Tom, Konrad

(Konrad Runowiecki, 1887-1957)
   Popular prewar actor, film director, and scriptwriter, Tom was also a well-known musical theater and cabaret singer associated with the Old Band (Stara Banda), Qui pro Quo, and other trendy Warsaw cabarets. Between 1918 and 1924, he directed three films, among them An Unfaithful Wife (Kiedy kobieta zdradza męża, 1924), based on Bela Balazs's novel. During the next ten years he was active as a screenwriter, actor, and the author of dialogues and lyrics. His better-known scripts include Is Lucyna a Girl? (1934, Juliusz Gardan), Antek, the Police Chief (1935, Michał Waszyński), and The Baltic Rhapsody (1935, Leonard Buczkowski). In the mid-1930s, he established himself as the master of musical comedy with two films: Love Schemes (Manewry miłosne, 1935, codirected by Jan Nowina-Przybylski) and Ada! Don't Do That! (Ada! To nie wypada! 1936). Together with Jan Fethke, he directed another classic prewar musical comedy in 1938, The Forgotten Melody (Zapomniana melodia), with Aleksander Żabczyński and Helena Grossówna. The music, including popular prewar songs, was composed for these three films by Henryk Wars. In 1938 Tom directed his only film in Yiddish, Little Mother (Mamele, 1938, with Joseph Green). During the war he served in General Władysław Anders's Second Polish Army Corps. In 1947 he migrated to the United States, and he died in Los Angeles.
   Other films (as director): The Profiteers (Rozporek i ska, 1918), Consul Pomeranc (Konsul Pomeranc, 1920), Little Sailor (Mały marynarz, 1936, with Jan Nowina-Przybylski), The Little Prince (Książątko, 1937), The Warsaw Parade (Parada Warszawy, 1937), Prince Joseph's Uhlan (Ułan księcia Józefa, 1937).
   Historical Dictionary of Polish Cinema by Marek Haltof

Guide to cinema. . 2011.

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