IMDb > Way Down East (1920)
Way Down East
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guide
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Way Down East (1920) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 69 | slideshow)


User Rating:
7.9/10   4,017 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Up 64% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Lottie Blair Parker (from the play by)
William A. Brady (play)
View company contact information for Way Down East on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 September 1920 (USA) See more »
A simple story for plain people.
A naive country girl is tricked into a sham marriage by a wealthy womanizer, then must rebuild her life despite the taint of having borne a child out of wedlock. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
(11 articles)
Journal (6.6.16 - 1.10.17)
 (From MUBI. 20 March 2017, 8:00 AM, PDT)

Notebook's 8th Writers Poll: Fantasy Double Features of 2015
 (From MUBI. 4 January 2016, 6:41 AM, PST)

New book tackles film illiteracy
 (From 25 October 2015, 2:24 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Griffith knew his stuff See more (46 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Lillian Gish ... Anna Moore

Richard Barthelmess ... David Bartlett
Mrs. David Landau ... Anna Moore's Mother

Lowell Sherman ... Lennox Sanderson

Burr McIntosh ... Squire Bartlett
Josephine Bernard ... Mrs. Emma Tremont
Mrs. Morgan Belmont ... Diana Tremont
Patricia Fruen ... Diana's Sister
Florence Short ... The Eccentric Aunt
Kate Bruce ... Mrs. Bartlett
Vivia Ogden ... Martha Perkins
Porter Strong ... Seth Holcomb
George Neville ... Constable Rube Whipple

Edgar Nelson ... Hi Holler
Mary Hay ... Kate Brewster - the Squire's Niece

Creighton Hale ... Professor Sterling

Emily Fitzroy ... Maria Poole - Landlady
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Carol Dempster ... Barn Dancer (uncredited)
Louise Lawson II ... Minor Role (uncredited)

Paul Porcasi ... Party Guest (uncredited)
Athole Shearer ... Barn Dancer (uncredited)
Edith Shearer ... Barn Dancer (uncredited)

Norma Shearer ... Barn Dancer (uncredited)
Frank Walsh ... Barn Dancer (uncredited)

Directed by
D.W. Griffith 
Writing credits
Lottie Blair Parker (from the play by)

William A. Brady (play) (as Wm. A. Brady)

Joseph R. Grismer (elaborated by) (as Jos. R. Grismer)

Anthony Paul Kelly (scenario by)

D.W. Griffith  uncredited

Produced by
D.W. Griffith .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
William Frederick Peters (musical accompaniment) (uncredited)
Louis Silvers (musical accompaniment) (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Paul H. Allen (uncredited)
G.W. Bitzer (camera) (uncredited)
Charles Downs (uncredited)
Hendrik Sartov (uncredited)
Film Editing by
James Smith (uncredited)
Rose Smith (uncredited)
Art Direction by
Clifford Pember (uncredited)
Charles O. Seessel (uncredited)
Costume Design by
Henri Bendel (uncredited)
O'Kane Conwell (uncredited)
Lady Duff Gordon (uncredited)
Otto Kahn (uncredited)
Madame Lisette (gowns: Lillian Gish) (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Elmer Clifton .... second unit director (uncredited)
Herbert Sutch .... assistant director (uncredited)
Frank Walsh .... assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Clark Robinson .... set builder (uncredited)
Elmer Clifton .... stunt double: long shots of Lillian Gish on ice floe (uncredited)
Allan Law .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Paul H. Allen .... camera operator (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Lady Duff Gordon .... costume designer: gowns in prologue (uncredited)
Other crew
Elmer Clifton .... associate director (uncredited)
Elmer Clifton .... photo double: Richard Barthalmes (uncredited)
Victor Georg .... art titles (uncredited)
D.W. Griffith .... presenter (uncredited)
Katherine Johnston .... photo double: Lillian Gish (uncredited)
Una Merkel .... stand-in: Lillian Gish (uncredited)
Leigh Smith .... production assistant (uncredited)
Frank Wortman .... technical director (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
145 min | Spain:165 min | USA:107 min (1931 re-release) | 126 min (Alpha Video)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Finland:S (1965) | Portugal:M/6 (DVD rating) | USA:Not Rated

Did You Know?

While there is a lot of inter-cutting in the editing, the basic ice floe scenes were filmed in White River Junction (Hartford Village), Vermont during the late winter.See more »
Maria Poole - Landlady:Everybody is talking about you having no husband - I guess you'll have to leave.See more »
Movie Connections:


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Griffith knew his stuff, 4 December 2006
Author: rensamuels from United States

I just finished watching Way Down East. It was extremely powerful and moving. Gish is at her best, and while she may take getting used to if you've never seen her before, because she is a bit twittery, she is also a unique beauty with enormously expressive eyes and nervous mannerisms that make her perfect in this role as the poor innocent done wrong by the sophisticated older man. Like they say, the story's as old as the hills, and I was surprised but pleased at the happy ending, considering she had a baby out of wedlock--usually women were punished in the old films, even if it wasn't their fault. Little things like Richard Barthelmess petting a pigeon on the head, blossoms bouncing gently in the breeze, the play of light at sunset through Gish's hair as she stands by the river.... There's an appreciation of the beauty of nature and the gentle aspects of the human soul that's not much seen anymore. Just watching the men haying in the fields, the old barn dance, a horse and sled heading down a long avenue of tall trees is a pleasure, a record of days gone by that we don't get much chance to see anywhere else. Of course Gish floating down the river on the ice in the denouement is a classic. I highly recommend this film to any sensitive movie-lover.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (46 total) »

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Drama section IMDb USA section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.