The Fortieth Door (lost silent serial film; 1923)
The Fortieth Door is a silent serial film based on the 1920 novel of the same name that was released in 1923. The plot summary below is based on said novel, due to the loss of the serial, even though for the serial some of the plot elements may have been, and likely were, changed (one picture shows the film's star, Allene Ray, holding a gun on the actor Frank Lackteen, who played the role of her stepfather in the film).
Aimee, the orphaned daughter of a French general and his wife, has been raised by the evil Hamid Bey as his own child, and he is forcing her to marry a well-known desert sheik against her will. John Wallace, an American archaeologist who is working on a tomb in Egypt, tries to rescue Aimee at the request of her aunt, even though Hamid Bey denies him access to the girl and claims that she is his own daughter. Aimee and John must work together so as to allow her to escape from Egypt and come to America, where she will be safe from her evil guardian. Ultimately, both Hamid Bey and Aimee's fiance are killed and John brings her to America by wrapping her in the linen bandages of the mummy that he has uncovered in the tomb in Egypt.
Production on this serial began originally in 1921 but was halted when the then star, Charles Hutchison, injured his arm when he grabbed ahold of a chandelier in order to swing across a room and both of them fell to the floor hard, closing down production immediately. All of Allene Ray's screams were deliberately induced in the film, as she was an extreme introvert who never showed much emotion in real life.
Only stills have surfaced of this lost serial.
- Silentera page for the film. Retrieved 29 Mar '19