"silent movies" "silent
film" "silent era"
Lowell Sherman came from an acting family and had many
stage appearances to his credit from the age of four through the
years prior to 1920. Born in San Francisco Oct. 11, 1888. His
first film appearance was as a friend to Mary Pickford and James
Kirkwood in "Behind the Scenes" (1914). Although he
played a variety of roles in the early years, it wasn't long before
he found his forté as a scoundrel and villain. This character
was solidified with his roles in "Yes or No" (1920 where
he lured Norma Talmadge away from her husband and then abandoned
her, and in "Way Down East" (1920) in which he dupes
Lillian Gish into a fake marriage and gets her pregnant. He played
everything from a killer, to a Russian lusting after mother and
daughter to a German spy. One of his most famous roles was in
Garbo's "The Divine Woman" (1928) where he steals her
away from Lars Hanson. Sherman was also able to play the scoundrel
and, at the same time, instill humor into the character. In "The Garden of Eden"
he tries to seduce Corinne Griffith attempting to force himself
on her, but when the lights come on, he actually has grabbed the
motherly Louise Dresser! With hair awry and clothes askew, Sherman
makes a comical figure as he tries to maintain his pomposity.
Another such role is in "A Lady of Chance" where he
plays a shady figure from Norma Shearer's background constantly
threatening her happiness with the innocent John Mack Brown. Sherman
made 53 films between 1914 and 1932, but he also turned to directing
with 14 films to his credit between 1930 and 1935. One unfortunate
point in Sherman's career was that he was Fatty Arbuckle's partner
in the infamous Labor Day party in 1921 which resulted in the
death of Virginia Rappé and Arbuckle's ban from the screen.
Famous Players-Lasky cancelled Sherman's contract as a result
of this, but it wasn't long before he was back on the screen.
He was married to Pauline Garon from 1926 to 1930 and then married
Helene Costello. Sherman died Dec. 28, 1934, from pneumonia.
Selected films of this star available for viewing:
Way Down East (1920)
Molly O' (1921)
Monsieur Beaucaire (1924)
of Eden (1928)
Lady of Chance (1928)
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