The Savage (1917 film)

The Savage is a 1917 American silent drama film starring Colleen Moore and Monroe Salisbury that is set in Canada and was directed by Rupert Julian. The film is presumed to be lost.[1]

The Savage
Film still with Monroe Salisbury
Directed byRupert Julian
Produced byMel Epstein
Written byElliott J. Clawson (Scenario)
Elliott J. Clawson (Story)
StarringRuth Clifford
Colleen Moore
Monroe Salisbury
CinematographyJohn F. Seitz
Bluebird Photoplays
Distributed byBluebird Photoplays
Release date
  • November 19, 1917 (1917-11-19) (U.S.)
Running time
5 reels
CountryUnited States
LanguageSilent (English intertitles)


Marie Louise returns home from finishing school, and catches the eye of Julio Sandoval, an emotional half-breed. She is engaged to Captain McKeever of the mounted police, but Sandoval wants her for himself. Finding her alone in the woods, the half-breed carries her to his cabin, but he is taken ill. Marie nurses him back to health, and when a rescue party arrives for her, she protects him. Back in town, Marie discovers McKeever has been taken prisoner by the outlaw Joe Bedotte. Julio goes to the rescue, losing his life in the process.



Shortly after Colleen Moore's arrival in Hollywood, the Triangle Film Corporation went through a reorganization with the departure of D. W. Griffith for Europe. Colleen's contract was with Griffith's studio, not Triangle, and so she found herself on contract with no projects. She found a part in Universal Bluebird's film The Savage and was given several weeks off from her contract to film her part. In the film, Colleen plays the part of Lizette, a half-breed like Julio. This would be one of several "exotic" roles Colleen would play during her career, including her part as a Persian in The Devil's Claim. After this film, Colleen went on to work at the Selig Polyscope Company.


Like many American films of the time, The Savage was subject to cuts by city and state film censorship boards. For example, the Chicago Board of Censors required cuts of the holdup and stealing of a letter, two scenes of the holdup of the officer at point of knife, binding the officer to the cabin wall, two closeups of men leering at the young woman after the intertitle "Give me a leetle kiss", and three closeups of the half-breed's face as he looks at the unconscious young woman in the cabin.[2] The Board later made additional cuts in Reel 3 of all closeups of the half-breed leering at young woman at brookside, all but the first scene of the half-breed chasing her, the entire incident of half-breed laying unconscious woman on couch-bed including all closeups of man's passionate contortions and girl's scared face, intertitle "The white man's instinct struggles for supremacy", all other views of couple, and the intertitle "They'll kill you for this".[3]


  1. Progressive Silent Film List: The Savage at
  2. "Official Cut-Outs by the Chicago Board of Censors". Exhibitors Herald. New York City: Exhibitors Herald Company. 5 (25): 31. December 15, 1917.
  3. "Official Cut-Outs by the Chicago Board of Censors". Exhibitors Herald. 5 (26): 40. December 22, 1917.


  • The Savage on IMDb
  • Savage (1917), New York Times overview
  • Shorey, Jerome (January 1918). "The Savage". Photoplay. Chicago: Photoplay Magazine Co. 13 (2): 97–100, 128. A novelization of The Savage.
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