The White Circle

The White Circle is a lost[1] 1920 American silent drama film directed by Maurice Tourneur and written by John Gilbert and Jules Furthman. The film stars Spottiswoode Aitken, Janice Wilson, Harry Northrup, John Gilbert, Wesley Barry, and Jack McDonald. It is based on the short story "The Pavilion on the Links" by Robert Louis Stevenson. The film was released on August 22, 1920, by Paramount Pictures.[2][3]

The White Circle
Newspaper advertisement
Directed byMaurice Tourneur
Produced byMaurice Tourneur
Screenplay byJohn Gilbert
Jules Furthman
Based on"The Pavilion on the Links"
by Robert Louis Stevenson
StarringSpottiswoode Aitken
Janice Wilson
Harry Northrup
John Gilbert
Wesley Barry
Jack McDonald
CinematographyAlfred Ortlieb
Charles Rosher
Maurice Tourneur Productions
Famous Players-Lasky Corporation
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • August 22, 1920 (1920-08-22)
Running time
50 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageSilent (English intertitles)


As described in a film magazine,[4] Frank Cassilis (Gilbert), a wanderer, returns once each year to a spot on the bleak Scottish coast to fulfill his word of honor to his archenemy Northmour (Northrup), a wealthy soldier of fortune in whose hands hang his life. During the visit in 1860 during the night Northmour lands from his yacht in company with Bernard Huddlestone (Aitken), a London banker fleeing from the danger of the Society of Carbonari, formed of Italians in London. The white circle is the warning mark used by this society. Huddlestone has misused funds entrusted to him by the society and lost them in speculation, so he has bargained away his daughter Clara (Wilson) to Northmour for his protection. Accompanying them on this night, she finds love when she sees Cassilis. Later, following the death of Huddlestone and the burning of Northmour's great home on the Scottish shore by the Italians, the worth of Northmour's reputed character is revealed when he leaves the young woman with Cassilis and spares the latter's life.



  1. The Library of Congress American Silent Feature Film Survival Catalog: The White Circle
  2. "The White Circle". Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  3. "The White Circle (1920) - Overview -". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  4. "Reviews: The White Circle". Exhibitors Herald. New York City: Exhibitors Herald Company. 11 (9): 76. August 28, 1920.

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