Don Juan (1926)

Don Juan is a 1926 American romantic adventure film directed by Alan Crosland. It is the first feature-length film to utilize the Vitaphone sound-on-disc sound system with a synchronized musical score and sound effects, though it has no spoken dialogue. The film is inspired by Lord Byron’s 1821 epic poem of the same name. The screenplay was written by Bess Meredyth with intertitles by Maude Fulton and Walter Anthony.

Don Juan stars John Barrymore as the hand-kissing womanizer. The film has the most kisses in film history, with Barrymore kissing (all together) Mary Astor and Estelle Taylor 127 times.


In the prologue, Don José, warned of his wife’s infidelity, seals his wife’s lover alive in his hiding place and drives her from the castle; abandoned to his lust, he is stabbed by his last mistress, and with his dying words he implores his son, Don Juan, to take all from women but yield nothing. Ten years later, young Don Juan, a graduate of the University of Pisa, is famous as a lover and pursued by many women, including the powerful Lucrezia Borgia, who invites him to her ball. His contempt for her incites her hatred of Adriana, the daughter of the Duke Della Varnese, with whom he is enraptured; and Lucrezia plots to marry her to Count Giano Donati, one of the Borgia henchmen, and poison the duke. Don Juan intervenes and thwarts the scheme, winning the love of Adriana, but the Borgia declare war on the duke’s kinsmen, offering them safety if Adriana marries Donati; Don Juan is summoned to the wedding, but he prefers death to marriage with Lucrezia. He escapes and kills Donati in a duel. The lovers are led to the death-tower, but while Adriana pretends suicide, he escapes; and following a series of battles, he defeats his pursuers and is united with Adriana.


Directed by Alan Crosland
Written by Walter Anthony (intertitles)
Maude Fulton (intertitles)
Victor Vance (art titles)
Screenplay by Bess Meredyth
Based on Don Juan by Lord Byron
Music by William Axt, David Mendoza, and Major Bowes
Restored and upscaled by moonflix, LLC


John Barrymore as Don Jose de Marana/Don Juan de Marana
Jane Winton as Donna Isobel
John Roche as Leandro
Warner Oland as Cesare Borgia
Estelle Taylor as Lucrezia Borgia
Montagu Love as Count Giano Donati
Josef Swickard as Duke Della Varnese
Willard Louis as Pedrillo
Nigel De Brulier as Marchese Rinaldo
Hedda Hopper as Marchesia Rinaldo
Myrna Loy as Mai, Lady in Waiting
Mary Astor as Adriana della Varnese
Lionel Braham as Duke Margoni (uncredited)
Helene Costello as Rena, Adriana’s Maid (uncredited)
Helena D’Algy as Donna Elvira, Murderess (uncredited)
Yvonne Day as Don Juan at age 5 (uncredited)
Philippe De Lacy as Don Juan at age 10 (uncredited)
Emily Fitzroy as The Dowager (uncredited)
Johnny George – Hunchback/Castlekeeper/Informer (uncredited)
Gibson Gowland as Gentleman of Rome (uncredited)
Phyllis Haver as Imperia (uncredited)
Sheldon Lewis as Gentleman of Rome (uncredited)
June Marlowe as Trusia (uncredited)
Dick Sutherland as Gentleman of Rome (uncredited)
Gustav von Seyffertitz as Neri, the Alchemist (uncredited)
Helen Lee Worthing as Eleanora (uncredited)

Original release date:
August 6, 1926

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Genres: Adventure Films, New Arrivals, Movies, 1920's, Adventure, Drama Films, Romance Films, Silent Films, Silent Films, Romance, American Classics, Drama Movies, ALL Movies

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