Edward C. Earle

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Edward C. Earle (1876-1955) was a theatre manager and cinematographer.


Born in Brooklyn on 4 April 1876, according to the national census of 1910 Edward Crossley Earle was an electrician who had his own shop in Philadelphia. Subsequently he went to work for the Prussian-born American movie pioneer Siegmund Lubin and when Lubin's, the first twin theatre in Baltimore, was being upgraded, it was announced that Earle would be its resident manager. However, not long afterwards it was reported that he would be managing the new Victoria Theatre in Lawrence, Massachusetts. By 1913 his career had changed direction, as he appears in a photograph of "Lubin Photographic Staff". He worked on a number of shorts with director Lloyd B. Carleton at the Lubin Manufacturing Company, but achieved his greatest success with the features he shot for Edgar Lewis, first at Lubin and later when Lewis branched out on his own. The IMDb lists 17 films that he shot between 1915 and 1923, 10 of them for Lewis.

In 1920 September 1920 Earle applied for a passport in order to shoot a film in Haiti for the Delsarte Film Corporation. Dealing with the life of Toussaint l’Ouverture, the leader of the slave revolt, it was to star Clarence E. Muse, but it seems that the film was never made. Instead, in January 1921, he accompanied director Leander De Cordova and production manager Leon D. Britton to South Africa to shoot Swallow (released 1922), based on a story by H. Rider Haggard and starring British imports Joan Morgan and Hayford Hobbs, for African Film Productions. It is also possible that he may have shot Sam's Kid (1921) for De Cordova. He returned to the United States in December 1921 and in February 1924 the Film Daily reported that he was representing Bioscope Improvements Ltd. of Johannesburg, marketing a device to do away with having to rewind films after projecting them. In 1929 the Motion Picture News had him running the Manor Theater on Coney Island Avenue in Brooklyn for the Schwartz Circuit, while at the time of the 1940 Census he was a checker in the film industry. He most likely died in January 1955 in Park Ridge, Bergen County, New Jersey.

(According to one newspaper report he was a brother-in-law of Siegmund Lubin, but this has not been confirmed. However, Lubin’s wife’s maiden name was Annie Abrams and Earle’s wife was Lena/Helen Abrams. He should not be confused with Canadian-born actor Edward Earle.) (FO)


The Film Daily, 14 June 1921

The Film Daily, 26 February 1924


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