Sunday, February 19, 2006

Lon Chaney

Interesting piece in today's LA Times Magazine.

"Since Chaney's private life was just that, the rare personal glimpses of him by contemporaries are revered by devotees as if they were splinters from the true cross. Biographers argue over whether there was any hidden darkness in Chaney, and use words such as 'withdrawn,' 'secretive,' 'uncommunicative' and 'dour.' Yet as always, there is considerable evidence to the contrary as well. Though he likely was, as 'Phantom' cinematographer Charles Van Enger said, 'one person that you did not want to see mad,' he was also something of an instinctive socialist who once refused to work overtime because it would have cheated the film's extras of one more day's pay. Young actresses he worked with, such as his 'Hunchback' co-star Patsy Ruth Miller, invariably remembered him as 'extremely kind, thoughtful and protective.'"

Emphasis added.

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