Cast & Crew
Because his mother is deathly ill, poor country clerk Chauncey Short appeals to his wealthy Uncle Dan, but learns that Dan is abroad. Chauncey struggles to earn enough money to send his mother away for treatment, but fails. The day of her death, Chauncey learns that Dan died and left him five million dollars. Embittered because the money arrived too late, Chauncey, during the next five years, becomes a "gilded fool," spending extravagantly with no purpose other than indulgence in the offerings of Broadway. After Chauncey meets Margaret Ruthven, a banker's daughter, he romances her and proposes, but she refuses him because of his idleness. Strange, Margaret's father's partner, who has invested and lost Ruthven's funds without his consent, convinces Chauncey to join the firm to cover the loss, but when Margaret discovers that the firm is bankrupt, she rebukes Chauncey for acting out of sympathy. After Chauncey, by clever investments, doubles in profits Ruthven's loss, Strange is unmasked by a Scotland Yard detective as a wanted swindler, and Margaret agrees to marry Chauncey.
George De Carlton
The play opened in Brooklyn several weeks before its New York opening; its premiere May have been held either there or in Providence, RI. Nat C. Goodwin starred in the stage production. Some sources refer to the film as The Gilded Fool. Carey Lee is listed as the author of this film in the 1921 MPSD. As Edgar Lewis is credited as the scenarist in reviews and the film was based on a play and novel by Henry Guy Carleton, Lee's contribution is unclear.