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John Bunny – Film’s First King of Comedy

 

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The Movie:

When people think of silent comedians, Charlie Chaplin, or possiblyBuster Keaton, leap to mind. Before either of those star becamefamous however, John Bunny was drawing in audiences with theone-reelers he was making at Vitagraph. Now largely forgotten, evenamong silent film fans, this important actor from the early days ofcinema gets some attention in John Bunny: Film’s First King ofComedy. This short (41 minutes) documentary looks at thecomedian who was billed as “the man who makes more than thepresident” and made over 150 films during his five-year career.

John Bunny came from a sea-faring family. His father and grandfatherwere both mariners and his mother advised him not to go to sea…until he was 21 years old. But breaking with tradition Bunny went tothe theater. Based in New York, John played the circuit as part of aminstrel show and took smaller roles in pl…Read the entire review

By Max Schindler