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A Natural Born Gambler

Bert Williams


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"World's Funniest Man"
On Film!


Bert Williams stars in this twenty minute 1916 silent film based on one of his vaudeville sketches. Despite this film's heavy use of racial stereotypes Williams portrays a leadership role, something unseen in black performances of the period.

The Biograph Film Company had commissioned Bert Williams to write, produce, direct, and star in two comedies in 1916 which resulted in the creation of the films "A Natural Born Gambler" and "Fish". A black production with a black cast was unprecedented and thus not very well received. Williams did not appear in any further films.

In the closing sequence Bert plays an imaginary card game, a skit straight from his famous stage act.

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