Redux Flix Film Society

Theda Bara (1885-1955) - In 'Cleopatra' (1917) and Speaking About Silent Film Acting Technique

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I was totally intrigued by this snippet of footage showing Theda Bara in 'Cleopatra' (1917) -- the gentle undulating of her body in gossamer gilt mesh draperies is mesmerising. The actress was over thirty when she played the role and so, it seems, could more completely give herself to a mature expression of the character of the Egyptian queen -- well, to the character of public mythology. This is the only known fragment of this famous silent film to exist, the rest having been lost.

And I was also intrigued hearing her in a 1936 radio interview speaking about silent film acting technique and of working in 'Cleopatra' - her speaking voice is unexpectedly dignified and matronly, which in fact is hardly surprising as she was then in her fifties.

So I had to share -- you know me by now!


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