 7:00 pm at the historic Castro Theater in San Francisco. The film will be shown with live musical accompaniment by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. More information, including ticket availability, may be found at HERE.

This advertisement promotes sound versions of two great William Wellman films. For Beggars of Life,
the ad elicits viewers “Come hear Wallace Beery sing the theme song, ‘Beggars of Life,’ destined to be
as big a hit as ‘Ramona.’”  Buffalo, New York – September 1928
Here is some trivia about the film:

Beggars of Life (1924) is one of five autobiographical books Jim Tully (1886 – 1947) wrote which detail his transient childhood; a fictionalized memoir, it contains stories of the criminal tramp Oklahoma Red and the prostitute Nancy, who shoots and kills her abusive father. A play loosely based on these stories was woven into Outside Looking In (1925), a Broadway drama by Maxwell Anderson which starred James Cagney (as Oklahoma Red) and Charles Bickford and was produced by a group that included the Nobel Prize winning dramatist Eugene O’Neill. In 1925, Louise Brooks attended a performance of the play in the company of Charlie Chaplin.

One of my treasures: Colleen Moore's first edition copy of Beggars of Life, with her bookplate and an
inscription by the author to the actress.

— Brooks disliked Tully. “He was the most repulsive little Quilp I ever knew,” Brooks wrote years later to film historian Kevin Brownlow. “Short and fat with his belly hanging over his belt, yellow teeth to match his face and hair, full of the vanity of Vanity Fair and H.L. Mencken.” Nevertheless, Tully — who once served as Charlie Chaplin’s press agent, had his admirers, including the famed critic H.L. Mencken. Robert E. Howard, who authored the “Conan the Barbarian” stories, is oftentimes famously quoted as remarking that of all the writers living and working in his time there were only two whose work would endure — H. P. Lovecraft  and Jim Tully.

— Brooks respected director William Wellman. Her account of the making of Beggars of Life is found in her Lulu in Hollywood essay “On Location with Billy Wellman.” 

— The Wellman connection to the film didn't end  with the director. Included among the cast was Jacque Chapin, Wellman’s then 17-year old brother-in-law. Wellman’s wife served as script girl.

On location with Beggars of Life: from left to right, Jim Tully, Louise Brooks, Wallace Beery and Richard Arlen.
 — Girls will be boys: By dressing her in men’s clothing, Beggars of Life was the first film to capitalize on Brooks’ androgynous appeal. The August 1928 issue of Motion Picture Classic ran a full-page spread of Brooks in male attire, stating “Many a girl has wished – or said she wished – she were a boy. Louise Brooks goes one better and becomes one in her portrayal of one of the Beggars of Life in Jim Tully’s screen story." Motion Picture Classic approved.  The article went on to say, "Any time Louise wants a nickel for a cup of coffee, she has only to come to us. In fact, if she’d let us have one with her, we’d go as far as to wrench loose a dime.”

— Included in the cast in a supporting role is the African American actor Edgar Washington (1898 – 1970), a one-time prizefighter and noted semi-pro baseball player (in the Negro Leagues) who entered films in the late Teens. He was a pioneer among African-American actors, and was given the nickname “Blue” by friend Frank Capra. The Afro-American newspaper wrote, “In Beggars of Life, Edgar Blue Washington, race star, was signed by Paramount for what is regarded as the most important Negro screen role of the year, that of Big Mose. The part is that of a sympathetic character, hardly less important to the epic of tramp life than those of Wallace Beery, Louise Brooks and Richard Arlen, who head the cast.” Beggars of Life has a second baseball connection. Also in the film in a bit part was Michael Donlin, an outfielder whose Major League career spanned from 1899 to 1914.

Beggars of Life was especially popular throughout the American West.  
Reno, Nevada – March 1929

Saturday, May 21, 2016

On the road and around the world with Beggars of Life

Beggars of Life is the opening night presentation at this year's San Francisco Silent Film Festival! The acclaimed 1928 Louise Brooks film, directed by Oscar winner William Wellman and starring future Oscar winner Wallace Beery, will be shown on Thursday, June 2nd at 7:00 pm at the historic Castro Theater in San Francisco. The film will be shown with live musical accompaniment by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. More information, including ticket availability, may be found at HERE.

Beggars of Life was a big hit in the United States, and was perhaps even more popular abroad. Under its American title, documented screenings of the film took place in Australia, Canada, China, France, India, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, South Africa, Sweden, and the British Isles (England, Isle of Man, and Scotland).

Elsewhere, this motion picture was known to have been shown under other-language titles including Bettler des Lebens (Austria); Meias indiscretag (Brazil); Mendigos da vida (Brazil); Mendigos de la Vida (Chile); Žebráci života (Czechoslovakia); Žebráky živote (Czechoslovakia); De Lovløses Tog (Denmark); Menschen Zijn Nooit Tevreden (Dutch East Indies); Les mendiants de la vie (France); I mendicanti della vita (Italy); Bettler des Lebens (Latvia); Bettlers des Lebens (Les Mendiants de la Vie) (Luxembourg); Mendigos de vida (Mexico); Menschen Zijn Nooit Tevreden (The Netherlands); Zwervers (The Netherlands); Ludzie bezdomni (Poland); Mendigos da vida (Portugal); Strada cersetorilor (Romania); and Mendigos de vida (Spain).

Here are vintage advertisements for Beggars of Life which ran when it showed around the world.

Cape Town, South Africa 1930

Calgary, Alberta, Canada 1928

Sao Paulo, Brazil – 1929    

Paris, France – 1929

Warsaw, Poland 1929

Kingston, Jamaica – 1929    

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