When 1931's Falcon Flew First
New York's Winter Garden Preems The Maltese Falcon (1931)
It was Warners 'round the town as May 1931 closed out and hotter weather attractions waited turn. Here then is footnote to previous Greenbriar visit with The Maltese Falcon of precode translation, and chance to see how the Winter Garden put it across in first-run ads. I like how the Falcon itself is a hovering threat, with web-encased Bebe Daniels the focus of sell. The novel was known and well-received, so copy puts emphasis there, Dashiell Hammett getting proper mention. Extras include a Bobby Jones golf short, these at a peak of reception by a public gripped with then-golf craze. If they couldn't afford clubs nor link membership, at least there was Jones and star guests to be viewed in single-reel play. The 1931 Falcon is gravy we take for granted now (TCM and DVD), but try seeing it from 60's through 80's as retitled Dangerous Female ... a relic near-as-hard to find as the gold-encrusted bird itself. For curiosity, I just checked a 1975 United Artists 16mm catalog where Falcon rented at $35 per day (the 1941 classic was $125). How many takers do you suppose UA had?