Now Playing: 2007
Topic: Al Jolson
The Jazz Singer isn't the greatest film ever made. It isn't even the first all-talking motion picture. But when the Warner Bros. production opened in New York on Oct. 6, 1927, the drama, which stars Broadway-musical superstar Al Jolson and features synchronized sound and musical sequences, brought down the curtain on silent cinema and ushered in the sound era. "It's difficult if not impossible to picture what a moviegoer's reaction would have been back then," film historian Leonard Maltin said. Jolson had regularly toured the country in his latest Broadway hit, but up on the big screen "you could now see him larger than life."