Cinema: Cut-Rate Dreams

On a midsummer evening just 20 years ago this week, Warner Brothers decided—very cagily, as it turned out—that sound movies were here to stay.* When the public wholeheartedly agreed, the rest of Hollywood scrambled aboard the bandwagon.

"You Ain't Heard Nothin1 Yet." The four Warner boys—Harry, Jack, Abe and Sam (now dead)—were sons of a Polish immigrant who became an Ohio butcher. About 1905 the brothers got hold of a projection machine and began to pick up a few dollars exhibiting The Great Train Robbery. Then they acquired a nickelodeon in New Castle, Pa....

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!