~Clarence Sinclair Bull Portrait of Joan Crawford~
~The Unknown~
1927
~Plot Synopsis~
As a group, the silent-movie collaborations between director Tod Browning and star Lon Chaney hardly
represent the best work of either man, though each film definitely has its moments. One of the best, and
weirdest, of the batch is The Unknown. Chaney plays a carnival performer known as the "Armless
Wonder," who performs near-miraculous stunts with his bare feet. In fact, he is in possession of both his
arms, but keeps them strapped to his side to maintain the illusion of being limbless. Chaney's beautiful
assistant Joan Crawford has a pathological fear of being touched by any man. This leads Chaney to believe
that he is attractive to Crawford so long as his keeps his arms hidden. Halfway through the film, Chaney
murders the circus manager - a crime witnessed by Crawford, who was only able to glimpse Chaney's
distinctively mutated thumb. To cover up his crime, and to make himself the perfect mate for Crawford,
Chaney blackmails a doctor into amputating his arms. Upon returning to the carnival, the now-genuinely
armless Chaney learns to his horror that Crawford has overcome her aberration of being touched, thanks
to handsome circus strong man Norman Kerry. Enraged, Chaney plots to kill Kerry in a horrible
fashion...but guess who ends up seriously dead?

Plot Synopsis by Hal Erickson, AllMovie.com
Directed by: Tod Browning

Written by: Tod Browning - story
Waldemar Young - scenario
Joseph Farnham - titles
~Cast~

Lon Chaney ...  Alonzo the Armless
Norman Kerry ...  Malabar the Mighty, Circus Strongman
Joan Crawford ...  Nanon Zanzi
Nick De Ruiz ...  Antonio Zanzi, Nanon's Father
John George ...  Cojo, Alonzo's Assistant
Frank Lanning ...  Costra
Polly Moran ...  Landlady (scenes deleted)
Bobbie Mack ...  Gypsy (scenes deleted)
Louise Emmons ...  Gypsy Woman (uncredited)
Julian Rivero ...  Man in Audience (uncredited)
Billy Seay ...  The Little Wolf (uncredited)
John St. Polis ...  Surgeon (uncredited)
~Clarence Sinclair Bull Portrait Photograph of Lon
Chaney~
~Movie Still 305-11: Nick De Ruiz & Joan
Crawford~
~Movie Still 305-28: Joan Crawford & Nick De Ruiz~
~Movie Still 305-53: Nick De Ruiz & Joan Crawford~
~Movie Still 305-57: Joan Crawford & Norman Kerry~
~Movie Still 305-107: Lon Chaney & Joan Crawford~
~Movie Still 305-108: Clarence Sinclair Bull
Portrait of Lon Chaney & Joan Crawford~
~Remaining Credits~

Produced & Released by: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)

Cinematography by: Merritt B. Gerstad
Film Editing: Harry Reynolds & Errol Taggart
Settings: Richard Day & Cedric Gibbons
Stunts: Paul Desmuke
Still Photographer: Clarence Sinclair Bull
Wardrobe: Lucia Coulter &
Set Musicians: Jack Feinberg & Sam Feinberg

Length: 7 Reels
Runtime: 86 Minutes
Released: August 16, 1925

Filmed on Location at:
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios - 10202 W. Washington Blvd., Culver City, California, USA
.