About the Author
My name is David Gasten, and I have been a freelance
writer since 1991. The crown
jewel of my work so far is a how-to book I co-wrote called How To Make a Coopered Wooden
Bucket (Winepress Publications, 2004), which is now distributed
nationwide by Fox
Chapel Publishing and sold by Woodcraft
and Barnes and Noble. I worked
as staff writer for the online music journal
two years (back when it was Dallas' most popular online music weekly), and have contributed to
Classic Images, Films of
the Golden Age, the now-defunct Atlanta-based print magazine Visions of Gray, and
a number of underground music publications over
the course of my career. But most of my day-to-day work involves writing boring stuff
like web content and ad copy. When I'm not pushing a pen for a
living, one of the things I like to do is research and watch silent movies, especially German
and other European silents.
Author and Webmaster,
The Pola Negri Appreciation Site
This is how my interest in Pola Negri began.
In 1999, when I was still just exploring and learning about silent
movies, I thought it might be a good idea to devote some of my researching
and writing talents to preserving the memory of a silent film star.
So as I continued my reading, I kept my eyes open for a star that I
could specialize in. It was
not very long before I decided to devote a portion of my life to studying
and introducing others to Pola Negri.
There are three random incidents that drew me to
Pola. The first was that I
was getting into Theda Bara at the time and was depressed that there were
so few of her films in existence. I realized that I
would have to divert my growing interest in dark silent ladies elsewhere
if I didn’t want to hit a brick wall.
The second was that the name “Pola Negri” kept turning up again
and again in my research. I
quickly realized that Pola was an important star in her day and that there
was relatively little information available on her—and what did exist
wasn’t always very good. The
third was my discovery that Pola spent the last thirty years of her life
in San Antonio, Texas, and had left an archive of memorabilia at a
university there. I was based
in Dallas at the time, so beginning intensive research on Pola looked like
it would not be as difficult as researching other stars because she was
local. So I took the plunge.
Little did I know that I was destined to become one of the leading
authorities on Pola and would contribute heavily to the burgeoning revival
of interest in this once-forgotten star.
I hope that my contributions to reviving the memory
of Pola Negri through The Pola Negri Appreciation Site and elsewhere will
help to correct the years of scholarly neglect on this important actress and,
more importantly, that it will eventually help to make more of Pola’s
films available to the public. I
believe old films were made to be watched and appreciated, not to sit in
archives and be pretentiously debated over, psychoanalyzed, and read into by elitist,
revisionist scholars. So
while we wait for Pola's films to become more widely available, this
website will (God willing) be here, spreading "the gospel according to
Pola". We hope to add more artifacts and information as time and
resources permit, so do check back occasionally.
Feel free to contact me with your questions,
suggestions and contributions at
yåhøø ??? çöm.
The link works, but if you'd rather type it out, just replace the ???'s
with the appropriate symbols. Also eliminate all the funny marks.
I hate spam!