There are five segments to this part of Itsahotun - this is Part 1, The Blakeley Family.
Mike Blakeley is part of a long-established Film-Making family and scroll away here to find a treasure-trove of clippings regarding his family's Mancunian Film Studios ...
At the end of this section there is extended news about set lighting re the Hewitt Universal lighting and Paul Mertz (grandson of Arthur Mertz Snr who helped John E found the Studios) ... all adding to the Mancunian story.
1. The Blakeley Film Family History - HERE ... other sections in the Blakeley Family Gallery are:
2. Mancunian Studios - Missing Films - the quest to complete the Blakeley family collection continues apace ...
3. Cup-Tie Honeymoon Press Cuttings - a collection of Trade and Public press clippings. (Have you also been to the 'The Films' section to view a clip of Cup-Tie Honeymoon?)
4. Mancunian Studios - Various Press Clippings - more from the Trade and other Press!
5. Mancunian Studios - Ledgers and the Administration Business
James Blakeley and his son James E, with Stan Laurel & Oliver Hardy at the Midland Hotel, Manchester (2 August 1932). It was at this meeting that the Blakeleys were persuaded to go into sound production.
John E Blakeley at work - Slapstick King article in full below
More on John E Blakeley:
Tom Blakeley makes the news looking for a North Country script
... when you're through with this page you may wish to visit these other linked Historical files - Mancunian Studios - Missing Films - the quest to complete the Blakeley family collection continues apace ... Cup-Tie Honeymoon Press Cuttings - a collection of Trade and Public press clippings. (Have you also been to the 'The Films' section to view a clip of Cup-Tie Honeymoon?) Mancunian Studios - Various Press Clippings - more from the Trade and other Press! Mancunian Studios - Ledgers and the Administration Business - fascinating archive on the administration of running the Studios.
HOTUN NEWS - LIGHTING IN THE 1950s
Firstly, our thanks to Jules Hewitt for sending us this fascinating information regarding her own family history link with the Mancunian Studios -
* The lights in the newspaper cutting titled ‘Ready to Shoot’ & ‘Manchester Opens Film Studio-in Ex Chapel’ were made by my Great Grandfather's film lighting company Multiple HD Industries Ltd and were branded ‘Hewitt Universal’ ... they were made from the 1920s until 1959. I believe that the microphone boom in one of the shots is one of ours too ...Jules also has spotted another picture on the Hotun site - to visit click on the link below -
The lights can also be seen in the photograph of Winifred Atwell on the set of ‘It’s a Grand Life’ at the Dickinson Road Studio - the three lights facing the photographer are in fact the older style ones ...
"Although we supplied a lot of studios, including Elstree, Pinewood and Bray, I have not seen them in action before," writes Jules - and she has also expressly asked if any Hotun visitors know where other examples of Hewitt Universal lighting may be found, especially 'Compact Source' lamps.
We asked here on the website for anyone who knew anything to please get in touch with Cuthbert by email straight away and we'll pass the info on to Jules. So now, it's thanks to Lee Allen who got in touch with us with these photos! Lee has the same lights as used in 'It's A Grand Life' and here are the images which shows it really is a grand life!
HOTUN EXTRA! - MANCUNIAN HISTORY -
COOKING WITH MERTZ!
Cuthbert and Mrs Cuthbert were delighted to be invited to meet Paul Mertz (centre right) and Peter O'Grady who had emailed itsahotun with the news that Paul is Arthur Mertz Snr's grandson!
Arthur Snr helped John E Blakeley found the Studio and co-wrote many of the films with him. His sons, Arthur Jnr and John worked at the Dickinson Road studios.
The photo here shows Paul at work as Chef at Manchester's Market Restaurant with Peter (left) and Chris Lee (right) in 2007.
This page updated: 21.05.2013 COMMENTS OR NEWS? PLEASE let us know by emailing Cuthbert