HOBART VAN ZANDT BOSWORTH (August 11, 1867 – December 30, 1943) was an American film actor , director , writer, and producer .
* 1 Early life * 2 Career * 3 Death * 4 Partial filmography * 5 References * 6 External links
He was born on August 11, 1867, in
After his mother died, his father remarried and young Hobart took a dislike to his stepmother. Considering himself "ill used and cruelly treated", as he told an interviewer in 1914, he ran away to New York City . There he signed on as a cabin boy aboard the Sovereign of the Seas , a clipper ship , and was soon out to sea.
After his first voyage, a five-month trip that took him from New York
He once told an interviewer, "All my people were of the sea and my
father was a naval officer". He spent eleven months on an old
fashioned whaler plying the
Thinking he would like to become a landscape painter, a friend
suggested that he work as a stage manager to raise the money to study
art. Acting on his friend's advice, Bosworth obtained a job with McKee
Rankin as a stage manager at the California Theatre in San Francisco.
Earning some money, he undertook the study of painting. Eventually, he
was pressed into duty as an actor in a small part with three lines.
Though he botched the lines, he was given other small roles. Bosworth
was eighteen years old, and on the cusp of a life in the theater.
From left to right,
Monte Blue ,
Hobart signed on with Louis Morrison to be part of a road company for
a season as both an actor and as Morrison's dresser, playing
Measure for Measure . During his time with
the company, Hobart and another writer wrote a version of
Bosworth eventually wound up in Park City, Utah , where he worked in a mine, pushing an ore wagon in order to raise money. He escaped the pits to tour with the magician Hermann the Great as the conjurer's assistant for a tour through Mexico.
For the first time in eleven years, the 21-year-old Bosworth met his father. Hobart recalled, "He looked at me and said, "Hum! I couldn't lick you now, son." They never met again.
He arrived back in New York in December 1888, and was hired by
Augustine Daly to play "Charles the Wrestler" in
As You Like It . He
did so well in the role, Daly kept him on. Bosworth remained with
Daly's company for ten years, in which he played mostly minor parts.
Seven times while he was with the company they made foreign tours,
Just as Bosworth began to taste stage stardom in New York, he was stricken with tuberculosis , a disease often fatal in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Bosworth was forced to give up the stage, and he was not allowed to exert himself indoors. Though he made a rapid recovery, he returned to the stage too quickly and suffered a relapse . For the rest of his working life, he balanced his acting with periods of rest so as to keep his tuberculosis in remission.
Bosworth re-established himself as a lead actor on the New York stage, appearing in the 1903 Broadway revival of Henrik Ibsen 's Hedda Gabler . He also appeared that year on the Great White Way as the lead in Marta of the Lowlands. This role propelled him to Broadway stardom. However, he was forced again to give up the stage when he lost seventy pounds in ten weeks due to his illness.
Bosworth moved to Tempe, Arizona , to partake of the climate to improve his health. Eventually, he got the disease under control again. While not severely handicapped, he was forced to remain in a warm climate lest he suffer a relapse. The disease robbed him of his voice as well, but there was a new medium for actors: silent films .
Bosworth moved to
Due to his role in pioneering the film industry in California,
Bosworth often was referred to as the "Dean of Hollywood". He wrote
the scenarios for the second and third pictures he acted in, and
directed the third. According to his own count, he eventually wrote
112 scenarios and produced eighty-four pictures with Selig. Bosworth
was attracted to Jack
In 1913, he started his own company,
D.W. Griffith also released a Jack
Bosworth directed the follow-up, The Valley of the Moon , in which he also had a supporting role as an actor. He also appeared as an actor in John Barleycorn , which he co-directed with J. Charles Haydon . He produced, directed, wrote, and acted in Martin Eden and An Odyssey of the North, playing the lead in the latter, which was released by Paramount. He finished up the series by producing, directing, and playing the lead in the two-part "Burning Daylight" series, The Adventures of Burning Daylight . Both were released by Paramount.
Soon Bosworth joined the Oliver Photography Company. Subsequently, Bosworth Inc. and Oliver Morosco Productions released a total of thirty-one pictures, most which starred Bosworth. The company ceased operations after producing The Sea Lion . In a scene still for the 1919 silent drama "Behind the Door," German U-boat commander Lieutenant Brandt (played by Wallace Beery) is being throttled by American Merchant Marine Captain Oscar Krug (Hobart Bosworth).
The merger with Paramount ended the period in Bosworth's creative life where he was a major force in the motion picture industry, which was undergoing changes as the industry matured and solidified. He directed one other picture before the merger, The White Scar , which he also wrote and starred in for the Universal Film Manufacturing Company . After his own production company closed, Hobart wound up playing supporting roles as an actor.
He divorced his first wife, Adele Farrington , in 1919. On 22 December 1920 he married Cecile Kibre, widow of G. Harold Percival, who had been art director at Ince Studio and who had died of influenza in 1918. Cecile Kibre had a son by Percival, named George, whom Hobart Bosworth later adopted as his son.
Bosworth survived motion pictures' transition to sound, or "talkies".
Aside from appearing in
Warner Brothers ' showcase, The Show of Shows
(1929), his talking debut proper was in the film short A Man in Peace
He was survived by his second wife, Cecile and his son George. He was entombed in Glendale's Forest Lawn Memorial Park with a private mausoleum.
* The Count of Monte Cristo (1908)
* Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1908)
* Rip Van Winkle (1908)
* Damon and Pythias (1908)
* The Spirit of \'76 (1908)
* On Thanksgiving Day (1908)
* The Tenderfoot (1909)
* Boots and Saddles (1909)
* In the Badlands (1909)
* Fighting Bob (1909)
* In the Sultan\'s Power (1909)
* The Leopard Queen (1909)
* Across the Plains (1910)
* The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1910) (undetermined)
* Davy Crockett (1910)
* The Sergeant (1910) - extant
* Brown of Harvard (1911) (uncredited)
Alas! Poor Yorick! (1913 short)
Buckshot John (1915) (also directed)
* Oliver Twist (1916)
Joan the Woman
* ^ A B C "Hobart Bosorth, Film Pioneer, Dies. Played Lead in First Movie Made in Los Angeles. Star of Many Screen Epics". New York Times . December 31, 1943. Retrieved 2013-12-23.