Technicolor luster The Black Pirate

Posted by Matt Brunson on Sat, Jun 30, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Known for sporting one of the earliest versions of Technicolor, The Black Pirate caused so many problems for movie theaters back in 1926 that producer-star Douglas Fairbanks eventually had to release a black-and-white version to better accommodate projectors not used to the bulky nature of the two-strip Technicolor reels. In recent times, Kino Video took it upon itself to lovingly restore the film to its original luster, and this is the version that will be screened in Charlotte as part of the Main Library's series Ships Ahoy!!: 8 Classic Seafaring Films.

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Fairbanks, the most popular cinematic swashbuckler of the silent era (and, incidentally, the physical model for Superman in the comics), plays a young duke whose father is murdered by a band of pirates. He joins the group incognito in hopes of exacting his revenge, but he soon becomes distracted by a shapely hostage (Billie Dove). Local musician Ethan Uslan will provide the live piano accompaniment at the screening. Free. June 30, 2 p.m. ImaginOn's Wells Fargo Playhouse, 300 E. 7th St. 704-416-4600.

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