A Woman of the Sea

A Woman of the Sea

Infobox Film
name = A Woman of the Sea

image_size =
caption =
director = Josef von Sternberg
producer = Charlie Chaplin
writer = Josef von Sternberg
narrator =
starring = Edna Purviance
Raymond Bloomer
Charles French
Eve Southern
Gayne Whitman
music =
cinematography = Paul Ivano
editing =
distributor = United Artists
released = 1926
runtime = 75 minutes
country = USA
language = Silent film
English intertitles
budget =
gross =
preceded_by =
followed_by =
website =
amg_id =
imdb_id = 0017575

"A Woman of the Sea", also known by its working title "Sea Gulls", was an unreleased 1926 silent film produced by the Chaplin Film Company.

The now lost film starred Edna Purviance, Raymond Bloomer, Eve Southern and Charles French, and was directed by Josef von Sternberg.

Production details

The film was in production for about six months. Actual filming took about three months, mainly in the Los Angeles area, including indoor scenes at Chaplin's studio. During a twelve day period, outdoor scenes were filmed on location in the Monterey and Carmel coastal area in California.

Chaplin produced the film as a starring vehicle for his former leading lady Purviance, and to help establish Von Sternberg, whose 1924 experimental film "The Salvation Hunters "had greatly impressed Chaplin. This was the only time Chaplin produced a film in which he neither starred nor directed. His involvement in the production was minimal, as he was concurrently working on his problem-plagued film "The Circus". It was Purviance's final American film.

Chaplin did not approve the completed film for release, and it was never publicly screened. The few Chaplin associates who saw the film agreed in later years that it was not a commercially viable film. Under pressure from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, the production company burned the negatives in June 1933 for tax purposeswhat. Some evidence suggests a copy of the film survived at the Chaplin studio until at least the late 1930s, but no copy exists in the current Chaplin film archives. Oona Chaplin burned the last remaining copy in 1991.

In 2005, over 50 previously unknown production stills were discovered in the private collection of Purviance's relatives. Except for a few images in print and a few words in books over the years, nearly nothing has been known about the film. The working title for 'A Woman of the Sea' was 'The Sea Gull' as written in the shooting schedule that still survives. The original title list also has survived from the film. The information from the shooting schedule and title list has been combined with the production stills, and was published in 2008.

References in other media

The film, and Chaplin himself, figure prominently in Tim Powers' fantasy novel "Three Days to Never" (Morrow, 2006). Though rooted in established facts, the fictionalized Chaplin is attributed motives -- and the film attributed traits -- that are largely invented by Powers.

External links

*imdb title|id=0017575|title=A Woman of the Sea

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