Monday, 4 July 2022

Marmaduke Wetherell makes a Film

 


Before Marmaduke Wetherell engaged in his most famous production - the Surgeon's Photograph of 1934, he was in the African continent making another production, though this one was more based in fact being the story of the 19th century missionary, David Livingstone. The image above is the front cover of a promotional magazine from 1925 shows Wetherell playing the lead part. I saw the item on eBay which describes it thus:

Programme for one of the (presumed) first British screenings of the silent movie Livingstone, directed by “Duke” M. A. Wetherell, who also played the title role, David Livingstone the explorer of Africa. (For more on Wetherell and the Loch Ness Monster, see below) The film opened in the UK in January 1925, and though the programme has no date or venue it was certainly produced at around that time. The cover has an image of Wetherell as he appeared in the movie and the 5.5” x 8.5” programme is stuffed with information about the life and expeditions of Livingstone as well as the making of the film in October and November 1924. It includes a cast list, photos of film scenes, and even photographs and biographies of two African performers, one of whom claimed to have been Stanley’s servant as a boy, and therefore present at the actual meeting between the two men in November 1871. Eleven of the twelve pages are devoted to film-related content, with the only advert being one for Osram light bulbs on the back cover. In fair condition, the programme has some creases but is clean and bright. A very rare programme indeed.

* M. A. Wetherell was the hoaxer behind the famous “surgeon’s photograph” of the Loch Ness Monster. Details can be found on the Monster’s Wikipedia page, but it is interesting to note that the photo was actually taken by Ian Wetherell, who played David Livingstone at age 10 in the movie Livingstone.

Here is a picture of Wetherell from that magazine which tells us he had spent fifteen years in Africa up to that point. It made me wonder if he had ever heard of the mysterious Mokele-Mbembe of the Congo being the big game hunter he claimed to be. Then again, Africa is a huge place, and him being in Rhodesia must have put over a thousand miles between him and that cryptid.



Another player in the Surgeon's Photograph drama was his son, Ian Wetherell, who took part in the taking of the model photo at Loch Ness. As it turns out, he is in this film playing a young David Livingstone as shown below. Another person mentioned in this magazine is Gustave Pauli, who is credited with the photography. Now some may remember him as Wetherell's cameraman when he mounted his Daily Mail expedition to Loch Ness in late 1933. He is shown below with his beret on with his camera at the ready beside Wetherell at the loch. The location is Dores Beach on the pier which is now just a number of decaying posts sticking out of the water.




A thought passed my mind on the matter of Pauli. He had been at Wetherell's side since at least 1925 helping him with photographic matters. So he would seem the natural choice to get these monster pictures properly processed with the minimum chance of error. Not much is known about him and perhaps he was an honest man who would have nothing to do with Wetherell's planned revenge upon the Daily Mail. 

The eBay item can be viewed here.


Comments can also be made at the Loch Ness Mystery Blog Facebook group.

The author can be contacted at lochnesskelpie@gmail.com






15 comments:

  1. It has an entry in the IMDb website, I wonder if it has been lost forever.
    Livingstone has escaped so far being cancelled by the woke nazis, but for how long.

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  2. Livingstone was famously against the slave trade, he made several mentions of how horrible he found it. There's nowt for him to get cancelled for.

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  3. Maybe for wrong reasons but another big name in the mystery history!!!! On another note. .. My bag is packed.. Video and camera charged up.. Loch Ness here I come lol x

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  4. OT... "Palaeontologists have found that plesiosaurs inhabited freshwater environments — throwing crumbs of credibility to the belief the legendary Loch Ness monster is a living fossil."
    https://sputniknews.com/20220727/fossil-find-shows-plesiosaurs-lived-in-freshwater-habitats-yes-like-loch-ness-1097848337.html

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    1. I would barely grace these media articles with a comment, let alone a blog entry!

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    2. They are citing this scientific article: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0195667122001744?via%3Dihub

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    3. https://cosmosmagazine.com/history/morocco-plesiosaur-fossil-loch-ness/

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  5. Hope this will show up. Just found this randomly, no indication of location or size scale. Comments that it is a pike/jack or a muskie, but I've caught a few jackfish back in my fishing days and don't recall them looking like this. This is the type of photo of the LNM that is required for real credibility... https://i.imgur.com/nvTM363.jpg

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    1. All about adapting lol! Just got back from loch ness.. Great time as always.. Bit of excitement one night at 10.30pm when my daughter spotted summit moving through the water past our cabin and she managed to capture it on video! Good at first but as she zoomed in I think it shows an otter! Disappointing but still a good video despite the time of night lol.. Plenty of tennents consumed and brilliant time xx. . Cheerrs

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    2. Maybe a mink? Is there any up there?

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    3. Yeah cud of bin a mink!! Otter.. mink or a baby tullimonstrum lol I put it on my facebook last week so take a look and see wat u think.. Excuse my dawta's language though she thought she was filming nessie haha!. Cheers

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  6. Any updates on that Water Barrel ?

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    1. Yes!! I wanted to find out what part of Loch it went in....and I did!! I will keep it to myself though !, no point on here lol... Cheers

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  7. With no rain for a while, and none for the next week or so, will the water level drop sufficiently to reveal the age old mystery of the loch ?
    [ I should be writing for the National Geographic Channel ]

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