THE OSCAR PROJECT
Season one is back with a full look at the first feature length motion picture with synchronized singing and speech, The Jazz Singer. Featuring Broadway performer Al Jolson in the lead role, it explores the plight of a young Jewish boy from an immigrant family trying to make it big on the Broadway stage while dealing with the legacy of his father's role as the cantor of the local synagogue.
Including six different songs performed by Jolson along with about two minutes of spoken dialogue as part of the synchronized sound track, audiences at the time marveled at the ability to hear the performers on the screen while seeing the pictures move. It was the beginning of a new era of film and The Jazz Singer has maintained a legacy in film history.
Wikipedia: The Jazz Singer, Al Jolson
Variety: The Jazz Singer review
Time: The Jazz Singer review
AMC Filmsite: The Jazz Singer review
Magnificat: Sound Film and American Immigrant Identity in The Jazz Singer
Journal of the University Film Association: The Impact of The Jazz Singer on Conversion to Sound
Oxford Bibliographies: The Jazz Singer