A popular leading lady of the 1920s, Virginia Valli (born McSweeney) had appeared with a Milwaukee stock company prior to making her screen debut with the Chicago-based Selig Polyscope Company in 1915. By 1917, she was a popular ingenue with Essanay, another Chicago producer. She became a top star with Metro in Hollywood, who cast her opposite matinee idol Bert Lytell in several popular melodramas in 1921-1922. Usually considered a victim of sound, Valli actually registered well in her first talkie, Mr. Antonio (1929), and although she was considered a bit stiff and "too English" in The Isle of Lost Ships (1929), her voice recorded well. But no longer in the first bloom of youth by 1930, Valli found herself in a no-win position and chose to retire after Night Life in Reno (1931), a low-budget offering from small-scale Artclass Pictures. That same year she married handsome leading man Charles Farrell and would, as Mrs. Farrell, become the "first lady" of Palm Springs, CA.