Here are links to other important references about Helen Gardner.
Helen Gardner’s Wikipedia entry: Wikipedia
The Helen Gardner biography at allmovie.com
Corrections to the allmovie.com article from Dorin Gardner Schumacher:
- Gardners’s first Vitagraph film was made in 1910, not 1911.
- Gardner hired Charles L. Gaskill to be director of the films she produced, but he was not her husband. The two were never married. Silent film historians often erroneously give him equal credit with Gardner for her company and productions, which elevates a man and devalues the woman who was the driving force.
TCM’s “Silent Sunday Nights” CLEOPATRA entry
Corrections to the TCM article from Dorin Gardner Schumacher:
- CLEOPATRA was the first six-reel (6000′) feature made in the United States.
- CLEOPATRA did not have “producers.” It had one producer: Helen Gardner. As far as distribution is concerned, I do know that Cleopatra was offered on a “States Rights” basis. An exhibitor could purchase rights for exhibition in his or her state(s). I have not seen any evidence that Gardner used a “road show” approach. The licensed exhibitor would provide prints, etc. to the theaters.
- Gardner did not begin as a teacher of pantomime at Vitagraph. She was a student of pantomime at the drama school she attended before she joined Vitagraph as an actress.
- Gardner was the first American actress to form her own production company, on her own, without a man.
- Again, Charles Gaskill was not Gardner’s husband. Come on, folks!