Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Miss Lulu Bett - 1921

Country: United States
Director: William C. de Mille
Writers: Clara Beranger (adaptation), Zona Gale (novel) (play)
Stars: Lois Wilson, Milton Sills and Theodore Roberts
Release Date: November 1921 (USA)
Production Co: Paramount Pictures
Runtime: 71 min
Sound Mix: Silent
Color: Black and White
Plot Keywords: Bigamy | Pulitzer Prize Source | Based On Novel | Based On Play
Genres: Comedy | Drama
Spinster Lulu Bett lives with her sister, Diana, and is a servant in Diana's household. Diana's brother-in-law, Ninian, visits, and smitten with Lulu, arranges a dinner party in her honor. At the party Ninian jokingly proposes marriage to Lulu, and recites the wedding ceremony, which Diana's husband, a justice of the peace, realizes is binding. Lulu lives with Ninian until she discovers he is already married. She goes back to her sister's home where she is treated poorly. Lulu has had enough of this family, and when she finds out that Ninian's wife is alive, leaves to marry the village schoolteacher.
Zona Gale re-wrote her novel into a play, which was first produced by Brock Pemberton at the Belmont Theater, New York. The premier took place on 27 December, 1921. The following cast was featured: Carroll McComas as Lulu Bett, William Holden as Dwight Deacon, Catherine Doucet as Ina Deacon (billed as Catherine Calhoun Doucet), Jack Lionel Bohn as Bobby Larkin (billed as Jack Bohn), Willard Robertson as Neil Cornish, Louise Closser Hale as Miss Bett (misspelled as Louis Closser Hale), and Brigham Royce as Ninian Deacon, plus Lois Shore as Manona Deacon and Beth Varden as Diana Deacon.
The original Broadway production of "Miss Lulu Bett" by Zona Gale opened on December 27, 1920 at the Belmont Theater, ran for 198 performances and won the Pulitzer Prize in Drama in 1921. 

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