The Sea Gull
"A Woman of the Sea"

The Chaplin's Studio Lost Film Production

Edna Purviance

Directed by
Josef von Sternberg

Leading Ladies Publication
Book by Linda Wada
Design by Wesley Wada

Photos - Hill Family Collection
Lita and Ellie Hill

Sea Gull narrative of film
from the Chaplin Archives

order book


Reviews and Comments of The Sea Gull

"THE SEA GULL is an important contribution to film history, and worth buying for the stills alone. The look of the film, revealed in these marvellous photographs, makes it all the more tragic that it was destroyed.

This book provides the nearest experience we will have to seeing it. Thank you for all the hard work. It is much appreciated."

Kevin Brownlow - Silent Film Historian - London, England

"It is beautiful, informative and edifying all at once. All your hard work has resulted in a marvelous achievement. It's a great work and beautifully presented."

David W. Toll - Nevada Writer

"Let me first congratulate you on the fruition of your years of research and dedication to Chaplin's leading lady Edna Purviance.

I'm sure that Chaplin and Edna fans alike appreciate your efforts and commitments.

This ground breaking work has greatly enriched our understanding of Edna's life and works, and uncovered much of the mystery around "A Woman of the Sea," Chaplin's lost film.

Not for your dedication and perseverance, we might never even have a glimpse of the film.

I like the design of the book in particular. It looks very clean and classy. The stills from "The Sea Gull - A Woman of the Sea" with the reconstructed story line are no doubt the brightest spots of the book.

The Seagull has a 52 page gallery showing each photo from the Hill Collection along with a reconstructed narrative using the materials from The Chaplin Archives (shooting schedule and film narrative title list). - Photos by Linda Wada

They not only help us better understand the film but also offer us an opportunity to appreciate the photography, the set, the decoration, the costume and of course the actors.

So "The Sea Gull - A Woman of the Sea" is not completely lost after all.

The book makes pleasant reading, with so many eye-catching still photos and a well-balanced story of Edna's private and professional life.

I hope you'll give us a fuller account of Edna's life and career before and after "The Sea Gull - A Woman of the Sea" in future editions."

Ted Lu - Discover Chaplin - Montreal, Canada

The Seagull is printed in full color. Photo of book by Linda Wada.

"I congratulate you on a very interesting and attractive book...

I really hope it may lead to the discovery of other material about
The Seagull."

Kate Guyonvarch - Association Chaplin - Paris, France

Some Fan Comments since the release

"Almost Speechless! ...the book is PHENOMENAL! ... is even
better than I imagined! I am so impressed. This is such a great contribution to Chaplin/Edna scholarship, and I applaud your hard work and dedication." - PC

"Received "The Sea Gull" book this afternoon. What an outstanding treasure trove of outstanding pictures and research. Thank goodness Edna fans (and Edna herself) have someone like you to create such a wonderful book!!" - MM

" blew me away, it's amazing, better than I could have imagined." - GCE

"I have received The Sea Gull, and what a wonderful work it is! It is a very beautiful and important book and I enjoy it immensely." - IG

"The book is beautiful!" - DH

"Reading it was a real pleasure. It's very well conceived, with images illustrating perfectly the story. The progression towards the shooting of the film is very clear for every star involved (Edna, Charlie, Von Sternberg...). It's one of the most enjoyable books I've read about Chaplin. One point strucks me when seeing the pictures of Edna in A Woman of the Sea: She's so fresh and beautiful in these pictures!" - DD

"I received my book!!!!! It is wonderful. I enjoy to see pictures of Edna I never seen before." - FB

"I think it looks smashing. The photos are so interesting, Ellie had a treasure of images for sure. Really you guys did a wonderful job and Lita was so pleased. What you left for her certainly helped her to pass from this world knowing Edna's story would go on forever." - BT

"Great book!" - BK

"How beautiful, great book this is! Your matchless ultimate work help us to make unknown facts clear about the lost film and Edna." - SO

"I can't tell you how exquisite the Sea Gull book is!!! We were looking through it last night, ooohing and aaahing. The layout, the photos, the writing, the paper, the printing--everything is just perfect." - MM

"Beautiful book!" - JM

"The book arrived today, and it is absolutely fascinating. This is an important book-Leading Ladies should be very proud of themselves." - JW

"You have done a really magnificent job! The book is beautiful and the photos are so crisp & clear. I have read almost all of it already and am sure I will be re-looking and re-reading for some time to come - at least until the bio comes out!" - MC

"The book arrived - and it's lovely. I had it delivered to work where we know a little about publishing. My colleagues and I all agreed that you did a marvelous job, not only with the copy and design, but with choosing a printer." - AK

"It looks great!" - DF

"I received the book today, very well packaged, and have just been through it. It is really wonderful to be able to see the photos, along with your reconstruction of the story. The book is very nicely designed overall, and your love of Edna shines through it all. Thanks very much for this contribution." - JB

"I have been reading the seagull book, it is beautifully produced. The photos are wonderful. What a terrific loss! the movie, that is. I hope you are greatly appreciated for bringing it to the attention of our generation." - JMc

"My wife was thrilled and I must say, the book is beautifully done. You can be very proud of this outstanding and long-overdue achievement!" - KB

"It's beautifully produced, the page quality and picture clarity are exceptionally good, the 8X10 (the front cover still) of Edna was a fine choice, and nicely protected. All of your careful personal touches - the handwritten card, especially - were thoughtful, and appreciated. The scholarship in it also was important, just the basic outline you provided in it on Edna's personal history alone was more than most of us have been able to learn about her before this." - HM

Creating a book with a team of good people...

To get to the stuff above, you have to go through the stuff below...
During the creating of The Sea Gull, I had a contest for a free book. The contest lasted about a year. Because people were visiting, I decided to write a log about how things were going.

It is not perfect, but a place to note things down along the way. I decided to keep this log (as it is) to remember the project and how it developed in 2007. I added the pictures to show the book in different stages.

Log entries
January 13, 2007 - The Sea Gull will be released from Leading Ladies publications January 13th, 2008. It will be available only at the new site. This new site hosts our shop for the book.

Since we have fans worldwide, watch Edna's home page for the first public link to the new site. It will follow at Edna's Place blog on Sunday in the USA. Read the link on December 28, 2007 to learn more about the shop and book.

December 28, 2007 - Special information about The Sea Gull. more>

December 12, 2007 - The Sea Gull is set to release the week of January 13th, 2008. See this link to Edna's Place for more details.

Also, we got our hard cover and paperback proof books back. While we have a couple of adjustments to make on the paperback (due to the new additions we added) we decided to NOT offer a hard cover version of The Sea Gull.

The hard cover proof was made from another printer than the paperback, and we decided the hard cover did not meet our standards. We have been pleased with the paperback version, so decided to launch in January.

Note: If you were planning on a book for Christmas, we are very sorry, but getting the book as good as possible is most important. It takes a lot of work to self-publish a book. We are doing the best we can, with the options available.

Thanks to everyone for your support throughout this project!

December 11, 2007 - And the winner is Ingo Geirdal, from Iceland! Congratulations!

Our Sea Gull winner

With The Sea Gull nearly finished, we decided to draw for a winner.

December 10, 2007 - I started the drawing for The Sea Gull book! Full details are at Edna's Place blog.

December 3, 2007 - The contest is now CLOSED. Special thanks to everyone who has entered. Please see Edna's Place Blog post for December 2, 2007 for details. Watch this space for more details later this week.

November 28, 2007 - The first edition paperback proof book was sent in. This is the last proof book before going public.

November 26, 2007 - We decided to hold off sending the paperback proof in today. But we will be sending, very soon.

November 25, 2007 - It has been a long holiday weekend, so things have slowed down some. We plan to send in the paperback first edition for final proofing on Monday, Nov. 26th. Once both proof editions are back, and everything checks out, we will be releasing the book soon after. Watch for a date coming!

November 19, 2007 - We are now waiting for the hardbound proof book. It is Thanksgiving week in the US and hardbound books do take more time in printing. If anything goes well with the proofing, we will have a release date for the book very soon afterwards.

November 18, 2007 - We are just about ready to have the final test book printing for hardbound and softbound editions of Sea Gull. This is the first edition book printing, so unless the layout need adjusting after the test, this will be the final test before going public. A release date is coming very soon. This does mean the drawing above will end soon without notice. If you have already entered, make sure we have your latest email address. If your name is drawn, you have 24 hours to response, before a new name is drawn.

November 15, 2007 - Just made another research trip and working on new updates for the current edition for the book.

October 23-24, 2007 - We have the second proof book. The hardback will be the next book to proof. In the meantime, we are checking, editing and making any adjustments. More>

First full size test book on left, corrected one on right. The second proof on the right was used for the final edits for the book . Each post-it marked different corrections and many additions.

October 14, 2007 - I have placed a few images up at our latest BRIEF GLIMPSE

October 10, 2007 - The proof book has arrived in the early hours of today. We will be checking it over and sharing a few images soon.

October 7, 2007 - Late Friday, the proof book was finished by the printers. It is currently in shipment back, but this is a three day holiday weekend, so the book will be delayed in return. I don't know for sure what day it will be back, but we'll post when it does return. This is our first full book with this printing company so hoping it all turns out. Our first small test book last winter came out very well, so hoping for the same. Thank you very much for you're continued interest.

September 29, 2007 - Our book, The Sea Gull, has officially been handed off to the printers today for the first full book test printing! More as soon as it returns!!! Stay tuned...

September 28, 2007 - Feeling under the weather today, but we got a load more work done on SG. I spent some of the week re-writing one part and I have talked to the printers earlier this week, as we prepare for the test printing of the book. Right now, it appears it will have 132 pages, printed as hardback and paperback, with over 100 photos (55 images from The Sea Gull). All pages will be printed in color, in both editions, so you can see special images from the collection, and the natural tones of the photos.

September 22, 2007 - It has been a very busy work week, again, and after work, again, not much time to work on Sea Gull. We had personal projects that needed to get done before winter weather sets in and it has been taking longer than thought.

We still plan to publish this year. We are creating this book all in our free time, and there hasn't been as much the last couple of weeks. Thanks for your patience and interest.

September 3, 2007 - "Linda knows everything about Edna and it's about time she shared more with us!" - Marsha

I wouldn't say everything, but thanks Marsha. Good to hear from you! I certainly will be sharing alot more, soon, as the book nears the printed stage. Since information I have gathered on Edna has been from new and original sources too, it does take time to check and sort out. The Hills have been great in getting to know Edna through their life with her. And together, we have been sorting out bits neither of us knew. It just takes time and the project is done in freetime, after normal work.

The Sea Gull will be an introduction to Edna, with images never seen before, and will be followed by the second book, the biography on her and her family. (Other projects are in mind too following these, with the DVD of Edna's video also being worked on as well.)

Actually, I am learning more about Edna, as the project goes on. But thank you and everyone else who have been writing in. It is a holiday weekend, so back to SG now...

September 2, 2007 - We got lots of work done Saturday, with more in store today. One question asked is how many photos will SG have. At this time over 100 images are planned. To learn a bit more, I have a running comment just about SG on a special Live Journal page and also updates on Edna's Place.

During layout, more edits were made by us and readers, before sending to the printers.

September 1, 2007 - We are nearing the final stages of the layout for The Sea Gull. The next major stage is the first full book test printing. (We did a small paperback test printing last winter.) The Sea Gull will be a hard cover book with all pages printed in full color. At this time, we plan to have a dust jacket cover. Once the book is printed I will share more details about the book. Thanks for your continue interest and support.

August 19, 2007 - We suffered one of our older main computers going down last week. We ordered a brand new computer to replace it. The new computer will make everything better in the long run, except for the bank account, oh well...

August 8, 2007 - Sea Gull has moved into full production. Stay tuned...

August 2, 2007 - Just a quick update. I just sent the final text re-write for review to a special reader panel. This is an extra reading we decided to have. Once I have back, we will continue with final layout.

July 16, 2007 - First off, thank you for your continued support. We have had a busy month with our personal business, which has to come first. That aside, every free moment is being spent on the project. I can't wait to publish, but in the meantime, thank you very, very, much for your patience.

June 6, 2007 -
We are into the final stages of productions. Meanwhile, check out Edna's Place for the latest...

Black and white print out copy that our readers received.

May 1, 2007 - Special thanks to everyone for your support. We are still waiting for a few manuscripts to return (some of our readers have been away on holidays and business trips). Once the manuscripts are all returned, the final production will begin. In the meantime, a reminder that the entry form for this contest will end without notice to prevent last minute rush of entries.

Getting closer, but we feel the new material that came available has made it well worth the extra time. More to come!

April 20, 2007 - While I have been posting several Chaplin/Purviance film events that are currently on and coming up, I thought I pass on our latest Sea Gull update.

Our readers had their say with red pens with the very first text only version.

This month the manuscript has been in the hands of our special reader panel, so it will be a while still before we hear back from everyone. This is the last reading by the panel of the manuscript before final printing.

Due to our business work schedule, which can change in a moment, I am not ready to make a public date just yet, but we are working on a target date for release. Once I have the final book printed, I will be sending out copies for review and will work on a special website page about the book.

I like to thank everyone (worldwide) in your interest in the project. The work is coming along, and getting closer to final printing. Watch for more updates here and on Edna's Place about The Sea Gull.

March 24, 2007 - Seagull Project Update - Hard to believe March is almost over! We have been working many evenings and weekends on The Sea Gull during March. The work is coming along. I decided to show you a sample of what the inside of The Seagull will look like. Much more to come as I plan a full page about the book! Thanks very much for all the interest in The Sea Gull! - L

The book project started in the spring of 2005. After scanning the images, detail notes were added to each of the photos. This was before we had the narrative or the shooting schedule.

First Sea Gull book. Photo by Linda Wada. Thanks to everyone who supported this project. Special thanks to all our readers and especially Lita and Ellie Hill.



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