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Step back in time to see what area movie theaters were presenting in January 1925. Film titles are linked to the Internet Movie Database.
He Who Gets Slapped, starring master character actor Lon Chaney, opened in Detroit at the Adams theater on Sunday, January 18, 1925. It earlier opened in New York City on November 9, 1924. He Who Gets Slapped also featured John Gilbert and Norma Shearer and was the first film completely produced by the new Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studio.
"Lon Chaney adds another fine performance to his long list of splendid characterizations in his role of the clown in the dramatic picture, 'He Who Gets Slapped,' which Detroit saw for the first time Sunday in the Adams theater," wrote Roy Elltarcotte in The Detroit Free Press on January 19, 1925. "The picture is far out of the beaten path of photoplay attractions with which we have been bored for several months, but so fine is it in every way that it should take its place among the best pictures of the old year."
"Lon Chaney is back in all his gloomy glory this week at the Adams, where 'He Who Gets Slapped,' a picturization of the play of the same name, is holding forth," read a review in The Detroit News on January 19, 1925. "From the weird and gruesome hunchback of the bell tower of Notre Dame, Chaney becomes a circus clown-a tragic figure who proves his true worth at the finish by saving the heroine from an interloper."
Also playing in Detroit on January 18, 1925 were The Dark Swan (Marie Prevost, Monte Blue) at the Broadway-Strand; The Chorus Lady (Margaret Livingston, Virginia Lee Corbin) at the Capitol; Two Shall Be Born (Jane Novak, Kenneth Harlan) at the Colonial; The Deadwood Coach (Tom Mix and Tony the wonder horse) at the Fox-Washington; and The Wife of the Centaur (Eleanor Boardman, John Gilbert) at the Madison.
Also in Detroit at this time were A Sainted Devil (Rudolph Valentino, Nita Naldi) at the Regent and Ferry Field; The Midnight Express (Elaine Hammerstein) at the Orpheum; Christine of the Hungry Heart (Florence Vidor) at the LaSalle Garden; D.W. Griffith's America at the Miles; The Sea Hawk (Milton Sills) at the Palace; and The City That Never Sleeps (Virginia Lee Corbin) at the Cinderella.
He Who Gets Slapped played at the Majestic for four days, along with the comedy The Lunch Brigade; newsreel footage of recent tornadoes; an Aesop's Fable cartoon; a Pathé Review; Kinograms; the Majestic Sympho-Jazz Orchestra; and the Keith stage feature of Gus Bartram and Vertner Saxton, "True Blue 'Good Scouts' From the Blue Grass State."
Also playing in Ann Arbor on March 22, 1925 were Inez from Hollywood (Lewis Stone, Anna Q. Nilsson, Mary Astor) at the Arcade; Fools in the Dark (Matt Moore, Patsy Ruth Miller) at the Wuerth; and He Who Laughs Last (Kenneth McDonald) at the Orpheum. The Rae hosted Dynamite Dan (Kenneth McDonald, 'Doug Fairbanks' Double') and Crashed (Ham Hamilton).
Click here to see a PDF of newspaper images relating to the opening of He Who Gets Slapped.
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