The Battle of the Century image

The Battle of the Century

Silent Short - Released 31 December 1927

Fight manager (Hardy) takes out an insurance policy on his puny pugilist (Laurel) and then proceeds to try to arrange for an accident so that he can collect. When a pie delivery man (Hall) slips on a banana peel, meant for the fighter, a classic pie throwing scene results. A young Lou Costello can be seen in an early scene as a member of the audience at the prize-fight mentioned in the film's title. The film is most noted for the final sequence - a wonderfully-choreographed custard pie fight - that utilized an entire day's output of the Los Angeles Pie Company. For many years, footage from the famous climatic pie fight was known to be the only extant material from the film until the opening reel (featuring a boxing match) turned up in the 1970s. The sequence involving Eugene Pallette is still lost, as is the very final gag where a cop gets a pie in his face and promptly chases Stan and Ollie down the street.

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