Silent movie star Constance Talmadge is largely unknown to contemporary audiences, overshadowed by the enduring legacies of Mary Pickford, Lillian Gish, Greta Garbo, Gloria Swanson and Clara Bow. Yet in the twenties, Constance Talmadge–the bubbly, pretty comedienne with a knowing confidence and a sweet personality (in contrast to her elder sister Norma, who specialized in romantic tragedy) — was one of the biggest and most popular Hollywood stars. “She pinned down a role that became her, both on and off the screen — the hoydenish, devil-may-care, flirtatious sophisticate,” in the words of film historian Jeanine Basinger.
Her 1924 comedy Her Night of Romance, directed by Sidney Franklin (The Good Earth, 1937) and scripted by Hanns Kräly, is a familiar romantic farce of mistaken identities and ridiculous plot twists to bring together Dorothy Adams (Talmadge), an American heiress in London, with the seductive but penniless Lord Paul Menford (Ronald Colman). It’s just the right mix of silliness and sophistication that made her career.
Continue reading on Turner Classic Movies. Plays August 4 on TCM.