New York Nights (United Artists) (1929)

Record Details:

Something wrong or inaccurate about this page? Let us Know!

Thanks for helping us continually improve the quality of the Lantern search engine for all of our users! We have millions of scanned pages, so user reports are incredibly helpful for us to identify places where we can improve and update the metadata.

Please describe the issue below, and click "Submit" to send your comments to our team! If you'd prefer, you can also send us an email to with your comments.

We use Optical Character Recognition (OCR) during our scanning and processing workflow to make the content of each page searchable. You can view the automatically generated text below as well as copy and paste individual pieces of text to quote in your own work.

Text recognition is never 100% accurate. Many parts of the scanned page may not be reflected in the OCR text output, including: images, page layout, certain fonts or handwriting.

NORMA TALMADGE IN HER FIRST TALKING FILM Advance Stories and Shorts "NEW YORK NIGHTS’ Camera Put to Rigid Test in ”N. Y. Nights” It is safe to say that no picture that has come out of Hollywood in recent years has as many ingenious camera angles as Norma Talmadge s -New York Nights," playing at the .theatre. Though he sacrificed none of his drama for eccentric pictorial innova¬ tions, Lewis Milestone, who directed this sensational all-talking picture, has nevertheless injected a new ele¬ ment of photographic surprise. The camera has, for the first time since the institution of talk in pic- tures, wedded the photographic and sound processes into a realistic and acceptable pattern. t To achieve this, Milestone s cam¬ eraman, Ray June, essayed to show just what the human eye was cap¬ able of seeing and because the eye is capable of half-seeing some things to focus on another subject, he shot it that way. “One of the most interesting scenes was taken from an altitude of forty feet straight down on a circular “love couch” where twenty couples were sitting. Accompanied by the recording microphone, which was lashed to it, the camera glided down from the height, paused over the ;group and traveled the extent of the room where some hundred or so extras were gathered. In this manner the two senses of sight and sound as normally re¬ corded by ears and eyes were faith¬ fully reproduced on film. Other shots include successful experiments with rolling camera carriages to stimulate the visions of a drunkard. Actor Groggy for Weeks But Only in Character Roscoe Karns, featured player in "New York Nights,” starring Norma Talmadge, at, claims that he had to go all the way from New York to “get drunk i~ California. The actor plays a slightly me briated song writer in this debut by Miss Talmadge in the ' talkies. With the exception of a few feet of film, he totters throughout the length of the production. There is some relief, Karns says, in the fact that he gets well paid to act groggy. Roscoe Karns is but one of prom¬ inent stage and film notables who appear in support of Norma Tal madge in this, her first talking pic ture. There are Gilbert Roland, Miss Talmadge’s leading man in her last several pictures. John Wray, Broad¬ way star, Lilyan Tashman and Mary Doran. Lewis Milestone, director of The Racket” and “Two Arabian Nights” wielded the megaphone for this ro¬ mantic drama of life back-stage and along Tin Pan Alley song pluggers Last Word in Cubist Art Seen in “N. Y. Nights A veritable blaze of color 1 Mod¬ ernistic designs in furniture and drapes; triangular rugs and cub¬ istic fish bowls feature the^wild party scenes of United Artists New York Nights," Norma Talmadge's first talking and musical picture venture, opening its run at the. theatre. To make this a truly modern set, no small or large item was allowed to be out of character. A cubistic piano, with legs that rise from small points to flat planes a foot wide and colored in red and black, is one of the unusual touches. Another is the rug which has geo¬ metric designs in brilliant hues and is triangular in shape. The wall paper is in large pastelled squares of sympathetic colors. William Cameron Menzies, art di¬ rector for United Artists, designed this unusual set, one of the most spectacular of its kind ever con¬ structed for talking pictures. The story is a virile and hum¬ orous account of the trials and trib¬ ulations of fche song-writing and chorus-girl fraternity along New York’s Tin Pan Alley. Under Lewis Milestone’s direction, the spice of Broadway’s picturesque colloquialisms was caught. Sound Gives Star Workout Calls Norma Screen's Most Dramatic Star NORM A TALMADGE with GILBERT ROLAND in "NEW YORK- NIGHTS ' 7 3—Two Column Scene (Mat 10c; Cut 50c) A Raft of Shorts About the Production and the Cast Which Will Click With Your Editor A difficult technical problem was overcome at the United Artists stud¬ ios when director Lewis Milestone, who filmed "New York Nights,” Nor¬ ma Talmadge’s first all-dialogue pic¬ ture, succeeded in making success¬ ful sound shots of the interior of a moving automobile as it traveled through congested traffic lanes. In order to fit microphone and camera equipment in the car it was neces¬ sary to remove the roof of the ve¬ hicle and prevent against extraneous body squeaks and other noises. “New York Nights" is showing at the . theatre. A beaded evening gown weighing almost five pounds is worn by Nor¬ ma Talmadge in “New York Nights,” her first talking picture, showing at The costume is of French design. Norma Talmadge, who is starring in United Artists musical and dia¬ logue hit, “New York Nights,” at, claims that talking pictures are good exercise physically as well as vocally. The star estimates that she walked an average of two miles daily lis¬ tening to the wax "playbacks” which recorded an exact reproduction of her voice as taken in her scenes. After working in a scene the cast would walk across the studio to hear a reproduction of a preceding scene, then trudge back to the stage. When it comes to taming gang¬ sters and two-gun experts, the Chi¬ cago police force can learn some worthwhile things from Norma Tal¬ madge’s methods. In “New York Nights," which is scheduled to open at the. theatre next.. the star shows what a pair of tricky eyes and a winsome way can do towards making docile, harmless creatures out of wild men. She con¬ quers John Wray, the “heavy," and reduces him to a state of abject and worshipful impotence. “New York Nights,” is Miss Tal¬ madge’s first venture in dialogue pic¬ tures. This musical drama is laid in New York’s renowned Tin ^an Alley, the home of America’s musi¬ cal geniuses and composers of popu¬ lar songs and dance tunes. Sup¬ porting the star in the leading man role is Gilbert Roland, sensational Latin star, who portrays the charac¬ ter of an Italian-American song writer. Others cast are John Wray, Lilyan Tashman, Roscoe Karns and Mary Doran. Norma Talmadge, who makes her talking debut in “New York Nights” at the . theatre, made her first motion pic¬ ture appearance at the age of four¬ teen. The star earned her first “bit” in a picture called “The Pest" because she convinced a casting di¬ rector at the old Vitagraph studio that she could act. She did not say that her acting had been confined to little impromptu tent-show dram¬ as in her own backyard. Roscoe Karns’ work in the dia¬ logue and musical “New York Nights,” with Norma Talmadge, stamps him as one of the best com¬ edians of the new talking screen, according to Lewis Milestone, who directed the picture for United Art¬ ists. Karns portrays a drunken humorist who is always doing things he shouldn’t in the film which is at the . theatre. Adela Rogers St. John, noted writer, is convinced that the screen has produced among its stars only one great dramatic actress. In a recent issue of a national magazine she wrote the following voluntary tribute to Norma Tal¬ madge, star of United Artists "New York Nights” showing at the. theatre. "Understand that when I say great actress, I mean just that. I do not mean fascinating personalties nor ravishing beauties. I mean such act¬ resses as Duse, Ellen Terry, Maude Adams, Calve, Rejane, Ada Rehan, Emily Stevens, Katherine Cornell and Pauline Lord. w “Norma Talmadge can join this illustrious company; she is the screen’s one and only great actress.’ Of the merits of this tribute Miss Talmadge is too modest to be cer¬ tain. She does not know whether to be proud or afraid of Miss St, John’s praise. "I have always tried to be a good actress,” said the star, “and I have fought almost since the beginning oi pictures to that end. That I might be a great one never occurred to me —in fact it frightens me now. “The hardships of the leaner years, if they mean anything to one who is ambitious, are bound to de¬ velop into something worthy. As far as I am concerned 1 believe they have. Trials have taught me to eval¬ uate myself and those about me; to recognize the good things from the bad, the romantic from the sordid— all the facts of life. “If I am a good actress it is be¬ cause 1 could not help being one with the opportunities I have had. There are hundreds of good act¬ resses in Hollywood. Why single me out by saying I am the only great “It is my opinion that the screen will not be able to have its Duses, its Calves and Bernhardts until it has developed a finished and dis¬ tinctive technique. No one can be great who follows in the footsteps of others. At the present time we of the screen are aping the manner¬ isms and eccentricities of the dram¬ atic players. If this were not so, Miss St. John would not have men¬ tioned those grand women of the stage in drawing her illustration. "The screen is approaching a re¬ naissance of virile individuality. When that time is definitely here, then it will be proper to select a truly great motion picture actress." Norma Talmadge, star of United Artists all-talking picture, “New York Nights,” showing locally at the .theatre, has one of the most extensive wardrobes in the United States. Miss Talmadge re¬ cently estimated that she has 128 gowns and dresses for all occasions. Most of these, of course, belong to her professional wardrobe. Norma Talmadge knows now what it means to do home work. After her day’s work at the United Art¬ ists studios where she made "New York Nights,” the present all-talking musical feature at the. theatre, the star went home, ate her dinner and spent from two to three hours at night studying lines for her next day’s work. The movies, she agrees, have cer¬ tainly changed. However, she does not mind the extra work. In fact she likes it. Had not the lure of the movies intervened, Gilbert Roland, who plays opposite Norma Talmadge in "New York Nights," the current at¬ traction at the . theatre, might have been a first class bull fighter, pinning festive spears into snorting bovines. Coming from a distinguished family of matadors, Roland would have followed in the paternal footsteps eventually but for the opportunity Miss Talmadge gave him when she made “Camille” three years ago. Since that picture, Roland has olayed opposite the star in “The Dove,” again in “The Woman Dis¬ puted” and now in her new all dia¬ logue picture. A circular “loving couch," twelve feet in diameter, is something new in the way of odd furniture intro¬ duced in United Artists “New York Nights,” Norma Talmadge's all- talking debut at the. theatre. The couch, upholstered in crimson plush with a down founda¬ tion, seats twenty persons without crowding. It is the invention of Lewis Milestone, director of the pic¬ ture. One of the most spacious port¬ able bungalows in pictures is the property of Norma Talmadge, star of United Artists “New York Nights," the current all-talking mus¬ ical sensation at the. theatre. The bungalow accompanies the star on her sets and contains a couch, a dresser, four chairs and a wash basin. When in actual use, it is equipped with a radio and telephone. Stylish Clothes Simple Norma Talmadge Says Let the average girl dress to suit her personality, says Norma Tal¬ madge, and she will increase her attractiveness a thousand per cent. The 8tar of “New York Nights" now being shown at the. theatre, feels that too many young women wear the sort of clothes that look attractive on others. “And they overlook the fact," says Miss Talmadge, "that what may appear smart on one person is un¬ suitable on themselves. "I would recommend that every girl study her personality and dress accordingly. It isn't hard to do. Miss Talmadge feels that gaudi¬ ness as it applies to wearing apparel is a thing of the past. Colors, she feels, accentuate bad lines and ad¬ vertise them blatantly. "To the girl who is uncertain what to wear, I should say this: Wear simple clothes. They are al¬ ways smart, and what is better, al¬ ways correct. “As to coloring, I believe that neutral tints such as tans and beiges a^e the best. Naturally, the fact must not be lost sight of that color¬ ing should also fit the personality. Some persons look best in black, others in mauves. That again is a matter of study.” Miss Talmadge is recognized as one of the best dressed women in the screen colony. She has made the scientific study of what to wear, and how to wear it, one of her foremost hobbies. She believes that the greatest in¬ dividuality can be expressed in gar¬ ments that have the good taste of plainness. The really smart woman, she contends, has a mania against frills and decorative effects. 7 —One Column Scene (Mat 5c; Cut 30c) Back Stage Setting in Norma Talmadge Picture The entire back-stage section of a mighty modern theatre, reinforced by concrete pillars and pilasters, had to be constructed on one of the United Artists sound stages to ac¬ commodate the hundred girls used in the musical show sequences of Norma Talmadge’s “New York Nights,” the crowd-drawing, all-talk¬ ing picture at the .theatre. The set, with its hum of busy industry and crowds of girls, was so reminiscent of the real thing that John Wray and Roscoe Karns, both in the cast, thought they were back on Broadway. Hollywood’s shapeliest and small¬ est girls, most of them with actual revue experience, were selected by director Lewis Milestone. Larger and heavier girls found places in the "beef trust” — showdom’s unkind name for the portlier chorus girl. A number of unusual camera shots from an altitude of thirty feet catch the girls as they dance and sing on their reinforced stage. Playing opposite Miss Talmadge in a role which demands the ex¬ treme in acting is Gilbert Roland, the romantic hero of the star’s past three successes. Roland imperson¬ ates the carefree, lazy, gin-liking songster husband to Miss Talmadge’s depiction of a typical Broadway chorine. Lilyan Tashman as a hard-boiled show girl and Mary Doran as a back-stage gold-digger complete the cast. Norma Talmadge Believes Special Glossary for Films Necessary if Realism in Slang Persist A talking picture with a glossary of definitions may be the thing of the near future if realism in inter¬ preting slang expressions and col¬ loquialisms persists. For instance, who outside of the theatrical world knows that "are you decent?” is a gentle expression of inquiry as far removed from the literal sense of the words as the North Pole is from the South. The phrase, liberally analyzed, means; “Are you dressed enough so that I may come in to see you?” “There must be some means de¬ vised,” thinks Norma Talmadge, star of United Artists “New York Nights” showing at the. Theatre "of acquainting rural and small city audiences witb the mean¬ ing of local slang and colloquialisms. “In the silent films we could ex¬ plain things away in titles. Dia¬ logue has changed all this. I can hardly see an actress making a side speech defining the meaning of the words she uses. In comedy, perhaps, but certainly not in a dramatic pro¬ duction. Perhaps a repetition of slang on the screen will eventually ed¬ ucate audiences to know what "scram” and “bubble water" stand for. But there will be a period of doubt in the beginning when ignor¬ ance of these words or others like them will cause a disturbing cessa¬ tion in the drama. People will stop to think what those expressions stand for and meanwhile the sense of the action and even some of the recognizable dialogue will escape them.” Miss Talmadge believes that a glossary of these picturesque expres¬ sions might be incorporated in a special trailer film either before or after the feature is shown. Miss Talmadge has surrounded herself with a cast of well-known players from the stage and the screen for “New York Nights.” There are Gilbert Roland, John Wray, Roscoe Karns and Lilyan Tashman. Lewis Milestone is re¬ sponsible for the direction.