John G. Adolfi (John G. Adolfi)

John G. Adolfi

Motion Picture Director.  Best known for his early 1930s films starring famed British actor George Arliss.  Born in New York City,  he began as an actor in stock and made his screen debut in the Vitagraph one-reeler “The Spy” (1907). He switched to directing in 1913 and turned out scores of silent potboilers for Fox and a host of minor studios.  Adolfi’s fortunes improved with the arrival of talkies,  when he joined Warner Bros. and had a hit with “The Show of Shows” (1929);  as evidenced in this extravaganza, his unfussy style and sympathetic treatment of actors made him a natural for handling Broadway talent newly arrived in Tinseltown.  In 1930 he struck up a partnership with Arliss and they made seven films together,  some adapted from the veteran star’s stage hits:  “The Millionaire” (1931),  “Alexander Hamilton” (1931),  “The Man Who Played God” (1932),  “A Successful Calamity” (1932),  “The King’s Vacation” (1933),  “The Working Man” (1933),  and “Voltaire” (1933).  Shortly after completing the last title,  Adolfi suffered a fatal stroke while vacationing in British Columbia.  Arliss never found another Hollywood director as congenial and soon returned to England. (bio by: Bobb Edwards)  Family links:  Parents:  Jennie Reinhardt Adolfi (1861 – 1888)  Sibling:  John G. Adolfi (1881 – 1933)  Frederick William Adolfi (1887 – 1943)* *Calculated relationship


  • January, 19, 1881
  • USA


  • May, 05, 1933
  • Canada


  • Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Glendale)
  • California
  • USA

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