Saturday, July 13, 2024

“American Horror Story” Star Lily Rabe Will Play Silent Film Legend Mary Pickford in Film Co-Produced by Julie Pacino


There’s a lot of Hollywood royalty in this story: “American Horror Story” star Lily Rabe, known to New Yorkers as the best young theater actress, is going to play silent film star Mary Pickford in a new film.

Rabe, of course, is the daughter of playwright David Rabe and the late great actress Jill Clayburgh.

“The First” is being produced by Jen DeLia and Julie Pacino, who is also the daughter of Al Pacino. They’ve been working on this project a long time and now it’s ready to roll. They’ve also got Michael Pitt as ‘Owen Moore’, Julia Stiles as ‘Frances Marion’, Billy Magnussen as ‘Jack Pickford’, Louisa Krause as ‘Lottie Pickford’, Josephine de La Baume as ‘Elsie Janis’, and Ryan Simpkins as a younger ‘Mary Pickford’. 

More names are to come soon including D.W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, Adolf Zukor, Samuel Goldwyn, Lillian Gish and Charlotte Hennessy (Mary’s mother).Of course, Lily Rabe’s real life boyfriend and frequent acting partner, Hamish Linklater, would be a great Fairbanks.

DeLia is directing from a script written by her with Josh Fagin.

“The First” will be cast by Bonnie Timmermann and Adrienne Stern, with cinematography by Larry Smith who shot Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut, production design by Oscar-nominee Anastasia Masaro, costume design by Amit Gajwani, and hair and make-up design by Oscar-winner Jan Archibald.  The production companies are Poverty Row Entertainment, Katsize Films, and IMC Entertainment.

This movie will not be silent, by a long shot. Pickford, Fairbanks, and Chaplin were among the group that founded United Artists Pictures in the 1920s.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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