Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum said yesterday that the movie Rule Sixty – Three is a “lost film”. Much of the early efforts at motion picture-making have been lost because of the materials that were used. Nitrate film proved to be extremely flammable. It would even burn underwater! Furthermore it decomposed over time. Another motion picture that is probably lost is The Two Affinities. A portion of this was filmed from a PLZ&W RR baggage car. Right Foot Forward was a two-reel comedy filmed in Palatine in 1920. The directors chose Palatine because we had no paved streets. But the biggest production of all was a Pathe Weekly newsreel shot that same year at Deer Grove on Indian Day.
Some Palatine residents were captured on film in 1915 by Essanay Studios of Chicago. They were used as extras in the two-reel drama Rule Sixty-Three. The film, shot at Lake Zurich, was shown at Seip’s Auditorium in Palatine and around the country in such places as Carbondale, IL, Coshocton, OH, Gettysburg, PA and Salamanca, NY. The drama was described as “showing cold reason trying to get the better of Dan Cupid and suffering ignominious defeat; with Bryant Washburn as one of the lovers.” A check of the Internet Movie Datebase gives further details. Is this a “lost film” or is it lying somewhere waiting to be viewed?