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Harry Southwell

Kelly Gang, The (Harry Southwell, 1920)

Hordern Mystery, The (Harry Southwell, 1920)

When The Kellys Were Out (Harry Southwell, 1923) aka True Story of the Kelly Gang

Down Under (Harry Southwell, 1927)

When the Kellys Rode (Harry Southwell, 1934)

Burgomeister, The (Harry Southwell, 1935) aka Hypnotised [previously made as The Bells]

Harry Southwell was a Welsh-born actor and writer who spent several years in America before coming to Australia in mid-1919 with his Australian wife. In 1917-18 he had adapted numerous short stories by O Henry into scenarios for a series of two-reelers produced by Broadway Star Features in America. This screen-writing experience tended to be represented by Southwell in Australia as experience in production and direction, and he was quickly able to impress enough businessmen to gain backing for a local production company. With a koala as his trademark and promoting himself extensively as 'the Welsh Wizard', he announced plans for five Australian features and for the construction of a studio in Sydney. The first production was The Kelly Gang, a subject with a supposedly ready-made audience and ample scope for cheaply staged outdoor action. ...
After his next film, The Hordern Mystery (1920), Southwell's plans for continuous production unexpectedly collapsed. He attempted to set up another company, Southwell's Ideal Productions, in mid-1921, but this also failed, and early in 1922 he ran for cover with a low budget re-make of the Kelly story, When The Kellys Were Out. Southwell turned to Kelly twice again in his career (in 1934 and 1947) but at no stage did the story help him out of trouble. He remained throughout the rest of his life on the shadowy fringes of Australian production, except for a period spent in Europe after 1923, where he made a biblical drama, David (1924), and Le Juif Polonais (1925), a story that he later refilmed in Australia as The Burgomeister (1935). Pike & Cooper: 95, 96.

Garry Gillard | New: 5 May, 2013| Now: 4 April, 2020