Maurice Elvey

Maurice Elvey

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Maurice Elvey

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Maurice Elvey (11 November 1887 – 28 August 1967) was the most prolific film director in British history. He directed nearly 200 films between 1913 and 1957. During the silent film era he directed as many as twenty films per year.

Born William Seward Folkard in Stockton-on-Tees, Elvey began his career as an actor at the age of 17. He quickly rose to directing and producing plays and established his own theatrical company before switching to films with The Great Gold Robbery in 1913. He directed a wide array of popular features in a variety of genres, including comedy, drama, literary adaptations – including Robert Louis Stevenson's The Suicide Club (1914) and a version of William Shakespeare's As You Like It entitled Love in a Wood (1916) – and biographical profiles of such luminaries as Florence Nightingale and Lord Nelson. The Life Story of David Lloyd George, suppressed for political reasons just prior to its release in 1918, had its world premiere in Cardiff in May 1996 and was hailed by critics and film historians as one of the best silent films produced in the UK.

In 1921, Elvey directed 16 shorts and one full-length feature film (The Hound of the Baskervilles) with Ellie Norwood as Sherlock Holmes. The actor was Arthur Conan Doyle's favorite among those who portrayed his literary sleuth.

Elvey worked with such performers as Leslie Howard, Gracie Fields, Claude Rains, Alastair Sim,......
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