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Fred Niblo Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (2)  | Trivia (7)  | Personal Quotes (2)

Overview (4)

Born in York, Nebraska, USA
Died in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA  (pneumonia)
Birth NameFrederick Liedtke
Height 6' (1.83 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Fred Niblo entered films in 1917 after two decades as a touring actor in vaudeville and one-time manager of 'The Four Cohans' (he married Josephine Cohan, the sister of George M. Cohan). He made his film debut with two early Australian silent films in 1916. He worked for Thomas H. Ince from 1917 as producer-director, many of his films starring his second wife, Australian actress Enid Bennett. Niblo joined Paramount under a three-year contract from 1918-21 and then settled at MGM (1923-31). During this period, his chief claim to fame rests on directing the epic Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (1925), filmed in Italy (though completed in California) at the (then) staggering cost of $4 million. Niblo was brought in by Louis B. Mayer to replace director Charles Brabin after the production ran into financial difficulties.He not only rescued it but made it into one of the biggest blockbusters of the decade. However, it was second-unit director B. Reeves Eason who deserves credit for the famous chariot race.

In 1926 Niblo replaced Swedish director Mauritz Stiller who had a disagreement with producer Irving Thalberg, on Greta Garbo's The Temptress (1926). This, alongside Camille (1926) and The Mysterious Lady (1928), were his last successes. His career failed to survive the transition to sound and even a stint in England could not resuscitate it. After a few small parts as an actor, Niblo slipped quietly into relative obscurity in 1943.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: I.S.Mowis

Spouse (2)

Enid Bennett (2 March 1918 - 11 November 1948) ( his death) ( 3 children)
Josephine Cohan (2 June 1901 - 12 July 1916) ( her death) ( 1 child)

Trivia (7)

Children, with Enid Bennett: Louise, Peter and Judith.
One of the 36 founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS)
Stage and vaudeville actor.
Wife, actress Josephine Cohan, was the sister of George M. Cohan.
Child, with Josephine Cohan: director Fred Niblo Jr..
Born Frederick Liedtke, he changed his last name to Niblo in the early 1900s when he was performing in vaudeville and one of the theaters he worked the most was owned by a man named William Niblo.
Has a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on the 7000 block of Hollywood Blvd.

Personal Quotes (2)

If portraying emotional situations that occur again and again in human life is 'hokum' let's have more of it.'Hokum' is 'hokum' only when the handling fails to strike direct and definitely into the heart of the audience which beholds it.
[on Rudolph Valentino in Blood and Sand (1922)] Valentino is one of the most sensitive, responsive actors with whom it has ever been my good fortune to work. He has a remarkable instinct for acting which makes his characterization of Gallardo, the bull fighter, stand out as the best work he has ever done.

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