AFI Catalog of Feature Films
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The Phantom of the Opera
Director: Rupert Julian (Dir)
Release Date:   15 Nov 1925
Premiere Information:   New York opening: 6 Sep 1925
Duration (in feet):   8,464 (Si); 8,382 (Sd)
Duration (in reels):   10
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Cast:   Lon Chaney (The Phantom)  
    Mary Philbin (Christine Daae)  
    Norman Kerry (Raoul de Chagny)  
    Snitz Edwards (Florine Papillon)  
    Gibson Gowland (Simon)  
    John Sainpolis (Philippe de Chagny)  
    Virginia Pearson (Carlotta)  
    Arthur Edmund Carewe (Ledoux)  
    Edith Yorke (Mama Valerius)  
    Anton Vaverka (Prompter)  
    Bernard Siegel (Joseph Buguet)  
    Olive Ann Alcorn (La Sorelli)  
    Cesare Gravina (Manager)  
    George B. Williams (M. Ricard)  
    Bruce Covington (M. Moncharmin)  
    Edward Cecil (Faust)  
    John Miljan (Valentin)  
    Alexander Bevani (Mephistopheles)  
    Grace Marvin (Martha)  
    Ward Crane (Count Ruboff)  
    Chester Conklin (Orderly)  
    William Tryoler (Director of opera orchestra)  

Summary: Christine Daae, an understudy at the Paris Opera, is guided to stardom by a mysterious and compelling voice that emanates from behind the walls of her dressing room. The voice eventually summons her to a meeting, and she discovers a sinister man whose face is covered by a mask. He demands that she give up her fiancé, Raoul, and devote herself to her music and her mentor. She agrees, and he allows her to sing again. Realizing that she is going back on her word, The Phantom kidnaps Christine, takes her to his underground chambers, and is revealed, when his mask is removed, to be hideous beyond description. Raoul and Ledoux (of the secret police) follow The Phantom, and he traps them in an infernal device. A mob follows, and The Phantom flees. Raoul and Ledoux escape, rescuing Christine. The mob forces The Phantom into the Seine, where he drowns, grotesquely defiant to the last. 

Production Company: Universal Pictures Corp.  
Production Text: Universal-Jewel
Distribution Company: Universal Pictures Corp.  
Director: Rupert Julian (Dir)
  Edward Sedgwick (Addl dir)
Producer: Carl Laemmle (Pres)
Writer: Raymond Schrock (Adpt)
  Elliott J. Clawson (Adpt)
  Tom Reed (Titles)
Photography: Virgil Miller (Dir of photog)
  Milton Bridenbecker (Addl photog)
  Charles J. Van Enger (Addl photog)
Art Direction: Charles D. Hall (Art dir)
Film Editor: Maurice Pivar (Film ed)
Country: United States
Language: English

Source Text: Based on the novel Le fantome de l'Opéra by Gaston Leroux (Paris, 1910).
Authors: Gaston Leroux

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number
Universal Pictures Corp. 1/8/1925 dd/mm/yyyy LP21689

Physical Properties: b&w with col seq: Technicolor
  Si: Si, also with talking seq added in 1929

Genre: Horror
Subjects (Major): Detectives
  Faust (Opera)
  Paris (France)
  Unrequited love

Note: The film was reissued on 15 Dec 1929, with talking sequences added featuring Mary Philbin and Norman Kerry. For the reissued version, scenes with John Sainpolis were deleted and others were inserted with Edward Martindel in the role of "Philippe de Chagny." The role played by John Miljan was completely removed from the reissue. Scenes from the original, in which part of the opera Faust is performed, were newly shot with fully synchronized arias from the work. For information on other versions of The Phantom of the Opera . Universal would remake Phantom of the Opera in1943 Universal (see entry). 

Bibliographic Sources:   Date   Page
Exhibitors Trade Review   21 Sep 1925   p. 47.
Film Daily   13 Sep 1925.   
Film Daily   16 Feb 1930   p. 8.
MPW   7 Feb 1925   p. 605.
MPW   19 Sep 1925   p. 256.
New York Times   7 Sep 1925   p. 15.
New York Times   10 Feb 1930   p. 20.
Variety   9 Sep 1925   p. 35.
Variety   12 Feb 1930   p. 14.

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.
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