W. Somerset Maugham in Camille (1926)

still of W. Somerset Maugham as Monsieur Duval in Ralph Barton's Camille (1926)
W. Somerset Maugham as Monsieur Duval in
Ralph Barton's Camille (1926)

W. Somerset Maugham in the Film Camille (1926)

I have stumbled upon a most interesting footage of W. Somerset Maugham "acting" in a short silent film, Camille, described as a home movie version of Alexandre Dumas fils's Camille, made by Ralph Barton. He was able to recruit an impressive cast, such as Anita Loos as Camille, Charlie Chaplin, Sinclair Lewis, Alfred Knopf, Theodore Dreiser, Paul Claudel, Max Reinhardt, Ethel Barrymore, and of course, W. Somerset Maugham.

It is a silent movie, retelling the story of Camille, the fallen woman, during the prohibition in the States. There are scenes after scenes of people debauching themselves with alcohol and cigarettes. It gets better and better and at the end, you are simply absorbed and your indulgent smile slowly becomes laughter.

You will find the embedded movie on the Media page. At that time Maugham was 52 years old; his appearances are at 23:09 and 30:19, but if you have time, just watch the whole thing. The duration is only 31 minutes.

Here is the full cast:

  • Paul Robeson...Alexandre Dumas fils
  • Sinclair Lewis...Allegorical figures
  • Anita Loos...Camille
  • George Jean Nathan...Arthur
  • Donald Freeman...Gustave
  • Pauline Starke...Nan
  • Theodore Dreiser...Gas-House Gleasen
  • Sherwood Anderson...Mr. X
  • Clarence Darrow...August Peters
  • Lois Moran...Alice Brown
  • Édouard Bourdet...The Earl of Idaho
  • Jacques Copeau...Radavanni
  • Georges Lepape...The Weasel
  • Denise Bourdet...Olga Petroff
  • Bernard Boulet de Monuel...Dou-Dou-Dou
  • Sacha Guitry...Mancha y Zaragosa
  • Yvonne Printemps...Angèle Hemingway
  • Alfred Knopf...Abd-el-Hammam
  • Wally Toscanini...Madge
  • H.L. Mencken...Andrew Volstead
  • Joseph Hergesheimer...Spirit of Valentino
  • Aileen Pringle...Estelle
  • Marie-Blanche de Polignac...Les Pâcheux
  • Julia Hoyt...Kitty
  • Charles Chaplin...Mike
  • Ethel Barrymore...Olympe
  • John Emerson...Count de Varville
  • Sem...Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Paul Morand...Lars Nelson
  • Patsy Ruth Miller...Sadie
  • Morris Gest...Butter-and-Egg Man
  • Lili Darvas...Queenie
  • Rex Ingram...Charles Stewart Parnell
  • Paul Claudel...Jean Bart
  • W. Somerset Maugham...Monsieur Duval
  • Roland Young...Lord Kyne
  • Sultan of Morocco...Sultan of Morocco
  • Frank Keenan...Prince von Lindenstein
  • Ferenc Molnár...Drnskaqrsk
  • Max Reinhardt...Siegfried
  • Charles G. Shaw...Armand Duval
  • T.R. Smith...Doctor
  • Zéna Naylor...Nurse
  • Mary Hutchins...Nanine
  • Richard Barthelmess...Gaston
  • Chauncey Olcott...Pierre
  • Nikita Balieff...Ivon
  • Dorothy Gish...Grace
  • James Rennie...Philippe
  • Carmel Myers...Agatha
  • Mrs. Thomas Ward...The Virgin Mary (as Fanny Ward)

Enjoy and have a good time!


  1. I'm unable to watch the video, unfortunately, it seems to be otherwise engaged!
    I read Lady of the Camelias years ago, I found a copy of it by chance in London and it was a great e
    reading experience. The pain Dumas fils went through is so well related in the lengthy descriptions,the reader can live it as though they are there. A powerful and most memorable novelette. It impacted me in a way I'll never forget. Thank you for sharing this.

    1. I'm so sorry about that and thanks for letting me know.

      It seems that YT has taken it down; I had a search on the Internet and it's been wiped out....unfortunately. If I come across it in the future I'll put the link.

      I only read the teen version when I was little, but the story imprinted itself in my mind. It's still vivid, Camille, her suffering and his too. I should read the original now.


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