The collection consists of film and television scripts, correspondence, contracts, books and periodicals, scrapbooks and loose
clippings, miscellaneous items, and photographs.
William Beaudine [Sr.] (1892-1970) was born in New York City and entered the film industry in 1909 as a prop boy and general
assistant at Biograph Studios. He began appearing as an actor in Mack Sennett's Biograph films in 1912 and continued to work
behind the camera as well. After moving to California in 1914, he got his first chance to direct while working on the Kalem
Company's Ham and Bud comedy series in 1915. He directed as many as 150 short comedies before graduating to feature film assignments
in 1922. His early feature work—including several comedies starring Bebe Daniels and Viola Dana, and three films each with
child actors Wesley Barry and Ben Alexander—quickly established him as a capable craftsman with a light touch and a special
knack for working with children. On the strength of these credentials, he was hired to direct two major Mary Pickford vehicles,
LITTLE ANNIE ROONEY (1925) and SPARROWS (1926). He went on to become one of Hollywood's most prolific directors, turning out
more than 150 feature films after SPARROWS in virtually every conceivable genre. He directed pictures for First National,
Universal, Columbia, Warner Bros., and Paramount prior to moving to England in the mid-1930s, during which time he made 13
films, mostly comedies starring Will Hay, Max Miller, and other popular British comics. Following his return to Hollywood
in 1937, he worked almost exclusively on B pictures at such studios as Producers Releasing Corporation and Monogram (later
Allied Artists). His credits include multiple entries in the "Charlie Chan" and "Bowery Boys" series, as well as such unusual
fare as the religious drama THE PRINCE OF PEACE (1951), the sex-education/exploitation film MOM AND DAD (1946), the Disney
features WESTWARD HO THE WAGONS! (1956) and TEN WHO DARED (1960), and his final two films (both released in 1966), the horror-westerns
BILLY THE KID VS. DRACULA and JESSE JAMES MEETS FRANKENSTEIN'S DAUGHTER. As his feature film output declined in the 1950s,
he moved into television, directing more than 200 episodes of such popular series as LASSIE, RIN-TIN-TIN, and WALT DISNEY
PRESENTS. At the time of his death in 1970, Beaudine was considered to be Hollywood's oldest active director.
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