Edward Arnold Was The Master

The French have Alain Resnais’ elegant “Stavisky” and the Italians can count Francesco Rosi’s conspirational “The Mattei Affair.”

But no recent American film of note has been based on an actual case of business skullduggery. Oliver Stone’s 1987 “Wall Street” was more “inspired” by news stories.

Perhaps the most famous corporate malefactor profiled by Hollywood was the financier Jim Fisk in the 1937 romanticized bio “Toast of New York.” Edward Arnold, who played the Wall Street operator of the 1880s, also played powerful tycoons for Frank Capra, including the fascistic manipulator in “Meet John Doe.”

But the Arnold character that caused the most political ruckus was in the 1940 “Johnny Apollo.” Arnold played a convicted Wall Street businessman who chides his idealistic son (Tyrone Power) for not knowing how things really are. Advance word on the film aroused vocal protests from N.Y. brokerage houses, but businessmen were assuaged when the film was screened for them. Most of the movie is a prison film with both father and son in the slammer.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More News from Variety