CUSTER’S LAST FIGHT Released
In 1908 in order to to bring stability to the patent wars and litigation the Edison Film Manufacturing Company, the Biograph company, and the 7 other east coast motion picture studios ended their competitive feuding in favor of a cooperative system that provided industry domination and formed the Motion Picture Patents Company known as The Film Trust. By pooling their interests, the member companies legally monopolized the business, and demanded licensing fees from all film producers, distributors, and exhibitors for cameras and projectors, which were all made by Edison. Either you did what the Film Trust wanted or you could build your own cameras, developers, and projectors.
There are 7 film production companies in Southern California. In November 1911 Ince arrived and proceeded to revolutionize the film industry. He was the first to use a “shooting script” the blueprint to map out the entire movie-making process. He created the first modern movie studio in the Santa Monica mountains at Bison Ranch called Inceville. The Miller Brothers 101 Ranch Wild West Show provided cowboys, horses, oxen, Indians, wagons, everything needed to make the greatest Westerns ever for $25,000 per week. Ince didn’t take total control as director but managed teams of film-makers on several projects.
On October 4, 1912 CUSTER’S LAST FIGHT announced initially for June 1912 was finally released. It stars Francis Ford as George Armstrong Custer and William Eagle Shirt as Sitting Bull. It is considered by some that Ford also actually directed this film.