Troublesome Secretaries (April 21, 1911)

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Troublesome Secretaries
 

Released on April 21, 1911: Mr. Harding has trouble finding a secretary thanks to his scheming daughter Betty.

Directed by Ralph Ince

The Actors: John Bunny (Mr. Harding), Mabel Normand (Betty Harding), Ralph Ince (Ralph, secretary/suitor), Alec B. Francis (unknown), James Morrison (unknown)

 

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Motion Picture History

The first movies were often short comedy sketches, and two of the most famous comedians of early film were John Bunny and Mabel Normand, who only worked together on one picture . . . this one. In this seven minute comedy John Bunny is wealthy businessman Mr. Harding and his daughter is Betty, played by Mabel Normand. Mr. Harding has a young male secretary who falls in love with Betty, and papa cannot have that, so he fires Ralph and sends for a female secretary. The gal who shows up for the job is an old schoolmate of Betty, so Betty and her school chum plot to get her boyfriend back as Dad's secretary. The new gal secretary sprays perfume all around the office and when Harding comes in she pretends to instantly fall in love with him, and he fires her on the spot. Once again without a secretary Harding writes to a fellow named Morton, explaining that when he hires a male secretary he falls in love with daughter Betty, and when he hires a female secretary she falls in love with him . . . what on earth is he to do? The answer comes back, "Hire a secretary over 60 years old" . . . so scheming Betty tells her boyfriend to disguise himself as an old man so that he can get his job back, and he does so successfully, bringing the two back together again, with dad Harding none the wiser. Pop a little bowl of white kernel popcorn with warm melted butter on it and enjoy the show.

John Bunny and Mabel Normand at home relaxing
John Bunny and Mabel Normand at home relaxing
John Bunny gets the letter with advice on hiring an old man
John Bunny gets the letter with advice on hiring an old man
John Bunny in Troublesome Secretaries
John Bunny in Troublesome Secretaries
Mabel Normand as Betty Harding in Troublesome Secretaries
Mabel Normand as Betty Harding in Troublesome Secretaries
Mabel Normand looks at the letter that John Bunny got
Mabel Normand looks at the letter that John Bunny got
Mabel Normand meets John Ince walking down the street
Mabel Normand meets John Ince walking down the street
Mabel Normand
Mabel Normand
Ralph Ince and John Bunny
Ralph Ince and John Bunny
Ralph Ince, Magel Normand and John Bunny
Ralph Ince, Magel Normand and John Bunny
Ralph Ince and Mabel Normand plot to get his job back
Ralph Ince and Mabel Normand plot to get his job back
Ralph Ince dresses up like an old man
Ralph Ince dresses up like an old man
Ralph Ince kisses Mabel Normand on the sidewalk
Ralph Ince kisses Mabel Normand on the sidewalk
Ralph Ince
Ralph Ince