Kenneth Webb

Kenneth Seymour Webb (16 October 1885 New York City – 6 March 1966 Hollywood, California) was an American film director, screenwriter, and composer noted for directing a number of films in the early age of the American film industry. He helped write the Gay Divorce along with Samuel Hoffenstein.[1]

Kenneth Seymour Webb
Kenneth Webb (center) on location in New Orleans filming Fair Lady in 1922, with Betty Blythe and Robert Elliott (extreme right)
Kenneth Seymour Webb

16 October 1885
DiedMarch 6, 1966(1966-03-06) (aged 80)
OccupationStage & film director
Years active1910–1938
Spouse(s)Lorraine Frost (maiden; 1897–1993)

Selected songs

  • "You and Me and You" (1919)
Kenneth Webb (words)
Roy Webb (music)


Webb, beginning around 1910, became a sketch writer and director for vaudeville stage. In 1913, he began writing scenarios for the Vitagraph Company. From 1918 to 1919, he was a writer and director for Vitagraph. From 1919 to 1938, Webb was a writer and director, first with the Famous Players Film Company, then with Whitman Bennett (a production company) and Associated First National Theatres, Inc. (Bennett's distributor), then Fox Film Corporation, then Whitman Bennett (production company) and United Artists (Bennett's distributor), then Burr & Company, then Pathe, then Lee de Forest, Inspiration Pictures (fr), Tiffany Pictures, and then FitzPatrick Pictures. Webb wrote for legitimate stage since 1924. Since 1933, Webb was a radio writer and producer with Batten Barton Durstine & Osborn, Inc., and since 1953, was its Western editor.

From 1943 to 1943, Webb was a lecturer at New York University of radio writing and production.

Partial filmography

As director

  1. Will You Be Staying for Supper? (1919)
  2. Sinners (1920)
  3. The Stolen Kiss (1920)
  4. The Master Mind (1920)
  5. The Devil's Garden (1920)
  6. The Truth About Husbands (it) (1920)
  7. The Fear Market (1920)
    Realart Pictures Corporation (producer and distributor)
  8. The Great Adventure (1921)
    Whitman Bennett (producer)
    Associated First National Pictures, Inc. (distributor)
  9. Jim the Penman (1921)
  10. Salvation Nell (1921)
  11. Fair Lady (1922)
  12. The Daring Years (1923)
  13. The Beautiful City (1925)
  14. Just Suppose (1926)


Webb attended The Collegiate School on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. He went on to study at Columbia University, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1906.[2]

Professional and fraternal associations


Kenneth Webb was one of children born to the marriage of William Edward Webb (1844–1915) and Juliette Seymour Bell (1863–1930).[3] Kenneth Webb married, on September 20, 1920, silent film actress Lorraine Frost (maiden; 1897–1993) in Manhattan, New York.[4] His brother, Roy Webb, also composer and film director,[5] was one of his chief collaborators.


  1. The ASCAP Biographical Dictionary (4th ed.), compiled for the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers – by Jacques Cattell Press, New York: R.R. Bowker Co. (1980)
  2. Rhodes, Gary D. (2001). White Zombie: Anatomy of a Horror Film. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company. p. 84. ISBN 978-0-7864-2762-8. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  3. The Heroes of the American Revolution and Their Descendants: Battle of Long Island, by Henry Whittemore, Genealogical Society of Utah (2001), pps. 161–162; OCLC 866036044
  4. "New York, New York City Marriage Records, 1829–1940" (database), FamilySearch, March 20, 2015, "Kenneth Webb" and "Lorraine Frost", September 20, 1920; citing Marriage, Manhattan, New York, New York City Municipal Archives
    NYC Marriage Certificate No. 28772
    FHL microfilm (GS No.) 1643956
    Note: The FHL microfilm number was formerly known as a GS film number (GS = Genealogical Society of Utah) (registration/login for FamilySearch may be required, but is free)
  5. The Encyclopedia of Film Composers, by Thomas S. Hischak (born 1951), Rowman & Littlefield (2015); pps. 708–708; OCLC 934688063
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