Pay Day (1918)

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Sidney Drew and his wife, Lucille McVey -- better known as Mr. and Mrs. Sidney Drew -- starred in a long string of polite one-reel comedies for Vitagraph and then Metro. This rather flimsy excuse for a comedy heralds their foray into five-reel features. The couple is first seen meeting with Metro's president, Richard A. Rowland (playing himself). Rowland is offering to star the Drews in a five-reel feature. Mr. Drew is concerned it will ruin the reputation the couple earned through their one-reelers. Mrs. Drew starts to read the screenplay, which comes to life: Doris Fenton (McVey) steals a large amount of money from her boss, Dr. Grayson (Charles Rigel), at the instigation of her fiancé, Kirke Brentwood (Drew). The doctor discovers the loss and Doris is sent off to prison. When she gets out, she discovers that Brentwood has married a society girl, Isabel (Linda Farley). But Isabel figures out just how abominable her husband is, and when she threatens to expose him, he strangles her -- and places the blame on Doris, who is shipped off to prison once again. After five years, she escapes to discover that Brentwood has married yet again. She goes to his home and, finding him alone, tries to murder him when the latest Mrs. Brentwood walks in. Instead of killing him, Doris throws his arms around her and his wife walks out on the philanderer. Dr. Grayson discovers that Doris has leprosy and has passed it along to Brentwood. They are both shipped off to a colony. Next we see Mr. Drew declaring that the screenplay is no good. But then Rowland offers him a large salary to do it and he accepts.