SALOME (1922)


Vintage original 14 x 11″ (36 x 28 cm.) double weight photo. Diagonal creases at top left, one tear on left (mended with archival paper), VERY GOOD+. Alla Nazimova (actor and uncredited co-director, along with Charles Bryant). The notorious and flamboyant Nazimova, who had initially captivated Broadway with her interpretations of Ibsen, was lured to Hollywood with a then unheard of salary of $13,000 a week. She had a vogue which lasted for several years. Mann, pp. 60f: “In her few films that survive, what’s preserved for all time is lesbian passion — passion that breaks rules, defies tradition, reverses gender roles, challenges assumptions — lesbian passion, even though it’s ostensibly directed at a man.” Here, in this rare image from her Oscar Wilde adaptation, she is with Mitchell Lewis (as Herod); this image is from late in the film, as she demands that Herod give her the head of John the Baptist.


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