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Robbing Bank For Movie Proves An Exciting Event
Director Dieterle Stages
For “Dr. Socrates”
By CARLISLE JONES
W. R. Burnett, author of ‘‘Dr. Socrates,’’
Bros;.: pietures which..comes.to. the 205.) ic ek theatre on 1 8 esas nee ee , has never robbed a bank. Neither has Mary C. McCall, Jr., who adapted the story for the screen. Nor yet has Robert Lord, writer of the film play. So the details of the particular bank hold-up that is one of the important sequences in the picture were left to Di
rector William Dieterle.
Even so, the robbery had to be postponed twice on account of bad weather. Grand larceny in the movies is accomplished best on a bright, sunshiny day and the California weather man laid down a barrage cf high fog that saved the First National Bank of Big Bend for two days.
This correspondent made the trip to the far end of the back lot of the studio three times before he actually got in on the ‘*shootin’.’’ Back there the studio had built the main street and the town square of ‘‘Big Bend,’’ described on a welcoming arch as ‘“‘The Biggest Little Town in Wayne County.’’ The First National Bank, (capital and surplus $1,250,000) a red brick building, stood on the most prominent corner, ready to be robbed. In fact Director Dieterle was busy robbing it at the moment we arrived.
Police Guns Fail
A tile colored sedan stood by the curb on the bank corner, the motor running. The driver was a hard faced blonde woman, whose sprouting whiskers belied the straw. eolored wig and the fiowered hat.
A string of tough visaged men, led by Barton MacLane, came running down the bank steps, piled into the tile colored sedan and slammed the doors. A second later the ugly noses of rifles and submachine guns were poked out of each window of the ear.
‘“Go!’’ yelled Dieterle.
The tile colored sedan jerked suddenly away from the curb and, at the same moment the protruding muzzles belched fire, raking the village streets, scattering the bewildered populace and _ giving your correspondent a nervous shock from which he has not yet entirely recovered.
Down the hill from around a corner beyond the bank, came a second car, loaded with sheriffs and police-officers, siren screaming
In New Triumph
Paul Munt, whose work in ‘‘ Black Fury’’ established him as the screen’s greatest character actor, re-establishes his right to that title as the nerve broken doctor in ‘‘ Dr. Socrates,’’ the Warner Bros. picture in which he is scoring daily triumphs at the ...........0005 Theatre.
Mat No. 107—10¢
PAUL MUNI m Dr. Socrates’’ at the Strand.
Mat No. 104 10¢
and guns blazing. One of these police guns jammed while the ear was just before the camera and Dieterle waved his hands, still encased in white gloves, stamped his big feet and swore.
““Why,’’ he demanded from nobody in particular, ‘‘must the police guns fail? Once more! ’’
The tough guys went back inside the bank, the title colored sedan was put in place beside the curb and the police with the balky ““Tommy’’ gun went back up the hill out of sight in their touring car.
Dieterle waved his hands and the scene started a second time. It moved with clock like precision and Dieterle was obviously satisfied. ,
‘“That,’? he said pointedly, ‘‘is the way to rob a bank. Now we will do it from the inside.’’
Bank Robbing Hard Job
While the director prepared to film the same scene from the viewpoint of the banker, trapped inside the building, your correspondent looked about for the principals of the screen drama. Paul Muni, the star, he found in front of a book store and magazine stand, across the street from the bank that was being robbed, waiting, he said, ‘‘to be shot at and missed.’’
Ann Dvorak, the leading lady, was located with more difficulty. She was occupying an easy chair, under a beach umbrella, in the alley just behind the bank, where, she explained, she had just fallen, the innocent victim of a bullet in the shoulder.
It was then your correspondent realized how long and involved a process is the robbery of a motion picture bank. It goes on for hours, some times for days, the bandits carrying make-believe money in and out of the tellers’ cages, firing blanks at the heels of galloping extras, shooting Miss Dvorak and missing Muni.
If your observer has occasion to rob a bank, he will certainly consult Director Dieterle. Mary C. McCall, Jr. had evaded the issue.
‘¢The entire bank hold-up,’’ she wrote in her screening directions, ‘‘should be done in an impressionistic manner.’’
The picture is filled with exciting episodes and thrilling situations in which Muni, as a neurotic doctor, traps a band of bank robbers, and by a ruse dopes them with morphine, so that they are easy prey for the government agents.
The stirring action cures the doctor of his malady and wins for him the beautiful girl he loves. Barton MacLane is the ‘‘big, bad, bank bandit,’’ while others in the cast include Robert Barrat, John Eldredge, Hobart Cavanaugh, Helen Lowell, Mayo Methot and Henry O’Neill.
At Paul Muni On ‘Dr. Socrates’ Set
Death lurked in a bunch of bananas at Warner Bros.’ studio and threatened the life of Paul Muni, film star.
It happened in a grocery store on the set of “Dr. Socrates” a picture which comes to the .......... ei tehesoentess Pheatrer On tcc. 3
The bananas, unpacked from a crate shipped from Central America, were hanging from the ceiling. Muni entered the store, saw the bananas and reached for one.
“Leave those alone,” yelled the property man.
“T like bananas,” he said. “One less won’t hurt the picture,” He started to. pull one from the bunch,
But the property man wasn’t thinking of bananas. He saw something Muni didn’t see — a big tanantula making a dive for the actor’s hand, and again he yelled:
“Look out, Paul!”
Then Muni saw the great spider and leaped away.
The prop man seized a stick to kill the insect just as Ann Dvorak, who plays opposite Muni, came into the store.
“Stop,” Miss Dvorak ealled. I want him.”
She insisted on having the tarantula taken alive and placed in a bottle so that she could take it home and study it. Ann is an amateur bacteriologist and biologist.
“Dr. Socrates” is a powerful drama by W. R. Burnett, author of “Little Caesar.” Others in th2 east include Barton MacLane, Robert Barret, John Eldredge, Hobart Cavanaugh, Helen Lowell, Mayo Methot and Henry O'Neill. William Dieterle directed the picture from the screen play by Robert Lord. The adaptation was made by Mary C. MeCall, Jr.
Girls To Cry As Well As Laugh
Ann Dvorak has issued a warning to women.
According to Miss Dvorak, who plays opposite Paul Muni in “Dr. Socrates,” the Warner Bros. picture now showing at the ................ Theatre, women should change their moods occasionally if they would hold the interest of men.
“Are you happy all the time? Do you smile when you get up, when you eat lunch and when you retire? Then ery once in a while,” advises Miss Dvorak.
“Men like happy women,” Miss Dvorak said. “But they don’t like women who are continually and unchangingly happy. Happiness ean become a liability if the woman never changes her mood. A smile that doesn’t come off is almost revolting. Continual sadness is even worse than continual happiness.
“No woman beautiful unless she reflects inner
and varied emotions,” Miss: Dvork*
“Dr. Socrates” is a powerful story by W. R. Burnett, author of “Little Caesar.” There is a fascinating romance with Ann Dvorak playing opposite Muni. Others in the cast include Barton MaclLane, Robert Barrat, John Eldredge, Hobart Cavanaugh, Helen Lowell, Mayo Methot and Henry O’Neill. William Dieterle directed the picture from the screen play by Robert Lord, as adapted by Mary C. McCall, Jr.
ean be: truly
5. Who is this?
6. What is his home state?
7. In what film with Cagney?
8. His current film?
1. Who is this star? 2. His first film? 3. In what as coal miner?
4. His current picture?
9. Who is this star?
10. What film with Rudy Vallee?
11. In what desert film?
12. Her current film?
Mat No. 201—20c
I. Paul Muni. crates.” 5. Barton MacLane. 8. “Dr. Socrates.”’ Lightning.”
2. “Seven Seas.”’ 6. South Carolina. 9. Ann Dvorak. 10. “Sweet Music.”’ 12. “Dr. Socrates.”’
4, “Dr. So7. “G-Men.” 11. ‘‘Heat
3. “Black Fury.”
Paul Muni Ils Timid And Retiring Off The Screen
Star of ‘Dr. Socrates’’ Only Loses Self-Consciousness When Working
Watching him on the set, you wouldn’t know it. He seems to be the most confident fellow in the world. But Paul Muni is timid. He is as timid as any man in
He has tried to overcome it but always, in the presence of men and women he does not know, it floods his being and
leaves him silent.
So far, the Warner Bros. star, now, playing sat thes 2. eee Theatre in ‘‘Dr. Socrates,’’ has found one cure for his self-consciousness—acting.
““But one can’t act off the sereen,’’ says Muni. ‘‘One must be one’s self.’’
Muni doesn’t know why he lacks assurance around strangers. He is tremendously sincere. He is serious—sometimes too serious. But unless his self-consciousness leaves him tongue-tied, he is always courteous.
The actor’s preoccupation with lis work is a legend in Hollywood. Over and over again the story is told about how Muni loses his own personality and takes on a new one every time he starts a picture.
During the making of ‘‘ Bordertown’’ he wasn’t Muni—he was the Mexican. When ‘‘Black Fury’’ was being filmed, he was Jan, the bewildered coal miner. And when ‘‘Dr. Socrates’’ was made, he was Dr. Lee Caldwell, a neurotie physician.
This isn’t a pose with him. Here’s how he explains it:
“*T know that pictures are filmed piece-meal,’’ he says. ‘‘ Unlike the stage, there is no continuous flow toward a climax. On the stage, one can experiment. Each night, the actor can change his portrayal of the character until he gives a perfectly rounded performance.
‘¢This is impossible before the camera. There can be no experimenting when the scene is shot. That must come before the cameraman gives the order to ‘roll ’em.’
‘‘So I do my experimenting
weeks before the actual shooting starts. I try to become the character and to develop each little facet of the character’s personality?
Those who know Muni, those who watch him at home and at work, will tell you that while he takes his work seriously, he doesn’t take himself seriously. A stranger might think him gloomy. He isn’t. He believes in producing tragedies on the stage and on the screen, but he feels that they should have some ‘‘lift’’ in them somewhere.
To see this side of Muni, one must know him. His timidity is a wall that shuts him off from the rest of the world and the only cure he knows for it is acting.
‘Dr. Socrates’’ is a powerful and dramatic story in which Muni plays the part of a neurotic doctor.
Ann Dvorak plays opposite him. William Dieterle directed the picture from the screen play by Robert Lord.
Ann Dvorak Writing Her Adventures
Ann Dvorak, who has the feminine lead opposite Paul Muni in the Warner Bros. production, ‘‘ Dr. Socrates,’’ which comes to the ida ace iee Theatret Oa: s.eee 2, is now writing a book.
The opus deals with the ten months Ann and her husband, Leslie Fenton, spent in Europe, and those who have read parts of it declare that the book deals with unusual adventures and exciting episodes.