Frederick Warde
Frederick Barkham Warde (1851–1935) was an English Shakesperian actor
An actor is a person who acts in a dramatic production and who works in film, television, theatre, or radio in that capacity...

 who relocated to the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 in the late 19th century.

In the late 1870s he partnered with actor Maurice Barrymore
Maurice Barrymore
Herbert Arthur Chamberlayne Blythe —stage name Maurice Barrymore — was the patriarch of the Barrymore acting family and great-grandfather of actress Drew Barrymore.-Early life:...

 and the two agreed to tour plays around the United States. Warde would have one section of the country while Barrymore and his company toured the other. For a time the venture was very successful. Warde had two notable film achievements, one being the "discovery" of Douglas Fairbanks
Douglas Fairbanks
Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. was an American actor, screenwriter, director and producer. He was best known for his swashbuckling roles in silent films such as The Thief of Bagdad, Robin Hood, and The Mark of Zorro....

 Sr. and persuading him to move from Denver to join Warde's New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 actors troupe.
The second achievement was as the star of Richard III
Richard III (1912 film)
Richard III is a 55-minute film adaptation of Shakespeare's play, starring Frederick Warde as the title character. The film, a French/U.S. coproduction, was produced by Film d'Art and released through the independent states rights film distribution system...

(1912), based on the play by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon"...

. This 55-minute film was re-discovered in 1996 by a private film collector who donated it to the American Film Institute
American Film Institute
The American Film Institute is an independent non-profit organization created by the National Endowment for the Arts, which was established in 1967 when President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act...

 archive. The film is thought to be the earliest surviving American feature film
Feature film
In the film industry, a feature film is a film production made for initial distribution in theaters and being the main attraction of the screening, rather than a short film screened before it; a full length movie...

. In 1916 Warde filmed another Shakespearean tragedy, King Lear, for the Thanhouser company. This film also exists. In 1917 he appeared in a Pathe film Under False Colors with an up and coming beauty named Jeanne Eagels
Jeanne Eagels
Jeanne Eagels was an American actress on Broadway and in several motion pictures. She was a former Ziegfeld Follies Girl who went on to greater fame on Broadway and in the emerging medium of sound films....

. Another of his films was A Lover's Oath (filmed in 1921 and premiered four years later), opposite Ramon Novarro
Ramón Novarro
Ramón Novarro was a Mexican leading man actor in Hollywood in the early 20th century. He was the next male "Sex Symbol" after the death of Rudolph Valentino...

, in which he portrayed Omar Khayyám
Omar Khayyám
Omar Khayyám was aPersian polymath: philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, climatology and theology....

. It is regarded as a lost film
Lost film
A lost film is a feature film or short film that is no longer known to exist in studio archives, private collections or public archives such as the Library of Congress, where at least one copy of all American films are deposited and catalogued for copyright reasons...


Warde also recorded an early sound film Frederick Warde Reads Poem, A Sunset Reverie (1921) which was made in the short-lived sound-on-disc
The term Sound-on-disc refers to a class of sound film processes using a phonograph or other disc to record or playback sound in sync with a motion picture...

 Phono-Kinema process.

External links

  • Warde, Frederick, The Fools of Shakespeare: An Interpretation of Their Wit, Wisdom and Personalities (New York: McBride, Nast & Company, 1913) 214 pages
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