Films of Fields #5: “That Royle Girl”

royle-girl-poster

We’ll be blogging about comedian W.C. Fields all through November and December as part of our tribute to the comedian called Fields Fest.  For a full list upcoming live Fields Fest events go here. 

That Royle Girl (1925) was D.W. Griffith’s second film for Paramount Pictures, and his second to star Carol Dempster. Mid-way through the shooting, Griffith brought in W.C. Fields, who had appeared with Dempster in Griffith’s previous picture Sally of the SawdustFields was brought in as comic relief, playing Dempster’s drunken father. His is a minor role in the picture, most of which concerns Dempster as a poor girl who saves a musician (Harrison Ford — another Harrison Ford) from wrongful execution. The climax of the story was the big tornado scene, employing 24 airplane propellers as wind machines (hence the wreckage in the the photo still below). Sadly, the film is considered lost today, one of Fields’ many silent films not known to have survived.

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