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Talking in his Massapequa Park home with a (Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Talking in his Massapequa Park home with a visitor, John Carpenter is surrounded by stacks of film cans containing little-known silent films from the early 1900s through the industry's transition to sound. The round metal cans are piled on shelves, on the floor and in boxes in his climate-controlled basement. Carpenter estimates there are 3,500 films in his collection, most of them silent. (Jan. 14, 2012)

John Carpenter, a silent film buff

For a silent film buff, John Carpenter is getting pretty vocal about "The Artist," the critically acclaimed flick that has been reintroducing audiences to the art of movies without dialogue. In his own silent movie, "Late to Lunch," Carpenter, of Massapequa, plays a man who has a lunch date with his fiancee, but who keeps oversleeping. The film is packed with zany sight gags and pratfalls, and it finishes in classic style with a chase scene. -- Jim Merritt (Newsday / Jan. 28, 2012)

Roll ’em: John Carpenter of Massapequa Park projects
(Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Roll ’em: John Carpenter of Massapequa Park projects an air of authority about silent films. He should — he has thousands in his collection. (Jan. 14, 2012)

A scene from John Carpenter's silent film
(Credit: John Carpenter)

A scene from John Carpenter's silent film "Late to Lunch," a 40-minute comedy completed in 2002. In it Carpenter plays a man who has a lunch date with his fiancee, but who keeps oversleeping. The film is packed with zany sight gags and pratfalls, and it finishes in classic style with a chase scene.

(Credit: Handout)

"John Carpenter is a throwback to a vanished era," says Joe Franklin, left, the veteran New York film historian and former TV talk show host. Franklin, a mentor to Carpenter, sometimes visits Carpenter's home to watch films from the collection and stays for dinner. And Carpenter is a frequent guest on Franklin's radio show.

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A scene from
(Credit: John Carpenter)

A scene from "Late to Lunch," a slient film by Massapequa Park resident John Carpenter. He conceived his movie as a silent comedy so it would stand out from the independent talkies being made on Long Island. "I wanted to be noticed for my first independent film," says Carpenter, who learned the trade by watching thousands of movies.

John Carpenter, a Massapequa Park film buff and
(Credit: John Carpenter)

John Carpenter, a Massapequa Park film buff and filmmaker, appears in costume for his own silent film "Late to Lunch," completed in 2002. Along with silent film short subjects starring Oliver Hardy, Chaplin and Chase, Carpenter packaged his movie on a DVD distributed by Alpha Home Entertainment. Each short film features a synchronized soundtrack made with "mood music discs" first recorded in 1929. At $5.98, the "Silent Comedy Classics" DVD has sold about 1,300 copies worldwide.

Talking in his Massapequa Park home with a
(Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

Talking in his Massapequa Park home with a visitor, John Carpenter is surrounded by stacks of film cans containing little-known silent films from the early 1900s through the industry's transition to sound. The round metal cans are piled on shelves, on the floor and in boxes in his climate-controlled basement. Carpenter estimates there are 3,500 films in his collection, most of them silent. (Jan. 14, 2012)

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