Rupert Julian (right) and Ruth Clifford in The Fire Flingers (1919)
Rupert Julian (25 January 1879 – 27 December 1943) was the first New Zealand cinema actor, director, writer and producer.
Born Thomas Percival Hayes in Whangaroa, New Zealand, Son of John Daly Hayes (Jr) and Eliza Harriet Hayes, Rupert Julian performed on stage and in film both in his native country and Australia before emigrating to the United States in 1911, where he started his career as an actor at the Daly Theatre in New York and touring with Tyrone Power, Sr., before working in silent movies. He turned to directing in 1915, often directing his wife Elsie Jane Wilson (a director herself), and earned a substantial sum for his film The Kaiser, the Beast of Berlin which he wrote, produced, and directed, while also starring in the title role. This made him a star in Hollywood at the time, and opened doors to larger projects with Universal Studios.