Movies Way Back When: Montecito subs for Monte Carlo and Venice
By Betsy J. Green
Montecito was a stand-in for scenes in Europe in a silent movie about a wealthy young American man with plenty of time and money on his hands. He is ready for adventure – especially if it involves an attractive young woman. This “Flying A” film – “The Lure of the Mask” – was released on May 17, 1915.
Several locations in Montecito were used, including the Crocker-Sperry Ranch known as “Las Fuentes.” The site of this ranch is now the Birnam Wood Golf Club.
“The reservoir at the Crocker-Sperry Ranch in Montecito will be used for a Venetian scene this morning . . . A crew of workmen yesterday afternoon took out a bunch of specially prepared scenery and placed this in such a manner that the desired effect will be secured. Gondolas will also be employed to add the truer atmosphere.” – Santa Barbara Morning Press, February 27, 1915