Long before the Bob Fosse inspired remake of 2002, Phyllis Haver starred as the first Roxy Hart in the original 1927 film production. Based on the play by Maurine Dallas Watkins, Chicago follows the fictionalized story of a real life murderess. Roxie Hart is a boozing, jazz-loving playgirl, circa 1924, living off of her boyfriends' money and making a general fool of her husband Amos (Victor Varconi). This ends on the day that her current love, Mr. Casely (Eugene Pallette) tries to walk out on her, to which she responds with a few bullets. She becomes an instant celebrity, finagles the service of high-profile lawyer William Flynn (Robert Edeson), and gets away scott-free to enjoy her fame. Said Haver of the role:"Roxie struck so many keys of emotion...when one jumps up and down the octave whamming out this discord and that, the task is nerve wracking. I don't believe I have ever worked so hard on a single person as I did on Roxie, but then of course, I consider her the best characterization I have ever had." (Frank Urson, 1927, 35mm print courtesy of the UCLA Film and Television Archive, 118 minutes)
We are pleased to welcome back renowned silent film and jazz pianist - Chicago's own David Drazin - to accompany the film.