Frank Capra

1544 WordsNov 7, 20127 Pages
Frank Capra Have you ever heard about the great filmmaker Francesco Rosario Capra? Perhaps you’ve heard of his 1946 film “It’s a Wonderful Life” (Laurie Boeder)? Or his 1941 film “Meet John Doe” (Laurie Boeder)? These two are just a few films of his great work. Capra was a unique filmmaker. He struggled to keep his dream alive and managed to become one of the most successful filmmakers ever. Frank Capra was born on “May 18, 1897 in Bisacquino, Sicily. On May 10, 1903, his family left for America aboard the ship Germania, arriving in New York on May 23rd” (Jon C. Hopwood). They boarded a train and head to California where they stayed with Capra’s older brother, Benjamin, in Los Angeles. At age 6, Capra attended Castelar Elementary…show more content…
Hopwood). Producer Walter Montague hired Capra to direct a short film, “The Ballad of Fisher’s Boarding House,” based on one of Rudyard Kipling’s poems. Frank Capra insisted on making a film based on his own poems. Montague disagreed and later, Capra. Frank Capra struggled to find another professional filmmaking job but was hired later that same year by Paul Gerson Picture Corporation to help make its two-reel comedies. He began dating the actress Helen Edith Howe and later married on November 25, 1923. The couple moved to Hollywood where he would work as a gag-writer for Hal Roach for the “Our Gang” series in January,1924. Frank Capra wrote five “Our Gang” comedies in seven weeks and asked Roach for the position as a director. Roach’s refusal caused Capra to quit. After quitting on Roach, Capra also worked for a while with the famous comedian of the silent movie era, Harry Langdon, as a gag-writer. The film “Tramp, Tramp, Tramp” was a collaboration of Langdon (he was working on his first national feature length film), Harry Edwards (which directed all of Langdon’s films at Sennet), and Capra. Edwards over-ran the film budget making Langdon to pay for the extra costs out of his own pocket. Langdon wasn’t happy with the result even if it did well at box office. He fired Edwards and promoted Capra as director, boosting up his salary to $750 a week. “It was with Langdon that Capra made his first feature films, Tramp, Tramp, Tramp, The
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