Thomas Storey, a Story of a Story-Teller by Direction and by the Negatives

Thomas Storey, if we stay with the story provided by the Internet Movie Data Base, then our tale of Mr. Storey is over. Because he acquired only six credits as director, during what appears as a short career in film-making. By the by, all six movies that he sat in the directors’ chair, were as co-director. He wrote the stories for two flicks Man’s Best Friend, 1935 and Two in Revolt, 1936. Storey had an uncredited appearance in The Last Frontier, 1932, and was the cinematographer for The Girl of the Golden West in 1923.

Expanding upon Storey’s story, we begin with Hearts Are Trumps, with director Rex Ingram, while John Seitz gets the only listing for cinematography; Storey was considered a co-cameraman for this project.[1] For his following omitted piece of his résumé, once again Storey was sharing photography duties with John Seitz, on another Ingram project, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, 1921.[2] An unknown position of Thomas Storey is that of laboratory expert,[3] dealing with the negatives in adverse weather; Storey obviously had very specialized talents with regards to the handling of celluloid. He did such work on “Where the Pavement Ends, 1923, again for Rex Ingram. For The Girl of the Golden West production, Storey was responsible for transporting the negative.

Later in 1923, Storey worked in Victorville California, on The Bad Man, directed by Edwin Carewe; here he is accounted with the photography crew.[4] Next on our list of missing credits is one more Edwin Carewe project, the 1924 desert film: A Son of the Sahara. The film was shot on location in Algiers, and Carewe expected climate problems for the actual film-stock, therefore, he hired Storey not only as a co-cinematographer with Sol Polito, but also to take charge of the laboratory work;[5] laboratory expert is not a position that would show up on the credits-roll. Another project in which Storey worked but received no credit was on Spencer Gordon Bennet’s Melting Millions, 1927; Storey was hired as an assistant to Bennet and to fill the position of casting director.[6]

Following Melting Millions Mr. Storey took the role of casting- director again in The Hawk of the Hills, 1927.[7] In 1932 Storey was set as the co-director with Spencer Bennet, and was given the added duty of production manager for the upcoming 1932-33 season of serials on which Bennet would work.[8]


fire detectivePoster_of_the_movie_-The_Fire_Detective-Man's Best Friend


By C. S. Williams


[1] Motion Picture News, June 12, 1920

[2] Motion Picture News, July 24, 1920

[3] Exhibitor’s Trade Review, February 10, 1923

[4] The American Cinematographer, August, 1923

[5] The Film Daily, October 1, 1923

[6] The Film Daily, November 12, 1926

[7] Motion Picture News, April 8, 1927

[8] The Film Daily, July 7, 1932


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