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Sumurun (1920) More at IMDbPro »

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Friedrich Freksa (pantomime)
Hanns Kräly (scenario)
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Release Date:
25 September 1921 (USA) See more »
Pola Negri As the Wild Desert dancer (1921 One Arabian Night poster) See more »
The favorite slave girl of a tyrannical sheik falls in love with a cloth merchant. Meanwhile, a hunchback clown suffers unrequited love for a traveling dancer who wants to join the harem. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
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An Archetypical And Fascinating East See more (11 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Ernst Lubitsch ... Yeggar - the Hunchback

Pola Negri ... Yannaia - a Dancer

Paul Wegener ... Der alte Scheich
Jenny Hasselqvist ... Sumurun
Aud Egede-Nissen ... Haidee

Harry Liedtke ... Nur-Al Din
Carl Clewing ... Der junge Scheich
Margarete Kupfer ... Alte Frau
Jakob Tiedtke ... Head Eunuch
Max Kronert ... Muffti, 1st Servant of Nur-al-Djin
Paul Biensfeldt ... Achmed, the Slave Trader
Paul Graetz ... Pufti, 2nd Servant of Nur-al-Djin

Directed by
Ernst Lubitsch 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Friedrich Freksa  pantomime
Hanns Kräly  scenario
Ernst Lubitsch  scenario
Richard Rieß  book

Original Music by
Friedrich Hollaender 
Victor Hollaender 
Cinematography by
Theodor Sparkuhl 
Kurt Waschneck 
Art Direction by
Ernö Metzner 
Kurt Richter 
Costume Design by
Ali Hubert 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Hong Kong:115 min | USA:85 min | 103 min (Kino Print)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Germany:6 (DVD rating)

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Movie Connections:
Featured in Die UFA (1992)See more »


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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful.
An Archetypical And Fascinating East, 13 March 2009

During the silent film history, there were famous and important pairs who worked together in varying degrees in their film careers: Herr Stiller and Dame Garbo, Herr Pabst and Dame Brooks, Herr Griffith and Dame Gish or Herr Ego and Dame Swanson. One of these remarkable silent open marriages was Herr Ernst Lubitsch and Dame Pola Negri, who worked together in many important silent productions, especially during the German period of the Teutonic director.

"Sumurun" (1920) was one of those early lavish UFA productions, based on a Herr Max Reinhard's 1910 stage pantomime, which gave prestige to Germany's greatest film company and provided the chance to decisively open the world film markets to the German productions, specially in Amerika, a distant and perilous country where afterwards, as many longhaired youngsters know, Herr Lubitsch will continue his successful career, becoming one of the most important directors in film history. In this same country Dame Pola will also make some films but with uneven results; for her, it was a short lapse in her career that she will afterwards resume in old Europe.

This German count mentioned that "Sumurun" was a lavish, opulent major budget film production as can be seen in the superb and astonishing décors and art direction due to the pair of hands, two for each one, of Herr Ernö Metzner und Kurt Richter. Such Teutonic magnificence and exuberance is just what the story demands; a tale involving a tangled love triangle set in an archetypical and fascinating East.

This German count also must mention that in addition to Dame Negri the film also features Herr Paul Wegener, Dame Aud Agede Nissen and Herr Lubitsch himself. Pola has a role that's perfect for her: sensual, adventuresome, defiant and full of untameable spirit. The film's parallel stories sometimes are confusing or digressive although it makes for a comprehensible mess since the various love conflicts in the film include unrequited passion, Eastern vengeance and unrestrained desires, all transpiring in an exotic landscape and making for a delicious extravagant film fantasy where the talent of the German director shines more that the Eastern sun.

And now, if you'll allow me, I must temporarily take my leave because this German Count has an exotic appointment in East Germany.

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