Filmed May 24 to June 14, 1926. See the 'miscellaneous' below for details.
Copyrighted September 17, 1926, by Pathé Exchange, Inc. Registration no. LU23126. Since the copyright was not
renewed, this film is now in the public domain.
Released September 12, 1926. It was the 53rd film in the series to be released.
Silent two-reeler. Also released as a five-reeler for the European market.
Opening title: '"Our Gang" Comedies - Hal Roach presents His Rascals in "The Fourth
Alarm!"' The lobby card doesn't put the exclamation point in the title (and neither do Maltin &
Released into TV syndication as Mischief Makers episode no. 1015, "The Big Fire," copyrighted Sep. 1,
1960, with registration number LP17320.
- Produced by Hal Roach
- Credited in the film as a presenter.
- Supervised by F. Richard Jones
- Probably credited in the film as supervising director.
- Directed by Robert F. McGowan
- This credit probably appears in the film, but without his middle initial.
- Assistant Directors: Robert A. McGowan and Charles
- McGowan was later credited as Anthony Mack. The payroll summaries were listing McGowan as the assistant
director for the Our Gang unit during this period, but were still listing Oelze as a prop man. Rob Stone's list gives
sole credit to Oelze.
- Photographed by Art Lloyd
- This credit probably appears in the film.
- Edited by Richard Currier
- This credit probably appears in the film.
- Cutter: Lloyd Campbell
- This credit derives from Campbell's payroll status as the Our Gang cutter during this period.
- Titles by H. M. Walker
- This credit probably appears in the film.
- Props by Don Sandstrom
- According to Rob Stone's list. Oelze is also listed as a prop man in the payroll summaries from this
- Animation by E. H. Young
- This credit derives from Young's payroll status as the studio animator during this period. Also
listed as R. H. Young. The animation in this film involves the kitchen fire.
- Story by Hal E. Roach
and Robert F. McGowan
- This credit probably doesn't appear in the film.
- Animal trainer: Tony Campanaro
- He was Pal's trainer.
- Teacher: Fern Carter
- Released by Pathé Exchange, Inc.
- Passed by the National Board of Review
- As indicated in the film.
- studio personnel
- general manager - Warren Doane
- assistant general manager - L. A. French
- secretary-treasurer - C. H. Roach
- construction supervisor - C. E. Christensen
- laboratory superintendent - Charles Levin
- still photographer - Bud "Stax" Graves
- transportation director - Bob Davis
- possible uncredited involvement
- writing - Robert A. McGowan, Hal Yates, Carl Harbaugh and
James Parrott may have been among the gag writers.
- Joe Cobb as "Joe"
- Featured role. He's the chief of the gang's fire department, and has to periodically give Mildred her worm remedy.
- Allen "Farina" Hoskins
- Featured role. The nickname doesn't appear in this print. He's given a few comedy moments,
particularly the one with the fire hose.
- Mildred Kornman as "Mildred"
- Supporting role. She's featured pretty strongly in this short, as Joe has to keep feeding her the worm remedy.
- Bobby "Bonedust" Young as "Bonedust"
- Supporting role. He's given a few comic moments, getting stuck while trying to slide down the pole,
and getting his pants on fire.
- Mary Kornman
- Supporting role. She helps Joe take care of Mildred, and discovers the explosives. This was her last
appearance in the series barring reunion appearances.
- Johnny Downs
- Supporting role. He's in a partial leadership role in this short, not the chief, but still somewhat in charge.
- Jay R. Smith as "Turkie-egg"
- Supporting role. He's sent out with Abie to look for a fire.
- Elmer "Scooter" Lowry
- Supporting role. He's given a bit of extra screen time, but is mostly part of the ensemble.
- Jackie Condon
- Supporting role. He mostly does ensemble acting in this film.
- Jannie Hoskins
- Supporting role. She's seen mostly with Farina in the barn scene.
- boy 032
- Small part. This is the blonde boy previously seen in "Every Man For Himself" (no. 32).
- Billy Naylor
- Extra. I haven't been able to spot him in the film itself, but he is clearly shown on at least one
lobby card, and would have been present during the firehouse scenes.
- Mickey Daniels
- He was present on at least one day of shooting. In a publicity photo from that day, the kids are all in
their firefighting outfits and are posing with a visiting elderly couple. Standing with the group is Mickey, wearing
regular clothes. A lobby card from this film includes a photo that seems to show Mickey posing with the gang. He's still
in regular clothes, but his shorts have been replaced with long pants and his jacket is off. Looking at the film, the one
boy not in a firefighting uniform does indeed resemble Mickey.
- Julia Blake
- A publicity photo reveals her to be one of the kids in the opening bathing suit sequence.
- Howard "Brandy" Brandenburg
- He's also identified in the publicity photo as one of the kids in the opening sequence.
- other kids
- Supporting role and small parts.
- (1.) The boy that plays "Abie."
- (2.) There are at least 3 additional boys in the fire department, most notably the one driving the hook and
ladder, and the one picking his nose as he sleeps.
- (3.) Several additional kids in the opening swimsuit sequence, one of whom was named Paul.
- Pal as "Pal"
- Supporting role. He's the motor power for one of the vehicles, as well as part of the alarm system.
- Small part. This dog is the one that takes Joe's pants.
- Dinah the Mule as "Humidor"
- Small part. She pulls the wagon driven by Johnny and Mary.
- mule 053 as "Cuspidor"
- Small part. Or maybe it's a donkey. It has bigger ears and is smaller than Dinah, but still resembles
her. Could possibly be the mule from "Uncle Tom's Uncle" (no. 50). It pulls the hook and
- other animals
- Small parts. The two goat pulling Jackie's vehicle, named "Violet" and
- See the fly crawling on Pal's collar at the end of the film?
- Gene Morgan as the fire chief
- Supporting role. He's the most prominent adult in the film.
- George B. French as the chemist
- Small part. He's the one that keeps explosives in his office.
- Ham Kinsey as one of the firefighters
- Bit part. In the scene at the end of the film where the firefighters join up with the gang, he's in
the back and to the right.
- other adults
- Small parts, bit parts and extras.
- (1.) The housewife whose kitchen fire is put out by the gang.
- (2.) At least three more firemen, one of whom is listed by Maltin & Bann as Ed Brandenberg, but I'm
not sure which one.
- (3.) Charles Bachman is listed as a cop, but it's pretty hard to tell.
- (4.) One other cop as well.
- (5.) There are also dozens of pedestrians. Maltin & Bann list Sam Lufkin among them, but I don't
know which one they mean. The old man that gets drenched looks like he might be William A. Orlamond.
- Van Beuren Place, Culver City
- Footage was shot in Culver City June 1st through 5th. This would have presumably included the footage
shot at the actual Fire Department shown in the film, with the makeshift merry-go-round and water slide
built next to it. This was located at 415 Van Beuren Place, just south of the First National Bank of Culver City. Just to
the left of the Fire Department and housed in the same building, but not shown in the film, were the City Hall and Police
Department. This was actually an interim City Hall which existed until the better-known third variation was built
elsewhere. The original City Hall had been replaced by the Culver Hotel.
- Motor Avenue and Woodbine Street, Palms district, Los Angeles
- Footage was shot in Palms on June 5th, 7th and 8th. There was also footage shot back at the studio on the
8th. When the kids first leave in their fire wagon, we see it moving south and exiting the alley onto Woodbine midway
between Motor and Vinton. During its journey, it travels up the 3300 block of Motor, with background views of the house at
3359 Motor and a brief glimpse of part of the Palms Hardware Co. at 3351 Motor. In the shot of Jackie riding along,
the Palms Chamber of Commerce is seen behind him at 3438 Motor. In the shot where Bonedust is trying to put on the
'brakes,' they're at the intersection of Motor and Stilson. The buildings behind the Home Made Bakery
are shown in the background. I haven't been able to specify the locations elsewhere on this journey, but the spot
where Bonedust gets hosed off is right next to the vacant lot featured in "Olympic Games" (no. 63).
Also, at the end of the film when the mule runs off with the wagon, she's seen against the back wall of the Masonic
Hall at 3402 Motor.
- Hal Roach Studios, Culver City
- The barn set was used May 24th through 28th. Some of the June 8th footage was also shot here. The
downtown scene with the fire was shot on the New York exterior set on June 10th and 11th.
- Culver City
- Footage was shot here from June 1st to 5th.
- Footage was shot here on June 5th, 7th and 8th.
18 shooting dates went into the making of this film. Three and a half weeks after shooting finished for "Shivering
Spooks" (no. 52), the 'start' date arrived for "The Fourth Alarm!" on May 24th.
Shooting continued until the 'finish' date on June 14th. No shooting took place on May 23rd, May 30th, June 6th
or June 13th, which were all Sundays. There was also no shooting on May 31st, which was Decoration Day. Information was
entered in for this date, but crossed out, probably indicating that the person entering the information
absent-mindedly forgot to skip the page for that date. Over seven weeks passed before the Our Gang unit started
shooting "War Feathers" (no. 54). The studio was closed during four of these weeks, but director McGowan
was shooting overseas footage for "Seeing The World" (no. 55).
The Gang's fire station is called Engine Comp. No. 2.
In an easily missed gag, there's a 'for sale' sign in the window of the burning building which has been
altered later in the film to read 'fire sale.'
On the wall of the firefighters' sleeping quarters is a drawing of a horse previously seen in "Circus
Fever" (no. 35).
There were 40 copies of this film printed for its initial release.
The calendar in the woman's kitchen is for April, which makes it a Monday through Sunday calendar.
- Our Gang Comedies (3 LD set) from
MGM/UA Home Video
- Released 1994. This copy has an original opening title and inter-titles, but no crew credits. The
picture quality is very good, and the main body of the film is essentially complete. The original footage totals
- The Our Gang Collection - Volume 2
(DVD) from Reelclassicdvd.com
- Released Mar. 2007. This is comparable to the MGM/UA version. The original footage totals
- The Little Rascals Collection (5 DVD
set) from Passport Video
- Released July 13, 2004. This copy is essentially like the one on the laserdisc. The Pathé rooster
appears at the end, but is followed by a remade end title. The picture quality is good. The name of the boxed set is
superimposed in the lower righthand corner. The print totals 20:29, with 20:24 of it original footage. There's
also a clip lasting 0:02 included in the main menu of all 5 DVDs, showing Joe.
- Our Gang Silent Comedies Volume 7 (VHS) from
Video Classics and
- Our Gang Comedies VII (VHS) from
The Picture Palace
- This copy is essentially the same as Passport's, but the Pathé rooster is followed by a
PathéComedy end title. The picture quality is fairly good. The print totals 20:29, with 20:28 of it original
- Our Gang Silent Comedies Vol. 2 (VHS)
- This copy is essentially the same as Passport's, but with a different end title, and at least one of
the inter-titles missing. The print totals 20:11, with 20:09 of it original footage.
- Our Gang Volume #8 from
Grapevine Video and also from
The Picture Palace
- This copy is essentially the same as Passport's, except that the end title is generic, some of the
footage is missing, and the picture quality is fairly poor. The print totals 18:16, with 18:14 of it original
footage. This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.
- Our Gang Silent Comedies #2 (VHS) from
Nostalgia Family Video
- This copy is essentially the same as Grapevine's, but with a different soundtrack. The print totals
18:21, with 18:18 of it original footage.
- Hal Roach's Rascals 3-Tape Set (3
VHS set) and
- Hal Roach's Rascals (DVD) from
- VHS released Feb. 2000. DVD also included in a 2 DVD set with same-named volume. This copy is
identical to Grapevine's. Also included is a documentary entitled Hollywood Hall Of Fame, with 16 clips from
this film. The 1st lasts 0:04, and shows Farina with the fire hose. The 2nd lasts 0:01, and shows the burning
house. The 3rd lasts 0:23, and shows the gang putting out the stove fire. The 4th lasts 0:10, and shows the gang
leaving the station. The 5th lasts 0:07, and shows the gang pumping water. The 6th lasts 0:03, and shows the gang
racing to the fire. The 7th lasts 0:29, and also shows the gang racing to the fire. The 8th lasts 0:05, and shows
Farina with the fire hose. The 9th lasts 0:07, and shows the gang playing in the water. The 10th lasts 0:02, and
shows the gang discouraged. The 11th lasts 0:02, and shows Pal the dog with the mule. The 12th lasts 0:03, and
shows Mildred. The 13th lasts 0:13, and shows Joe trying to give medicine to Mildred. The 14th lasts 0:06, and
shows Joe trying to give medicine while on the run. The 15th lasts 0:02, and shows a man getting hosed. And the 16th
lasts 0:20, and shows the gang being awakened by the alarm.
- Our Gang Comedies presents Hal Roach's Rascals 2
Pack (2 VHS set) from Brentwood Video
- Released Nov. 2000. Also released as part of
Our Gang Comedies presents Hal Roach's Rascals 10
Pack 10 VHS set.
- The Little Rascals & Our Gang Collection Vol.
1 (DVD) from Janus Entertainment Inc.
- This was also released with Vol. 2 as a 2 DVD set entitled
The Little Rascals Our Gang Collector's
- Laurel and Hardy and Friends - Volume Seven
(VHS) from Hal Roach Studios
- Released June 1, 1999.
- Our Gang Volume 2 (DVD) from
- Released Sep. 5, 2003.
- TV Time Comedy 100 TV Episodes (10 DVD set)
from TV Time
- Three Stooges, Little Rascals & East Side Kids
Collection (5 DVD set) from
Diamond Ent. Corp.
- Released Aug. 30, 2005.
- Classic Troublemakers (3 DVD set) from
St. Clair Entertainment
- Released Oct. 25, 2005.
- Laurel And Hardy Collection (2 DVD set)
from Warner Home Video
- Released Apr. 18, 2006. Includes a documentary entitled "Added Attractions: The Hollywood Shorts
Story. This documentary contains a clip from this film lasting 0:07 and showing Jay and Abie.
See anything that needs changing? Contact me at BtheW@aol.com.