John Francis Dillon — Directors I Have Met (1925) 🇬🇧

John Francis Dillon — Directors I Have Met (1925) |

February 17, 2024

John Francis Dillon, familiarly known as “Jack”, is a contradiction! Born and educated in New York City, he is so enthusiastic over California that only the initiated know that he is not a “Native Son.” Mr. Dillon has been identified with Hollywood for some time, making his visits East shorter and shorter and so the inference is a natural one.

An old timer in experience, though not in years, he has been in the business for more than ten years and before that was a legitimate actor with a reputation as an excellent player. Through a fellow actor, Carlyle Blackwell, then the leading Kalem star, Mr. Dillon was sent for to act in Kalem pictures. A shortage in directors led him to be tried out almost immediately and he has been director instead of actor ever since.

An up-to-date director, constantly studying new methods and trying in every way to advance himself, Dillon has gained a name for making pictures just a little different from the usual run.

There was Flaming Youth which set the stage for a series of flapper comedies and served, by the way, to firmly establish Colleen Moore as one of our leading stars.

The public demanded “More” and next came The Perfect Flapper with the charming Colleen in another delightful part. Everything runs in threes they say, and so it is to be expected that a third flapper comedy will come along with the same star, director and producing company.

The new picture, work on which will be started soon, is We Moderns, a filmisation of Zangwill’s stage play which was the sensation of two continents. Needless to say the part of Mary Sundale will be one of the best of Colleen’s roles.

Mr. Dillon is a firm advocate of good stories. He contends, and rightly, too, that there is no need of coarseness or suggestiveness to get a theme over; in fact, plays of this kind do much harm to the picture business.

Mr. Dillon hopes shortly to visit England to take some scenes in We Moderns and it is more than possible that he may make a picture over here Europe is an unexplored country and so he looks forward with much pleasure to the trip. Our talk was a pleasant one though he assured me he was a poor interviewer.

Later I met a friend of his, “Did he tell you about his new Rolls-Royce?” he asked, and when I replied in the negative, said that Jack was the only person in the world who would overlook such a very important item in an interview. Seems so to me, too, but since simplicity, the copy books tell us, is a sign of success — it may explain a lot of things!

John Francis Dillon — Directors I Have Met (1925) |

Left: Colleen Moore and Ben Lyon in Flaming Youth

Above: John Francis Dillon.

Doris Kenyon and Frank Mayo in If I Marry Again

Collection: Picturegoer Magazine, November 1925


see also other entries of the Directors I Have Met series: