M | | Drama, Comedy
Story of a brilliant silent-film comic whose talent is overshadowed by his ego.
The clip of the fictional Billy Bright comedy "Dr. Jerk and Mr. Hyde" is a parody of John Barrymore's 1920 silent film version of "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." Like Barrymore, Dick Van Dyke (playing Billy Bright) transforms from Jekyll to Hyde on camera using only his facial expressions, and his ability to quickly switch from one to the other becomes the key gag of the scene.
In fact, the on-camera transformation was a bit more complex than that - Barrymore's makeup was done in tinted colours, and his costumes had coloured chalk applied to them. In the scenes that featured the transformation, the lighting colour was gradually changed, which, with the orthochromatic B&W film stock in use at the time (sensitive to only blue/green light, not to red) caused "Jekyll's" respectable clothing to appear to become "Hyde's" shabby suit, and to cause Barrymore's face to appear to change shape and contours. (Ortho stock will render pure red as black or dark grey)
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