Celebrating the History of Motion Pictures from 1890 to 1960

1928 Timelines: 1920 to 1929

Great Britain enacts “The Quota Act”. It stipulates that 7.5% of the films screened in domestic theaters must be made in Great Britain.


The success of the sound film, “The Jazz Singer”, throws the movie business into turmoil.


Many movies begin to be made in multiple versions: silent with intertitles; with synchronized music; and with part–dialogue.


Warner Bros. buys a majority stake in First National Pictures. They now control the First National studios, distribution network and cinemas.


“Movietone News” begins to be distributed regularly to cinemas throughout the U.S.


A fire breaks out in the UFa laboratories in Berlin. The fire destroys all of the films in the laboratories, including a negative of Carl Dreyer’s, “The Passion of Joan of Arc”.


Metro–Goldwyn–Mayer films an opening logo that consists of a roaring lion enclosed in a scroll–like frame, accompanied by the firm’s new motto, “Ars gratia artis” (Art for arts sake). The lion is known as Leo.


Significant Films:

Walt Disney releases the cartoon, “Plane Crazy”. The film introduces Mickey Mouse.

The Warner Bros. gangster film “Lights of New York ” premiers in New York City. It is billed as the first “All Talking Picture” because it uses synchronized dialogue throughout the film. Costing only $23,000 to make, the movie is a box-office smash taking in over $1 million at the box–office.

Walt Disney releases the third cartoon staring Mickey Mouse, “Steamboat Willie”. It is the first film in which Mickey Mouse speaks.

Theodor Dreyer’s film, “The Passion of Joan of Arc”, is released in Paris. The French stage actress playing the title role, Renée Falconetti, gives one of the greatest performances ever recorded on film. She never makes another film.

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