Nell Shipman

Trusky, Tom

The highlight of Canadian-American Nell Shipman’s career in the US is the 1921–1925 period in which she ran a motion picture company from the isolated woods of Idaho. Details surrounding Nell Shipman’s decision to move her production company from Southern California, first to Spokane, Washington, and finally to Lionhead Lodge on the shore of Priest Lake, Idaho, are still not fully known. We do know that by 1921 Shipman’s dealings with Los Angeles theatre magnate W. H. Clune had become acrimonious. Clune and other investors were enraged with Shipman and her director Bert Van Tuyle’s work on The Girl from God’s Country (1921), the first feature-length motion picture from their newly formed company, Nell Shipman Productions. Investors had wrested the film from Shipman and reedited it badly. Her response, she reported, was to place trade paper advertisements comparing their actions to Chinese men who deform their women’s feet by binding them (Shipman 1987; 2001, 103). Shipman and her lover Van Tuyle had made powerful and vengeful enemies in Southern California.


More About This Work

Academic Units
Women Film Pioneers Project
Published Here
October 15, 2019