Under Two Flags (1916)

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Desperately tired of playing man-eating "vamps," Theda Bara begged to play Ouida's 1901 Foreign Legion heroine, "Cigarette," in the fourth screen version of this enduring drama. The Legion's mascot, Cigarette falls for an Englishman, Bertie Cecil (Herbert Heyes), and when he is sentenced to a firing squad, she heroically takes the bullet herself. Directed by Bara regular J. Gordon Edwards (the step-grandfather of Blake Edwards), Under Two Flags was a major critical and popular success despite obvious Long Island locations standing in for the North African desert. Making his screen debut in this film, handsome but somewhat stodgy Herbert Heyes embarked on a long career than lasted until the late '50s; he is perhaps best remembered for playing Montgomery Clift's millionaire uncle in A Place in the Sun (1951).