M' Liss (1915)

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Although the 1918 version of Bret Harte's novel was a big success for Mary Pickford, it wasn't the first time it was filmed. In fact, 25 years before it was first picturized, it was made into a play which starred Anne Pixley. Barbara Tennant starred as the title character in this O.A.C. Lund production. It follows the storyline pretty faithfully, showing M'Liss as the ragged daughter of a drunk and her only real friend being Smith's Pocket's new schoolteacher Allan Gray (Howard Estabrook). After her father's death she goes to California where she learns to be a refined young lady and becomes a landowner. Eventually she and Gray wed. An interesting note about this picture -- it was shot on the East Coast in locations varying from New Jersey to St. Augustine, Florida, to Asheville, North Carolina, all in an attempt to recreate Nevada and Southern California!