The Florodora Girl


1h 19m 1930
The Florodora Girl

Brief Synopsis

A turn-of-the-century chorus girl searches for romance.

Film Details

Genre
Comedy
Romance
Musical
Release Date
1930
Distribution Company
Sony Pictures Releasing
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "The Gay Nineties" by Gene Markey (publication undetermined).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 19m
Sound
Mono (MovieTone)
Color
Black and White, Color (Technicolor)

Synopsis

Daisy, a Florodora girl, who is too man-shy to go after a husband, is taken into hand by her sisters and embarks on an affair with young millionaire Jack Vibart, whose mother has already planned his marriage. She falls in love, although her friends warn her of his dishonorable intentions. Realizing that he loves her, he proposes, but the marriage is opposed by his mother when he loses the family fortune. Daisy marries him, nevertheless, and he finally makes good in the new automobile business and comes to carry her off during the Florodora act.

Film Details

Genre
Comedy
Romance
Musical
Release Date
1930
Distribution Company
Sony Pictures Releasing
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "The Gay Nineties" by Gene Markey (publication undetermined).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 19m
Sound
Mono (MovieTone)
Color
Black and White, Color (Technicolor)

Articles

The Florodora Girl


Marion Davies was a little young to have been in the chorus of Florodora, a show that debuted in 1899 and was so successful it made its six leading chorines celebrities. She had, however, been a Ziegfeld girl, a job that first brought her to William Randolph Hearst's attention. That gave her experience to draw on for her third talkie, in which she plays a gay '90s chorus girl whose sisters in arms (or rather legs) encourage her to take up gold digging with a wealthy philanderer (Lawrence Gray). The film's historical re-creations are spotty at best. It shows Florodora with a neon sign years before they were used, and the stage on which the chorus girls perform "Tell Me, Pretty Lady" is mammoth compared to the show's original theatre, but Davies and a spirited cast -- including Walter Catlett as a stage door Johnny, Ilka Chase as a fellow chorus girl and Nance O'Neil as Gray's mother -- make it work. As usual, Hearst spared no expense. A beach scene is filmed in front of the palatial Santa Monica beach house he built for Davies and the final sequence is shot in two-strip Technicolor. The film opened Hollywood's Pantages Theatre and scored solid reviews. Unfortunately, MGM failed to obtain the rights to the music from Florodora, and its composer, Leslie Stuart, sued MGM for copyright infringement, which limited the picture's release, making it a box office failure.

By Frank Miller
The Florodora Girl

The Florodora Girl

Marion Davies was a little young to have been in the chorus of Florodora, a show that debuted in 1899 and was so successful it made its six leading chorines celebrities. She had, however, been a Ziegfeld girl, a job that first brought her to William Randolph Hearst's attention. That gave her experience to draw on for her third talkie, in which she plays a gay '90s chorus girl whose sisters in arms (or rather legs) encourage her to take up gold digging with a wealthy philanderer (Lawrence Gray). The film's historical re-creations are spotty at best. It shows Florodora with a neon sign years before they were used, and the stage on which the chorus girls perform "Tell Me, Pretty Lady" is mammoth compared to the show's original theatre, but Davies and a spirited cast -- including Walter Catlett as a stage door Johnny, Ilka Chase as a fellow chorus girl and Nance O'Neil as Gray's mother -- make it work. As usual, Hearst spared no expense. A beach scene is filmed in front of the palatial Santa Monica beach house he built for Davies and the final sequence is shot in two-strip Technicolor. The film opened Hollywood's Pantages Theatre and scored solid reviews. Unfortunately, MGM failed to obtain the rights to the music from Florodora, and its composer, Leslie Stuart, sued MGM for copyright infringement, which limited the picture's release, making it a box office failure. By Frank Miller

The Florodora Girl


By 1930 America was beginning its long slide into the Great Depression, but in William Randolph Hearst's world all was well. When not overseeing his publishing empire or furthering construction on San Simeon, he was making sure his beloved mistress Marion Davies was fulfilling the Hollywood destiny he desired for her. His fingerprint is all over Floradora Girl (1930), a feather-light romance about a stage beauty (Davies) and her on-again, off-again courtship with wealthy suitor Jack (Lawrence Gray) -- not just in how the very Jazz Age Davies plays a gay '90s blushing blossom, down to how exterior scenes were filmed at his 118-room beach house on Santa Monica Beach. (Delicate pastel scenes shot in the primitive two-strip Technicolor process only add an antique flavor to the story.) Despite how she was savaged in Citizen Kane (1941), Davies was actually a talented and charming screen presence, her work ethic unspoiled by her anointed status. Hearst's insistence in placing her in light, virginal follies like this one may have hindered the natural rise of her star in Hollywood. Nevertheless, Floradora Girl still holds the distinction of being the first film ever screened at Hollywood's legendary Pantages Theater.

By Violet LeVoit

The Florodora Girl

By 1930 America was beginning its long slide into the Great Depression, but in William Randolph Hearst's world all was well. When not overseeing his publishing empire or furthering construction on San Simeon, he was making sure his beloved mistress Marion Davies was fulfilling the Hollywood destiny he desired for her. His fingerprint is all over Floradora Girl (1930), a feather-light romance about a stage beauty (Davies) and her on-again, off-again courtship with wealthy suitor Jack (Lawrence Gray) -- not just in how the very Jazz Age Davies plays a gay '90s blushing blossom, down to how exterior scenes were filmed at his 118-room beach house on Santa Monica Beach. (Delicate pastel scenes shot in the primitive two-strip Technicolor process only add an antique flavor to the story.) Despite how she was savaged in Citizen Kane (1941), Davies was actually a talented and charming screen presence, her work ethic unspoiled by her anointed status. Hearst's insistence in placing her in light, virginal follies like this one may have hindered the natural rise of her star in Hollywood. Nevertheless, Floradora Girl still holds the distinction of being the first film ever screened at Hollywood's legendary Pantages Theater. By Violet LeVoit

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Miscellaneous Notes

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