Posts Tagged ‘Hobart Bosworth’

Hobart Bosworth remembers early filmmaking

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011


The early days of filmmaking as remembered by Hobart Bosworth



On October 27, 1911 producer David Horsley came from New York and converted a deserted tavern on the northwest corner of Sunset and Gower into Hollywood’s first movie studio. On Thursday we will celebrate one-hundred years of filmmaking in Hollywood. Films were already being made in Los Angeles in the Edendale section where actor Hobart Bosworth was making films since 1909. The following is taken from a 1936 letter that Bosworth wrote a Los Angeles Times columnist reminiscing about those early days in Los Angeles and Hollywood.


“The Fanchon-Royer studio was the original permanent studio established by Francis Boggs, director for the Selig Polyscope Company. The buildings which have just been torn down were built by him from plans approved by Col. Selig. That was the triumph of Bogg’s life, which was ended by a bullet fired by a crazed Japanese gardener when Boggs was on the threshold of great things. Another bullet dangerously wounded Col. Selig.


“The Selig Polyscope party, on a location tour from the plant in Chicago, stopped in Los Angeles in May, 1909, and made two pictures, The Heart of a Race Track Tout, mostly at the old Santa Anita track, and Power of the Sultan, in which Stella Adams and I were the leads. The ‘studio’ for these two was a Chinese laundry on Olive near Eighth. Then the Selig part went north as far as the Columbia River, but was driven back by fogs and hired a little wooden hall on Alessandro Avenue (now Glendale Blvd.), built a little stage and, I think, made one picture there. In the meantime, Boggs had written me at Ramona, where I was battling a gangrenous lung. In September 1909, I started playing the Roman in the old Virginius story with a happy ending.


“Boggs asked if I would write a plot he could produce, which would enable us to use the same scenery and costumes for another picture. I did it by stealing from The Rape of Lucrece, Cymbeline, Quo Vadis and Arius the Epicurean, setting a fashion for acquiring stories which has been considerably followed ever since. So I wrote and acted my second picture, and wrote, directed and acted my third, Courtship of Miles Standish. I have the records to prove all this.


“In November, 1909, a little independent company called Imp started on the other side of the street and a little further down. A year later Mack Sennett occupied that studio. It expanded across the street and had a big growth. But before that, I think in 1910, Jimmie Young Deer began making Westerns for Pathé. He hired a lot nearer us and on the same side of the street which became the Norbig studios. It is there yet, just as it was when I moved to it in 1914 to make the interiors for Jack London snow pictures.


Tom Mix, after he became a Fox star, moved a long way farther out on the Glendale road to what was called Mixville. He had his stables there. Curly Eagles ran them. He was a member, with the Stanley boys, Art Accord, Hoot Gibson and Bosco, of a little stranded rodeo troupe. They came to Boggs in 1910 to work in westerns, but began with Mazeppa, in which I was the gent who was bound to the fiery, untamed steed. It was Kathlyn Williams’ first picture.


“The next studio was established by Al Christie and Dave Horsley at Sunset and Gower. Vicky Ford with her mother and father were there. It later became Universal. Griffith brought the Biograph to Georgia Street in January 1910 and it rained for a month. He was about to go back when he learned that Vitagraph, Lubin, etc., were starting out here because our pictures had such fine scenery and light. Selig had scored a scoop. Griffith brought Mary Pickford, Jack Bennett, Henry Walthall and a lot more.”


—Hobart Bosworth

May 1936



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Hollywood Profile…Tyrone Power, Sr.

Friday, November 14th, 2008


Tyrone Power, Sr.





By Allan R. Ellenberger



Tyrone Power Sr., the father of popular matinee idol, Tyrone Power, was a member of one of England’s most famous stage families and was widely known on the American stage and screen.


The actor was born Frederick Tyrone Power in London, England on May 2, 1869 to Harold Power and Ethel Lavenue, a popular dramatic team of the English stage. Power, the namesake of his grandfather, the legendary Irish actor, Tyrone Power (1795-1841), began his stage career touring Europe with his parents. Later he came to America and started an orange grove in Florida. When that venue failed, he returned to the theatre where he rose to fame on the Broadway stage, using the name, Tyrone Power II. For more than two decades he gained widespread attention in Shakespearean plays and in such productions as The Wandering Jew and The Servant in the House.


Walter Hampden, Arthur Lewis and Tyrone Power in The Servant in the House


Most of his life had been devoted to the stage although he appeared in silent films during the pioneer days of motion pictures. His last film role was as the villain in The Big Trail (1931), an early talkie western.


Power had just completed an eastern tour with the Chicago Shakespeare Company when he returned to Hollywood in early December 1931 to appear in the title role of The Miracle Man (1932), at Paramount. The film, a remake of the 1919 Lon Chaney classic, was directed by Norman Z. McLeod and starred Sylvia Sidney and Chester Morris.


At about 9 p.m. on Tuesday evening, December 29, Power finished filming for the day  and retired to his room at the Hollywood Athletic Club. With him were his son, Tyrone, Jr. and his attorney, Francis D. Adams. They talked until 11 p.m. when Adams left. At around midnight, Power suffered a heart attack and a physician was summoned, but emergency treatment was to no avail. Power died in the arms of his son, early on the morning of December 30, 1931 (not December 23 as reported on


The Hollywood Athletic Club where Tyrone Power, Sr. died.


Power’s simple funeral rites were held the following Saturday from the A. E. Maynes Chapel, 1201 South Flower Street. The pallbearers were H. B. Warner, Rupert Julian, Arno Lucy, Sidney Olcott, Edmund Breese, Lawrence Grant, and Claude Gillingwater.


Actor and friend, Ian Keith delivered the eulogy, saying:


“The curtain is rung down. The prompter has left his box. You have played your last great role on your mortal stage, Tyrone. But you know that the Great Dramatist has prepared a finer role for you than any you played here.”


Tyrone Power, Sr. and his son, Tyrone Power


Besides his son, Tyrone, Power was survived by an ex-wife, Patia and his daughter Anne.


After the services, Power’s body was cremated at the Los Angeles Crematory. A few months later, Tyrone and his mother scattered the ashes up the Richelieu River at Isle Aux Noix, Quebec, Canada, near the actor’s home, Two Pines.


Power was replaced in The Miracle Man by his close friend, Hobart Bosworth, who closely resembled the actor. “It does seem odd that I should be the one to replace him in this role after all these years,” Bosworth said. “We were warm friends and I only hope that I can do justice to the role in his stead.”


When Tyrone Power placed his hands and footprints in cement at Grauman’s Chinese Theater, he wrote: “To Sid, following in my father’s footsteps.”



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