Back in Hollywood, Valentino joined an operetta company that traveled to Utah where it disbanded. Then traveled to San Francisco where he met the actor Norman Kerry, who convinced him to try his luck in silent films. Until then, Valentino had only made silent movie extra in New York.
He began to work in several films where he used to be given the role of villain or gangster. Valentino was the opposite that the actor ‘fashionable’ at the time, Douglas Fairbanks, pale blue eyes and ‘the typical American man. ” This allowed him to play the trump card ‘Latin lover’, a gallant Exotic entirely from the model of Fairbanks.
Finally, caught the attention of screenwriter June Mathis, who decided it was perfect for his next film, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, directed by Rex Ingram. The movie was a hit and earned the nickname Valentino ‘legs tango’. Then would come The Sheik / The fall, his most iconic character, and years later the son of Kaid. With the movie Blood and Sand, along with Lila Lee and Nita Naldi, Valentine became the greatest male star of his time. Nevertheless, Valentino was not very happy with his salary, and embarked on a tour of dance by the U.S. with the ballerina Natacha Rambova. The tour was a success, and Valentino was up to about 7,000 per week. In that same period, he published a book of poetry, From Day Dreams, and his biography appeared in serial form in film magazines. He also recorded an album called ‘Valentino’s Renditions’, and challenge a journalist to a boxing match by implying he was gay.