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The Scarlet Letter

An early sound adaptation of Hawthorne's novel about social mores, intolerance, and ostracism in 17th Century Massachussetts.

The Scarlet Letter (1934 in film) is an American film directed by Robert G. Vignola.
It was shot in Salem, Massachusetts's Pioneer Village (Salem, Massachusetts) and Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles. This was the only film Colleen Moore ever said she made for the money. She was preparing to take her dollhouse on tour for charity, and saw the film as an opportunity to make a last film with friends.
Henry B. Walthall played Roger Chillingworth in both this and the The Scarlet Letter (1926 film).

Plot summary

Hester Prynne has a child out of wedlock and uses to name the father (who is a respected citizen). For this, she is sentenced to wear a red letter "A" (for adultery). Her husband is long missing and presumed dead. When the husband returns and finds his wife with another man's child, he sets out to torture them. At last, the father reveals himself, with a letter "A" carved in his chest.

Differences from novel

In the film, the character Bartholomew Hockings, played by Alan Hale, Sr., is not in the original novel by Nathaniel Hawthorne.


  • Colleen Moore as Hester Prynne
  • Hardie Albright as Arthur Dimmesdale
  • Henry B. Walthall as Roger Chillingworth
  • Cora Sue Collins as Pearl
  • Alan Hale, Sr. as Bartholomew Hockings
  • Virginia Howell as Abigail Crakstone
  • William T. Kent as Sampson Goodfellow
  • William Farnum as Gov. Bellingham
  • Betty Blythe as Innkeeper
  • Al O. Henderson as Master Wilson
  • Jules Cowles as Beadle
  • Mickey Rentschler as Digerie Crakstone
  • Shirley Jean Rickert as Humility Crakstone
  • Iron Eyes Cody as Native American (uncredited)


  • Jeff Codori (2012), Colleen Moore; A Biography of the Silent Film Star, McFarland Publishing,(Print ISBN 978-0-7864-4969-9, EBook ISBN 978-0-7864-8899-5).
  • Colleen Moore research/history project page

  • Category:1934 films
    Category:1930s drama films
    Category:Films based on The Scarlet Letter
    Category:American films
    Category:American drama films
    Category:English-language films
    Category:Black-and-white films
    Category:Films directed by Robert G. Vignola
    Category:Films shot in Massachusetts
    Category:Films shot in California


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