The Great Gatsby (1926 film)

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The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby 1926.jpg
1926 Lobby card
Directed by Herbert Brenon
Ray Lissner (assistant)
Produced by Jesse L. Lasky
Adolph Zukor
Written by Owen Davis (play)
Becky Gardiner
Elizabeth Meehan
Based on The Great Gatsby 
by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Starring Warner Baxter
Lois Wilson
Neil Hamilton
Georgia Hale
William Powell
Cinematography Leo Tover
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release dates
  • November 21, 1926 (1926-11-21)
Running time
80 minutes
Country United States
Language Silent film
English intertitles

The Great Gatsby (1926) is a silent film adaptation of the novel The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The film was directed by Herbert Brenon, produced by Adolph Zukor and Jesse L. Lasky at Famous Players-Lasky, and released by Paramount Pictures. The film is a famous example of a lost film.[1][2] [3]



Background and production[edit]

The screenplay was written by Becky Gardiner and Elizabeth Meehan and was based on Owen Davis' stage play treatment of The Great Gatsby. The play, directed by George Cukor, opened on Broadway at the Ambassador Theatre Feb 2, 1926, and soon after the film rights were purchased, with F. Scott Fitzgerald receiving US $45,000.

The film was entrusted to a contract Paramount director, Herbert Brenon who designed the film as lightweight, popular entertainment, playing up the party scenes at Gatsby's mansion and emphasizing their scandalous elements. The film had a running time of 80 minutes, or 7,296 feet. No copies of the film are known to survive.[1]

Lost film[edit]

Professor Wheeler Winston Dixon, James Ryan Professor of Film Studies at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, made extensive but unsuccessful attempts to find a surviving print. Dixon noted that there were rumors that a copy survived in an unknown archive in Moscow but dismissed these rumors as unfounded.[1]

However, the trailer has survived and is one of the 50 films in the 3-disk boxed DVD set More Treasures from American Film Archives, 1894-1931 (2004), compiled by the National Film Preservation Foundation from five American film archives. It is preserved by the Library of Congress (AFI/Jack Tillmany collection) and has a running time of one minute.[1]


External links[edit]