The Second Movie Version was a Silent Film
The second movie version was a 1925 silent film called “Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ,” one of the greatest epics in film history, with thousands of extras. Silent stars Ramon Novarro and Francis X. Bushman played Ben-Hur and Messala. The action scenes were in black and white and the religious scenes were filmed in color. Many Hollywood luminaries and future stars came to watch the chariot race scene and were added to the crowd scenes as extras. If you look carefully, you can see John Barrymore, Lionel Barrymore, Joan Crawford, Gary Cooper, Marion Davies, Myrna Loy, John Gilbert, Douglas Fairbanks, Clark Gable, Harold Lloyd, Carole Lombard, Janet Gaynor, Fay Wray, Mary Pickford, and the man who would direct the Charlton Heston version released in 1959, William Wyler.