LBJBR’s Spotlight on Film Directors – Allan Dwan

When it comes to the evolution of filmmaking, throughout the decades, there have been a lot of names who have helped to make film what it is today. Some have made large contributions and been forgotten, their deeds only known in some because some dusty book in an attic somewhere, holding tightly to the information it swore to keep it safe. While others have left very tiny indentations on the fabric of cinema that have barely left a mark and yet their names echo throughout the history books as gods. LBJBR turns its spotlight on Allan Dwan, a forgotten film pioneer.

When it comes to the evolution of filmmaking, throughout the decades, there have been a lot of names who have helped to make film what it is today. Some have made large contributions and been forgotten, their deeds only known in some because some dusty book in an attic somewhere, holding tightly to the information it swore to keep it safe. While others have left very tiny indentations on the fabric of cinema that have barely left a mark and yet their names echo throughout the history books as gods. LBJBR turns its spotlight on Allan Dwan, a forgotten film pioneer.

The Films of Allan Dwan

When it comes to the evolution of filmmaking, throughout the decades, there have been a lot of names who have helped to make film what it is today. Some have made large contributions and been forgotten, their deeds only known in some because some dusty book in an attic somewhere, holding tightly to the information it swore to keep it safe. While others have left very tiny indentations on the fabric of cinema that have barely left a mark and yet their names echo throughout the history books as gods. LBJBR turns its spotlight on Allan Dwan, a forgotten film pioneer.

When it comes to the evolution of filmmaking, throughout the decades, there have been a lot of names who have helped to make film what it is today. Some have made large contributions and been forgotten, their deeds only known in some because some dusty book in an attic somewhere, holding tightly to the information it swore to keep it safe. While others have left very tiny indentations on the fabric of cinema that have barely left a mark and yet their names echo throughout the history books as gods. LBJBR turns its spotlight on Allan Dwan, a forgotten film pioneer.

When it comes to the evolution of filmmaking, throughout the decades, there have been a lot of names who have helped to make film what it is today. Some have made large contributions and been forgotten, their deeds only known in some because some dusty book in an attic somewhere, holding tightly to the information it swore to keep it safe. While others have left very tiny indentations on the fabric of cinema that have barely left a mark and yet their names echo throughout the history books as gods. LBJBR turns its spotlight on Allan Dwan, a forgotten film pioneer.

Born April 3 1885, Allan Dwan destiny was in filmmaking. No matter how hard he tried to get away from it, the picture business would follow him wherever he went. Dwan would become a key innovator in young Hollywood. The Flying A studio, which he operated, was one of the first operating film studios in California.

The Films of Allan Dwan

Before Dwan ever got into the movie business, he started out in the lighting trade something that would come in extremely useful later on in his film career. He was first offered a job as a scriptwriter for Essanay, the studio employed a young Charlie Chaplin. While in New York, the young Allan would become head of the east coast head of the Motion Picture Directors Association a precursor to the guild.

Allan Dwan would head out to Hollywood to monitor Essanay’s productions out in California and eventually would step into the role of director. In an article for The New Yorker. author Richard Brody noted about how prolific

” Dwan’s filmography is huge—more than a hundred and thirty features, and nearly three hundred silent shorts, in a directorial career that ran from 1911 to 1961. He sometimes made as many as four features a year..”

Dwan’s experience with lighting would help him develop proper lighting for film.


“He studied at Notre Dame University, intending to become an electrical engineer. His expertise with lighting brought him into the film industry “

 Chambers Film Factfinder, 2006


“Dwan’s career spanned the history of American motion pictures, from the days of silent one-reelers to modern Technicolor features that utilized some of the cinematic techniques whose use he had pioneered. By his own estimate, Dwan participated in the making of 1,850 films, some 400 of these as director .
 The Virgin International Encyclopedia of Film, 1992

IMBD lists Dwan’s first director’s credit in 1911 and his last 1961.

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