Most of Bara’s early films were shot around the East Coast, primarily at the Fox Studios in Fort Lee, New Jersey. Until the rise of Hollywood as the epicenter for the entertainment industry forced her to move in 1917 to Los Angeles for the filming of Cleopatra. Which became one of Theda Bara’s biggest hits.
Between 1915 and 1919 Bara was Fox Studios biggest star. Ranking behind only Charlie Chaplin and Mary Pickford. Bara’s best-known roles were as the “vamp”, although she attempted to avoid typecasting by playing wholesome heroines in films such as Under Two Flags and Her Double Life. She also appeared as Juliet in a version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Although Bara took her craft seriously, she was too successful as an exotic “wanton woman” to develop a more versatile career.
Somethings do not change. It’s why America still loves a good old fashioned Vamp or femme fatale. Before Elvira was born inside one of the O’s in the Hollywood sign, the was Vampira. Who became TV’s first Horror show host. Which is why Reign Noir magazine chooses to focus on the dark side of entertainment. It was the original.