Nazimova is enjoying something of a renaissance these days, but this latter day interest is focused more on her sexual orientation than on her unique film career. She entered films in 1915 in the critically acclaimed, but now lost anti-war film War Brides. She appeared in a series of films for Metro playing a variety of types, though critics usually referred to her screen persona as "bizarre" and didn't always find her choice of roles appropriate. Most of these films are lost. She demanded and received more artistic control of her films and produced some extraordinarily stylized films which were hated by contemporary audiences. She hired talented designer Natasha Rambova for Camille (1921) and Salome (1923), two of the most unusual films ever to come out of Hollywood. The foremost interpreter of Ibsen in the theatre, it is unfortunate that her own production of A Doll's House (1922) does not survive. She went back to the theatre where her talents were more appreciated, returning to Hollywood in the late 30s in distinguished character roles.
Lambert, Gavin Nazimova. New York: Knopf, 1997.
Golden, Eve. Golden Images. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2001: p. 114-117.
Franklin, Joe [and William K. Everson].Classics of the Silent Screen. New York : Citadel Press, 5th ed., 1971 (originally published 1959): p. 207.
An Eye for an Eye (1918) at Gosfilmofond
Toys of Fate (1918) at Czech Film Archives
The Red Lantern (1919)at Gosfilmofond
Madame Peacock (1920)--Incomplete at the Cinematheque Royale, Belgium,
Stronger Than Death (1920)at George Eastman House, plus Turner
Camille (1921)at George Eastman House
Salome (1923)at George Eastman House
The Lambert book also implies that the following exist--not confirmed:
an episode of "Screen Snapshots (1919)
the trailer for "The Redeeming Sin (1925)
Also, existing is a trailer for Madonna of the Streets (1924), and a brief clip from My Son (1925) can be seen in a Warner Bros. Passing Parade short from the 1930s which airs occasionally on TCM.
©2001, by Greta de Groat. All Rights Reserved
Last revised November 27, 2008