Alcatraz Island (Warner Bros.) (1937)

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PUBLICITY (Advance Feature) (Opening Day Story) Prison Films Hold — [RIPPING PRISON Powerful Interest Scenes In “Zola,” “They Won’t Forget,” and ‘Alcatraz Island’? Have Great Dramatic Value There has never been and perhaps never will be as argumentative a subject as the great problem of penology. Since the beginnings of civilization the combination of crime and punishment have been perplexing and unsatisfying with regard to solution. Countries, individuals and social groups are continually at odds as to how jails, prisons, and criminals should be managed. The problem is directly reflected in the movie-going public. Films dealing with the subject, either directly or injected by reason of a dramatic plot, have always held a great interest. Various scenes from recent pietures serve to show the increased interest, not only in the social aspect but also as a source of melodrama. The movie-makers have been quick to see and make use of this. When “I Am a Fugitive From a Chain Gang” with Paul Muni was released a few years ago, interest was aroused to such an extent that the picture was a smashing success _ wherever played. Here was an excellent example of how the social and dramatic aspects were interwoven with splendid acting, and direetion by Mervyn LeRoy, to make it the success it was. When Warden Lewis E. Lawes of Sing Sing prison wrote his enlightening book, it was made into another strong film by Warner Bros. with Bette Davis and Spencer Tracy in the leading roles. It was called “20,000 Years in Sing Sing.” Various other films contain just short scenes of the incarceration of one or more of the principals, and in nearly all the cases, the intense dramatic atmosphere is thus attained. The Devil’s Island episodes with the imprisonment of Captain Dreyfus in the recent “The Life of Emile Zola” are never-to-beforgotten scenes, it is wunanimously agreed. The same is applicable to those in “They Won’t For Mat 101—10e John Litel, whose featured role as “Gat” Brady in “Alcatraz Island,’’ the picture now showing at the Strand Theatre, has been widely acclaimed by those who have seen this exciting drama. get,” powerful treatise of crime and justice. Others include “Jailbreak,” “Road Gang,” and the recent “San Quentin.” The very latest, “Alcatraz Island” combines the inten Ann Sheridan Mat 108—10c sity of many of the preceding films with a punch that may well never again be revealed on celluloid. A powerful story with a background of rackets and a tender love story, has John Litel, a racketeer, as the father of lovely Mary Maguire, who has spent her girlhood in an exclusive girls’ boarding school. The complications thus arising tend to bring one of the most gripping films in a long while to the Strand Theatre sereen starting Friday. Ann Sheridan plays the romantic lead opposite Litel. She has recently come into her own after sterling performances in “San Quentin” and “Wine, Women and Horses.” William McGann directed the film from a story by Crane Wilbur. Also in the cast are Vladimir Sokoloff who played Cezanne in “The Life of Emile Zola,” and Dick Pureell. CHAMPION’S DAUGHTER Mary Maguire, one of the leading women in the CosmopolitanWarner Bros. melodrama, “Aleatraz Island,” is the daughter of Michael Maguire, Australian football star and former welterweight champion of the Antipodes. She is to be seen now at the Strand Theatre. ODDEST FAN PLEA Dick Purcell, featured in the Cosmopolitan-Warner Bros.’ melodrama “Alcatraz Island,’ now showing at the Strand theatre, got a request from a fan for one of the wisdom teeth he recently had extracted. The fan wants to add it to her charm bracelet, she said, COPPER PHOTOS Dick Pureell, featured in Cosmopolitan Warner Bros.’ “Aleatraz Island,” is perfecting a new method of printing photographs on copper. He is one of Hollywood’s most expert amateur photographers. Dick is to be seen currently at the Strand theatre. Feer f 2 Sale P = STORY OPENS AT STRAND THEATRI “Alcatraz Island,’ a Warner Bros. melodrama, is to have its first local showing today at the Strand Theatre. It is said the story isn’t merely one of life behind the stone walls of the Pacific-washed prison. There’s plenty of action on the mainland, both before and after the protagonist — one Gat Brady, played by John Litel — is confined for income-tax evasion. The story itself deals with a powerful racketeer, (John Litel), who is forced to remove his daughter (Mary Maguire), from an exclusive boarding school, and take her to live with him. When he is imprisoned for ineome tax evasion, his one wish is to get out as soon as his term is up to rejoin his daughter, now in love with a district attorney, (Gordon Oliver) and his own sweetheart (Ann Sheridan). How this desire is thwarted time and again by a former mobman seeking revenge brings us through the various prisons in the story, thus forming as powerful a background as has been seen Mary Maguire 10¢ Mat 105 in a long while. The double romance in the story keeps the film from being grim and thus well up in the realm of excellent entertainment. The film is excellently cast. John Litel, who played Patrick Henry in the Academy-Awardwinning short, “Give Me Liberty,” is Gat Brady. He was also in “The Life Of Emile Zola” as was Vladimir Sokoloff, who played Cezanne the artist in that film. In “Aleatraz Island,” Sokoloff plays a Dutchman, also an inmate of “The Rock,” and gives one of the finest performances of the film. “Alcatraz Island” was directed by William McGann, from an original screen play by Crane Wilbur. Included in the east are Dick Purcell, Vladimir Sokoloff, Ben Welden, Addison Richards, Peggy Bates, Ellen Clancy and George E. Stone. NO PREJUDICE HERE Vladimir Sokoloff, noted Russian actor in the CosmopolitanWarner Bros. melodrama, “Aleatraz Island,” now showing at the Strand Theatre, keeps fit by doing Japanese exercises. This Publicity Featurette available in one and two col. size. Order Mat 115 10¢ for the one col., Mat 218—20c for the two column. Specify size. a Mat 201—20c Playing opposite John Litel in one of the featured roles of “Alcatraz Island,” the picture which comes to the Strand Theatre next Frdiay, Ann Sheridan once again shows herself to be one of the most beautiful and talented actresses in Hollywood. Litel Nearly Was Banker John Litel, leading man in “Aleatraz Island,” the Cosmopolitan melodrama which Warner Bros. are now presenting at the Strand Theatre, trained for an acting career without knowing he was going to be an actor. Until he was 26 years old a career as a Thespian was far from his thoughts. Born at Albany, Wiise., December 30, 1894, he was educated at Albany High School and then was graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. When John showed no interest in a specific profession or business, his banker father, James E. Litel, permitted him to shift for himself, Accordingly John worked at manual labor, as a clerk in stores and as a salesman of life insurance. At the age of 26, John found himself on the stage acting. It was just another job that he took on the spur of the moment. But since then he has played in stock in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Kansas City, Denver, New Orleans, San Francisco and Los Angeles, to mention but a few. On Broadway he scored a great suecess, one of his most recent hits being “Room Service.” Signed to a screen contract by Warner Bros. when he came to Hollywood to visit his mother, Litel has been featured in ‘Midnight Court,” “Marked Woman,” “Shm,” “Back In Cireulation” and “Aleatraz Island.” Five feet 11 inches tall, Litel weighs 180 pounds, has hazel eyes and dark brown hair and is of the virile type he portrays in “Alcatraz Island.” For more than 15 years he has been married to Ruth Pecheur, a non-professional. Together they have traveled extensively abroad and in this country. BEN WELDEN WATCHES DIET The fact that an actor watches his diet to guard against a tendency to heaviness doesn’t mean he doesn’t make a good heavy on the sereen. In fact, nothing an actor does in private life affects in any way the quality of villainy he purveys on the screen. Either he is a very good villain or a very bad villain, according to Ben Welden, who delivers his particular brand of villainy in the Cosmopolitan-Warner Bros. melodrama, “Alcatraz Island, due to open next Friday at the Strand theater. “Perhaps I should say that a man must be a very bad villain to be a very good villain,” says Welden with a smile. “Being a successful villain is largely a question of putting yourself in the position of the man who was asked how he found a lost horse. He replied, ‘I just imagined I was a horse, figured out where I would go as a horse, went there and found my horse.’ ” Mat 102—10c Ann Sheridan, beautiful star of the picture now showing at the Strand Theatre, entitled “Alcatraz Island.” Her performance in this and other Warner films has skyrocketed her to fame. Page Five