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Film Details

TitleINNOCENT LIE, THE
Production companyFamous Players Film Co
Country of originUSA
DirectorOLCOTT, Sidney
Script/AdaptationZELLNER, Lois
PhotographyLIGUORI, Alphonso
CastValentine Grant (Nora O'Brien), Jack J Clark (Terry O'Brien),
Morris Foster (Pat O'Brien), Hunter Arden (Nora Owen), Robert Cain
(Captain Stewart), Frank Losee, William Courtleigh Jr, Helen Lindroth,
Charles Ferguson.
Colourb&w
Soundsil
Release date1916
SummaryIn 1914 Nora O'Brien and her brothers, Terry and Pat, earn their living in the fishing trade in County Cork. Nora Owen and her invalid mother also live in the neighbourhood. Mrs Owen dies and her daughter is sent for by her wealthy aunt and uncle, the Watsons, who live in New York. On the eve of her departure for America, Nora becomes engaged to Captain Stewart of the British army, and decides not to go abroad. Meanwhile, Pat O'Brien has gone to America, from where he has written his sister a letter stating that he is working as a chauffeur, and expects to have her join him shortly. The elder brother, Terry, enlists as a recruit in Captain Stewart's regiment and goes to the front in France. On the strength of the somewhat vague letter from Pat, Nora O'Brien emigrates to America. Nora Owen gives her a card with her aunt's address, and asks her to notify her relatives of her marriage and thus her inability to take up the invitation to visit them. On reaching New York, Nora discovers that her brother is no longer at the address given in the letter. She then falls into the hands of a 'white slaver' bora whom she makes her escape, but in so doing falls and sustains concussion of the brain. When picked up, Nora Owen's card is found on her, and she is taken to the home of the latter's relatives, who have never seen their niece. Her first protestations upon her recovery that she does not belong there are regarded as an hallucination due to the injury, and she makes no further effort to undeceive them. While living this lie she wins the favour of the family, including their son Jack, who is just home from college, and falls in love with her. Eventually her brother Pat, who has fallen into bad company and evil ways, appears on the scene. Nora attempts to rescue him and goes to live with him, but she is trapped in his tenement lodgings by a drunken roommate. She is rescued by Jack, with the aid of the police. The discovery of her real identity doesn't affect her standing with the family, including Jack. (Adapted from NYDM 20/5/1916:25; Motog 20/5/1916:1167-8).
Note5 reels. USA Rel 8/5/1916. 'To Mr Olcott must be accorded due credit for the cunning craftsmanship shown in the difficult task of obtaining excellent Irish settings for the photodrama through the medium of filming in Bermuda. The illusion is perfect in every respect and many a native of the Emerald Isle will be fully convinced that he is gazing upon genuine reproductions of the rocky coast of Erin and the cabin homes of her peasantry'. (NYDM 20/5/1916:25). 'In the making of stories of Ireland Sidney Olcott is in a class by himself. For that matter he has very nearly a monopoly in the staging of photoplays on the 'Ould Sod', and his experience in this particular section of the world covers a half dozen years. He knows his Irish, its people and its people's ways. He has the art of creating Irish atmosphere, or portraying its interesting inhabitants. We see this fidelity to things Irish in THE INNOCENT LIE'. (MPW 20/5/1916:1349).
ReferenceFD 11/5/1916; MPN 20/5/1916:3090; NYT 8/5/1916:7; Var 12/5/1916:19; Wid's 11/5/1916:567. AFI Cat 1911-1920:456; MPG.
Format35mm
DistributorParamount Pictures Corp (USA)
LanguageEnglish
Production creditsp.c: Famous Players Film Co, d: Sidney Olcott. sc: Lois Zellner from a
story by Hugh Ford, c: Alphonso Liguori, USA distr: Paramount Pictures
Corp.
Genre/CategoryShort Film Drama
KeywordsMigration
Irish America

Contact: irishfilm@tcd.ie | Last updated: Nov 27 2006.