AFI Catalog of Feature Films
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A Society Sensation
Director: Paul Powell (Dir)
Release Date:   23 Sep 1918
Duration (in reels):   5
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Cast:   Carmel Myers (Sydney Parmelee)  
    M. Rodolpho De Valentina (Dick Bradley)  
    Lydia Yeamans Titus (Mrs. Jones)  
    Alfred Allen (Captain Parmelee)  
    Fred Kelsey (Jim)  
    ZaSu Pitts (Mary)  
    Harold Goodwin (Tommy)  

Summary: Captain Parmelee, an old California fisherman, believes he is of noble birth. When social climber Mrs. Jones hears of his claims, she invites Parmelee's daughter Sydney to be her guest and introduces her to San Francisco society as a duchess. Dick Bradley falls in love with Sydney and follows her back to the fishing village after her father's claims were revealed as false. Jim, a local fisherman also in love with Sydney, abducts her in a fit of jealousy, but Dick discovers their whereabouts and the two men fight. Jim is rescued from the water by Mary, whom he later weds, leaving Dick and Sydney free to marry. 

Production Company: Bluebird Photoplays, Inc.  
Distribution Company: Bluebird Photoplays, Inc.  
Director: Paul Powell (Dir)
Writer: Hope Loring (Scen)
  Paul Powell (Scen)
Photography: E. G. Ullman (Cam)
Country: United States

Source Text: Based on the short story "The Borrowed Duchess" by Perley Poore Sheehan (publication undetermined).
Authors: Perley Poore Sheehan

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number
Bluebird Photoplays, Inc. 11/9/1918 dd/mm/yyyy LP12863

Physical Properties: b&w:
  Si:

 
Genre: Comedy-drama
 
Subjects (Major): Fishermen
  Jealousy
  Parentage
  Social climbers
  Village life
 
Subjects (Minor): Abduction
  California
  Drowning
  Fights
  Nobility
  Rescues
  San Francisco (CA)

Note: The pre-release title of this was The Borrowed Duchess . M. Rodopho De Valentina was later known by the name Rudolph Valentino. 

Bibliographic Sources:   Date   Page
ETR   5 Oct 18   p. 1521.
MPW   12 Oct 18   p. 273, 278
NYDM   12 Oct 18   p. 553.
Variety   13 Apr 18   p. 287.
Wid's   6 Oct 18   p. 26.

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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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