December 1,  2018


Mamba movie posterStarring Jean Hersholt, Mamba takes place in 1913 in German East Africa, now Tanzania. August Bolte is a thoroughly disgusting plantation owner, who violently mistreats his African workers, sexually abuses native women, and is shunned by both the British and German military officers garrisoned in the border area between British and German colonies.  He buys himself an impoverished countess as a wife and brings her back to Africa where she soon is terrorized by the alien environment.

The film went into production in late 1929, when Tiffany, a low-budget, independent studio decided to play with the big boys in Hollywood, investing half a million dollars to make a sound, color and 3-D film, at least according to Film Daily.  Shot on the Universal lot by action specialist Albert S. Rogell, the film kept running out of money, but the gamble paid off.  When the film opened in New York in March 1930, it broke the box office record for the Gaiety Theatre.  That didn't help Tiffany, which went bankrupt in 1932, as the Depression deepened, its catalog of prints and negatives disappearing into oblivion.

It was not until 2009 that an Australian film impresario, Paul Brennan, “discovered” an original two-color Technicolor IB nitrate print, belonging to an old couple in their 80s who lived in or near Adelaide.  But there were problems.  The film had been sent to Australia in 1930 with Vitaphone sound discs, rather than sound on the film, and some of those discs were missing.  Brennan contacted Ron Hutchinson of The Vitaphone Project, who put him in touch with UCLA’s motion picture archivist Todd Wiener; miraculously, the discs had survived at UCLA, as well as two reels of color nitrate.  In 2012, the original print was sent to UCLA for this restoration.


Mamba. 1930. USA. Directed by Albert S. Rogell. Production: Tiffany Productions/Colorart.  Distribution: Tiffany Pictures.  Story: F.Schumann-Heink, John Reinhardt.  Continuity: Tom Miranda, Winifred Dunn.  Editor: Richard Cahoon.  Cinematography: Charles P. Boyle.  Art Direction: Andre Chotin.  Ferdinand Schumann-Heink. With Jean Hersholt, Eleanor Boardman, Ralph Forbes. DCP, b7w, 78 min.

Hearst Metrotone News, Vol. 1 No. 269 (1930)

Me and the Boys (1929) Director:  Victor Saville. Musical short with Estelle Brody and Ben Pollack’s jazz band


Sound Stages


Call 323.960.4000

Dear Friends,

For every single one of us, these are challenging times, both personally and professionally. The economic burden we all are bearing is difficult, and our hearts go out to all those who suffer adverse health issues from Covid-19. While we wait to hear news and updates from around the world, it is uplifting to learn about the positive things people are doing in our communities to help those unable to help themselves. It is humbling to see a warm spirit of humankind shining through during times of struggle.

At Raleigh Studios, while our lots remain accessible to our tenants, we have minimal staffing and we have closed our café in keeping with directives of government officials.  Our managers and executives remain accessible by phone at their regular extensions should you require any support and our security remains staffed.  Our current operations follow the explicit guidelines set forth by the CDC to ensure the safety and welfare of our employees, our tenants and their families.

While the road ahead will be difficult, one thing is certain; this, too, shall pass. We are optimistic and hopeful for a speedy end to this global crisis and confident that we will persevere by working together, coming together as a global community, and being patient and kind to one another. Thank you for your patronage, and we look forward to welcoming you back to a vibrant and active Raleigh Studios lot very soon. 

Very Truly Yours,


Mark A. Rosenthal
Raleigh Enterprises