The captivating lives and groundbreaking accomplishments of fourteen men who dared to gamble their reputations by appearing in the first motion pictures are explored in a richly researched new book, The First Male Stars: Men of the Silent Era. At a time when other actors in the "legitimate theater" scorned the industry, these amazing men not only defied the odds of success but also received a place at the heights of a fascinating business that was a new form of art. Each made an enduring and important contribution to early cinema, although some are forgotten today. Exhaustive research in every major archive of the world has created this compilation of information and images. In this engaging and educational volume, author David W. Menefee reaches into the vaults of history to withdraw countless, unusual details that tell how these men, their roles, and their influence were received in their time, and how their powerful impact still lingers today. The book includes 114 rare scene photos, portraits, reproductions of full-page film advertisements, and lobby cards. Actors include: John Barrymore, Lionel Barrymore, Richard Barthelmess, John Bunny, Francis X. Bushman, Lon Chaney, Jackie Coogan, William S. Hart, Tom Mix, Antonio Moreno, Jack Pickford, Wallace Reid, Rudolph Valentino, and Crane Wilbur. This is the softcover edition.