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They Shall Pay (1921)

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Cast overview:
Lottie Pickford ...
Margaret Seldon
Allan Forrest ...
Allan Forbes
Paul Weigel ...
Henry Seldon
Lloyd Whitlock ...
Courtland Wells
George Periolat ...
Amos Colby
Katherine Griffith ...
Mrs. Yates


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Release Date:

17 August 1921 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Featured in Mary Pickford: A Life on Film (1997) See more »

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Viewed at CINEFEST 2009... Lottie Pickford, troubled sister of silent superstar Mary Pickford, stars in this revenge melodrama.
7 April 2009 | by (Culpeper, VA) – See all my reviews

Henry Seldon (Paul Weigel) is victimized and framed by three of his business associates and then sent to prison. He calls his daughter Margaret (Lottie) back from boarding school and makes her swear vengeance. After Seldon dies in jail, Margaret sets out to keep her promise. Through a detective agency she locates two of her fathers enemies: Amos Colby (George Periolat) and Courtland Wells (Lloyd Whitlock), and learns that the third man is dead. SPOILERS: She ruins Amos Colby who swindled her father on Wall Street by keeping him from doing the same thing to two other men. Margaret discovers that the second man, Courtland Wells, is engaged to an heiress. Disguised as a Spanish dancer, she appears at a reception given by Wells' fiancée where she traps him into making love to her, and then exposes him. But will she cling to her scheme after she meets and falls in love with Allen Forbes, a Greenwich Village architect, when she learns that he is the son of the dead, third man who framed her late father?

Lottie Pickford (born Charlotte Smith in 1895) was 3 years younger than her sister Gladys Louise Smith and a year older than brother John Smith. Born in Toronto, all three siblings took to the stage to make a living after their father died tragically. It was theatrical impresario David Belasco that changed Gladys's name to Mary Pickford in 1907. Her Broadway success brought the family to New York where they also adopted the surname of Pickford. In 1909 Mary started working at Biograph for D. W. Griffith, bringing along her little sister and brother. Between 1909 -1910, Mary made 80 shorts, Jack 28 and Lottie 25. As the most successful of the three, Mary took her father's place as family head and breadwinner. Jack and Lottie resented her control and took to partying and alcohol, the family curse. Lottie's personal life included four husbands and a daughter, Gwynne, who was raised by Lottie's mother Charlotte. Before she died of a heart attack at the age of 41 she had only made 8 feature films, so this is a rare opportunity to see one of them. Leading man Allan Forrest was best known for making 20 films with Mary Miles Minter from 1916-1922. Six months after making They Shall Pay he became Lottie's second husband. German actor Paul Weigel usually played Spanish or French aristocrats in silent films. When sound came along his specialty switched to playing kind ministers like his role in Chaplin's The Great Dictator (1940) as philosophical Mr. Agar.

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