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The Shadow of the Desert

The Shadow of the Desert
The Shadow of the East (1924) - 1.jpg
Directed byGeorge Archainbaud
Written byFanny Hatton
Frederic Hatton
Based onThe Shadow of the East
by Edith Maude Hull
StarringFrank Mayo
CinematographyJules Cronjager
Distributed byFox Film Corporation
Release date
  • January 27, 1924 (1924-01-27)
Running time
6 reels (approx. 60 minutes)
CountryUnited States
LanguageSilent (English intertitles)

The Shadow of the Desert (also released under its original title The Shadow of the East) is a 1924 American silent horror film directed by George Archainbaud.[1] The film is based upon the novel The Shadow of the East by Edith Maude Hull, who also wrote the best-selling desert romance The Sheik.


As described in a review of the film in a film magazine,[2] Barry Craven (Mayo) is a young Englishman living in India who has taken a native wife, Lolaire (Brent). Barry meets his old university friend Said (Kerry), a polished gentleman who is the son of an Algerian sheik. John Locke (Swickard) and his daughter Gillian (Harris) visit India, and Barry’s former love for Gillian returns; but he cannot marry her as he has a native wife. Crazed by jealousy, Lolaire kills herself. Barry is called back to England and marries Gillian. His Hindu servant Kunwar (Grassby), through his command of oriental mysticism, casts a spell on Barry that makes him feel remorse for his former wife Lolaire’s death. This remorse causes Barry to leave Gillian. He goes to the desert and joins Said, and while helping him fight a bandit chief, Gillian arrives on the scene. Said denies that he is with Barry and makes love to Gillian, who had previously repulsed him. A messenger comes to Said and tells him of Barry’s danger. Said repents, sends aid, rescues Barry, and restores Gillian to him. Barry’s servant Kunwar is killed and with his death the curse, which was the shadow of the east, is lifted.



With no prints of The Shadow of the Desert located in any film archives,[3] it is a lost film.[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b Kear, Lynn (2009). Evelyn Brent: The Life and Films of Hollywood's Lady Crook. p. 139. ISBN 978-0-7864-4363-5.
  2. ^ Sewell, C. S. (February 16, 1924). "The Shadow of the East: Strong Note of Oriental Mysticism in Fox Story of India and the Desert by Author of "The Sheik"". The Moving Picture World. New York City: Chalmers Publishing Co. 66 (7): 582–83. Retrieved March 19, 2021. Public Domain This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  3. ^ Library of Congress American Silent Feature Film Survival Database: The Shadow of the East
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The Shadow of the Desert
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