Silent Feature: Male and Female


Studio: A Paramount-Artcraft Picture
Released: November 16, 1919

Featured Cast: Gloria Swanson, Thomas Meighan, Bebe Daniels

Producer-director: Cecil B. DeMille
Screenwriter: Jeanie Macpherson
Source: the Sir James M. Barrie play, The Admirable Crichton
Art director: Wilfred Buckland
Costumes: Paul Iribe, Mitchell Leisen, Clare West
Technical director: Howard Higgin
Cinematographer: Alvin Wyckoff
Editor: Anne Bauchens


When a yacht sinks, its wealthy owners depend on their resourceful butler for survival.

Production Quotes

“Monday, June 2, marked the beginning of a big production, The Admirable Crichton. On that day Cecil B. DeMille took up his megaphone to direct Jeanie Macpherson’s adaptation of the celebrated James M. Barrie play.”

– “Paramount Companies in Action,” Motion Picture News, Vol. 19, No. 25 (June 21, 1919)


“A truly gorgeous panorama, it is a typical DeMille production—audacious, glittering, intriguing, superlatively elegant, and quite without heart. It reminds me of one of our great California flowers, glowing with all the colors of the rainbow and devoid of fragrance.”

– Julian Johnson in Photoplay Magazine, December, 1919

Letters From Regional Theater Owners

“Played two days to capacity. Patrons liked it better than any picture shown here. Could stand a second run.”

– L.J. Mason, Queen Theatre, McAllen, Texas, Exhibitors Herald, Vol. X, No. 21 (May 22, 1920)

Artist Comment

“I had to wade out of the surf in a beaded gown and crawl up an incline of slippery rocks. When I finished the scene, my knees were bloody, my hands were scratched, and pieces of crushed beads had dug into my thighs. Mr. DeMille began to call me ‘young fellow,’ as if I were one of the boys.”

– Gloria Swanson, Swanson on Swanson


Male and Female cost $168,619.28 and grossed $1,256,226.59.
(These figures have not been adjusted for inflation nor do they include the considerable profits realized from reissues, television syndication, and home entertainment formats.)