Charles Emmett Mack

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Charles Emmett Mack
Charles Emmett Mack Smiling in Motion Picture Classic.jpg
Born Charles Stewert McNerney
(1900-11-25)November 25, 1900
Scranton, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died March 17, 1927(1927-03-17) (aged 26)
Riverside , California, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Spouse(s) Marion Mack (??-1927, his death)

Charles Emmett Mack (November 25, 1900 – March 17, 1927), was an American film actor during the silent film era. He appeared in 17 films between 1916 and 1927.

Biography[edit]

Born Charles Emmett McNerney in Scranton, Pennsylvania to an Irish family, at a young age Mack could speak three or four languages. One of Mack's early jobs was as a peanut vendor at the Ringling Brothers Circus. After that, he appeared in vaudeville, specializing in buck-and-wing dancing. Later he became a tour guide for D.W. Griffith's Mamaroneck Studios. After that he was Griffith's prop man, fetching all sorts of props for the director.

Mack in Motion Picture Classic, 1926

One day, Griffith invited Mack to rehearse a scene from Dream Street with him. Mack enjoyed the part he had and thought Griffith was friendly. He ended up playing the lead.[1]

The first time I saw myself on the screen I thought I couldn't stand it. We were all in the projection room looking at the rushes of my first day's work. I couldn't think of the shadow on the screen as myself—I thought of it as "It." I saw this thing sneak in. It had such big ears and such a strange nose. Its mouth seemed to be all over its face. And then suddenly it turned around on me and I bolted out of the room. Mr. Griffith sent for me and had me sit by him while he showed me what was wrong and why. I thought it all terrible, but he seemed to think it good, and so I kept on acting instead of going back to the property room.

— Charles Emmett Mack, Prop Boy to Star, Motion Picture Classic[1]

While filming America in 1924, a soldier's arm was blown off. As Mack recalls, "Neil Hamilton and I went to neighboring towns and raised a fund for him—I doing a song and dance and Neil collecting a coin."[2]

After signing with Warner Brothers, Mack was killed in an automobile accident on his way to a racetrack to film an auto racing scene for the film The First Auto (1927). He was 26 years old.[3]

Mack was survived by his wife, Marion Mack and her twelve-year-old adopted daughter and three-year-old son.[4] She was born in Italy and came to the United States when she was three. A 1929 issue of Picture-Play revealed that it was anticipated that she would perhaps become a leading actress, but it doesn't seem her career ever went past bit parts. She is not to be confused with the other Marion Mack.[5]

Filmography[edit]

Still with Mack and Carol Dempster in Dream Street (1921)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Tildesley, Alice L. (July 1926). "Prop Boy to Star". Motion Picture Classic. Chicago: Brewster Publications. Retrieved September 3, 2015. 
  2. ^ Tildesley, Alice L. (July 1926). "Prop Boy to Star (Continued)". Motion Picture Classic. Chicago: Brewster Publications. Retrieved September 3, 2015. 
  3. ^ Fandango
  4. ^ McKegg, William H. (January 1929). "Carrying On (Part One)". Picture-Play Magazine. New York City: Street & Smith Corporation. Retrieved October 22, 2015. 
  5. ^ McKegg, William H. (January 1929). "Carrying On (Part Two)". Picture-Play Magazine. New York City: Street & Smith Corporation. Retrieved October 22, 2015. 

External links[edit]