11 user 3 critic

Lord Byron of Broadway (1930)

Passed | | Musical, Romance, Drama | 28 February 1930 (USA)
A tunesmith, a user and an out-and-out heel, puts the stories of his broken romances into song, turning old love letters into lyrics, and capitalizing on the death of his best friend to ... See full summary »


Nell Martin (from the novel by), Crane Wilbur (dialogue continuity) | 1 more credit »

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Complete credited cast:
Charles Kaley ... Roy
Ethelind Terry ... Ardis
Marion Shilling ... Nancy
Cliff Edwards ... Joe
Gwen Lee ... Bessie
Benny Rubin ... Phil
Drew Demorest ... Edwards
Jack Byron Jack Byron ... Mr. Millaire (as John Byron)
Rita Flynn ... Red Head
Hazel Craven ... Blondie
Gino Corrado ... Riccardi
Pauline Paquette Pauline Paquette ... Marie (as Pauline Paquet)


A tunesmith, a user and an out-and-out heel, puts the stories of his broken romances into song, turning old love letters into lyrics, and capitalizing on the death of his best friend to turn it into the subject of a tear-jerker that turns into a hit. Written by Stan Skiemwierczowski

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Musical | Romance | Drama








Release Date:

28 February 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Song Writer See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric System)


Black and White | Color (2-strip Technicolor) (two sequences)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Two musical sequences, totaling 878 feet, were filmed in 2-strip Technicolor, and occur in Reels #4 & #6, and survive in the TCM print. The first number, The Woman in the Shoe, was re-used in Nertsery Rhymes (1933) and the second number, Blue Daughter of Heaven, was re-used in Roast-Beef and Movies (1934). See more »

Alternate Versions

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer also released this movie as a silent. See more »


Edited into Roast-Beef and Movies (1934) See more »


The Japanese Sandman
(1920) (uncredited)
Music Richard A. Whiting
Lyrics by Ray Egan
Sung by Cliff Edwards in his vaudeville show
See more »

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User Reviews

Originally announced for William Haines and Bessie Love
9 November 2007 | by drednmSee all my reviews

This backstage musical a la THE Broadway MELODY about love and angst behind the footlights was based on a famously nasty novel by Nell Martin. Haines and Love balked at the idea of playing in such a nasty plot so MGM had it re-written (watered down) and brought in stage stars Charles Kaley and Ethelind Terry, and ingenue Marion Shilling. Creaky and a little slow in places but very interesting for the music and the 2-strip Technicolor.

Kaley (who slightly resembles Haines) plays a user. He latches on to anyone or anything that will get him ahead. He uses women (Shilling and Gwen Lee) as well as his partner (Cliff Edwards). But while he meets his match in the grasping Ethelind Terry (the original star of RIO RITA on Broadway), he's not the one who pays.

One good song: "Should I" which one used in SINGIN'IN THE RAIN decades later. Co-stars included Benny Rubin, Drew Demorest, Eddie Kane, Rita Flynn, and the voice of Jack Benny. Ann Dvorak is in the chorus.

Shilling and Edwards, perhaps, come off best.

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