rbudrick
2015-08-30T23:54:48Z
Hi Folks,

Glad to have found this forum and happy to make my first post. I started to really get a bit confused when researching these. Some are unanimously lost, others are supposedly known to exist, but by whom (Private collectors? Museums? Libraries? Disney?) and whether they are publicly accessible in any way are a mystery. Others are listed lost in some places, and known to exist in others. So, I'm hoping someone can enlighten me on these particular shorts. Where can these be viewed and are the "lost" ones really, really lost?

1925
Alice Plays Cupid -Not listed as lost anywhere, but I could find no source at all for this in any format.

1926
Alice Helps the Romance -Same as above
Alice's Spanish Guitar -Same as above
Alice's Brown Derby -Same as above

1927
http://www.intanibase.co...um/index.php?topic=183.0 
https://en.wikipedia.org...ney_animated_shorts#1927 
Many other sites not cited contradict each other too in this regard too

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_Comedies 

Alice in the Big League -Same situation as the first four shorts listed above


As for the "lost" ones, for some (can't remember which) I've seen still shots that seem legit from sites that offer a synopsis off the plot or other descriptive info.

I bow to your expertise. Thanks!

-Rob

Mac
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  • Advanced Member
2015-08-31T07:54:07Z
Hi! Some of the answers can be found in the book "The Silent Films of Walt Disney", A must read if you're interested in this. Yeah, some of these shorts are hard to find on DVD, but they do exist.

Alice Plays Cupid: Disney owns a 35mm print and a 16mm print exits at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)

Alice Help the Romance: a 35mm print titled "Romantiek" exists in the Nederlands Film Museum. A clip used to on their website and, if I remember correctly I think David Gerstein said that was once the whole thing was online, but I missed it myself.

Alice's Spanish Guitar: A print was donated to the George Eastman House in 1998. At the time, there was some confusion over the terms the owner placed on how it could be released, but this may have just been the result of some bad press reporting. At one point (I'm going back well over 10 years here), it was due to be released on a DVD with other rare films from the archive, but I don't believe it ever happened.

Alice's Brown Derby: a 35mm print titled "Alice en net Wonderpaard" is in the Nederlands Film Museum.

Alice's Rodeo (or Alice at the Rodeo): a 35mm print titled "Alice op de Rodeo" is in the Nederlands Film Museum.

Alice's Auto Race: I'm not aware of a print of this

Alice in the Big League: Once again the Nederlands Film Museum holds a 35mm print, "Alice Speelt Base-Bal"


I am not sure how many Alices have been discovered in recent years. In one D23 article David Gerstein said one had been located recently, but he didn't specify the title, but it's definitely one more over my latest information.


Mac
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2015-08-31T08:04:08Z
An extra thought: Even when a short is lost, information, such as the plot, can still be determined from other records (e.g copyright synopsis, reviews, studio records etc). Also sometimes stills are preserved from films which are otherwise lost. For example, an image from Alice's Three Bad Eggs is reproduced in 'Walt in Wonderland" (even though I believe it's still a lost film). I've seen the exact same frame reproduced in a magazine article from the 30s which suggest that it's the image that survives and not a print of the film.
DevonB
2015-08-31T21:31:09Z
ALICE'S AUTO RACE only exists in fragmentary form -- a small excerpt from a toy projector print.
I've heard it's in good hands now ;)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/88613268@N00/4896791945 
rbudrick
2015-09-01T03:17:29Z
Wow, thanks, Mac! I'll have to look into that book. Yes, Devon, I've seen that frame too, which really threw me off! As for it being fragmentary form, excuse my ignorance, please, but what is a toy projector? A manual crank thing like a Viewmaster for kids? Any idea how much of the film exists? And is this the only fragment that makes some sites say it's not lost?

I remember seeing Gerstein's blog concerning the alternate "not so happy ending" Cinderella he found and the Jack and the Beanstalk in someone's personal collection. It was the same post he described the MoMA mislabeled reels of Goldilocks and the Three Bears and Jack the Giant Killer. Were one of these perhaps the D23 goods you were thinking of, or was this more recent?

Great info! Thanks again!

-Rob
Mac
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  • Advanced Member
2015-09-01T09:41:17Z
Thank you, Devon. I didn't know about the Auto Race clip – great to see some frames from and good to know at least some of this short survives.

Rob, I forgot to say, welcome to the forum! The article where David mentioned a recent Alice find was definitely on D23, but I can't find the article again. I think he was talking about how at the end of the Mickey short, "The Barnyard Olympics", some of the animation of the crowd seemed to be reused from a silent era cartoon which he could not identify, so it was probably from one of the lost cartoons. He mentioned that maybe the short in question could turn up one day as, only very recently, a lost Oswald and a lost Alice had been found. The Oswald cartoon is surely one we know about by now, but I never heard what Alice turned up. Maybe he was referring to the "Alice's Auto Race" clip?

Tommy Stathes is a silent animation expert who posts here, wonder if he's reading this thread and can help us? Tommy, do you know of any Alice Comedy finds in recent years?
rbudrick
2015-09-02T01:33:32Z
Thanks for the welcome, Mac! I saw this page here:

http://www.disneyfilmpro.../alice-fire-fighter.html 

I wrote the NFPF to see if Alice's Spanish Guitar was ever released. I doubt it, but maybe they will have more info. Found this 13 year old article:

http://variety.com/2002/...of-rare-pics-1117865536/ 

I think that's David Gerstein's handle in the comment replies on that page. He said the Alice Helps the Romance vid was on Youtube at one time, as mentioned above. Pre-2009, I guess, based on the timestamps of the comments. I wonder if anyone saved it...would love to see it. Until then, I can wait and hope it gets reposted.

In addition, a commenter mentioned the Netherlands Film Museum makes some films available for sale. Worth a shot. I'll write them.

-Rob

EDIT: Apparently, Alice Helps the Romance and some others aired on the German public TV station 3Sat back in 2006:

https://translate.google...3D167235&prev=search 

It seems these same 4 Alice shorts were screened in several other places. Perhaps taken from this TV airing?
One of a few links I found hinting this:
https://translate.google...092.html&prev=search 

Many public access stations will gladly sell you a copy of a show from any given date. I wonder if this station would do the same. I dropped them a line.

This research library seems to have a VHS (probably PAL or SECAM format) of Alice Helps the Romance, among others:

http://cibleplus.ulb.ac.be/recorddetails/717710?0# 
Click Record Details.
Mac
  • Mac
  • Advanced Member
2015-09-02T09:57:23Z
Nice work! If you learn any more, please post here.

Lobster Films in France list over 20 Alice shorts in their catalogue (see below). They don't own many actual prints of the Alices, but they do have copies of on Blu Ray, I guess this is due to them working with other European archives. They've got a few of the harder-to-find known survivors.

http://www.lobsterfilms....e_imprimer_resultats.php 

I don't think they sell any of these as commercially available Blu Rays, but maybe they can provide them to researchers for a charge (I haven't been in touch with them so I don't know).
rbudrick
2015-09-03T03:59:47Z
I heard back from the NFPF:

"Some of the films on that list were eventually released on NFPF DVDs, but most of the films were either released by other organizations or never made it to DVD. In the case of Alice’s Spanish Guitar, a preserved copy should be held by George Eastman House in New York, and you can try contacting GEH’s Film Study Center (DELETETHISfilmstudycenter AT geh DOT org) to ask about viewing options."

I decided to check out their site first and found this:
http://www.eastmanhouse....f/archival.film.list.pdf 

Alice's Spanish Guitar is indeed listed as "available." I'm not sure what that means but I wrote them to ask.

"Archival Film Prints
Available From George Eastman House
We have more titles and are adding new ones all the time, so if you don't see a title listed please email us. Please contact ffor availability, format and any other information at DELETETHISmovingpictures at geh DOT org."

As for the lobsterfilms.com link you gave, Mac, for easier reading, here's the films they list there that they have (asterisked the ones in question they have):

ALICE AND THE DOG CATCHER
*ALICE AT THE RODEO
ALICE CANS THE CANNIBALS
ALICE CHOPS THE SUEY
ALICE GETS STUNG
*ALICE HELPS THE ROMANCE
*ALICE IN THE BIG LEAGUE
ALICE IN THE JUNGLE
ALICE IN THE WOOLY WEST
ALICE ON THE FARM
ALICE PICKS THE CHAMP
*ALICE PLAYS CUPID
ALICE RATTLED BY RATS
ALICE SOLVES THE PUZZLE
ALICE THE FIRE FIGHTER
ALICE THE JAIL BIRD
ALICE THE PIPER
ALICE THE TOREADOR
ALICE THE WHALER
ALICE WINS THE DERBY
ALICE’S BALLOON RACE
*ALICE’S BROWN DERBY
ALICE’S DAY AT THE SEA
ALICE’S EGG PLANT
ALICE’S FISHY STORY
ALICE’S LITTLE PARADE
ALICE’S MYSTERIOUS MYSTERY
ALICE’S SPOOKY ADVENTURE
ALICE’S TIN PONY
ALICE’S WILD WEST SHOW

Not bad, if they do indeed make these available! In addition, I couldn't help but notice they had Alice Picks the Champ at 9m 26s, which I thought was only available as a fragment! When was that found?!

I wrote Lobster Films. I guess we'll see what they say. Nice find, Mac!

-Rob
Mac
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  • Advanced Member
2015-09-03T06:27:39Z
Thanks, Rob. Really enjoying this thread.

Alice Picks the Champ is another short that's in the Nederlands Film Museum. The complete cartoon is on one of Tommy's DVDs.

One benefit of sourcing cartoons from different archives is that you may be able to find them in better quality. Also sometimes you'll find frames or scenes missing in one print that aren't in another. For example the version of Alice's Mysterious Mystery on the Disney Treasures DVD is missing the final ending gag which can found on be found on Tommy's DVD, although Tommy's version is missing some brief, but important footage from the rescue scene which is on the Disney DVD. Alice's Wild West Show looks good on the Disney DVD, but it's missing the funniest intertitle when Alice insults Tubby.

One Alice short I'd really like to see complete is Alice Solves the Puzzle since it's the first appearance of Pete. I've only ever seen the more common reissue version that cuts the references to bootlegging and scenes of Julius getting drunk. I believe the deutsches filminstitut in Frankfurt may hold the complete film. If not I think Tommy mentioned that there is an edited home movie version which includes the scenes deleted from the theatrical reissue.
rbudrick
2015-09-03T17:19:04Z
Thanks again, Mac! I'm learning a lot here. This info is great.

I didn't realize these films in particular had so many known variants. I wish this was all on Wikipedia. They might force citations, though, heh.

So for Alice Solves the Puzzle, there's three known variants?:

Complete version
Missing bootlegging/Julius drinking version
Edited home movie version

I see here these releases (which is a great thread):

http://www.intanibase.co...um/index.php?topic=183.0 
Alice Solves the Puzzle
-Alice in Cartoonland The Original Alice Comedies by Walt Disney
-Alice in Cartoonland 35mm Collector's Set
-Cartoons On Film: Disney's Alice Comedies Volume 2
-Cartoons On Film: Silent Cartoon Frolics

Assuming Tommy has the same one on the last two. The first one is only $10 on Amazon, the second, I couldn't find.

I heard back from the German public TV station, SAT3:

They replied in German. Google Translate was a bit rough, but here it is corrected:

"Leider ist es nicht möglich, eine Überspielung der gewünschten Sendung vornehmen zu lassen, da uns kein kopierfähiges Ausgangsmaterial zur Verfügung steht.

Wir bedauern daher sehr, Ihrem Wunsch nicht entsprechen zu können und bitten um Ihr Verständnis."

"Unfortunately it is not possible to make a dubbing of the desired program, there is no us copyable source material available.

We therefore very much regret not being able to meet your needs and ask for your understanding."


Bummer.

-Rob


Mac
  • Mac
  • Advanced Member
2015-09-03T18:21:40Z
Because I'm so interested in the early Disney cartoons, I've been wanting to make a chronological list of my own including info of what versions of different shorts are available where and what my source for the info is. I even made a little start on the project, it just takes a lot of time and I find other projects take priority.

A lot of the Alice cartoons were reissued theatrically by the Raytone Company with soundtracks. The soundtracks are pretty stupid (especially the voices) and many people find them annoying (I actually think they're quite funny!), but it did help the survival status of a lot of these films. I don't think many of them were edited for content, though Solves the Puzzle is an exception.

A lot of Alice's were released as home movie versions (some times in more than one variant). These are often edited versions – I don't think this was done for offending content, however, I think they just wanted shorter versions. Often the short home movie versions were given a new title. There are short home movie versions of a lot of Mickey and other Disney cartoons too.

rbudrick
2015-09-04T05:27:55Z
Wow, that would be a serious undertaking, Mac. Would love to see it. Maybe only post a year at a time in a thread to keep in easy to do in smaller bites?

Haven't heard back from anyone else yet.

I believe I have two of the three Alice's Mysterious Mystery versions on checking, and along with 2 different Alice's Wild West.

-Rob
rbudrick
2015-09-05T06:23:34Z
So, I heard back from the Netherlands FilmMuseum and the news is excellent. Here is the email they sent me:

引用:

Dear Rob,

Thank you for your interest in our collection! We actually have 14 episodes of the Alice series and recently we all rescanned them in HD quality! Via the link below you’ll have online access to the films during 1 month (streaming ONLY, NON downloadable). If you need longer access, please let me know and I’ll send you a new link (no problem at all!).

Wazee bin ‘SLS Budrick’
[Link eedacted, but if you write them, they will send you one too for your self]

You can purchase the film(s) for private/ research purposes ONLY. You can either buy the films as a file or on DVD. I advise you to purchase the file as it is cheaper and of better quality. We will deliver the films preceded by an EYE leader and with a small EYE watermark in the upper right corner.

In case you want to order material, I need your address for the invoice. I will also make up a small agreement.

Our prices for 2015:
· File(s) 0-60 min. 35,- euro
· File(s) 60-90 min. 45,- euro
· File(s) 90-120 min. 55,- euro
· DVD 0-60 min. 50,- euro
· DVD 60-90 min. 60,- euro
· DVD 90-120 min. 70,- euro

The prices are cumulative and not per film. So for example to buy three films on file of 10 minutes each will cost €35 in total. All the films together as files would cost 55,- + 35,- euro = 90,- euro in total.

We can deliver the material after the agreement has been signed and the invoice has been paid.

Best regards,
Leenke Ripmeester



EYE Sales Collection


+31 20 5891 426 | +31 6 41189635 | Sales@eyefilm.nl
Van Marwijk Kooystraat 14, 1114 AG, Amsterdam-Duivendrecht | Postbus 37767, 1030 BJ, Amsterdam | eyefilm.nl




In short, the link they provided allowed me to watch all 14 titles in full:

Alice and the Dog Catcher
Alice and the Piper
Alice's Day at Sea
Alice's Fishy Story:
Alice's Spooky Adventure:
Alice's Wild West Show
Alice Picks the Champ
Alice Helps the Romance
Alice in the Wooly West
Alice and the Firefighter
Alice's Brown Derby
Alice in the Big League
Alice's Circus Daze
Alice's Rodeo

They are beautiful restorations compared to some of the low-quality copies I had.

To be honest, there's nothing really stopping you from downloading them using TubeDigger or GetFLV, but I can't recommend that, of course. Support the museum if you can. Besides, the HD resolution issues you can buy are of better quality than the ones they let you view in the site.

I'm a very happy guy right now to finally see these. And in such good quality!

-Rob
Mac
  • Mac
  • Advanced Member
2015-09-05T07:21:19Z
That's fantastic! Well done for taking the time to research this and thank you for sharing the replies you received. Brilliant news!
Toadette
2015-09-05T14:10:28Z
How generous of the Netherlands Film Museum to let viewers not only stream their films, but also download them (even at a price)!

This is indeed brilliant news, especially since they've rescanned the Alice films in their possession in HD. Thank you very much for sharing this info, Rob; now I'm hoping that the Museum will sell a Blu-ray in the future (or make the films available to an outside firm...Mr. Stathes or Mr. Stanchfield?).
rbudrick
2015-09-06T05:54:42Z
Yes, Toadette, it's very exciting!

If anyone plans to drop them a line to view or purchase them for yourself, I'd be glad to hear your thoughts on them!

-Rob
Toadette
2015-09-07T16:16:08Z
I dropped the Netherlands Film Museum a line, and now I also have access to the films! (My link was also called "SLS Budrick", though.)

I've gotten through watching "Alice at the Rodeo" and "Alice the Piper". Very interesting films, to say the least; "Rodeo" features rubbery horse animation, not to mention a long brawl between Julius and a robber that ends beyond a cliff (and they stay in mid-air for quite a while)...and when Julius realizes that he didn't get the money back after letting the robber fall, he jumps off the cliff, "swims" down to the robber, takes the money out of his chest fur, socks him on the head, then goes back up!

"Alice the Piper" features Dutch intertitles; the original ending is indeed intact, and consists of Alice and Julius, furious at not getting $5000, sucking the king up with the vacuum...but the machine gets stuck, and sucks up a healthy amount of furniture (and Julius) before Alice sets it in reverse; a sea of dust and mice come out, along with a fat roll of $5000! Then the king comes out, getting angry, and ultimately Alice and Julius run off into the distance with their hefty reward.

There is no audio, by the way.
Mac
  • Mac
  • Advanced Member
2015-09-13T16:06:41Z
Yeah it's awesome that these are available. When I have more time to watch them, I'll probably buy the downloads. And yeah I'd love to buy these on BluRay with some appropriate accompanying music added.

Rob, did you hear anything back from George Eastman House about Alice's Spanish Guitar?
rbudrick
2015-09-14T20:58:45Z
I'm afraid not, Mac! :-(

-Rob