Potash and Perlmutter (1923)

Genres - Comedy  |  
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Producer Samuel Goldwyn had first become familiar with Montague Glass' "Potash and Perlmutter" series of stories when he was a glove salesman. In 1923, he decided to make a film of the play (also written by Glass with Charles Klein), which went against the preference of most moguls of the day -- they shunned anything Jewish, although most of them were Jewish themselves. This ethnic comedy was Goldwyn's first as an independent producer. Alexander Carr as Morris Perlmutter and Barney Bernard as Abe Potash reprise the roles they played on Broadway; Vera Gordon, who played a Jewish mother in Humoresque, does so again here as Abe's wife Rosie. Potash's tailoring business is a failure, so he latches onto the more prosperous Perlmutter as a partner. Their enterprise promises to be a success, but they have an enemy in Feldman (Edward Durand), the rich attorney Potash has picked out as a husband for his daughter Irma (Hope Sutherland). Irma, however, has fallen in love with Boris Andrieff (Ben Lyon), a starving musician that Potash has hired as a fitter. When a murder is committed at the partners' establishment and Andrieff is charged with the crime, Feldman shows his true colors by refusing to clear the young man's name. Andrieff is eventually found to be innocent and proves to be a suitable husband for Irma. The film was so successful that Goldwyn made several more Potash and Perlmutter comedies.

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business, lawyer