Movie-Making Firsts by an Italian American: Robert Vignola was a Silent Era Movie Pioneer

Vignola on a beach in Florida with fellow Kalem Co. cast and crew. Vignola on a beach in Florida with fellow Kalem Co. cast and crew.

When we think of Italian entertainers, the people that most often come to mind are the world-renowned names like Sinatra, Tony Bennett and Frank Capra. Looking at the earlier days of film, we might recall Rudolph Valentino. But one of film history’s early pioneers was a little-known Italian named Robert Vignola and if you’ve ever enjoyed a mobster movie, a vampire flick or location shoots, you have him to thank.

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