The Life of General Villa (partially found silent film; 1914)

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Francisco Villa.jpg

Francisco Villa.

Status: Partially Found

The Life of General Villa was a 1914 film produced by Mutual Film Corporation, which is believed to be the first social uprising portrayed in a film. It starred Pancho Villa as himself.


The Life of General Villa detailed the life of Francisco Villa, first as a young man (portrayed by the film's director, Raoul Walsh) then as a general in the Mexican Revolution. The film incorporated recordings of both actual live action battles and re-enactments where more footage was required. The silent film made was successful.


Around 1914, General Francisco Villa needed funds for the Mexican Revolution, so he asked the Mutual Film Corporation[1] (by that time directed by D.W. Griffith) to produce a film about the Mexican Revolution, with Francisco Villa receiving $25,000 in advance and 50% of the movie's earnings. The movie was eventually filmed, and suppose to release in a film but the contract was soon cancelled because of the deteriorating relationship between the USA and Francisco Villa. Villa was left with no assistance to produce his film, and the film was quietly forgotten in time.


Fragment of the silent film.

Another fragment (minute 6:57).

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