Volume 2: Filmography

 

HINTON'S DOUBLE

 

Early working title: THE ROGUE AND HIS DOUBLE

Later working title: THE CLERK AND THE CRIMINAL

(Pathé Exchange)

May 6, 1917 (Sunday)

Length: 5 reels

Character: Drama; Pathé Gold Rooster Play

Director: Ernest C. Warde

Scenario: Lloyd F. Lonergan

Cameraman: William M. Zollinger

Cast: Frederick Warde (two parts: Josiah Stevens, an old clerk; John Evarts Hinton, an opportunist), Kathryn Adams (Josiah Stevens' widowed daughter, May), Eldean Steuart (May's daughter, Marie), Wayne Arey (Clancy, a detective), Charles Mussett (Mr. Smith, Hinton's lawyer), Justus D. Barnes (Denton, a detective), Arthur Bauer (Mr. Gray, Stevens' employer), John Lehnberg (Jake, a crook), Frank Gereghty (a policeman), Blanche Babette, and "about 100 extras in a cabaret scene."

Notes: 1. An article in The Moving Picture World, February 3, 1917, listed Eldean Steuart's name as "Eldeen Stewart." A synopsis in the same publication, issue of May 12, 1917, listed Kathryn Adams' role erroneously as the widowed mother of Stevens. In some notices, Stevens was spelled as "Stephens." Stevens' first name appeared as Josiah in some listings and Joshua in others. 2. The character name, John Hinton, had been used earlier in the August 3, 1913 Thanhouser film, Proposal by Proxy.

 

ADVERTISEMENT, The Moving Picture World, May 5, 1917:

"A swift moving, well thought out play that gives Mr. Warde a splendid opportunity to show the great talent which has made him one of the greatest actors of the land."

 

ARTICLE, The Moving Picture World, February 3, 1917:

"Frederick Warde, a Thanhouser star, is now being filmed in Lloyd Lonergan's modern drama, The Rogue and His Double, which is to be released through Pathé Exchanges in the spring. Mr. Warde is again being directed by Ernest Warde, his son. In The Rogue and His Double Mr. Warde plays the parts of Josiah Stevens, a tender-hearted old clerk, and J. Evarts Hinton, a 'get-rich-quick' operator. There is a great amount of double exposure in the play, but a 'back-of-the-head' double of Mr. Warde is used in several scenes...."

 

ARTICLE (Pathé Exchange, Inc. news release), c. February 1917:

"Mr. Frederick Warde, Thanhouser star, who has just finished The Vicar of Wakefield, demonstrated the heartlessness of a great city last week to the satisfaction of everyone connected with the Thanhouser Film Corporation. In a part wherein as a dejected middle aged man he is out seeking employment Mr. Warde was 'taken' by a cameraman in a taxicab in many different parts of New York City. The negative is a record that not the slightest attention was paid to the distracted man by the thousands that cruelly brushed by him. 'We were both pleased and disappointed,' said Ernest Warde, who is directing his father in the picture. 'For one thing, we won't have to cut out any of our good stuff because of bothersome crowds butting in, stopping and winking at the camera. But it is disheartening to know that a man, acting out a most forlorn part, can move about our busiest streets without winning the slightest amount of sympathy.' Mr. Warde's stunt was to walk along with a folded newspaper, consult it for help wanted addresses, go in shops and office buildings seeking work and then come out more crumpled up than ever."

 

ARTICLE, The Moving Picture World, May 5, 1917:

"Frederick Warde, star of King Lear and The Vicar of Wakefield, has been announced by Pathé as the star of Hinton's Double, the Gold Rooster Play to be released May 6. For the first time Mr. Warde leads classic productions and becomes the central figure of a modern romance. Hinton's Double is written by Lloyd Lonergan, creator of The Million Dollar Mystery, and author of a number of successful Gold Rooster plays from the Thanhouser studios. Hinton's Double is a thrilling story based upon mistaken identity and the law, in which Mr. Warde has to assume practically three different characterizations. First he is Joshua Stevens, a tender-hearted old clerk, secondly J. Evarts Hinton, a get-rich-quick Wall Street operator, and thirdly, when he, as Hinton, is trying to escape the police."

 

SYNOPSIS, Exhibitors Herald, May 12, 1917:

"In order to save his widowed daughter and her child from starvation Joshua consents to serve a prison sentence for Hinton, his double, for which his daughter is to receive a large sum of money for every month Joshua serves. Because of his good behavior Joshua is released, and finds that Hinton has not lived up to his contract. Hinton suggests that Joshua and his daughter go to the country where he will find sufficient funds. He goes. Hinton, a crook, does some more crooked work, and then advises the detectives that he is hiding in the country. Joshua is again arrested, but he and his daughter plead innocent so earnestly that they are let go and the real crook is found."

 

SYNOPSIS, The Moving Picture World, May 12, 1917:

"Under the pangs of starvation, Joshua Stephens, the double of John Hinton, charlatan of the stock market, agrees to serve a ten-year sentence on the condition that his widow daughter and her child will receive $500 a month for every month he serves. Through his bravery, Joshua saves the life of Detective Clancy and is pardoned. Searching for his daughter, he discovers that Hinton failed in his contract, and that she, owing to circumstances, was forced to place her child in an asylum. Hinton, learning of the pardon, and wishing to return under his old business name, has his lawyer convince Joshua that he and his daughter should flee from the law to some unknown village, where they will be well provided for. Assured of happiness for his loved ones, he relents. Suspected of some crookedness, Hinton is visited by Detective Clancy, who warns him that, although he saved his life, if he is caught swindling he will take the measure of the law. Money crazed, Hinton continues, forgetting the heeding of Clancy. Swindling in a big deal, he decides to make a getaway. To make it successful, he writes Clancy a letter that the fugitive is hiding in the country. Arriving at the home of happiness, Clancy puts poor old Joshua under arrest. Disheartened, he tells Clancy he is innocent. His daughter begs assistance. Her earnest pleadings win Clancy's confidence, and he determines to trap the real crook."

 

REVIEW, Exhibitor's Trade Review, April 28, 1917:

"In Hinton's Double, the latest offering from the Thanhouser studios, there are two noteworthy features that cause this release to stand out as an exceptional screen offering. They are a thoroughly interesting and entertaining story and remarkable character portrayal by Frederick Warde in the dual role of Hinton and Stevens. Through the five reels there is unfolded a story that is convincing and appealing with a certain touch of pathos that reaches the hearts of all. Aside from its interest it is well seasoned with thrills and the suspense is well sustained from the first to the very last. The smoothness of the story speaks well for the direction, for the photography is of the very best. But the point that must be considered more than anything else is the artistic touch given the production by the acting of Frederick Warde. Following closely upon the success achieved in The Vicar of Wakefield, Mr. Warde presents two characters of distinctly opposite emotions that demand much of the versatility of the veteran actor, and at no time does his portrayal drop below the high standard of artistic excellence. As the lovable Stevens, forced to sacrifice his liberty for the sake of his child and granddaughter, and then as the arrogant and selfish Hinton, Mr. Warde reaches an epoch in his motion picture career. The very success of the production lies in Mr. Warde's power of appealing to the hearts of the audience. Another character that does much to enhance the value of the production is Kathryn Adams as his daughter. Miss Adams work is pleasing throughout and blends very well with the artist she supports. Wayne Arey makes a very appealing detective hero. Hinton's Double is a picture that should receive the exhibitor's attention. Aside from the drawing power of the star, the play itself is one of exceptional interest and will do much toward upholding the high standards set by Thanhouser productions during the past six months."

 

REVIEW by Frances Agnew, The Morning Telegraph, April 22, 1917:

"Hinton's Double has more than the average film concerning two people (impersonated by one player) who are alike in appearance but different in character and in their positions in life. It has an interesting story and the situations leading to an exchange of names are plausibly presented and well carried out. The early scenes run along beaten tracks showing how the old man who has given years of life to his employer is discharged for a younger man. Crushed, Stephens if finally driven to begging in an effort to get money for the support of his widowed daughter and her little girl. He meets Hinton, a crooked financier, who sees the resemblance and agrees to give him $500 a month if he will take his place in court the next day and serve the jail sentence to be imposed for unscrupulous business deals. For the sake of his loved ones, Stephens agrees, telling them he is going to Australia on business. After a year in prison he is pardoned for saving the life of Detective Clancy. He comes out to find that Hinton has not sent the money to his daughter and that she has been forced to put the child in an asylum and take work herself in a restaurant, where she has met Clancy. Hinton, who has been living quietly, now wishes to go back to business as in the eyes of the world he is the one who had been pardoned. By getting the child from the asylum, he and his lawyer win the old man's faith again, and they are given a comfortable living on a nearby farm. Clancy hesitates when told to watch Hinton, who is again mixed up in crooked deals. Realizing he is suspected, Hinton and his lawyer attempt to make their getaway after sending an anonymous letter saying the fugitive can be found in the country. Clancy goes to arrest Stephens but latter's story of his double leads to Hinton's arrest.

"The two Wardes - father and son - have made another success in this film, the former giving two well-drawn characterizations and the latter represented by his excellent direction. Kathryn Adams is appealing as the daughter. We are glad that practically all the interest centers around the double role and that there is little of the inconsistent love story. Little Eldean Steuart is another bright spot in the cast as the baby granddaughter."

 

REVIEW by Edward Weitzel, The Moving Picture World, May 5, 1917:

"Here's a five-reel photoplay that is well worthwhile. Hinton's Double should prove one of the most successful screen dramas made by the Thanhouser Company. The scenario is a skillful bit of work, the production has been cleverly handled by Ernest Warde. The biggest factor in the play's abilities to win encomiums, however, is the ripe art of Frederick Warde, which enables him to act a dual role with such authority and ease and lend to both characters so distinct a personality that it is difficult to recall any finer specimen of acting for the screen. Hinton's Double has all the elements that go to make an absorbing drama. First of all, it is well supplied with heart interest. The development of the plot moves briskly and entertainingly, and the triumph of courage over adverse circumstances is achieved with unconscious heroism by the simple old clerk who is forced to see his family face hunger and want after his long years of faithful service. His resemblance to a notorious get-rich-quick operator is the means of his serving a term in prison in place of the swindler, who has run afoul of the law. For doing this, Hinton is to receive a stated sum for every month he serves.

"The various steps of the story are followed with keen interest, thanks to the sharp line of demarcation drawn between the two men by Frederick Warde. The gentle, trusting nature of the one is contrasted with the bold assurance of the other. Save for the strong facial resemblance, the two men have nothing in common. The walk, tricks of gesture and movements of the head are as distinct as the souls within them. Frederick Warde's technical grasp of his art and the lucidity of his method of expression are the result of a thorough schooling in the best the dramatic stage has had to offer in the last 40 years, controlled by an alert intelligence that is now at its highest efficiency. Mastery of the screen by an actor grounded in the great dramas of Shakespeare and the other makers of standard plays lends a force and dignity that can be obtained in no other way. Kathryn Adams, Eldren [sic] Steuart and Wayne Arey, the leading members of the supporting company, are more than satisfactory."

 

REVIEW, The New York Dramatic Mirror, April 28, 1917:

"Hinton's Double gives Frederick Warde a chance to appear as a scheming, unscrupulous old crook as well as a benevolent, self-sacrificing grandfather. In both roles he makes all the subtle distinction between the two characters stand out in a very interesting study of double exposure. The two men who are so identical in appearance and different in character are John Hinton, a ruthless charlatan who robs widows and orphans, and Joshua Stephens, a kindly and faithful old clerk who is the sole support of his widowed daughter and her child. Misfortune falls on the old man and he loses his job at the same time that Hinton is convicted of fraud and sentenced to a prison term. When the two men come face to face in front of Hinton's house the old crook sees in the extraordinary resemblance a chance to escape the penalty for his sins; he proposes to give Joshua a large monthly sum for the support of his daughter if he will take his place at the penitentiary. Joshua consents and begins his prison term, but, is released because of an act of bravery, only to find that the crook has played him false and that his daughter has been destitute through all his years of sacrifice. Here begins a long pursuit of the villain, Hinton, who is finally run to earth and the family restored to peace and happiness. A suggested romance between Joshua's daughter and the detective who unravels the mystery supplies the love interest. Kathryn Adams was pretty and helpless as the widowed daughter, and little Eldean Steuart was appealing and natural as the grandchild. The double exposure photography is remarkably clear and realistic. This is an unusual and picturesque combination of roles for Frederick Warde, which will be sure to interest the admirers of this veteran actor. - A.G.S."

 

REVIEW, Variety, April 20, 1917: This review is reprinted in the narrative section of the present work.

 

REVIEW, Wid's Film and Film Folk, April 26, 1917:

"Whenever we get one of those stories where they find a man's double, there is always an element of artificiality about the situations, because we are constantly reminded of the fact that one artist is playing two parts. This is particularly true where we have double exposures or scenes where someone fakes one part, the fault with such situations being that the audience is forcibly reminded of the mechanics of the production, which is bound to mar the effectiveness of the story values.

"Mr. Warde is shown first as a faithful old clerk who is called 'private in the ranks of business life,' and then as a get-rich-quick promoter. The clerk was fired when he asked for a raise, and then he was conveniently found by the lawyer of the get-rich-quick man who was about to be sentenced to a term in prison. On an agreement which was to give him a large salary each month, the clerk consented to go to prison in place of the other man, providing the money was paid over to his daughter and her baby. The clerk went to prison, but the daughter never got the money. In prison the clerk became a trusty and saved the life of a detective who was attacked by a newly arrested roughneck. The detective then proceeded to secure a pardon for the clerk, thinking he was a the get-rich-quick man, with the result that the get-rich-quick man hunted up the clerk, put him out on a farm with his daughter and grandchild living in comfort on a salary, so that the promoter could open offices again under his own name.

"The convict who had tried to kill the detectives escaped - rather easily, by the way - and went to the office of the get-rich-quick promoter, where he attempted to kill him, thinking he had been the man who had stopped him in his first attempt to escape. This was done in order to plant a scar on the real promoter's arms, which point will be painfully evident to anyone. When again in danger of arrest, the promoter sent word to the police that he could be found on the farm in New Jersey where he'd sent his double, and the detective was sent there to arrest him. Meanwhile the detective had fallen in love with the daughter, and when he arrived to arrest her father he, of course, discovered that father wasn't the right guy after all, because he didn't have the scar on his arm. All ended happily with the capture of the real crook. This sort of a story is always rather interesting, even though it doesn't convince, and I believe that you can figure this as a very satisfactory program release.

"Mr. Warde was inclined to put a few flourishes on his acting in some of the scenes, but, taken as a whole, the production will get by as a very satisfactory one. There was a very cute kiddie who had a number of delightful scenes with Mr. Warde. Upon several occasions they handed us rather melodramatically worded titles which jarred a bit. If the titles had been more intelligently prepared to harmonize with the action more smoothly it would have helped the story. In the supporting cast were Wayne Arey, Eldean Steuart and Kathryn Adams.

"The Box Office Angle: Frederick Warde has been in several productions now, but I fear that he hasn't built up any considerable following, and I would suggest that you centre your attention upon making it plain that he has an opportunity here to give two distinctive characterizations - one of them a delightful old clerk who has worn himself out in the service of an ungrateful employer, and the other, a successful get-rich-quick promoter who has lived off the fat of the land by using his wits. Most everyone who knows anything about Mr. Warde will be quite interested in seeing him in such characterizations, and the chances are that you can get some business on that angle. This can hardly be considered anything more than just a good program release, because I doubt if it has any big box office value, even though you plug Mr. Warde in your advertising. However, I think, it will satisfy generally and register as an interesting little bit of entertainment."

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Copyright © 1995 Q. David Bowers. All Rights Reserved.