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Divorcement for Fox,<br />

Loew's and Warners<br />

Complete TeMt of Court<br />

Decrees in This Issue<br />


Face 12<br />


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The Year's Greatest Honor<br />




"Gold Medal \\"/>i>ier"<br />




"Gold Medal Winner"<br />






honored by the fans<br />

of America in<br />

Photoplay's Annual<br />

Poll of the<br />

public is<br />

now appearing in<br />

the big M-G-M<br />

adventure success<br />

MALAYA<br />

. by<br />


selected as No. 1<br />

actress<br />

by Country Gentleman's<br />

millions of readers and<br />

exhibitors in <strong>Boxoffice</strong><br />

Magazine's Barometer<br />

and now honored by<br />

Photoplay will next<br />

be seen in M-G-M's<br />



And naturally the most popular trade-mark!<br />



G/imit^<br />


IIJ<br />




m [vrnm »m<br />

"Put down<br />

your horn,<br />

jazz man '<br />

I'm in the<br />

mood ^<br />

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3JI7SCRE<br />

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—<br />




Editor-in-Chief and Publisher<br />

lAMES M. JERAULD -.-Editor<br />

NATHAN COHEN Executive Editor<br />

JESSE SHLYEN Mcjnaging Editor<br />

IVAN SPEAR- Western Editor<br />

KENNETH HUDNALL-Equipment Editor<br />

RAYMOND LEVY..-.General Manager<br />

Published Every Saturday by<br />


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1,<br />

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J.<br />

and Service. Telephone CHestnut 7777-78.<br />

Other Publications; BOXOFFICE BAROMETER, published<br />

in November as a section of BOXOFFICE;<br />

THE MODERN THEATRE, published monthly as a<br />

section ol BOXOFFICE.<br />

ALBANY—21-23 V/aller Ave., M. Berrigan.<br />

ATLANTA— 163 Walton, N. W., P. H. Savin.<br />

BIRMINGHAM—The News, Eddie Badger.<br />

BOSTON—Frances W. Harding, Lib. 2-9305.<br />

CHARLOTTE—216 W. 4th, Pauline Griilith.<br />

CINC1NNAT1^1029 Reading Rd., Lillian Lazarus.<br />

CLEVELAND—Elsie Loeb, Fairmount 0046.<br />

DENVER— 1645 Lalayette, Jack Rose, TA 6517.<br />

DES MOINES— Register & Tribune Bldg., Russ Schoch.<br />

DETROIT— I0C9 Fox Theatre Bldg., H. F. Reves.<br />

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MINNEAPOLIS—29 Washington Ave., So., Les Rees.<br />

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NEW ORLEANS—Alberta Schindler, 218 So. Uberty.<br />

OKLAHOMA CITY—216 Terminal Bldg., Polly Trindle.<br />

OMAHA—Omaha World-Herald Bldg., Lou Gerdes.<br />

PHILADELPHIA—5363 Berks St., Norman Shigon.<br />

PITTSBURGH—86 Van Braam St., R. F. Klingensmith.<br />

PORTLAND, ORE.—Editorial; Edward Cogan, Nortonia<br />

Hotel, Uth and Stark. Advertising; Mel Hickman,<br />

907 Terminal Sales Bldg., ATwater 4107.<br />

PROVIDENCE—310 Howard Bldg., G. Fred Aiken,<br />

GA. 1-6954.<br />

ST. LOUIS—5149 Rosa, David Barrett, FL-3727.<br />

SALT LAKE CITY— Deseret News, Howard Pearson.<br />

SAN ANTONIO—211 Cadwalder St., L. J. B. Ketner.<br />

SAN FRANCISCO—Editorial: Gail Lipman, 25 Taylor<br />

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TOLEDO—4330 Willys Pkwy., Anna Kline, LA 7176.<br />


CALGARY—The Alberlan, Wm. Campbell.<br />

MONTREAL—4330 Wilson Ave., N. D. G., Roy Carmichael.<br />

Walnut 5519.<br />

ST. JOHN— 116 Prince Edword St., Wm. J. McNulty.<br />

TORONTO—R. R. No. 1, York Mills, Milton Galbrcrith.<br />

VANCOUVER—411 Lyric Theatre Bldg., Jack Droy.<br />

VICTORIA—938 Island Highway, Alec Merrlman.<br />

WINNIPEG—The Tribune. Ben Lepkin.<br />

Member Audit Bureau of Circulations<br />


•^-^ HE formation of a united intdustry group in Kansas<br />

City to function along lines in a manner similar to that of<br />

the Council of Motion Picture Organizations is an interesting<br />

development of the past week. Exhibitors, distributors, equipment<br />

people and others affiliated with the industry have organized<br />

the Motion Picture Ass'n of Greater Kansas City which<br />

proposes "to promote pubhc relations objectives, to participate<br />

in civic programs, undertake such charitable work as is required<br />

and to provide assistance to those within the industry<br />

who require such help." An additional objective is set forth<br />

in the plan to set up "a special committee to htxndle intraindustry<br />

matters in an effort to keep industry squabbles out of<br />

the courts."<br />

This very closely parallels the aims and purposes of<br />

COMPO and it sets a pattern that may be followed in other<br />

exchange areas throughout the country. As a matter of fact,<br />

this move may be interpreted as carrying forward on a local<br />

level the five-point program to which COMPO is committed<br />

even to the point of endeavoring to settle industry disputes<br />

which, no doubt, derives from Point 3 of COMPO's objectives<br />

directed "to improve internal relations."<br />

While exhibitor organizations from time to time call upon<br />

members oi otner brcmcnes of the industry to enter upon cooperative<br />

efforts, either in participation on civic matters or<br />

other community affairs, tbe Kansas City movement is the first,<br />

to our knowledge, wherein a permanent ail-industry organization<br />

has been created. In many respects this may be said to<br />

be an extension of the onetime unification that was known as<br />

the War Activities Committee. Under WAC there were similar<br />

setups in every exchange center, the great accomplishments<br />

of which are too well known to need repetition.<br />

While COMPO is still undergoing organizing "pains," it is<br />

good to see the Kansas City movement as giving evidence of<br />

implementation of the COMPO program in its application to<br />

local needs.<br />

It is to be hoped that COMPO on a national scale will soon<br />

receive the green Ught cmd get under way to carry out the<br />

program which not only the leaders but the rank and file of<br />

the industry acknowledge to be essential to the continuing<br />

progress of the industry.<br />

One needs only to scan the headlines of the trade news<br />

of the past few weeks to see how really vital is the need for<br />

a united front to fend the industry from the recurrent attacks<br />

made upon it by outside forces. The industry continues to be<br />

beset by unfair legislative assaults, not the least of which is<br />

Eiitved as Second Class matter at Post Office. Kansas City, Mo.<br />

Sictional Edition, $3.00 per year; National Edition, $7.50<br />

Vol. 56 No. 15<br />

FEBRUARY 11, 1950

—<br />

Producers Spur Congress<br />

To Abolish Federal Tax<br />

Ass'n of Motion Picture Producers adopts<br />

resolution emphasizing the discriminatory nature<br />

of the excise levy and charges there is<br />

no "just basis for it."<br />

censorship. New censorship bills are being introduced in<br />

stale legislatures and municipal councils; and other restrictive<br />

and regulative measures are being tried over and over<br />

again with some new ones cropping up. The purposes of<br />

these, as we have many times cited, is not so much in the public<br />

interest as in filling the state and municipal treasuries. Viz:<br />

the $350,000 annual fees received by the New York State Censor<br />

Board, duplicated in six other states and further pyramided<br />

in about 70 cities and towns.<br />

From the legislative and taxation standpoint alone, the inr<br />

dustry—and that means COMPO, when it gets to functioning<br />

has its work cut out for it. The taxation and legislative committee<br />

has its hands full presently with the fight to obtain the<br />

repeal of the federal admissions tax. A swell job is being<br />

done, incidentally, at the same time demonstrating how well'<br />

industry efforts can be coordinated for the common good. This<br />

gives further emphasis to the feeling that the industry should<br />

allow nothing to stand in the way of bringing COMPO into<br />

full bloom and of seeing it become the vital, united force which<br />

this industry has for so long needed.<br />

Small Investment, Big Return<br />

The Time: Brotherhood Week, Feb. 19-26.<br />

The Place: America's Theatres.<br />

The Goal: Ten members secured by each.<br />

If this minimum quota is attained, and it should not be<br />

difficult, the motion picture theatres will have obtained approximately<br />

$200,000 to aid one of the worthiest of causes. Sponsored<br />

by the National Conference of Christians and Jews,<br />

Brotherhood Week, is designed to bring about better understanding<br />

between peoples, races and creeds; to rid the world<br />

of hatred, bigotry and intolerance; to secure peace and freedom.<br />

It has been suggested that exhibitors enroll their own<br />

staffs, members of their families, in addition to patrons. Also<br />

that it would be a fine goodwill gesture to present Brotherhood<br />

memberships to merchants in their communities.<br />

Exchange managers, similarly, are urged to eruoU all of<br />

their office staffs and to get additional memberships from<br />

friends.<br />

At one dollar per membership, it is a small investment,<br />

indeed, from which to derive such big dividends.<br />

CLAy,<br />

Members of All N. Y Unions<br />

Urged to Aid Tax Campaign<br />

Emanuel Frisch, chairman of the exhibitor<br />

committee for repeal, mails request to several<br />

hundred labor groups through Metropolitan<br />

Motion Picture Theatres Ass'n.<br />

Court of Appeals Upholds<br />

Decision on Meiselman<br />

Higher district tribunal rules lower court<br />

judge within his rights in refusing to grant<br />

Charlotte exhibitor a preliminary injunction<br />

in damage suit against the majors.<br />

*<br />

Technicolor Litigation<br />

Reported Near End<br />

"Substantial possibility of a settlement" in<br />

the government antitrust action against<br />

Technicolor, Inc., and the Technicolor Motion<br />

Picture Corp. is expected in Washington.<br />

"Must Remain Free," Says<br />

Johnston to Boy Scouts<br />

MPAA head is principal speaker at 40th<br />

anniversary luncheon attended by film personalities<br />

who are leading campaign for $2,-<br />

000,000 fund in New York.<br />

X<br />

E. C. Rhoden Elected Head<br />

Of New Kansas City Group<br />

other officers of Motion Picture Ass'n of<br />

Greater Kansas City include Arthur H. Cole,<br />

first vice-president; Jay Means, second vicepresident;<br />

Senn Lawler. secretary, and Sam<br />

Abend, treasurer.<br />

National Theatres Heads<br />

To Convene Feb. 14-17<br />

Annual meeting of divisional presidents and<br />

executives scheduled in Los Angeles; more<br />

than 40 delegates expected from all five circuit<br />

divisions; Charles P. Skouras to preside.<br />

Walt Disney Productions<br />

Re-Elects All Directors<br />

stockholders again choose Walt Disney,<br />

chairman; Gunther R. Lessing, vice-chairman;<br />

Roy O. Disney, Paul L. Pease, Jonathan<br />

E. Lovelace and George E. Jones.<br />

Warner Bros. Terminates<br />

Danny Kaye Contract<br />

Five-year pact with the comedian ends by<br />

mutual agreement; "The Inspector General"<br />

wEis the only film the star made for Warners<br />

under the terms.



Three-Year Limit Is Set<br />

To Carry Out Plan<br />

For Divestiture<br />

NEW YORK—The statutory court wrote<br />

the final chapter on divorcement this week.<br />

The three-judge court ordered 20th Century-Fox.<br />

Loew's. Inc.. and Warner Bros,<br />

to separate their production-distribution<br />

busine.;s from exhibition, to submit a plan<br />

for divestiture within six months and to<br />

complete the job of divorcement within<br />

three years.<br />


If the three remaining theatre-holding defendants<br />

in the antitrust case and the Department<br />

of Justice adhere to the court's<br />

timetable, divorcement will be an accomplished<br />

fact by Feb. 8, 1953—when the threeyear<br />

deadline is reached.<br />

Judge Augustus N. Hand of the Circuit<br />

Court of Appeals and Judges Henry W. Goddard<br />

and Alfred C. Coxe of United States<br />

district court handed down their 61 -page<br />

findings of fact and conclusions of law and<br />

decrees for the three remaining Big Five<br />

defendants and Columbia. United Artists and<br />

Universal—the Little Three—late Wednesday<br />

afternoon (8i. There were separate decrees<br />

for the theatre-owning defendants and<br />

the Little Three, with the document for the<br />

Little Three consisting only of restraints in<br />

trade practices. These restraints, however,<br />

were identical with those invoked for 20th-<br />

Fox. Loew's and Warners.<br />

Tlie divorcement orders were not unexpected,<br />

in view of the consent decrees already<br />

negotiated by the government with<br />

Paramount and RKO Radio, nor were the<br />

trade restraints altered to any appreciable<br />

degree from previous declarations of the court<br />

on trade regulations. But there were several<br />

surprises.<br />

There was an absolute "no" to the maintenance<br />

of a system of clearances. Neither<br />

distributors nor exhibitors can become involved<br />

in any sort of a set plan for runs.<br />

The court did say that clearance "reasonable<br />

as to time and area is essential in the<br />

distribution and exhibition of pictures" and<br />

that the practice is of "proved utility" in<br />

the motion picture business. But clearance<br />

cannot be established along any established<br />

.system which distributors may agree to<br />

maintain between themselves or with exhibitors.<br />


This would halt such a plan as was discussed<br />

at the annual National Allied meeting<br />

in Minneapolis last fall in which it was<br />

proposed that Allied members sit down with<br />

distributor representatives to settle some of<br />

the controversial clearance situations around<br />

the country. This, under the decree, would<br />

involve an arrangement to maintain a system.<br />

The court held that the system of clearance<br />

which had been set up by the majors<br />

gave them "practical control" over the status<br />

of in-,- ..ivPTi theatre in the country, even<br />


1. Within six months, 'iOth Century-<br />

Fox, Warner Bros, and Loew's, Inc., shall<br />

submit a plan for ultimate separation of<br />

their distribution and production business<br />

from their exhibition business, with<br />

final divorcement to become effective on<br />

Feb. 8, 1953—three years from the day<br />

the decree was entered.<br />

2. Within one year, the defendants and<br />

the Department of Justice shall submit<br />

a list of theatres which must be divested<br />

to satisfy requirements of the Supreme<br />

Court.<br />

3. No distributing company resulting<br />

from the divorcement may engage in exhibition<br />

of pictures and no exhibition<br />

company created through divorcement<br />

may engage in film distribution except<br />

on permission granted by the court, upon<br />

a showing that "such engagement shall<br />

not restrain competition in the distribution<br />

or exhibition of motion pictures."<br />

This apparently is designed to enable the<br />

new distribution companies to acquire<br />


The decrees for 20th Century-Fox, Warner<br />

Bros , Loew's Inc., Columbia, United Artists<br />

and Universal restrain these companies:<br />

1. From granting any licenses in which<br />

minimum prices for admissions are fixed,<br />

either in writing, through a committee,<br />

by arbitration or in any other manner.<br />

1. From agreeing with each other or<br />

with any exhibitors or distributors to<br />

maintain a system of clearances.<br />

3. From granting any clearance between<br />

theatres not in substantial competition.<br />

4. From granting or enforcing clearance<br />

against theatres in substantial competition<br />

with the theatre receiving the<br />

licenses in excess of what is reasonably<br />

necessary to protect the run.<br />

though it probably would be impossible to<br />

prove there was discrimination in negotiation<br />

for clearance and runs on a theatre by theatre<br />

basis. But, added the court, the system<br />

which had been set up made competition<br />

against the defendants practically impossible.<br />

The surprise in the decree handed down<br />

for the Little Three was the court's restraint<br />

on the granting of franchises, Columbia,<br />

UA and Universal had argued for this right,<br />

and Edward Raftery, UA's counsel, held that<br />

franchises were the small independent's insurance<br />

that he would get a steady supply<br />

of product from a distributor. The court<br />

was not inclined to accept this viewpoint<br />

showcases they contend is essential to a<br />

successful operation.<br />

4. No exhibitor company resulting from<br />

divorcement may acquire directly or indirectly<br />

any interest in any theatre<br />

divested by another defendant.<br />

5. The defendants are restricted from<br />

acquiring any new theatres unless it is<br />

shown first to the court that the acquisition<br />

will not restrain competition in exhibition,<br />

or the new theatre replaces one<br />

lost through physical destruction, expiration<br />

or cancellation of a lease under<br />

which such a theatre is held, or disposition<br />

other than dispositions made in compliance<br />

with the decree.<br />

6. For the purpose of securing compliance<br />

with the decree, the Department<br />

of Justice is permitted reasonable access<br />

to records of the defendants and to interview<br />

personnel as well as to request written<br />

reports as may be necessary for compliance.<br />


5. From granting franchises, except<br />

for the purpose of enabling an independent<br />

exhibitor to operate a theatre in<br />

competition with a theatre affiliated with<br />

a defendant or with theatres in new<br />

circuits which may be formed as a result<br />

of divorcement.<br />

6. From entering into formula deals<br />

or master agreements with circuits, calling<br />

for blanket picture deals.<br />

7. From entering into any license in<br />

which the right to exhibit one feature<br />

is conditioned upon the exhibitor's taking<br />

one or more other features.<br />

8. From licensing features in any other<br />

manner than by offering them theatre<br />

by theatre and without discrimination<br />

in favor of affiliated circuits, circuit<br />

theatres or others.<br />

and it held that franchises could only be<br />

made to enable an independent exhibitor<br />

to operate a theatre in competition with a<br />

theatre affiliated with a defendant or with<br />

theatres in new circuits which may be formed<br />

as a result of divorcement.<br />

However, the Little Three may find some<br />

satisfaction in the decree handed down for<br />

20th-Fox, Warners and Loew's through the<br />

provision which gives the new distribution<br />

companies the right to acquire theatres,<br />

where it is proven the acquisitions will not<br />

restrain competition in exhibition. In some<br />

quarters this was taken as an invitation to<br />

the Little Three to acquire showcases for<br />

f! BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

Invitation to Arbitration:<br />

"The defendants . . . and any others willing<br />

to file with the American Arbitration Ass'n<br />

their consent to abide by the rules of arbitration<br />

and to perform the awards of arbiters are<br />

hereby authorized to set up an arbitration<br />

system with an accompanying appeal board<br />

which will become effective as soon as it is<br />

organized, upon terms to be settled by the<br />

court, upon notice to the parties of the action."<br />

their product. For while the court ordered<br />

divorcement of production-distribution from<br />

exhibition, as presently constituted, it did<br />

not utter an absolute "no" to the right of a<br />

distribution company to own theatres or an<br />

exhibition company to produce and distribute<br />

pictures. This "out" would permit the new<br />

distribution companies to own some showcases,<br />

if they can prove to the court that the<br />

theatres are essential to a successful business<br />

operation and will not stifle competition.<br />

The court had a good word to say for arbitration.<br />

The decree invited distributors and<br />

exhibitors to take advantage of the American<br />

Arbitration Ass'n. to create a voluntary<br />

arbitration setup with court approval, along<br />

with a mechanism for appeal from decisions<br />

of arbiters. Tlie court held that the arbitration<br />

machinery established by the old consent<br />

decree in 1940 no longer was in force—except<br />

as it was required to terminate matters currently<br />

under consideration.<br />


The court, in coming to its conclusions,<br />

looked at the national picture of distributorexhibitor<br />

relations both from the practices<br />

of the individual companies and the companies<br />

as a group, i.e. both horizontally and<br />

vertically. From this viewpoint, the court<br />

came to the conclusion that "There is substantial<br />

proof that the intent to exercise the<br />

monopoly power existed among the defendants."<br />

The court also took into consideration evidence<br />

submitted since the case was returned<br />

to it by the Supreme Court on the<br />

change in status and practices since 1945,<br />

but said the evidence "has been insufficient<br />

to warrant a change in the findings and<br />

judgment entered herein."<br />

The court concluded that the defendants<br />

did join in a system of price-fixing on admissions,<br />

conspired with one another to restrict<br />

competition for theatre patronage, to<br />

set up a system of runs and clearances substantially<br />

uniform: and fixing runs and<br />

clearances to prevent effective competition,<br />

to protect their theatre holdings and to safeguard<br />

their theatre revenues.<br />


The lengthy findings of fact went carefully<br />

into the whole operation of clearances,<br />

runs, regional monopolies and other trade<br />

practices. The court commented that it was<br />

essential to look at the national picture collectively<br />

rather than individually to grasp<br />

"the power which they exercised over the<br />

market by theatre holdings."<br />

"For the dependency of the defendants to<br />

obtain pictures for their theatres on the<br />

one hand and on the other to obtain theatre<br />

outlets for their pictures has lessened competition<br />

among defendants and between them<br />

and independents."<br />

Viewed collectively, the court found that<br />

the major defendants in 1945 owned at least<br />

70 per cent of the first run theatres in the 92<br />

largest cities of the country, and that collectively<br />

they also owned 60 per cent of all<br />

the first runs in cities of 25,000 to 100,000 population.<br />

"There is substantial proof." the court<br />

found, "that in approximately 238 towns involving<br />

all but 17 cases of populations of<br />

less than 25.000 but having two or more<br />

theatres, some single one of the five major<br />

defendants or in about 18 cases two of the<br />

defendants had all the theatres and therefore<br />

possessed complete local monopoly in<br />

exhibition." The court pointed out. however,<br />

that this was not applicable to Loew's, Inc..<br />

which had no theatres in these towns.<br />

It also was pointed out that the major<br />

defendants aided each other in attaining a<br />

monopoly of exhibition and in restricting<br />

competition from having theatre interests in<br />

many areas where one of them had theatres.<br />

Here was the total national picture as the<br />

court saw it:<br />

Taking in account all theatres across the<br />

country in which the defendants had an<br />

interest, the court said there were 2,020<br />

houses located in 834 towns. In 26 towns<br />

or 3 per cent containing 100 of their theatres,<br />

or 5 per cent, there was competition<br />

among some of them.<br />

"In somewhat over 5 per cent of the towns,<br />

competition between them was substantially<br />

lessened or eliminated by pooling agreements,<br />

and in this 5 per cent were located<br />

7 per cent of their theatre interests. And<br />

in somewhat less than 92 per cent of the<br />

towns, containing 88 per cent of their theatre<br />

interests, only one of the major defendants<br />

owned theatres in the area.<br />

"Thus there appears to have been little,<br />

if any, competition among the five defendants<br />

or any of them in 97 per cent of the<br />

towns and in respect to 95 per cent of the<br />

theatres in which they had an interest."<br />

Divesting theatres where monopolies exist,<br />

Finding on Clearance<br />

"This system gave the defendants a<br />

practical control over the run and clearance<br />

status of any given theatre. It involved<br />

discrimination against per.sons applying<br />

for licenses and seeking runs and<br />

clearances for their theatres, because<br />

they had no reasonable chance to improve<br />

their status by building or improving<br />

theatres while the major defendants<br />

possessed superior advantages. Therefore,<br />

though the evidence was insufficient<br />

to prove that there was discrimination in<br />

negotiation for clearances and runs theatre-by-theatre,<br />

because it was well-nigh<br />

impossible to establish that a particular<br />

clearance or run w'as not refused because<br />

of the inadequacy of the applicant's theatre,<br />

the system of clearances and runs<br />

was such as to make competition against<br />

the defendants practically impossible, and<br />

there was discrimination in particular instances."<br />

as defined by the Supreme Court, will be<br />

one of the tougher problems facing the defendants<br />

and the Department of Justice.<br />

The defendants have one year in which to<br />

list these specific theatres and the government<br />

has six months within which to file<br />

objections or submit alternate plans for accomplishing<br />

the same results.<br />

Turning to monopoly in distribution, the<br />

court said that in the 1943-44 season, the<br />

defendants as exhibitors played first run<br />

substantially all of the feature films distributed<br />

by the five majors in about 43 of<br />

the 92 cities of more than lOO.ODO population<br />

and substantially all of the featm-e films<br />

distributed by the eight defendants in about<br />

143 cities of the 320 cities of 25,000 to 100,-<br />

000 population.<br />


As distributors, viewed collectively, the<br />

five majors received approximately 73 per<br />

cent and the three minor defendants 21 per<br />

cent of the domestic rentals from all films,<br />

except westerns, in 1943-44.<br />

"The percentages of first run theatre ownership<br />

and domestic film rentals controlled<br />

by the major defendants when coupled with<br />

their strategic advantages of vertical integration<br />

created a power to exclude competition<br />

from the distribution and exhibition<br />

markets when desired." the court said.<br />

"This power." it continued, "might be exercised<br />

either against nonaffiliated exhibitors<br />

or distributors, for the ownership of what<br />

was generally the best first run theatres<br />

coupled with the possession by the defendants<br />

of the best pictures enabled them to<br />

control the market in first run pictures."<br />

In establishing the procedure under which<br />

the major defendants may operate under the<br />

decree, the court restrained 20th-Fox. Loew's<br />

and Warners from operating, booking, or<br />

buying features for any of their theatres<br />

through any agent who is known by it to<br />

be also acting for any other exhibitor, independent<br />

or affiliate. Tliis would prohibit<br />

buying and booking relationships with any<br />

circuits which may be formed out of divorcement<br />

or with any of the buying organizations<br />

already in existence.<br />

While the court ordered a plan of divorcement<br />

within a year, divestiture is likely<br />

to move much faster. Warner Bros, has been<br />

negotiating with the Department of Justice<br />

for some weeks and it is believed that a consent<br />

decree will be worked out within a very<br />

short period. This decree is expected to be<br />

followed by a similar decision on the part<br />

of 20th-Fox to negotiate a consent decree.<br />

Just what Loew's will do is not known.<br />

Extra copies of the findings of fact, conclusions<br />

of law and decrees in the antitrust<br />

case, published in this issue, are available<br />

without cost. Address your requests to:<br />

BOXOFFICE, 825 Van Brunt Blvd., Kansas<br />

City, Mo.<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

'<br />

'<br />



House Ways and Means<br />

Committee Now Said<br />

To Favor the Step<br />

WASHINGTON—Pressure to ride over<br />

the administration recommendations for<br />

tax revision in order to cut the 20 per cent<br />

federal admissions tax in half was mounting<br />

in strength this week as the nationwide<br />

theatre campaign began to be reflected<br />

more and more clearly.<br />

At the weekend it was even reported that<br />

a majority of the key House ways and means<br />

committee was ready to support reduction<br />

of the admissions tax along with reduction<br />

of other excise taxes asked by the administration.<br />

Meantime. MPAA President Eric Johnston<br />

predicted flatly that there will be a reduction<br />

of the admissions levy this year, and<br />

support for the battle was voiced by both<br />

the AFX and the CIO.<br />


It was announced that the industry's case<br />

for reduction will be presented the committee—perhaps<br />

next week—by Gael Sullivan<br />

and A. F. Myers, respectively director of TOA<br />

and chairman of National Allied. Myers is<br />

also chairman of the COMPO tax committee<br />

and thus head of the united industry<br />

campaign.<br />

Johnston will probably appear on behalf<br />

of the National Committee to Remove Wartime<br />

Excises. He said he will make a strong<br />

plea for the removal of the 25 per cent<br />

manufacturers' excise on photographic apparatus<br />

and the 15 per cent levy on raw<br />

stock.<br />

Secretary of the Treasury John Snyder<br />

told the ways and means committee last<br />

week the government cannot afford to give<br />

up any more revenue than would be lost by<br />

enactment of the President's recommenda-<br />



Another Tax Gouge<br />

VI/HILE THE NATION is aroused over the un-<br />

*' fairness of the whole range of wartime excise<br />

taxes, we hope people won't forget one particular<br />

gouge that cuts into the purse of every<br />

American family and bites those in the lower and<br />

middle income ranges the hardest.<br />

This is the flat 20 percent "amusement" tax<br />

on movies, theatre, opera, sports events, etc. Let's<br />

confine our attention at the moment just to the<br />

movies.<br />

"They affect more people, about 85,000,000<br />

Americans being regular weekly moviegoers, and<br />

the movies being their principle source of outside<br />

recreation.<br />

You take your wife to the neighborhood movie<br />

and, on the average, you will be paying 30 cents to<br />

the Washington spenders for the privilege of<br />

watching the show. Multiply that by the number<br />

of times you go to the movies in a year and you can<br />

see it is a considerable tribute.<br />

The movie people, through the Council of<br />

-Mntion Picture Organizations, starting a dermined<br />

is<br />

battle on this discriniinatorv tax, and we<br />

ivl' all for them. Moviegoers should take part in<br />

iO<br />

fight for their own self-interest.<br />

The Tax Campaign:<br />

1. Newspaper editorials across the country<br />

call for tax aid to the industry.<br />

2. Radio announcements now going on<br />

the<br />

air.<br />

3. First shipment of 10.000,000 campaign<br />

aids has been sent to exhibitors by<br />

National Screen Service, which already<br />

has requests for 8,000 more booklets.<br />

4. Current newsreels carry an appeal<br />

by Congressman Cecil R. King, and tell<br />

theatre patrons to "sign up in the lobby."<br />

5. Actors Equity, League of New York<br />

Theatres and Committee of Theatrical<br />

Producers pledge aid.<br />

6. Fifteen New York congressmen will<br />

support repeal with their votes, with<br />

others due to follow their lead.<br />

7. Eric Johnston, MPAA president, predicts<br />

a cut in the tax.<br />

8. Abram F. Myers, National Allied<br />

general counsel, and Gael Sullivan, TOA<br />

executive director, selected to testify at<br />

House ways and means committee hearing.<br />

9. John Balaban and Jack Kirsch, Illinois<br />

Allied head, co-chairman of COMPO<br />

committee in Chicago, consolidating drive<br />

there.<br />

10. Jerry Zigmond of Paramount becomes<br />

general chairman of San Francisco<br />

campaign.<br />

11. Variety Clubs lining np all 35 tents<br />

to join campaign.<br />

12. Sam Pearlman, manager of Loew's<br />

State, New York, sends initial batch of<br />

900 protest cards to Congressman Walter<br />

A. Lynch of House ways and means committee,<br />

as New York theatregoers begin<br />

mass support of appeal.<br />

13. All amusements interests in New<br />

Jersey to work together.<br />

14. Many exhibitor groups publicly announce<br />

they will pass on savings to the<br />

public.<br />

15. New York Bookers club says repeal<br />

would increase business, employment and<br />

taxes on profits.<br />

16. Gael Sullivan warns exhibitor<br />

inertia is greatest threat to a snccessfnl<br />

campaign.<br />

tions. He did not refer to the admissions<br />

tax specifically in his formal statement, but<br />

when asked if the admissions tax enjoys any<br />

priority for reduction in the event the treasury<br />

finds it can give up more revenue, Snyder<br />

replied only that he would "have to look at<br />

my list."<br />

Both SulUvan and Myers warned against<br />

exhibitor inertia, stressing that public relations<br />

values going far beyond the tax battle<br />

are to be gained from personal contact between<br />

management and patrons.<br />

Biggest Tax Repeal Danger<br />

Is Inertia, Sullivan Warns<br />

NEW YORK—The greatest danger to successful<br />

completion of the industry's admis-<br />



sions tax repeal campaign is exhibitor inertia,<br />

Gael Sullivan. TOA executive director, said<br />

after conferences in Washington with A.<br />

Julian Brylawski, TOA tax representative;<br />

Abram P. Myers, National Allied general<br />

counsel and chairman of the COMPO committee<br />

on taxation, and Henderson M. Richey,<br />

consultant.<br />

"It will not be enough to show the trailer<br />

and posters and set an unmanned table in<br />

the lobby." Sullivan said. "Our patrons are<br />

eager and willing to help, but we cannot<br />

expect them to stand in line to sign the<br />

petitions. We must make it convenient and<br />

easy for them. Comparable theatres in comparable<br />

locations show a wide variance in<br />

totals. The results will match your enthusiasm<br />

and efforts. The fight has just begun."<br />


Sullivan found "heartening" the action of<br />

William Green and the AFL in maldng a<br />

specific plea in Congress on the tax. He said<br />

he had assurance from Philip Murray that<br />

the CIO will reaffirm its position "in the<br />

strongest possible language" to the President<br />

and Congress for tax relief.<br />

Referring to a postal deficit this year of<br />

$500,000,000. Sullivan said over $225,000,000 of<br />

it is a subsidy to the press for certain mailing<br />

privileges which cannot be met by the<br />

revenues from second-class mail.<br />

"It has been said there are three great<br />

freedoms in communication: freedom of the<br />

press, freedom of the air and freedom of the<br />

screen," Sullivan said. "Millions who benefit<br />

from the motion picture industry, whether its<br />

workers or general public, cannot understand<br />

why the nation's screens should be imsubsidized<br />

and overtaxed, while the nation's<br />

press is subsidized and untaxed, except for<br />

those normal taxes which apply to all business<br />

enterprises."<br />

New York World-Telegram<br />

and<br />


Tax That Should End.<br />

Now that Congress is reported ready<br />

to repeal the odious wartime excise taxes<br />

on women's handbags, cosmetics, furs, luggage,<br />

etc., motion picture theaters ask for<br />

a rollback of admissions taxes which Congress<br />

doubled to 20 per cent on the same<br />

plea of war emergency.<br />

The admissions tax is a tax on every<br />

man, woman and child attending a movie.<br />

They thus tax "the poor man's entertainment"<br />

and discriminate against him and<br />

his family.<br />

In fairness, the admissions tax should<br />

either be repealed or at least rolled back<br />

to the pre-war rate.<br />

It should not be allowed to become<br />

permanent through sheer Congressional<br />

neglect or refusal to keep the promise<br />

made when the tax was doubled.<br />

BOXOrnCE :: February 11, 1950

Text of the Findings of Fact, Conclusions<br />

Of Law and Decrees in<br />

the Antitrust Suit<br />

In Litigation Against 20th Century-Fox, Loew's Inc., Warner Bros., United Artists,<br />

Universal and Columbia Before the Statutory Court<br />



Equity No. 87-273<br />


Plointlff,<br />

against<br />



TRIBUTING CORPORATION (formerly known as<br />

Vltagroph, Inc.), WARNER BROS. CIRCUIT MAN-<br />










Defendants.<br />


This action having been duly tried and the<br />

proofs and arguments of the respective parties<br />

having been duly heard and considered, this<br />

court, having filed its opinions herein dated<br />

June 11, 1946, and July 25, 1949, does hereby<br />

find and decide as follows:<br />

1. The following are definitions of terms<br />

used in these findings and in the Judgment<br />

to be entered hereon:<br />

Block-booking—The practice of licensing,<br />

or offering for license, one feature,<br />

or group of features, upon condition that<br />

the exhibitor shall also license another<br />

feature or group of features released by<br />

the distributor during a given period.<br />

Clearance—The period of time, usually<br />

stipulated in license contracts, which must<br />

elapse between runs of the same feature<br />

within a particular area or In specified<br />

theatres.<br />

Exchange District—An area in which<br />

an office is maintained by a distributor<br />

for the purpose of soliciting license agreements<br />

for the exhibition of its pictures<br />

In theatres situated throughout the territory<br />

served by the exchange and for the<br />

physical distribution of such films<br />

throughout this territory.<br />

Feature—Any motion picture, regardless<br />

of topic, the length of the film of<br />

which is in excess of 4,000 feet.<br />

Formula Deal—A licensing agreement<br />

with a circuit of theatres In which the<br />

license fee of a given feature is measured<br />

for the theatres covered by the agreement<br />

by a specified percentage of the<br />

feature's national gross.<br />

Franchise—A licensing agreement, or<br />

series of licensing agreements, entered<br />

into as part of the same transaction, in<br />

effect for more than one motion picture<br />

season and covering the exhibition of<br />

features released by one distributor during<br />

the entire period of the agreement.<br />

Independent — A producer, distributor,<br />

or exhibitor, as the context requires, which<br />

is not a defendant in this action or a<br />

subsidiary or affiliate of a defendant.<br />

Master Agreement—A licensing agreement,<br />

also known as a "blanket deal,"<br />

covering the exhibition of features in a<br />

number of theatres, usually comprising<br />

a circuit.<br />

Motion Picture Season—A one-year period<br />

begirming about September 1 of<br />

each year.<br />

Road-show—A public exhibition of a<br />

feature in a limited number of theatres,<br />

in advance of its general release, at admission<br />

prices higher than those customarily<br />

charged in first-run theatres in the areas<br />

where they are located.<br />

Runs—The successive exhibitions of a<br />

feature in a given area, first-run being<br />

the first exhibition in that area, secondrun<br />

being the next subsequent, and so on,<br />

and shall include also successive exhibitions<br />

in different theatres even though<br />

such theatres may be under a common<br />

ownership or management.<br />

Trade-Showing—A private exhibition of<br />

a feature prior to its release for public<br />

exhibition.<br />

2. Paramount Pictures, Inc., Is a corporation<br />

organized and existing under the laws<br />

of the State of New York, with its principal<br />

place of business at 1501 Broadway, New<br />

York, New York, and is engaged in the business<br />

of producing, distributing, and exhibiting<br />

motion pictures, either directly or through<br />

subsidiary or associated companies, in various<br />

parts of the United States and in foreign<br />

countries.<br />

3. Paramount FUm Distributing Corporation,<br />

a wholly owned subsidiary of Para-<br />

•nount Pictures, Inc., Is a corporation organized<br />

and existing under the laws of the State<br />

of Delaware, with a place of business at 1501<br />

Broadway, New York, New York, and Is engaged<br />

in the distribution branch of the industry.<br />

4. In 1916 or 1917, a group of exhibitors<br />

which controlled many of the then best<br />

theatres throughout the country organized<br />

First National Exhibitors Circuit, Inc. Although<br />

this corporation was Initially organized<br />

to function as a film bujring combine, it<br />

evolved into a film-producing company first<br />

by financing the production of pictures by<br />

others for exhibition in the theatres of its<br />

members and finally by producing its own<br />

motion pictures.<br />

5. The members of this First National<br />

group, consisting of many of the most important<br />

exhibitors In the United States controlling<br />

many of the best theatres, became<br />

franchise holders of the distributing company<br />

which they formed. They acquired not only<br />

the right to exhibit in their own theatres<br />

the pictures produced and distributed by<br />

First National, but also they each obtained<br />

the right to sub-franchise other exhibitors<br />

in their respective territories. In a short time<br />

there were some 3,500 franchise holders, representing<br />

as many or more theatres.<br />

6. First National soon began to negotiate<br />

for the services of well-known stars and directors<br />

in the employ of other producers, including<br />

Paramount, and the members of First<br />

National began to refuse to exhibit Paramount<br />

films. Such well-known stars as Mary Pickford<br />

and Norma Talmadge went over to the<br />

First National group.<br />

7. Many of the theatres owned by members<br />

of First National had, for a long time prior<br />

to 1918, exhibited Paramount pictures. The<br />

formation and growth of First National gradually<br />

cut down the number of Paramount<br />

pictures exhibited in the theatres of the First<br />

National group. By 1919 Paramount faced a<br />

situation where a group of owners of many<br />

of the best theatres in the large cities, many<br />

of whom had been its customers in the past,<br />

had combined together for cooperative buying<br />

and had expanded into a strong organization<br />

which distributed its own pictures and<br />

threatened to supply its members with enough<br />

pictures to permit them to operate without<br />

using any pictures of other producers, including<br />

Paramount.<br />

8. In these circumstances Paramount determined<br />

to acquire interests in theatres of<br />

its own so that it might assure itself of<br />

outlets for Paramount productions. Prior to<br />

the fall of 1917 Paramount had no theatre<br />

interests. Between 1917 and 1919 it acquired<br />

an interest in two theatres in New York City<br />

as show windows, to replace the Strand Theatre<br />

which had gone over to the First National<br />

group. During that year in conjunction with<br />

its representative in the South, it formed<br />

Southern Enterprises, Inc., which acquired<br />

various theatres in the South. At about the<br />

same time Paramount acquired a 50% interest<br />

in the Black chain of theatres in New England.<br />

Paramount continued to expand Its<br />

theatre holdings.<br />

9. In January 1932, Paramount went into<br />

equity receivership in the United States District<br />

Court for the Southern District of New<br />

York. It stayed in equity receivership until<br />

March 1933, when It went into voluntary<br />

bankruptcy. It remained in bankruptcy until<br />

June 1934, when upon passage of Section<br />

77B of the Bankruptcy Law, it petitioned for<br />

reorganization. It was finally reorganized under<br />

its present name in June 1935. During<br />

these years various companies operating theatres<br />

in which Paramount was interested were<br />

themselves the subject of bankruptcy or receivership<br />

proceedings.<br />

10. Some of the theatre Interests which<br />

Paramount held at the time of the trial of<br />

this action had been acquired and were wholly<br />

owned by it either directly or indirectly<br />

through subsidiary companies prior to bankruptcy<br />

and reorganization. In the course of<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February U, 1950

its reorganization, some of its partly owned<br />

theatre interests were created, i. e., in some<br />

instances the plan of reorganization approved<br />

by this court provided for the sale or other<br />

disposition by Paramount of a partial interest<br />

(sometimes amounting to 50 ^t . sometimes<br />

more and sometimes less) in theretofore<br />

wholly owned theatre operating companies,<br />

or companies holding legal or equitable interests<br />

in theatres or theatre operating com«<br />

panies. The result was the creation of many<br />

of Paramount's present partly owned theatre<br />

interests.<br />

11. In the course of the reorganization proceedings<br />

Paramount lost its interests in some<br />

theatres and also changed its relationship<br />

with respect to interests in some of its theatre<br />

operating companies. The effect of these<br />

proceedings and the policy of decentralization<br />

inaugurated in the course thereof, was<br />

that in some instances Paramount disposed<br />

of a partial interest in companies theretofore<br />

wholly owned.<br />

12. Loew's Incorporated is a corporation<br />

organized and existing under the laws of the<br />

State of Delaware, with its principal place<br />

of business at 1540 Broadway, New York, New<br />

York, and is engaged in the business of producing,<br />

distributing, and exhibiting motion<br />

pictures, either directly or through subsidiary<br />

or associated companies, in various parts of<br />

the United States and in foreign countries.<br />

13. Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corporation is a<br />

corporation organized and existing under the<br />

laws of the State of Delaware, with principal<br />

place of business at 1270 Sixth Avenue, New<br />

York. New York, and is engaged in the business<br />

of producing, distributing, and exhibiting<br />

motion pictures, either directly or through<br />

subsidiary or associated corporations, in various<br />

parts of the United States and in foreign<br />

countries.<br />

14. RKO Radio Pictures, Inc., a wholly<br />

owned subsidiary of Radio-Keith-Orpheum<br />

Corporation, is a corporation organized and<br />

existing under the laws of the State of Delaware,<br />

with a place of business at 1270 Sixth<br />

Avenue. New York, New York, and is engaged<br />

in the prodiytion and distribution branch of<br />

the industry.<br />

Organizational History<br />

15. Keith-Albee-Orpheum Corporation was<br />

a corporation organized and existing under<br />

the laws of the State of Delaware, with a<br />

place of business at 1270 Sixth Avenue, New<br />

York, New York, and was engaged in the<br />

business of exhibiting motion pictures prior<br />

to its dissolution on September 29, 1944. Approximately<br />

99% of its common stock and<br />

33*:; of its preferred stock were held by<br />

Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corporation.<br />

16. RKO Proctor Corporation, a wholly<br />

owned subsidiary of Radio-Keith-Orpheum<br />

Corporation, is a corporation organized and<br />

existing under the laws of the State ef New<br />

York, with a place of business at 1270 Sixth<br />

Avenue, New York, New York, and is engaged<br />

in the business of exhibiting motion<br />

pictures.<br />

17. RKO Midwest Corporation, a wholly<br />

owned subsidiary of Radio-Keith-Orpheum<br />

Corporation, is a corporation organized and<br />

existing under the laws of the State of Ohio,<br />

with a place of business at 1270 Sixth Avenue,<br />

New York, New York, and is engaged in the<br />

business of exhibiting motion pictures.<br />

18. RKO was organized in 1928 by Radio<br />

Corporation of America largely for the purpose<br />

of obtaining an effective means of developing<br />

the use of its motion picture soxind<br />

recording and reproduction devices in the<br />

motion picture production and exhibition<br />

fields.<br />

19. At the time of its organization, RKO<br />

secured production and distribution facilities<br />

by merger with a small company, FBO Productions,<br />

Inc., which had limited production<br />

facilities and a national distributing organization.<br />

RKO invested substantial sums to modernize<br />

these facilities.<br />

20. The formation of RKO introduced a<br />

new and substantial competitive factor in<br />

the production and distribution of motion<br />

pictures.<br />

21. During its Initial organizational period,<br />

RKO acquired interests in a number of companies<br />

operating circuits of vaudeville theatres.<br />

22. RKO went into receivership in 1933<br />

and continued in receivership and reorganization<br />

until 1940. At the time of its receivership<br />

RKO operated considerably more theatres<br />

than its present total of 106. During the<br />

receivership it lost 57 theatres.<br />

23. The organization of RKO did increase<br />

competition in each of the three branches of<br />

the industry.<br />

24. Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc., is a corporation<br />

organized and existing under the<br />

laws of the State of Delaware, having its<br />

principal place of business at 321 West 44th<br />

Street, New York, New York, and is engaged<br />

in the business of producing, distributing, and<br />

exhibiting motion pictures, either directly or<br />

through subsidiary or associated companies, in<br />

various parts of the United States and in<br />

foreign countries.<br />

25. On April 4, 1923, the four Warner<br />

brothers, Harry M., Jack L., Albert, and Sam,<br />

transferred their business of production and<br />

distribution of motion pictures to a corporation<br />

known as Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.<br />

(hereafter referred to as Warner).<br />

Develop Sound Films<br />

26. Beginning in 1925, Warner began the<br />

work of developing sound pictures under<br />

license and agreements from Western Electric,<br />

culminating in the production of such<br />

sound pictures as "The Jazz Singer," starring<br />

Al Jolson. in October, 1927, and the first<br />

100% talking picture, "The Lights of New<br />

York" in the summer of 1928.<br />

27. The Stanley Company of America had<br />

in 1928 and for a year prior thereto about<br />

250 theatres situated principally in and<br />

around Peruisylvania and New Jersey.<br />

28. Negotiations were begun with the view<br />

of exchanging stock of Warner for the stock<br />

of Stanley Company of America. This transaction<br />

was consummated late in 1928.<br />

29. With the acquisition of the stock of<br />

Stanley Company of America, Warner<br />

acquired 250 theatres which could be immediately<br />

equipped with sound installation.<br />

30. In the year and nine months immediately<br />

following the acquisition of the stock<br />

of Stanley Company of America Warner<br />

secured in a sirnilar fashion several other<br />

circuits of theatres owning theatres in the<br />

same general locality and a smaller number<br />

of theatres scattered in various other parts<br />

of the country.<br />

31. In 1931 Warner had an interest in 591<br />

theatres, the largest number of theatres in<br />

which Warner has ever had an interest.<br />

32. Today, the Warner companies have an<br />

interest in 547 theatres—a net reduction of<br />

44 from its peak holdings of 591 in 1931.<br />

33. First National Pictures, Inc., & corporation<br />

engaged in the production and distribution<br />

of silent motion pictures, had been organized<br />

as far back as 1917 by approximately 24<br />

exhibitors on a cooperative basis for the basis<br />

of acquiring film of first quality for exhibition<br />

in their own theatres, as well as for distribution<br />

by them for other theatres in the<br />

respective territories in which they operated.<br />

34. In 1928 Stanley Company of America<br />

owned >3 of the stock of First National F>ictures.<br />

Inc., all the stock of First National<br />

Pictures, Inc., being subject to a voting trust.<br />

35. Warner acquired as part of the Stanley<br />

Company of America transaction in 1928, %<br />

of the stock of F%st National Pictures, Inc.<br />

36. At or about the time of the acquisition<br />

of the Stanley Company of America stock, or<br />

shortly thereafter, Warner purchased another<br />

'3 of the stock of First National Pictures,<br />

Inc., from other First National Pictures, Inc.,<br />

stockholders.<br />

37. Subsequently, in 1929, Warner acquired<br />

the remaining % of the stock of First National<br />

Pictures, Inc., from defendant Twentieth<br />

Century-Fox.<br />

38. Vitagraph, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary<br />

of Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc., is a<br />

corporation organized and existing under the<br />

laws of the State of New York, with a place<br />

of business at 321 West 44th Street, New<br />

York, New York, and is engaged in the business<br />

of distributing motion pictures. On July<br />

20, 1944, its name was changed to Warner<br />

Bros. Pictures Distributing Corporation.<br />

39. Warner Bros. Circuit Management<br />

Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc., is a corporation<br />

organized and existing under the laws of the<br />

State of New York, with a place of business<br />

at 321 West 44th Street, New York, New York,<br />

and, among other things, acts as booking<br />

agent for the exhibition interests of the said<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.<br />

40. Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation<br />

is a corporation organized and existing<br />

under the laws of the State of New York,<br />

having its principal place of business at 444<br />

West 56th Street, New York, New York, and<br />

is engaged in the business of producing, distributing,<br />

and exhibiting motion pictures,<br />

either directly or through subsidiary or associated<br />

companies, in various parts of the<br />

United States and in foreign coimtries.<br />

20th-Fox Production<br />

41. Twentieth Century-Fox produces Its<br />

features in its own studio in Los Angeles,<br />

California, distributes them in this country<br />

through thirty-one branches or exchanges<br />

which it operates in the principal centers of<br />

population, and licenses its features for exhibition<br />

in its own and other theatres.<br />

42. Twentieth Century-Fox acquired its initial<br />

interest in theatres through the purchase<br />

of stock in corporations then engaged in operating<br />

theatres. Since such original acquisition,<br />

it has acquired additional interestis in<br />

theatres, some of which were acquired in<br />

competition with other defendants and with<br />

independent circuits and some of .which are<br />

new theatres constructed by it.<br />

43. National Theatres Corporation is owned<br />

and controlled by Twentieth Centiiry-Fox<br />

Film Corporation, and is a corporation organized<br />

and existing under the laws of the<br />

State of Delaware, with a place of business<br />

at 2854 Hudson Boulevard, Jersey City, New<br />

Jersey, and is a holding company for the<br />

theatre interests of the said Twentieth Century-Fox<br />

Film Corporation.<br />

43(a). The theatre holdings of the major<br />

defendants have played a vital part in effecting<br />

violations of the Sherman Anti-trust<br />

Act.<br />

43(b). Each of the defendants. Pox, Loew,<br />

Paramount, RKO and Warner has since 1940<br />

increased its interest in theatres in which<br />

it had had an interest. Fox, Paramount and<br />

Warner, and RKO to a lesser extent, have<br />

acquired an interest since 1940 in a number<br />

of theatres in which they had had no interest<br />

prior thereto. The foregoing acquisitions<br />


:: February 11, 1950

were permitted under the consent decree of<br />

November, 1940.<br />

44. Columbia Hctures Corporation Is a<br />

corporation organized and existing under the<br />

laws of the State of New York, with its principal<br />

place of business at 729 Seventh Avenue,<br />

New York, New York, and is engaged<br />

in the business of producing and distributing<br />

motion pictures, either directly or through<br />

subsidiary or associated companies, in various<br />

parts of the United States and in foreign<br />

countries.<br />

45. Screen Gems, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary<br />

of Columbia Pictures Corporation, is<br />

a corporation organized and existing under<br />

the laws of the State of California, with a<br />

place of business at 700 Santa Monica Boulevard,<br />

Hollywood, California, and is engaged<br />

in the business of producing motion pictures.<br />

46. Columbia Pictures of Louisiana, Inc.,<br />

a wholly owned subsidiary of Columbia Pictures<br />

Corporation, is a corporation organized<br />

and existing under the laws of the State of<br />

Louisiana, with a pleice of business at 150<br />

South Liberty Street, New Orleans, Louisiana,<br />

and is engaged in the business of distributing<br />

motion pictures.<br />

47. Universal Corporation is a corporation<br />

organized and existing under the laws of the<br />

State of Delaware, with its principal place<br />

of business at 1250 Sixth Avenue, New York,<br />

New York, and is engaged in the business of<br />

producing and distributing motion pictures,<br />

either directly or through subsidiary or associated<br />

corporations, in various parts of the<br />

United States and in foreign countries. On<br />

May 25, 1943, its name was changed to Universal<br />

Pictures Company, Inc., when a subsidiary<br />

of the same name was merged into it,<br />

but Universal Corporation was the surviving<br />

corporation.<br />

48. The corporation named in the complaint<br />

as Universal Pictures Company, Inc.<br />

was a subsidiary corporation, controlled by<br />

Universal Corporation, which was engaged in<br />

the business of producing motion pictures,<br />

prior to its merger into Universal Corporation<br />

on May 25, 1943'.<br />

Universal<br />

Group<br />

49. Universal Film Exchanges, Inc., a<br />

wholly owned subsidiary of Universal Corporation,<br />

is a corporation organized and existing<br />

under the laws of the State of Delaware,<br />

with a place of business at 1250 Sixth Avenue,<br />

New York, New York, and is engaged in<br />

the business of distributing motion pictures.<br />

51. Prior to May 25, 1943, the name of Universal<br />

Pictures (Company, Inc., was Universal<br />

Corporation, incorporated in Delaware in<br />

1936. It owned approximately 92 per cent of<br />

the outstanding common stock of a Delaware<br />

corporation which was incorporated in the<br />

year 1925 and was also known as Universal<br />

Pictures Company, Inc. Said corporation<br />

last-named had its principal office in New<br />

York, N. Y., and was engaged in the business<br />

of producing motion pictures and distributing<br />

the same through its subsidiaries. It<br />

owned all of the outstanding stock of Universal<br />

Film Exchange, Inc., and 20 per cent<br />

of the outstanding common stock of Big U<br />

Film Elxchange, Inc. The other 80 per cent<br />

of said stock was owned by Universal Corporation.<br />

On May 25, 1943, Universal Pictures<br />

Company, Inc., (Delaware 1925) was merged<br />

into Universal Corporation (the surviving<br />

corporation), and the name of the surviving<br />

corporation was changed to Universal Pictures<br />

Company, Inc.<br />

52. Big U Film Exchange, Inc., a wholly<br />

owned subsidiary of Universal Corporation,<br />

is a corporation organized and existing under<br />

the laws of the State of New York, with a<br />

place of business at 1250 Sixth Avenue, New<br />

York, New York, and is engaged in the business<br />

of distributing motion pictures.<br />

United Artists Organization<br />

53. United Artists Corporation is a corporation<br />

organized and existing under the laws<br />

of the State of Delaware with its principal<br />

place of business at 729 Seventh Avenue,<br />

New York, New York, and is engaged in distribution<br />

of motion pictures in various parts<br />

of the United States and in foreign countries.<br />

54. During the entire period in question<br />

United Artists Corporation distributed photoplays<br />

in the United States of America that<br />

were produced by David O. Selznick, Mary<br />

Pickford, Charles Chaplin, Hunt Stromberg.<br />

William Cagney, Bing Crosby, Edward Small,<br />

Sol Lesser, Lester Cowan, Jack Skirball,<br />

Benedict Bogeaus, Seymour Nebenzal, Jules<br />

Levey, David Loew, Arnold Pressljurger,<br />

Charles R. Rogers, Andrew Stone, Constance<br />

Bennett, Howard Hughes, Preston Sturgis, J.<br />

Arthur Rank, Edward Golden, or corporations<br />

with which the aforesaid individuals<br />

were associated and other independent producers.<br />

55. United Artists Corporation maintains 26<br />

branches or exchanges located throughout the<br />

United States, and through these facilities it<br />

distributes and has distributed all of the<br />

product handled by it during the period in<br />

question.<br />

56. Paramount Pictures, Inc.; Loew's Incorporated;<br />

Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corporation;<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.; and Twentieth<br />

Century-Fox Film Corporation and<br />

their respective distribution and exhibition<br />

subsidiaries are the five major defendants.<br />

Columbia Pictures Corporation, Universal<br />

Pictures Company, Inc. and United Artists<br />

50. The Universal group of defendants at<br />

the time of the trial consisted of the following<br />

corporations: (1) Universal Pictures Company,<br />

Inc., (hereinafter sometimes called<br />

Universal Pictures), a Delaware corporation<br />

with its principal office in New York, N. Y.,<br />

engaged in the business of producing motion Corporation and their respective distribution<br />

pictures and distributing the same through subsidiaries are the three minor defendants.<br />

wholly owned subsidiaries; (2) Universal Film<br />

Exchanges, Inc. (hereinafter sometimes called<br />

Universal Film Exchanges), a Delaware mount, Loew's, Fox, Warner, Columbia,<br />

57. As between the eight defendants, Para-<br />

corporation, with Its principal office in New United Artists, and Universal, there are no<br />

York, N. Y., engaged in the business of distributing<br />

motion picture throughout the said defendants owns any controlling stock<br />

officers or directors in common, and none of<br />

United States (except for the Metropolitan or other securities in any other of said defendants.<br />

District of New York City), a wholly owned<br />

subsidiary of Universal Pictures; (3) Big U<br />

58. Neither of the defendants Columbia,<br />

Film Exchange, Inc. (hereinafter sometimes<br />

Universal and United Artists owns any theatres.<br />

called Big U), a New York corporation, with<br />

its principal office in New York, N. Y., engaged<br />

In the business of distributing motion 59. There exists active competition among<br />

pictures throughout the Metropolitan District<br />

of New York City, a wholly owned sub-<br />

of motion pictures.<br />

the defendants and others in the production<br />

sidiary of Universal Pictures. The term<br />

"Universal" as used herein means any or all<br />

of the Universal defendants.<br />

60. None of the defendants has monopolized<br />

or attempted to monopolize or contracted or<br />

combined or conspired to monopolize or to restrain<br />

trade or commerce in any part of the<br />

business of producing motion pictures.<br />

61. In the distribution of feature motion<br />

pictures no film is sold to the exhibitor; the<br />

right to exhibit under copyright is licensed.<br />

62. In licensing features, each of the distributor-defendants<br />

has agreed with each of<br />

its respective licensees that the licensee<br />

should charge no less than a stated admission<br />

price during the exhibition of the feature<br />

licensed.<br />

63. The minimum admission prices included<br />

in licenses of each of the eight distributor-defendants<br />

for any given theatre are<br />

in general uniform, being the usual admisjsion<br />

prices currently charged by the exhibitor.<br />

64. The defendants' licenses are in effect<br />

price-fixing arrangements among all of the<br />

distributor-defendants, as well as between<br />

such defendants individually and their various<br />

exliibitors. Thus there was a general<br />

arrangement of fixing prices in which both<br />

the distributors and exhibitors were involved.<br />

The licenses required existing admission price<br />

schedules to be maintained under severe penalties<br />

for infraction. In the case of such exceptional<br />

features as "Gone With the Wind,"<br />

"For Whom the Bell Tolls," "Wilson," and<br />

"Song of Bernadette," licensed for exhibition<br />

prior to general release and as to which the<br />

distributors were not satisfied with current<br />

prices, they would refuse to grant licenses<br />

unless the prices were raised.<br />

65. The defendants granting film licenses<br />

have agreed with their licensees to a system<br />

which determines minimum admission prices<br />

in all theatres where feature motion pictures<br />

licensed by them are exhibited.<br />

In this way<br />

are controlled the prices to be charged for<br />

most of the feature motion pictures exhibited<br />

either by the defendants or by independents<br />

within the United States.<br />

66. All of the five major defendants have<br />

a definite interest in keeping up prices in<br />

any given territory in which they own theatres<br />

and this interest they were safeguarding<br />

by fixing minimum prices in their licenses<br />

when distributing films to exhibitors in those<br />

areas. Even if the licenses were at flat rate,<br />

a failune to require their licences to maintain<br />

fixed prices would leave tnem free for<br />

lowering' the current charge to decrease<br />

through competition the income to the licensor<br />

on theatres in the neighborhood. The<br />

whole system presupposed a fixing of prices<br />

by all parties concerned in all competitive<br />

areas. There exists great similarity, and in<br />

many cases identity, in the minimum prices<br />

fixed for the name theatres in the licenses<br />

of all the defendants.<br />

Joint Theatre Operations<br />

67. The major defendants made operating<br />

agreements as exhibitors with each other<br />

and with independent exhibitors in which<br />

joint operation of certain theatres covered<br />

by the agreements is provided and minimum<br />

admission prices to be charged are either<br />

stated therein or are to be Jointly determined<br />

by other means. These agreements show the<br />

express intent of the major defendants to<br />

maintain prices at artificial levels.<br />

68. Certain master agreements and franchises<br />

between various of the defendants in<br />

their capacities as distributors and various<br />

of the defendants in their capacities as exhibitors<br />

stipulate minimum admission prices<br />

often for dozens of theatres owned by an exhibitor-defendant<br />

in a particular area In the<br />

United States.<br />

69. Licenses granted by one defendant to<br />

another disclose the same interrelationship<br />

among the defendants. Each of the five major<br />

defendants as an exhibitor has been licensed<br />

by the other seven defendants as distributors<br />

to exhibit the pictures of the latter<br />

at specified minimum admission prices. RKO,<br />

Loew's, Warner, Paramount, and Fox, in<br />

granting and accepting licenses with mlni-<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 m.

-<br />

mum admission prices specified, have among<br />

themselves engaged in a national system to<br />

fix prices, and Columbia, Universal, and<br />

United Artists, in requiring the maintenance<br />

of minimum admission prices in their licenses<br />

granted to these exhibitor-defendants,<br />

have participated in that system.<br />

70. The distributor-defendants have acquiesced<br />

in the establishment of a price-fixing<br />

system and have conspired with one another<br />

to maintain prices.<br />

71. In agreeing to maintain a stipulated<br />

minimum admission price, each exhibitor<br />

thereby consents to the minimiun price level<br />

at which it wUl compete against other licensees<br />

of the same distributor whether they<br />

exhibit on the same run or not. The total<br />

effect is that through the separate contracts<br />

between the distributor and its licensees a<br />

price structure is erected which regulates the<br />

licensees' ability to compete against one another<br />

in admission prices. Each licensee<br />

knows from the general uniformity of admission<br />

price practices that other licensees having<br />

theatres suitable for exhibition of a distributor's<br />

feature in the particular competitive<br />

area will also be restricted as to maintenance<br />

of minimum admission prices, and<br />

this acquie.scence of the exhibitors in the distributor's<br />

control of price competition renders<br />

the whole a conspiracy between each<br />

distributor and its licensees. An effective<br />

system of price control in wliich the distributor<br />

and its licensees knowingly take part by<br />

entering into price-restricting contracts is<br />

thereby erected.<br />

71(a). This system also restricted competition<br />

between the theatres of the major defendants<br />

in those areas where there were theatres<br />

of more than one defendant since the<br />

minimum price to be charged by any theatre<br />

licensee was fixed and the licensee was prevented<br />

from competing in the business of<br />

exiiibition by lowering his price.<br />

71(b). Complete freedom from price competition<br />

among theatre holders could only be<br />

obtained if prices were fixed by all distributors<br />

and such a result was substantially obtained.<br />

Consequently the system of theatre<br />

licensing had a vital and all-per\'asive effect<br />

m restricting competition of theatre patronage.<br />

Licensing Provisions<br />

72. Tlie differentials in admission price set<br />

by a distributor in licensing a particular feature<br />

in theatres exhibiting on different runs<br />

in the same competitive area are calculated<br />

to encourage as many patrons as possible to<br />

see the picture in the prior-rim theatres<br />

where they will pay higher prices than in<br />

the subsequent runs. The reason for this<br />

is that if 10,000 people of a city's population<br />

are ultimately to see the feature—no matter<br />

on what run—the gross revenue to be realized<br />

from their patronage' is increased relatively<br />

to the increase in numbers seeing it in the<br />

higher-priced prior-run theatres. In effect,<br />

the distributor, by the fixing of minimum<br />

admission prices, attempts to give the priorrun<br />

exhibitors as near a monopoly of the<br />

patronage as possible.<br />

73. Among the provisions common to the<br />

licensing contracts of all the distributordefendants<br />

are those by which the licensor<br />

agrees not to exhibit or grant a license to<br />

exhibit a certain feature motion picture before<br />

a specified number of days after the last<br />

date of the exhibition therein licensed. This<br />

so-called period of "clearance" or "protection"<br />

is stated In the various licenses In<br />

differing ways; in terms of a given period<br />

between designated runs; In terms of admission<br />

prices charged by competing theatres;<br />

in terms of a given period of clearance<br />

over specifically named theatres; in<br />

terms of so many days' clearance over specified<br />

areas or towns; in terms of clearances<br />

as fixed by other distributors; or in terms<br />

of combinations of these formiUae.<br />

74. The cost of each black and white print<br />

from $150 to $300, and of a Technicolor<br />

is<br />

print is from $600 to $800. Many of the<br />

bookings are for less than the cost of the<br />

print so that exhibitions would be confined to<br />

the larger high-priced theatres unless a system<br />

of successive runs with a reasonable protection<br />

for the earlier runs is adopted in<br />

the way of clearance.<br />

75. Without regard to period of clearance,<br />

licensing features for exhibition on<br />

different successive dates is essential in the<br />

distribution of feature motion pictures.<br />

76. Either a license for successive dates,<br />

or one providing for clearance, permits the<br />

pubUc to see the picture in a later exhibiting<br />

theatre at lower than prior rates.<br />

77. A grant of clearance, when not accompanied<br />

by a fixing of minimum admission<br />

prices or not unduly extended as to area<br />

or duration affords a fair protection of the<br />

interest of the licensee in the run granted<br />

without unreasonably interfering with the<br />

interest of the public.<br />

78. Clearance, reasonable as to time and<br />

area, is essential in the distribution and exhibition<br />

of motion pictures. The practice is<br />

of proved utility in the motion picture industry<br />

and necessary for the reasonable conduct<br />

of the business.<br />

Control Over Clearances<br />

79. The major defendants have acquiesced<br />

in and forwarded a uniform system of clearances<br />

and in numerous instances have maintained<br />

unreasonable clearances to the prejudice<br />

of independents.<br />

80. Some licenses granted clearance to all<br />

theatres which the exhibitor party to the contract<br />

might thereafter own, lease, control,<br />

manage, or operate against all theatres in<br />

the immediate vicinity of the exhibitor's theatre<br />

thereafter erected or opened. The purpose<br />

of this type of clearance agreements was<br />

to fix the run and clearance status of any<br />

theatre thereafter opened not on the basis<br />

of its appointments, size, location, and other<br />

competitive features normally entering into<br />

such determination, but rather upon the sole<br />

basis of whether it were operated by the exhibitor<br />

party to the agreement.<br />

81. The distributor-defendants have acted<br />

in concert in the formation of a uniform system<br />

of clearance for the theatres to which<br />

they license their films and the exhibitor<br />

defendants have assisted in creating and have<br />

acquiesced in this system.<br />

82. The defendants have acted in concert<br />

in their grant of run and clearance.<br />

83. Clearances are given to protect a particular<br />

run against a subsequent run and the<br />

practice of clearance is so closely allied with<br />

that of run as to make findings on the one<br />

applicable to the other.<br />

84. Both independent distributors and exhibitors,<br />

when attempting to bargain with<br />

the defendants, have been met by a fixed<br />

scale of clearance, runs, and admission prices<br />

to which they have been obliged to conform<br />

if they wished to get their pictures shown<br />

upon satisfactory runs or were to compete in<br />

exhibition either with the defendants' theatre<br />

or theatres to which the latter had licensed<br />

their pictures.<br />

85. The fixed system of runs and clearances<br />

which involved a cooperative arrangement<br />

among the defendants, was also designed<br />

to protect their theatre holdings, safeguard<br />

the revenue therefrom, and eliminate<br />

competition. The major defendants' predominant<br />

position in first-run theatre holdings<br />

was strongly protected by a fixed system of<br />

clearances and runs. The power to fix clearances<br />

and runs which existed and was exercised<br />

by the major defendants was in itself a<br />

power to exclude independents who were competitors,<br />

and w£is accompanied by actual exclusion.<br />

85(a). This system gave the defendants a<br />

practical control over the run and clearance<br />

status of any given theatre. It involved discrimination<br />

against persons applying for<br />

licenses and seeking runs and clearances for<br />

their theatres, because they had no reasonable<br />

chance to improve their status by building<br />

or improving theatres while the major<br />

defendants possessed superior advantages.<br />

Therefore, though the evidence was insufficient<br />

to prove that there was discrimination<br />

in negotiation for clearances and runs theatre<br />

by theatre, because it was well-nigh impossible<br />

to establish that a particular clearance<br />

or run was not refused because of the inadequacy<br />

of the applicant's theatre, the system<br />

of clearances and runs was such as to make<br />

competition against the defendants practically<br />

impossible, and there was discrimination<br />

in particular instances.<br />

86. Formula deals have been entered into<br />

by Paramount and by RKO with Independent<br />

and affiliated circuits. The circuit may allocate<br />

playing time and film rentals among the<br />

various theatres as it sees fit. Arrangements<br />

whereby all the theatres of a circuit are included<br />

in a single agreement, and no opportunity<br />

is afforded for other theatre owners to<br />

bid for the feature in their several areas, seriously<br />

and imreasonably restrain compretition.<br />

87. Loew's Is not, and never has been, a<br />

party either as a distributor or as an exhibitor,<br />

to any "formula deal" license agreements.<br />

88. Master agreements which cover exhibition<br />

in two or more theatres in a particular<br />

circuit and allow the exhibitor to allocate the<br />

film rental paid among the theatres as it sees<br />

fit and also to exhibit the features upon such<br />

playing time as it deems best and leaves other<br />

terms to the circuit's discretion, have been<br />

entered into by the distributor-defendants<br />

and unreasonably restrain trade.<br />

Franchises to 770<br />

89. Franchises have been entered into by<br />

the distributor-defendants with affiliated and<br />

non-affiliated circuits which unreasonably<br />

restricted the opportunities of small exhibitors<br />

to license fiims in competition with the<br />

theatres of such circuits by tying up the films<br />

released for long periods of time. None of<br />

the major defendants has entered into any<br />

franchises since November, 1940, and they<br />

have none in existence in 1950.<br />

90. Loew's today has outstanding no franchise<br />

agreements for any theatre In which It<br />

does not have an interest, and Loew's is not<br />

currently granting franchises. During its<br />

entire history Loew's, as a distributor, granted<br />

a total of 213 franchises, of which 154 were<br />

to independent theatres and only 59 to those<br />

in which any other producer-exhibitor had<br />

an interest.<br />

91. Twentieth Century-Fox has not granted<br />

any franchises since June 6, 1940. In<br />

1938-39, the motion picture season in which<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox had the greatest<br />

number of franchises outstanding, there were<br />

400. Of these, 361 were with independent<br />

exhibitors.<br />

92. During the period in question Universal<br />

entered into franchise agreements with<br />

727 independent exhibitors and 43 affiliated<br />

exhibitors.<br />

93. Block-booking, when the license of any<br />

feature is conditioned upon taking of other<br />

features, is a system which prevents competitors<br />

from bidding for single features on<br />

their individual merits.<br />

IV. BOXOrnCE :: February 11, 1950

94. For many years the distributor-defendants,<br />

except United Artists Corporation,<br />

licensed their films in "blocks" or indivisible<br />

groups, before they had been actually produced.<br />

In such cases the only knowledge prospective<br />

exhibitors had of the films which they<br />

had contracted for was from a description of<br />

each picture by title, plot, and players. In<br />

many cases licenses for all the films had to<br />

be accepted in order to obtain any, though<br />

sometimes the exhibitor was given a right of<br />

subsequent cancellation for a certain number<br />

of pictures. Because of complaints of block<br />

booking and blind-selling based upon the supposed<br />

unfairness of contracts which often includes<br />

pictures the inferior quality of which<br />

could not be known, Sections III and IV of<br />

the consent decree required the five consenting<br />

distributors to trade-show their films<br />

before offering them for license and limited<br />

the number which might be included in any<br />

contract to five. More than one block of five,<br />

however, could be licensed where the contents<br />

of any had been trade-shown. While this<br />

restriction in the consent decree has now<br />

ceased by time limitation, the consenting distributors<br />

have continued to observe the restriction.<br />

The non-assenting distributors have<br />

retained up to the present time their previous<br />

methods of licensing in blocks, but have<br />

allowed their customers considerable freedom<br />

to cancel the license as to a percentage of<br />

the pictures contracted for.<br />

95. United Artists did not at any time<br />

license the exhibition of Its pictures in blocks<br />

but on the contrary licensed the exhibition of<br />

its pictures separately and individually.<br />

96. During the period in question United<br />

Artists did not condition the licensing of any<br />

photoplay in any exhibitor's theatre upon that<br />

exhibitor's agreement to license other United<br />

photoplays for exhibition In said theatre.<br />

97. Blind-selling is a practice whereby a<br />

distributor licenses a feature before the exhibitor<br />

is afforded an opportunity to view it.<br />

Poor Trade Show Attendance<br />

98. Since the consent decree of November<br />

20, 1940, the five major defendants have given<br />

each exhibitor, whether a defendant or independent,<br />

an opportunity at trade shows to<br />

view each feature before licensing it. In general,<br />

trade shows, which are designed to prevent<br />

blind-selling, are poorly attended by exhibitors.<br />

99. I>uring the 1943-44 season, the number<br />

of features distributed by eight distributor<br />

defendants and the three other national distributors<br />

were as follows:<br />

Percentages of Total<br />

Number With With<br />

Distributor- of "Westerns" "Westerns"<br />

defendants: Mms included excluded<br />

Fox 33 8.31 9.85<br />

Loew's 33 8.31 9.85<br />

Paramount 31 7.81 9.25<br />

RKO 38 9.57 11.34<br />

Warner 19 4.79 5.67<br />

Columbia 41 10.32 12.24<br />

United Artists 16 4.04 4.78<br />

Universal 49 12.34 14.63<br />

Sub-total 260

Producer or its representative shall return<br />

such proposed contract to United with its<br />

rejection noted thereon or appended<br />

thereto.<br />

Should the Producer or its representative<br />

reject any such proposed contract<br />

the Producer or its representative shall<br />

have fourteen (14) days from the date of<br />

rejection in which to obtain a more favorable<br />

contract. Should the Producer or its<br />

representative fail so to do the original<br />

contract shall ipso facto be deemed approved<br />

unless the Producer or its representative<br />

shall have designated its original<br />

rejection as final. No proposed contract<br />

on which the rejection has been<br />

designated as final shall be entered into<br />

by United.<br />

Should the Producer or its representative<br />

at any time agree in advance with<br />

United upon the rental terms or license<br />

fees for the distribution, exhibition, or<br />

marketing of any motion picture in any<br />

specified theatre or situation. United shall<br />

not be obligated to submit the contract<br />

containing the terms so agreed upon to<br />

the Producer or its representative for approval.<br />

113. Other forms of operating agreements<br />

are between major defendants and independent<br />

exhibitors rather than between major<br />

defendants. The effect is to ally two or more<br />

theatres of different ownership into a coalition<br />

for the nullification of competition between<br />

them and for their more effective competition<br />

against theatres not members of the<br />

"pool."<br />

114. In certain other cases the operating<br />

agreements are accomplished by leases of<br />

theatres, the rentals being determined by a<br />

stipulated percentage of profits earned by the<br />

"pooled" theatres. This is but another means<br />

of carrying out the restraints found above.<br />

115. Many theatres, or the corporations<br />

owning them, have been held jointly by one or<br />

more of the exhibitor-defendants together<br />

with another exhibitor-defendant. These<br />

joint interests have enabled the major defendants<br />

to operate theatres collectively<br />

rather than competitively. When one of the<br />

major defendants has owned an interest of<br />

five per cent or less, such an interest was<br />

de minimis and was only to be treated as an<br />

inconsequential investment in exhibition. A<br />

summary of theatres jointly owned by two<br />

defendants is set forth in the following tabulation<br />

taken from RKO's Exhibit 11;<br />

Paramount-Fox<br />

Other Discriminations<br />

110. Various contract provisions by which<br />

discriminations against small independent<br />

exhibitors and in favor of the large affiliated<br />

and unaffiliated circuits were accomplished<br />

are: suspending the terms of a given contract,<br />

if a circuit theatre remains closed for<br />

more than eight weeks, and reinstating it<br />

without liability upon reopening; allowing<br />

large privileges in the selection and elimination<br />

of films; allowing deductions in fUm<br />

rentals if double bills are played: granting<br />

move overs and extended runs; granting roadshow<br />

privileges; allowing overage and underage;<br />

granting unlimited playing time; excluding<br />

foreign pictures and those of independent<br />

producers; granting rights to question the<br />

classification of features for rental purposes.<br />

These provisions are found most frequently<br />

in franchises and master agreements, which<br />

are made with the larger circuits of affiliated<br />

and unaffiliated theatres. Small independents<br />

are usually licensed, however, upon the<br />

standard forms of contract, which do not<br />

Include them. The competitive advantages of<br />

these provisions are so great that their inclusion<br />

in contract with the larger circuits<br />

constitutes an unreasonable discrimination<br />

against small competitors.<br />

111. The discriminations refen-ed to in<br />

Finding 110 can be enjoined but there is no<br />

effective way of preventing similar results<br />

from the use of other discriminatory devices<br />

in tiie absence of divorcement relief.<br />

112. Agreements were made by the exhibitor-defendants<br />

with each other and their<br />

affiliates by which given theatres of two or<br />

more exhibitors, normally in competition with<br />

each other, were operated as a unit, or most<br />

of their business policies collectively determined<br />

by a joint committee or by one of the<br />

exhibitors, and by which profits of the<br />

"pooled" theatres were divided among the exhibitors<br />

in or owners of such theatres according<br />

to pre-agreed percentages or otherwise.<br />

Some of the agreements provide that the<br />

parties thereto may not acquire other theatres<br />

in the competitive vicinity without first<br />

offering them for inclusion in the "pool."<br />

The result is to eliminate competition pro<br />

tanto both in exhibition and in distribution<br />

of features which would flow almost automatically<br />

to the theatres in the earnings of<br />

which they have a joint interest.

and in some cases the operating companies<br />

in which Paramount was interested were not<br />

able to obtain the right to exhibit tlie feature<br />

of some of the other defendant distributors.<br />

130. Paramount features are licensed for<br />

exhibition in from 8,000 to 14,500 theatres in<br />

the United States annually. The number of<br />

licenses each year varies from feature to feature<br />

and from year to year.<br />

131. In 21 of the 36 out of the 92 cities<br />

where Loew's operates theatres none of the<br />

other four producer-exhibitors licensed its<br />

features in the 1943-44 season for first-run<br />

exhibition in a Loew's theatre, to the extent<br />

of more than three features, the Loew's theatres'<br />

first-run exhibition being otherwise<br />

limited to its own features and those of nontheatre-owning<br />

producers.<br />

132. Over the 10 years from 1935 to 1945,<br />

the total number of features licensed by the<br />

other four theatre-owning distributors to<br />

Loew's first-run houses, decreased from 1,382<br />

to 998 and the features of non-theatre-owning<br />

distributors increased from 1,201 to 1,879.<br />

133. In 1935, the other four theatre-owning<br />

distributors earned $2,611,986 from Loew's theatres<br />

and the non-theatre-owning distributors<br />

earned $2,205,330 ($406,656 less). In 1944, the<br />

non-theatre-owning distributors earned $5,-<br />

261,116 in Loew's theatres, which was $419,477<br />

more than the $4,841,639, earned in Loew's<br />

theatres in that year by the four other theatre-owning<br />

distributors.<br />

Loew's Film Rentals<br />

134. In 1944, the percentage of the total<br />

film rental paid by Loew's theatres to each<br />

of the non-theatre-owning distributors, Columbia<br />

(8.8%), United Artists (8.3%) and<br />

Universal (7.4%), was higher than that paid<br />

to each of "three producer-exhibitors, RKO<br />

(2.1%), Warner Bros. (2.1%) and Twentieth<br />

Century-Fox (6.1%).<br />

135. In the year 1944, of the total film<br />

rental paid by Loew's theatres, 47.9% was to<br />

Loew's itself for the exhibition of Loew's pictures,<br />

and 27.1% was to non-theatre-owning<br />

distributors. Thus a total of 75% of all film<br />

rentals paid by Loew's theatres went to persons<br />

other than the four other defendantproducer-exhibitors.<br />

136. During the 1943-44 season RKO received<br />

56.9% of its total license fees from independent<br />

theatres, 14.1% from its own theatres,<br />

and (in the aggregate) 29% from theatres<br />

affiliated with other defendants.<br />

137. In the 1943-44 season, of the total<br />

number of exhibitions of features in first-run<br />

and metropolitan second-run theatres operated<br />

by RKO, 23.1% were exhibitions of featiu-es<br />

distributed by RKO, 29.6% were exhibitions<br />

of features distributed by other theatreowning<br />

distributors, and 47.3% were exhibitors<br />

of features distributed by non-theatreowning<br />

distributors. In the same season the<br />

respective peccentages of the feature film<br />

rentals paid by RKO were 30.6 to RKO, 43.7<br />

to other theatre-owning defendants, and 23.7<br />

to non-theatre-owning distributors.<br />

138. In the 4 pre-war seasons of 1937-<br />

1940, Warner derived about 61-6/10% of its<br />

domestic gross rentals from theatres not<br />

affiliated with any of the defendants, about<br />

14% from theatres in which it had an interest,<br />

about 13 7o from theatres in which Paramount<br />

had an interest, about 4% from theatres<br />

in which Twentieth Century-Fox had an<br />

Interest, about 6% from theatres in which<br />

RKO had an interest, and less than 1% from<br />

theatres in which Loew had an interest.<br />

139. Of its total domestic and foreign<br />

rentals Warner received about 30% from<br />

abroad, about 43% from theatres in which<br />

none of the defendants had an interest, about<br />

10% from Warner's own American theatres,<br />

and the balance, about 16%. from American<br />

theatres in which one or more of the defendants<br />

had an interest.<br />

140. Not a single one of the Loew first run<br />

theatres in the 39 of the 92 largest cities<br />

where Loew operates or has an interest in<br />

first run theatres licensed a Warner feature<br />

for exhibition in the 1943-44 season. In the<br />

same season the Warner theatres regularly<br />

exhibited the Loew features in many of the<br />

28 of the 92 largest cities where Warner<br />

operated or had an interest in first run<br />

theatres.<br />

141. The dollars paid by Warner to each<br />

of the other defendants and by each of the<br />

other defendants to Warner show no uniformity<br />

of pattern from company to company<br />

from year to year.<br />

142. There were marked variances from<br />

year to year in the sums paid as rental by the<br />

theatres in which Warner had an interest to<br />

United Artists, Universal, and Columbia, the<br />

non-theatre owning defendants.<br />

443. Between 1937 and 1944 the theatres<br />

in which Warner had an interest substantially<br />

decreased the amount of film rental paid<br />

to the 5 theatre owning defendants, and substantially<br />

increased film rental paid to the<br />

non-theatre owning defendants.<br />

143(a). During the 9 prewar years of<br />

1933-1941, the average cost of American made<br />

Warner features rose from $241,000 in 1933<br />

to $448,000 in 1940. By 1945 the average cost<br />

had risen to $1,371,000.<br />

143(b). In the past the foreign business<br />

of Warner has been exceedingly profitable.<br />

143(c). With the cessation of the war the<br />

foreign market for Warner pictures is being<br />

severely restricted.<br />

144. Of the total film revenue received by<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox in 1944 from all theatres<br />

in the United States, 60.8 percent was<br />

paid by exhibitors not defendants in this<br />

action; 14.1 percent was paid by its own theatres;<br />

1.26 percent by Loew theatres; 5.52<br />

percent by RKO theatres; 13.46 percent by<br />

theatres in which Paramount had an interest;<br />

and 4.82 percent by Warner theatres.<br />

145. On January 1, 1935, there were 13,386<br />

theatres operating in the United States. In<br />

1945, there were 18,076 theatres operating in<br />

the United States.<br />

146. In about 60% of the 92 cities having<br />

populations over 100,000, there are Independent<br />

first run theatres.<br />

In 91 % of Big Cities<br />

147. In about 91 percent of the 92 cities<br />

with over 100,000 population there are first<br />

run theatres of more than one defendant or<br />

of a defendant and independents.<br />

147(a). All the defendants entered into a<br />

horizontal conspiracy to fix prices, runs and<br />

clearances which was powerfully aided by the<br />

system of vertical integration of each of the<br />

five major defendants. Such a situation has<br />

made the vertical integration an active aid<br />

to the conspiracy. Vertical Integration has<br />

furnished an incentive for such conspiracy.<br />

147(b),. There is close relationship between<br />

the vertical integrations and the illegal practices.<br />

The vertical integrations were a means<br />

of carrying out the restraints and conspiracies.<br />

147(c). The interdependency of defendants<br />

to obtain pictures for their theatres, on the<br />

one hand, and on the other, to obtain theatre<br />

outlets for their pictures has lessened competition<br />

among defendants and between them<br />

and independents.<br />

147(d). There is substantial proof that<br />

monopoly power existed among the eight distributor-defendants<br />

who were all working together.<br />

Considering that the vertical integrations<br />

aided the horizontal conspiracy<br />

mentioned in Finding 147(a) at every point,<br />

the defendants must be viewed collectively<br />

rather than independently as to the power<br />

which they exercised over the market by<br />

major defendants' theatre holdings.<br />

147(e). Viewed collectively the major defendants<br />

owned in 1945 at least 70 percent of<br />

the first run theatres in the 92 largest cities.<br />

148. In the aforementioned 92 cities, at<br />

least 70% of all of the first run theatres are<br />

affiliated with one or more of the major<br />

defendants. In 4 of said cities there are no<br />

affiliated theatres. In 38 of said cities there<br />

are no independent first run theatres. In the<br />

remaining 50 cities the degree of first run<br />

competition varies from the most predominantly<br />

affiliated first run situations, such as<br />

Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia,<br />

St. Paul, and Washington, D. C, in each of<br />

which the independent first run theatres<br />

played less than eleven of the defendants'<br />

features on first run during the 1943-44 season,<br />

to the most predominantly independent<br />

first run situations, such as Nashville, Louisville,<br />

Indianapolis, and St. Louis, where the<br />

affiliated first run theatres played at least<br />

31 of the defendants' pictures on first run<br />

during that season. In none of the said 50<br />

cities did less than three of the distributordefendants<br />

license their product on first run<br />

to the affiliated. In 19 of said 50 cities less<br />

than three defendant-distributors licensed<br />

their product on first run to Independent theatres.<br />

In a majority of said 50 cities the major<br />

share of all of the defendants' features were<br />

licensed for first run exhibition in theatres<br />

affiliated with the major defendants.<br />

148(a). Viewed collectively the major defendants<br />

owned 60 percent of the first run<br />

theatres in cities with populations between<br />

25,000 and 100,000.<br />

Control in Small Cities<br />

148(b). In addition to the proof of monopoly<br />

control in cities of more than 25,000, there<br />

is substantial proof that in approximately 238<br />

towns involving in all but about 17 cases<br />

populations of less than 25.000 but having two<br />

or more theatres, some single one of the<br />

five major defendants, or in about 18 cases<br />

two of the defendants, had all the theatres<br />

and therefore possessed a complete local<br />

monopoly in exhibition. (See Government<br />

Exhibit 488.) This Finding is not applicable<br />

to Loew's, which had no theatres in the foregoing<br />

towns.<br />

148(c). The film distribution in the 1943-<br />

44 season shows that one or more of the five<br />

major defendants exhibited on first run substantially<br />

all of the feature films distributed<br />

by the five major defendants in about 43 of<br />

the 92 cities of over 100 thousand, and substantially<br />

all of the feature films distributed<br />

by the eight defendants in about 143 of the<br />

320 cities of 25,000 to 100,000. (See Government<br />

Exhibits- 489, 490, 490A.)<br />

148(d). As distributors, the five major defendants<br />

viewed collectively, received approximately<br />

73 percent and the three minor defendants<br />

21% of the domestic film rentals<br />

from the films, except Westerns, distributed<br />

in the 1943-44 season.<br />

148(e). The percentages of first run theatre<br />

ownership and domestic film rentals controlled<br />

by the major defendants when coupled<br />

with the strategic advantages of vertical<br />

integration created a power to exclude competition<br />

from the distribution and exhibition<br />

markets when desired.<br />

148(f). This power might be exercised<br />

either against nonaffiliated exhibitors or distributors,<br />

for the ownership of what was generally<br />

the best first run theatres coupled with<br />

the possession by the defendants of the best<br />

pictures, enabled them substantially to control<br />

the market in first-run pictures.<br />

148(g). There is .substantial proof that the<br />

intent to exercise the monopoly power existed<br />

among the defendants.<br />

BOXOrnCE :: February 11, 1950 vn.

149. Loew's operates first-run theatres in<br />

36 of the 92 cities in the United States with<br />

more than 100.000 population; in every one<br />

of these 36 cities, there are other "first-run"<br />

theatres exhibiting the features of one or<br />

more of the other defendant distributors; in<br />

21 of these 36. one or more of the other firstnm<br />

theatres are operated by independents.<br />

150. Of the 92 cities in the United States<br />

having a population in excess of 100,000,<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox is interested in first<br />

run theatres in 16 and licenses its features<br />

to them. In 4 of the remaining cities, none<br />

of the defendants has theatre interests. This<br />

leaves 72 cities in which there are first run<br />

theatres operated by defendants other than<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox. In 23 of the 72<br />

cities, Twentieth-Century-Fox Ucenses its features<br />

to independent exhibitors.<br />

151. Except for a very limited number of<br />

theatres in the very largest cities, the 18,000<br />

and more theatres in the United States exhibit<br />

the product of more than one distributor.<br />

Such theatres could not be operated on<br />

the product of only one distributor.<br />

152. The major defendants aided each<br />

other ui attaining a monopoly of exhibition<br />

and in restricting competition by refraining<br />

from having theatre interests in many areas<br />

where one of tliem had theatres.<br />

Pooling Agreements<br />

153. In cities of less than 100,000 in population.<br />

Paramount, Warner, Fox and RKO<br />

owned or operated theatres either in largely<br />

separate market areas or in pools, without<br />

more than trifling competition among<br />

themselves or with Loew's. In cities having<br />

a population of more than 100,000, there was<br />

in general little competition among the major<br />

defendants, although considerably more<br />

than in towns of under 100,000.<br />

153(a). In cities of less than 100,000,<br />

Paramount had complete or partial interests<br />

in or pooling agreements* with other defendants<br />

affecting 1,236 theatres located in<br />

494 towns. In 13 of these towns containing<br />

31 of the theatres—only 3%—were theatres<br />

of another defendant. In 9% of these towns<br />

competition between Paramount and the only<br />

other defendant in the town was substantially<br />

lessened or eliminated by means of a<br />

pooling agreement affecting some or all of<br />

their theatres; and in this 97c were located<br />

10% of Paramount's theatre interests. And in<br />

88 7o of the towns, containing 87% of Paramount's<br />

theatre interests. Paramount was<br />

the only defendant operating theatres. Thus<br />

it appears that there was little, if any, theatre<br />

competition between Paramount and any<br />

other defendant in 97% of the towns under<br />

100,000 and in respect to 97% of the theatres<br />

in which Paramount had an interest.<br />

153(b). Fox had similar theatre interests<br />

in 428 theati-es located in 177 towns. In 13<br />

of these towns containing 29 Fox theatres, or<br />

about 7% thereof, there were theatres of another<br />

defendant. In about 93 7o of the towns<br />

containing the .same percentage of Fox's theatre<br />

interests. Fox was the only defendant<br />

operating theatres; in 22 of these towns there<br />

was but one theatre and a population capable<br />

of supporting only one theatre.<br />

153(c). Warner had similar theatre Interests<br />

in 306 theatres located in 155 towns of<br />

less than 100,000. In 17 towns, or 11%, containing<br />

30 Warner theatres, or 10% of its<br />

holdings, there were theatres of another major<br />

defendant. In 37c of the towns, competition<br />

between Warner and the only other defendant<br />

in the town was substantially lessened<br />

or eliminated by means of pooling<br />

agreements; and in this 3% were located 47o<br />

of Warner's theatre interests. In 86% of the<br />

'Pooling agreements cmd joint interests among defendants<br />

are treated in Findings 153-153(g) and 154-<br />

154(h) as indistinguishable for the purpose of summarizing<br />

geographical distribution.<br />

towns containing the same percentage of<br />

Warner's theatre interests, Warner was the<br />

only defendant operating theatres. Thus,<br />

there appears to have been little, if any, theatre<br />

competition between Warner and any<br />

other defendant in 89% of the towns and in<br />

respect to 90% of the theatres in which Warner<br />

had an interest. In 33 of these towns<br />

there was but one theatre and a population<br />

capable of supporting only one theatre.<br />

153(d). Loew had interests in only 17<br />

theatres located in 14 towns. In 4 towns<br />

containing 4 Loew theatres, there were theatres<br />

of another defendant. In 2 of the towns,<br />

competition was substantially lessened or<br />

eliminated by means of joint interests; and<br />

in these 2 were located 3 of Loew's theatre<br />

interests. In 8 of the towns, containing 10<br />

Loew's theatre interests, Loew was the only<br />

defendant operating theatres. Thus, there<br />

appears to have been little, if any, theatre<br />

competition between Loew and any other defendant<br />

in 10 of the towns and in respect to<br />

13 of the theatres in which Loew had an<br />

'<br />

interest.<br />

153(e). RKO had interests in 150 theatres<br />

located in 66 towns. In 6 towns, or 10%,<br />

containing 6 RKO theatres or 4%, there was<br />

competition with another major defendant.<br />

In 60% of the towns, competition was substantially<br />

lessened or eliminated by means of<br />

pooling agreements, and in this 60% were<br />

located 73%, of RKO's theatre interests. In<br />

30% of the towns, containing 23 %> of RKO's<br />

theatre interests, RKO was the only defendant<br />

operating theatres. Thus, there appears<br />

to have been little, if any, competition between<br />

RKO and any other defendant in 90 %><br />

of the towns and in respect to 96%; of the<br />

theatres in which RKO had an interest.<br />

153(f). The major defendants had interests<br />

altogether in 2,020 theatres located in<br />

834 towns. In 26 towns, or 3% containing<br />

100 of their theatres, or 5%, there was conpetition<br />

among some of them. In somewhat<br />

over 5% of the towns, competition between<br />

them was substantially lessened or<br />

eliminated by means of pooling agreements,<br />

and in this 5%! were located 7% of their<br />

theatre interests. And in somewhat less than<br />

92% of the towns, containing 88% of their<br />

theatre interests, only one of the major defendants<br />

owned theatres in the area. Thus,<br />

there appears to have been little, if any, competition<br />

among the five defendants or any<br />

of them in 97% of the towns and in respect<br />

to 95% of the theatres in which they had an<br />

interest.<br />

Eliminated<br />

Competition<br />

The effect of the geographical dis-<br />

153(g).<br />

tribution in towns having a population of<br />

less than 100,000 was largely to eUminate<br />

competition among all of the defendants in<br />

the areas where any of them had theatres.<br />

The statistics upon which these findings are<br />

based are contained in the appendix to this<br />

Court's opinion of July 25, 1949.<br />

154. In cities of over 100,000 Paramount<br />

had complete or partial interests in or pooling<br />

agreements with other defendants affecting<br />

352 theatres in 49 cities. In 18 of<br />

these cities, or 37%, containing 91 Paramount<br />

theatres, or 26%, there were theatres of<br />

other defendants. In an additional 10% of<br />

the cities, containing 17% of Paramount's<br />

theatre holdings, there were other defendants<br />

having theatre interests, but those interests<br />

were so relatively small as compared with<br />

Paramount, both on first and later runs, that<br />

competition with Paramount was unsubstantial<br />

owing to the dominance which the latter's<br />

theatre holdings gave it. In 12% of these<br />

cities competition between Paramount and<br />

the only other defendants in the city was<br />

substantially lessened or eliminated by means<br />

of a pooling agreement affecting some or<br />

all of their theatres, and in this 12% were<br />

located 18% of Paramount's theatre interests.<br />

And in 41% of the cities, containing 39%<br />

of Paramount's theatre interests, Paramount<br />

was the only defendant operating theatres.<br />

Thus, it appears that there was little, if any,<br />

theatre competition between Paramount and<br />

any other defendant in 63% of the cities of<br />

over 100,000 and In respect to 74% of the<br />

theatres in which Paramount had an interest.<br />

154(a). Fox had similar theatre interests<br />

in 211 theatres located in 17 cities. In 5 of<br />

these cities, or 29%, containing 54 Fox theatres,<br />

or 26%, there were theatres of other<br />

defendants. In an additional 18% of the cities,<br />

containing 41% of Fox's theatre holdings,<br />

there were other defendants having theatre<br />

interests, but those interests were so relatively<br />

small as compared with Fox, both on<br />

Fox was unsubstantial owing to the dominance<br />

which the latter's theatre holdings<br />

first and later runs, that competition with<br />

gave it. In 53% of the cities, containing 33%<br />

of Fox's theatre interests. Fox was the only<br />

defendant operating theatres. Thus, it appears<br />

that there was little, if any, theatre<br />

competition between Fox and any other defendant<br />

in 71% of the cities and in respect<br />

to 74% of the theatres in which Fox had an<br />

interest.<br />

Warner Theatre<br />

Interests<br />

154 (b). Warner had similar theatre interests<br />

in 243 theatres located in 26 cities.<br />

In 14 of these cities, or 54%., containing 89<br />

theatres, or 37%, there were theatres of other<br />

defendants. In an additional S% of the cities,<br />

containing 5% of Warner's theatre holdings,<br />

there were other defendants having theatre<br />

interests, but those interests were so relatively<br />

small as compared with Warner, both<br />

on first and later runs, that competition with<br />

Warner was unsubstantial owning to the<br />

dominance which the latter's theatre holdings<br />

gave it. In 19% of these cities competition<br />

between Warner and the only other<br />

defendants in the city was substantially<br />

lessened or eliminated by means of a pooling<br />

agreement affecting some or all of their theatres,<br />

and in this 19% were located 51% of<br />

Warner's theatre interests. And in 19% of the<br />

cities, containing 7% of Warner's theatre interests,<br />

Warner was the only defendant operating<br />

theatres. Thus, it appears that there<br />

was little, if any, competition between Warner<br />

and any other defendant in 46% of the<br />

cities and in respect to 63% of the theatres<br />

in which Warner had an interest.<br />

154 (c) . Loew had similar theatre interests<br />

in 144 theatres located in 37 cities. In<br />

32 of these cities, or 86%, containing 122<br />

Loew theatres, or 85%, there were theatres<br />

of other defendants. In 3% of these cities,<br />

competition between Loew and the only other<br />

defendant in the city was eliminated by<br />

means of a pooling agreement affecting aU<br />

of their theatres, and in this 3% were located<br />

7% of Loew's theatre interests. And in 11%<br />

of the cities, containing 8% of Loew's theatre<br />

interests, Loew was the only defendant<br />

operating theatres. Thus, it appears that<br />

there was little, it any, theatre competition<br />

between Loew and any other defendant in<br />

14% of the cities and in respect to 15%,<br />

of the theatres in which Loew had an interest.<br />

154 (d) . In New York City Loew and RKO<br />

divided the neighborhood prior run product<br />

of the various defendant distributors under<br />

a continuing arrangement so that there was<br />

no competition between them in obtaining<br />

pictures. On one occasion where<br />

Paramount was having a long dispute with<br />

Loew's as to rental terms for Paramount films<br />

to be shown in Loew's New York neighborhood<br />

circuit of theatres, no attempt was made by<br />

Paramount to lease its films to RKO for exhibition<br />

in the latter's circuit, nor was any<br />

effort made by RKO to procure Paramount<br />

films as they both evidently preferred to adhere<br />

to the existing arrangement, under<br />

which Loew's circuit consistently exhibited<br />

the films of itself. Paramount, United Artists,<br />

Columbia and half of Universal, while<br />

RKO exhibited the films of itself. Fox, Warvm.<br />

BOXOrnCE :: February 11, 1950

ner, and half of Universal. Accordingly, the<br />

showing that 85 per cent of Loew's theatres<br />

are in competition with theatres of other defendants<br />

is misleading and may properly be<br />

reduced by the exclusion of its New York<br />

neighborhood theatres. If this is done, it<br />

would give Loew a percentage of approximately<br />

52 per cent of its theatres in competition<br />

with other defendants in cities over<br />

100,000.<br />

154(e). RKO had similar theatre Interests<br />

In 256 theatres in 31 cities. In 22 of these<br />

cities, or 72 per cent, containing 190 theatres,<br />

or 74 per cent, there were theatres of other<br />

defendants. In an additional 6 per cent of<br />

the cities, containing 4 per cent of RKO's<br />

theatre holdings, there were other defendants<br />

having theatre interests, but those interests<br />

were so relatively small as compared<br />

with RKO, both on first and later runs, that<br />

competition with RKO was unsubstantial<br />

owing to the dominance which the latter's<br />

theatre holdings gave it. In 16 per cent of<br />

these cities, competition between RKO and<br />

the only other defendants in the city was<br />

substantially lessened or eliminated by means<br />

of a pooling agreement affecting some or all<br />

of their theatres, and in this 16 per cent were<br />

located 15 per cent of RKO's theatre interests.<br />

And in 6 per cent of the cities, containing<br />

7 per cent of RKO's theatre interests,<br />

RKO was the only defendant operating theatrestle,<br />

if<br />

Thus, it appears that there was lit-<br />

any, theatre competition between RKO<br />

and other defendants in 28 per cent of the<br />

cities and in respect to 26 per cent of the<br />

theatres in which RKO had an interest.<br />

154(f). Approximately 58 per cent of RKO<br />

theatre interests were located in New York<br />

on neighborhood runs, and the same comments<br />

as to distribution of film made in regard<br />

to Loew's are applicable to RKO. If<br />

its New York neighborhood theatre interests<br />

were excluded from the category of theatres<br />

in competition with other defendants the<br />

RKO percentage would then be only about 16<br />

per cent in competition with other defendants.<br />

154(g). The major defendants had interests<br />

altogether in 1,112 theatres located in<br />

87 cities of more than 100,000. In 46 per<br />

cent of these cities, containing 23 per cent<br />

of their theatre interests, only one of the<br />

major defendants owned theatres in the area.<br />

In 11.5 per cent of the cities, competition<br />

between them was substantially lessened or<br />

eliminated by means of pooling agreements,<br />

and in this 11.5 were located 16 per cent of<br />

their theatre holdings. In an additional 11.5<br />

per cent of the cities, containing 17 per cent<br />

of their theatre interests, there was<br />

more than one defendant having theatre<br />

interests in the city, but the position<br />

of one defendant was so dominant relative<br />

to the others that competition between them<br />

was unsubstantial. In 31 per cent of the<br />

cities, containing 44 per cent of their theatre<br />

interests, there was competition among the<br />

defendants. But the New York neighborhood<br />

theatres of Loew and RKO, which are<br />

included in reaching the 44 per cent figure,<br />

should properly be excluded because there is<br />

no competition between Loew and RKO in<br />

obtaining pictures for the reasons we have<br />

already given. This would reduce the percentage<br />

of defendants' theatres which compete<br />

with one another to 27.<br />

154(h). The effect of the geographical distribution<br />

in cities having a population of more<br />

than 100,000 was substantially to limit competition<br />

among the major defendants.<br />

155. Although there was no agreement to<br />

divide territory geographically in the original<br />

organization of the defendants' theatre<br />

circuits, the geographical distribution of theatres<br />

among the major defendants became<br />

a part of a system in which competition was<br />

largely absent and the status of which was<br />

intentionally maintained by fixed runs, clearances<br />

and prices, by pooling agreements and<br />

joint ownerships among the major defendants,<br />

and by cross-licensing which made it<br />

necessary that they should work together.<br />

156. In the relatively few areas where more<br />

than one of the major defendants had theatres,<br />

competition for first-run licensing privileges<br />

was generally absent because the defendants<br />

customarily adhered to a set method<br />

in the distribution and playing of their<br />

films.<br />

156(a). A study of four seasons between<br />

the years 1936 and 1944 shows that during<br />

this period the privilege of first-run exhibition<br />

of a defendant's films was ordinarily<br />

transferred from one defendant to another<br />

only as the result of dissolution of a theatre<br />

operating pool or an arbitrary division of the<br />

product known as a "split."<br />

156(b). Effective relief from the monopoly<br />

power of and its exercise by the major defendants<br />

cannot be obtained without divorcement.<br />

No adequate competition among<br />

the defendants or between defendants and<br />

independents can exist in the presence of<br />

interdependency among the defendants on<br />

the one hand to obtain pictures for their<br />

own theatres and on the other to obtain<br />

theatre outlets for their own pictures. Divorcement<br />

is necessary to prevent the<br />

major defendants from being in a state<br />

of interdependence which too greatly restricts<br />

competition. Divorcement is a necessary<br />

remedy to introduce competition into<br />

defendants' system of fixed admission prices,<br />

clearances and runs, and to remove a major<br />

incentive to discriminatory trade practices.<br />

157. The arbitration system and the Appeal<br />

Board which has been a part of it have been<br />

useful in the past and should be continued<br />

upon terms to be settled by the Court.<br />

158. Evidence submitted since the remand<br />

of this case has been considered by this<br />

Court. Such evidence has been used by the<br />

Court in making its findings as to the situation<br />

in 1945. The change in status and practices<br />

since 1945 revealed by this evidence has<br />

been insufficient to warrant a change in the<br />

findings and judgment entered herein.<br />

159. A consent judgment was entered on<br />

March 3, 1949, against defendants Paramount<br />

Pictures, Inc. and Paramount Film<br />

Distributing Corporation, and neither of<br />

these companies nor their counsel appeared<br />

or participated in any of the proceedings<br />

after the entry of that consent judgment, except<br />

that, on April 21, 1949, counsel for these<br />

companies presented, and the court made and<br />

directed the entry of, an order severing and<br />

terminating, as of March 3, 1949, this action<br />

as against said defendants.<br />

160. A consent judgment was entered on<br />

November 8, 1949, against defendants Radio-<br />

Keith-Orpheum Corporation, RKO Radio<br />

Pictures, Inc., RKO Proctor Corporation,<br />

RKO Midwest Corporation and Keith-Albee-<br />

Orpheum Corporation, and none of these<br />

companies nor their counsel appeared or<br />

participated in any of the proceedings after<br />

the entry of that consent judgment, except<br />

that on January 18, 1950, counsel for these<br />

companies presented, and the court made<br />

and directed the entry of, an order styled<br />

United States v. Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corporation,<br />

et al, severing and terminating, as<br />

of November 8, 1948, this action as against<br />

said defendants.<br />


1. The Court has jurisdiction of this cause<br />

under the provisions of the Act of July 2,<br />

1890 entitled "An Act to Protect Trade and<br />

Commerce Against Unlawful Restraints and<br />

Monopolies," hereinafter referred to as the<br />

Sherman Act.<br />

2. Universal Pictures Company, Inc. and<br />

Screen Gems, Inc. have not violated the<br />

Sherman Act and should be dismissed as<br />

defendants herein.<br />

3. None of the defendants herein has violated<br />

the Sherman Act by monopolizing or<br />

attempting to monopolize or conspiring to<br />

monopolize the production of motion picture<br />

films.<br />

4. The consent decree entered herein on<br />

November 20, 1940 does not foreclose enforcement<br />

in this suit at this time of any rights<br />

or remedies which the plaintiff may have<br />

against any of the defendants by virtue of<br />

violations of the Sherman Act by them, except<br />

such acts as were in accord with such<br />

decree during the period it was in force.<br />

5. None of the defendants herein has violated<br />

the Sherman Act by combining, conspiring<br />

or contracting to restrain trade in any<br />

part of the business of producing motion pictures<br />

or by monopolizing, attempting to monopolize,<br />

or conspiring to monopolize such<br />

business.<br />

6. The defendants, and each of them are<br />

entitled to judgment dismissing all claims of<br />

the plaintiff based upon their acts as producers,<br />

whether as individuals or in conjunction<br />

with others.<br />

7. The defendants Loew's, Incorporated;<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures Inc.; Warner Bros. Pictures<br />

Distributing Corporation, (formerly<br />

known as Vitagraph, Inc.); Warner Bros.<br />

Circuit Management Corporation; Twentieth<br />

Century-Pox Film Corporation; National Theatres<br />

Corporation; Columbia Pictures Corporation;<br />

Columbia Pictures of Louisiana, Inc.;<br />

Universal Corporation; Universal Film Exchanges,<br />

Inc.; Big U Film Exchange, Inc.;<br />

and United Artists Corporation have unreasonably<br />

restrained trade and commerce in<br />

the distribution and exhibition of motion<br />

pictures and attempted to monopolize such<br />

trade and commerce, both before and after<br />

the entry of said consent decree, in violation<br />

of the Sherman Act by:<br />

(a) Acquiescing in the establishment<br />

of a price fixing system by conspiring<br />

with one another and with Paramount<br />

and RKO to maintain theatre admission<br />

prices;<br />

(b) By conspiring with one another<br />

and with Paramount and RKO to restrict<br />

competition for theatre patronage with<br />

each other and with independents<br />

through a system of admission price fixing;<br />

(c) Conspiring with each other and<br />

with Paramount and RKO to maintain<br />

a nationwide system of runs and clearances<br />

which is substantially uniform in<br />

each local competitive area;<br />

(d) Fixing, together with Paramount<br />

and RKO, a system of runs and clearances<br />

which prevented effective competition<br />

by outsiders and which was designed<br />

to protect the theatre holdings of<br />

the major defendants and to safeguard<br />

the revenue therefrom.<br />

8. The distributor-defendants Loew's, Incorporated;<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.;<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures Distributing Corporation<br />

(formerly known as Vitagraph, Inc.);<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation;<br />

Columbia Pictures Corporation; Columbia<br />

Pictures of Louisiana, Inc.; Universal Corporation;<br />

Universal Film Exchanges, Inc.; Big<br />

U Film Exchange, Inc.; and United Artists<br />

Corporation, have unreasonably restrained<br />

trade and commerce in the distribution and<br />

exhibition of motion pictures and attempted<br />

to monopolize such trade and commerce, both<br />

before and after the entry of said consent<br />

decree, in violation of the Sherman Act, by:<br />

(a) Conspiring with each other and<br />

with Paramount and RKO to maintain<br />

a nationwide system of fixed minimum<br />

motion picture theatre admission prices.<br />

(b) Agreeing individually with their respective<br />

licensees to fix minimum motion<br />

picture theatre admission prices;<br />

(c) Conspiring with each other and<br />

with Paramount and RKO to maintain<br />

a nationwide system of runs and clearances<br />

which is substantially uniform as<br />

to each local competitive area;<br />

(d) Agreeing individually with their<br />

respective licensees to grant discriminatory<br />

license privileges to theatres affiliated<br />

with other defendants and with large<br />

circuits as found in Finding 110 above;<br />

(e) Agreeing individually with such 11-<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 K.

:<br />

censees to grant unreasonable clearance<br />

against theatres operated by their competitors:<br />

(f) Making master agreements and<br />

franchises with such licensees;<br />

(g) Individually conditioning the offer<br />

of a license for one or more copyrighted<br />

films upon the acceptance by the licensee<br />

of one or more other copyrighted films,<br />

except in the case of the United Artists<br />

Corporation;<br />

9. The exhibitor-defendants Loew's, Incorporated;<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.;<br />

Warner Bros. Circuit Management Corporation;<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation;<br />

and National Theatres Corporation,<br />

have unreasonably restrained trade and<br />

commerce in the distribution and exhibition<br />

of motion pictures both before and after the<br />

entry of said consent decree in violation of<br />

the Sherman Act by:<br />

(a) Jointly operating motion picture<br />

theatres with each other, with Paramount<br />

and KKO, and with independents<br />

through operating agreements or profitsharing<br />

leases;<br />

(b) Jointly owning motion picture theatres<br />

with each other, with Paramount<br />

and RKO, and with independents through<br />

stock interests in theatre buildings:<br />

(c) Conspiring with each other, with<br />

the distributor-defendants named in<br />

Paragraph 8 above, and with Paramount<br />

and RKO, to fix substantially uniform<br />

minimum motion picture theatre admission<br />

prices, runs, and clearances;<br />

(d) Conspiring with the distributordefendants,<br />

named in Paragraph 8 above<br />

and with Paramount and RKO to discriminate<br />

against independent competitors<br />

in fixing minimum admission price,<br />

run, clearance, and other license terms.<br />

10. The formula deals, master agreements<br />

and franchises referred to in Findings 86,<br />

88, and 89 have tended to restrain trade and<br />

violate Section 1 of the Sherman Act.<br />

11. Block-booking, as hereinabove defined,<br />

violates the Sherman Act.<br />

12. As an aid to the conspiracy to fix<br />

prices, runs, and clearances hereinabove<br />

described, and as a means for carrying out<br />

such conspiracy, the maintenance of vertical<br />

integration by the major defendants named<br />

in Paragraph 7 above has violated the Sherman<br />

Act and effected a situation where the<br />

creation of competition require dissolution of<br />

these vertical integrations.<br />

13. The collective monopoly power of the<br />

defendants named in Paragraph 7 above<br />

(taken together with Paramount and RKO)<br />

to exclude competitors from first run coupled<br />

with their intent to exercise this power violated<br />

Section 2 of the Sherman Act.<br />

14. Their use of this power to actually exclude<br />

independents from the first run market<br />

and to restrict the distribution of pictures to<br />

independents violated Sections 1 and 2 of the<br />

Sherman Act.<br />

15. The power of the defendants named in<br />

Paragraph 7 above to fix runs and clearances<br />

when exercised by the major defendants<br />

named in Paragraph 7 above to exclude independent<br />

competitors violated the Sherman<br />

Act.<br />

16. Loew's, Incorporated, has violated the<br />

Sherman Act by conspiring with RKO to<br />

monoplize and monopolizing the first neighborhood<br />

run in New York City, and by the<br />

dividing of that<br />

RKO.<br />

market between itself and<br />

17. Further conclusions of law are made<br />

and embodied in the decree filed herewith.<br />

Dated: February 8, 1950.<br />


United States Circuit Judge.<br />


United States District Judge.<br />


United States District Judge.<br />


for<br />

Columbia, United Artists,<br />

The plaintiff, having filed its petition<br />

hereon on July 20, 1938, and its amended and<br />

supplemental complaint on November 14,<br />

1940; the defendants having filed their answers<br />

to such complaint, denying the substantive<br />

allegations thereof, the court after<br />

trial having entered a decree herein, dated<br />

Dec. 31, 1946, as modified by order entered<br />

Feb. 11, 1947; the plaintiff and the defendants<br />

having appealed from such decree; the<br />

Supreme Court of the United States having in<br />

part affirmed and in part reversed such decree,<br />

and having remanded this case to this<br />

court for further proceedings in conformity<br />

with its opinion dated May 3, 1948; this court<br />

having, on June 25, 1948, by order made the<br />

mandate and decree of the Supreme Court<br />

the order and judgment of this court;<br />

Now, having considered the proposals of<br />

the parties, having duly received additional<br />

evidence and heard further arguments, and<br />

having rendered its opinion on July 25, 1949,<br />

and having filed its findings of fact and<br />

conclusions of law in accordance with said<br />

opinion<br />


AND DECREED that the decree heretofore<br />

entered by this court on Dec. 31, 1946, as to<br />

the defendants Columbia Pictures Corporation,<br />

Screen Gems, Inc., Columbia Pictures of<br />

Louisiana, Inc., Universal Corporation, Universal<br />

Pictures Company, Inc., Universal Film<br />

Exchanges, Inc., Big U Film Exchange, Inc.,<br />

and United Artists Corporation, is hereby<br />

amended to read as follows:<br />

1. The findings of fact and conclusions of<br />

law heretofore made are superseded by the<br />

findings and conclusions now entered in support<br />

of this decree.<br />

2. The complaint is dismissed as to the<br />

defendants Screen Gems, Inc., and the corporation<br />

named as Universal Pictures Company,<br />

Inc., merged during the pendency of<br />

this case into the defendant Universal Corporation.<br />

The complaint is also dismissed<br />

as to all claims made against the remaining<br />

defendants herein based upon their acts as<br />

producers, whether as individuals or in conjunction<br />

with others.<br />

n<br />

The defendants Columbia Pictures Corporation,<br />

Columbia Pictures of Louisiana, Inc.,<br />

Universal Corporation, Universal Film Exchanges,<br />

Inc., Big U Film Exchange, Inc., and<br />

United Artists Corporation^ and the successors<br />

of each of them, and any and all individuals<br />

who act in behalf of any thereof with<br />

respect to the matters enjoined, and each<br />

corporation in which said defendants or any<br />

of them own a direct or indirect stock interest<br />

of more than fifty percent, are hereby<br />

enjoined:<br />

1. From granting any license in which<br />

minimum prices for admission to a<br />

theatre are fixed by the parties, either ili<br />

writing or through a committee, or through<br />

arbitration, or upon the happening of any<br />

event or in any maimer or by any means.<br />

2. From agreeing with each other or with<br />

any exhibitors or distributors to maintain a<br />

system of clearances; the term "clearances"<br />

as used herein meaning the period of time<br />

stipulated in license contracts which must<br />

elapse between runs of the same feature<br />

within a particular area or in specified theatres.<br />

3. From granting any clearance between<br />

theatres not in substantial competition.<br />

Universal<br />

4. From granting or enforcing any clearance<br />

against theatres in substantial competition<br />

with the theatre receiving the license<br />

for exhibition in excess of what is reasonably<br />

necessary to protect the licensee in the run<br />

granted. Whenever any clearance provision<br />

is attacked as not legal under the provisions<br />

of this decree, the burden shall be upon the<br />

distributor to sustain the legality thereof.<br />

5. From further performing any existing<br />

franchise to which it is a party and from<br />

making any franchises in the future, except<br />

for the purpose of enabling an independent<br />

exhibitor to operate a theatre in competition<br />

with the theatre affiliated with a defendant<br />

or Vvfith theatres in new circuits which may<br />

be formed as a result of divorcement. The<br />

term "franchise" as used herein means a<br />

licensing agreement or series of licensing<br />

agreements, entered into as a part of the same<br />

transaction in effect for more than one motion<br />

picture season and covering the exhibition of<br />

pictures released by one distributor during<br />

the entire period of agreement.<br />

6. Prom making or further performing any<br />

formula deal or master agreement to which<br />

it is a party. The term "formula deal" as<br />

used herein means a licensing agreement<br />

with a circuit of theatres in which the license<br />

fee of a given feature is measiired for the<br />

theatres covered by the agreement by a specified<br />

percentage of the feature's national gi'oss.<br />

The term "master agreement" meairs a licensing<br />

agreement, also known as a "blanket<br />

deal," covering the exhibition of features in<br />

a number of theatres usually comprising a<br />

circuit.<br />

7. From performing or entering into any<br />

license in which the right to exhibit one<br />

feature is conditioned upon the licensee's taking<br />

one or more other features. To the extent<br />

that any of the features have not been trade<br />

shown prior to the granting of the license for<br />

more than a single feature, the licensee shall<br />

be given by the licensor the right to reject<br />

twenty percent of such features not trade<br />

shown prior to the granting of the license,<br />

such right of rejection to be exercised in the<br />

order of release within ten days after there<br />

has been an opportimity afforded to the<br />

licensee to inspect the feature.<br />

8. From licensing any feature for exhibition<br />

upon any run in any theatre in any other<br />

manner than that each license shall be offered<br />

and taken theatre by theatre, solely upon the<br />

merits and without discrimination in favor<br />

of affiliated theatres, circuit theatres or<br />

others.<br />

in<br />

The defendants named in Section II of<br />

this decree and any others who are willing<br />

to file with the American Arbitration Association<br />

their consent to abide by the rules of<br />

arbitration and to perform the awards of<br />

arbitrators, are hereby authorized to set up<br />

or participate in an arbitration system with<br />

an accompanying Appeal Board which will<br />

become effective as soon as it may be organized,<br />

upon terms to be settled by the court<br />

upon notice to the parties to this action.<br />

IV<br />

The provisions of the consent decree of<br />

November 20, 1940, are hereby declared to be<br />

of no further force or effect.<br />

1. For the purpose of securing compliance<br />

with this decree, and for no other purpose,<br />

duly authorized representatives of the Department<br />

of Justice shall, on written request of<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February H, 1950

;<br />

the Attorney General or an Assistant Attorney<br />

General, and on notice to any defendant<br />

bound by this decree, reasonable as to time<br />

and subject matter, made to such defendant<br />

at its principal office, and subject to any<br />

legally recognized privilege (a) be permitted<br />

reasonable access, during the office hours of<br />

such defendant, to all books, ledgers, accounts,<br />

correspondence, memoranda and other records<br />

and documents in the possession or under the<br />

control of such defendant, relating to any of<br />

the matters contained in this decree, and that<br />

during the times that the plaintiff shall<br />

desire such access, counsel for such defendant<br />

may be present, and (b) subject to the reasonable<br />

convenience of such defendant, and<br />

without restraint or interference from it, be<br />

permitted to interview its officers or employes<br />

regarding any such matters, at which interviews<br />

counsel for the officer or employee<br />

interviewed and counsel for such defendant<br />

may be present. For the purpose of securing<br />

compliance with this decree any defendant<br />

upon the written request of the Attorney General,<br />

or an Assistant Attorney General, shall<br />

submit such reports with respect to any of<br />

the matters contined in this decree as from<br />

time to time may be necessary for the purpose<br />

of enforcement of this decree.<br />

FINAL<br />

for<br />

2. Information obtained pursuant to the<br />

provisions of this section shall not be divulged<br />

by any representative of the Department of<br />

Justice to any person other than a duly<br />

authorized representative of the Department<br />

of Justice, except in the course of legal proceedings<br />

to which the United States is a<br />

party, or as otherwise required by law.<br />

VI<br />

Jurisdiction of this cause is retained for the<br />

purpose of enabling any of the parties to<br />

this decree, and no others, to apply to the<br />

court at any time for such orders or direction<br />

as may be necessary or appropriate for<br />

the construction, modification, or carrying out<br />

of the same, for the enforcement of compliance<br />

therewith, and for the punishment<br />

of violations thereof, or for other or further<br />

relief.<br />

Dated: February 8, 1950.<br />

AUGUSTUS N. HA^^^,<br />

United States Circuit Judge,<br />


United States District Judge.<br />


United States District Judge<br />

DECREE<br />

20fh Century-Fox, Loew's, Inc., Warner Bros.<br />

The plaintiff, having filed its petition herein<br />

on July 29, 1938, and its amended and<br />

supplemental complaint on November 14,<br />

1940; the defendants having filed their answers<br />

to such complaint, denying the substantive<br />

allegations thereof; the court after<br />

trial having entered a decree herein, dated<br />

December 31, 1946, as modified by order entered<br />

February 11, 1947; the plaintiff and<br />

the defendants having appealed from such<br />

decree; the Supreme Court of the United<br />

States having in part affirmed and in part<br />

reversed such decree, and having remanded<br />

this case to this court for further proceedings<br />

in conformity with its opinion dated<br />

May 3, 1948; this court having, on June 25,<br />

1948, by order made the mandate and decree<br />

of the Supreme Court the order and judgment<br />

of this court; a consent decree having<br />

been entered on November 8, 1948, against<br />

the defendants Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corporation,<br />

RKO Radio Pictures, Inc., RKO<br />

Proctor Corporation, RKO Midwest Corporation,<br />

and Keith-Albee-Orpheum Corporation;<br />

orders having been entered on stipulation<br />

against the Fox, Loew, and Warner defendants<br />

respectively, and Loew having further<br />

stipulated in the record, with respect to certain<br />

theatre interests held jointly with others;<br />

and a consent judgment having been<br />

entered on March 3, 1949, against defendants<br />

Paramount Pictures, Inc. and Paramount<br />

Film Distributing Corporation; and an order<br />

having been entered on April 21, 1949, severing<br />

and terminating, as of March 3, 1949,<br />

this action as against defendants Paramount<br />

Pictures, Inc. and Paramount Film Distributing<br />

Corporation; and an order having been<br />

entered on January 18, 1950 severing and<br />

terminating as of November 8, 1948 the<br />

action as against defendants Radio-Keith-<br />

Orpheum Corporation, RKO Radio Pictures,<br />

Inc., RKO Proctor Corporation, RKO Midwest<br />

Corporation and Keith-Albee-Orpheum<br />

Corporation;<br />

Now, having considered the proposals of<br />

the parties, having duly received additional<br />

evidence and heard further arguments after<br />

entry of the consent decree against the RKO<br />

defendants, and having rendered Its opinion<br />

on July 25, 1949, and having filed its findings<br />

of fact and conclusions of law in accordance<br />

with said opinion:<br />


AND DECREED that the decree heretofore<br />

entered by this court on December 31, 1946<br />

is<br />

hereby amended to read as follows:<br />

1. The findings of fact and conclusions of<br />

law heretofore made are superseded by the<br />

findings and conclusions now entered in support<br />

of this decree.<br />

2. The complaint is dismissed as to all<br />

claims made against the defendants herein<br />

based upon their acts as producers, whether<br />

as individuals or in conjunction with others.<br />

II<br />

Each of the defendant distributors, Loew's,<br />

Incorporated; Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.;<br />

Warner Bros. Pictures Distributing Corporation<br />

(formerly known as Vitagraph, Inc.)<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation,<br />

and the successors of each of them (including<br />

but not limited to companies resulting<br />

from divorcement), and any and all individuals<br />

who act in behalf of any thereof<br />

with respect to the matters enjoined, and<br />

each corporation in which said defendants<br />

or any of them own a direct or indirect stock<br />

interest of more than fifty per cent, is hereby<br />

enjoined:<br />

1. From granting aiiy license in which<br />

minimum prices for admission to a theatre<br />

are fixed by the parties, either in writing or<br />

through a committee, or through arbitration,<br />

or upon the happening of any event or<br />

in any manner or by any means.<br />

2. Prom agreeing with each other or with<br />

any exhibitors or distributors to maintain<br />

a system of clearances; the term "clearances"<br />

as used herein meaning the period<br />

of time stipulated in license contracts which<br />

must elapse between runs of the same feature<br />

within a particular area or in specified<br />

theatres.<br />

3. Prom granting any clearance between<br />

theatres not in substantial competition.<br />

4. From granting or enforcing any clearance<br />

against theatres in substantial competition<br />

with the theatre receiving tlie license<br />

for exhibition in excess of what is reasonably<br />

necessary to protect the licensee in the run<br />

granted. Whenever any clearance provision<br />

is attacked as not legal under the provisions<br />

of this decree, the burden shall be upon the<br />

distributor to sustain the legality thereof.<br />

5. From further performing any existing<br />

franchise to which it is a party and from<br />

making any franchises in the future, except<br />

for the purpose of enabling an independent<br />

exhibitor to operate a theatre in competition<br />

with a theatre affiliated with a defendant<br />

or with theatres in new circuits<br />

which may be formed as a result of divorcement.<br />

The term "franciiise" as used herein<br />

means a licensing agreement or series of<br />

licensing agreements, entered into as a part<br />

of the same transaction, in effect for more<br />

than one motion picture season and covering<br />

the exhibition of pictures released by one<br />

distributor during the entire period of agreement.<br />

6. From making or further performing any<br />

formula deal or master agreement to which<br />

it is a party. The term "formula deal" as<br />

used herein means a licensing agreement with<br />

a circuit of theatres in which the license<br />

fee of a given feature is measured for the<br />

theatres covered by the agreement by a<br />

specified percentage of the feature's national<br />

gross. The term "master agreement" means<br />

a licensing agreement, also known as a<br />

"blanket deal," covering the exhibition of<br />

features in a number of theatres usually<br />

comprising a circuit.<br />

7. From performing or entering into any<br />

license in which the right to exhibit one<br />

feature is conditioned upon the licensee's<br />

taking one or more other features. To the<br />

extent that any of the features have not<br />

been trade shown prior to the granting of<br />

the license for more than a single feature,<br />

the licensee shall be given by the licensor<br />

the right to reject twenty per cent of such<br />

features not trade shown prior to the granting<br />

of the license, such right of rejection<br />

to be exercised in the order of release within<br />

ten days after there has been an opportunity<br />

afforded to the licensee to inspect the feature.<br />

8. From licensing any feature for exhibition<br />

upon any run in any theatre in any<br />

other manner than that each license shall<br />

be offered and taken theatre by theatre, solely<br />

upon the merits and without discrimination<br />

in favor of affiliated theatres, circuit theatres<br />

or others.<br />

in<br />

Each of the defendant exhibitors, Loew's<br />

Incorporated; Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.;<br />

Warner Bros. Circuit Management Corporation;<br />

Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation;<br />

and National Theatres Corporation;<br />

and the successors of each of them (including<br />

but not limited to companies resulting<br />

from divorcement), and any and all individuals<br />

who act in behalf of any thereof<br />

with respect to the matters enjoined, and<br />

each corporation in which said defendants<br />

or any of them own a direct or indirect stock<br />

interest of more than fifty per cent, is hereby<br />

enjoined and restrained:<br />

1. From performing or enforcing agreements,<br />

if any, referred to in Paragraphs 5<br />

and 6 of the foregoing Section II hereof to<br />

which it may be a party.<br />

2. From making or continuing to perform<br />

pooling agreements whereby given theatres<br />

of two or more exhibitors normally in competition<br />

are operated as a unit or whereby<br />

the business policies of such exhibitors are<br />

collectively determined by a joint committee<br />

or by one of the exhibitors or whereby profits<br />

of the "pooled" theatres are divided among<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 XI.

the owners according to prearranged percentages.<br />

3. From making or continuing to perform<br />

agreements that the parties may not acquire<br />

other theatres in a competitive area where<br />

a pool operates without first offering them<br />

for inclusion in the pool.<br />

4. From making or continuing leases of<br />

theatres under which it leases any of its theatres<br />

to another defendant or to an independent<br />

operating a theatre in the same<br />

competitive area in return for a share in the<br />

profits.<br />

5. From continuing to own or acquiring<br />

any beneficial interests in any theatre,<br />

whether in fee or in shares of stock or<br />

otherwise, in conjunction with another defendant,<br />

or with any company resulting from<br />

divorcements provided for in decrees entered<br />

in this cause.<br />

6. From acquiring a beneficial interest in<br />

any additional theatre unless the acquiring<br />

company shall show to the satisfaction of<br />

the court, and the court shall first find, that<br />

such acquisition will not unduly restrain<br />

competition in the exhibition of feature motion<br />

pictures, provided, however, that the<br />

acquisition of a theatre as a replacement for<br />

a theatre, held or acquired in conformity<br />

with this decree, which may be lost through<br />

physical destruction, conversion to nontheatrical<br />

purposes, disposition (other than<br />

the disposition of a theatre in compliance<br />

with this decree) or expiration or cancellation<br />

of the lease under which such theatre<br />

is held, shall not be deemed to be the acquisition<br />

of an additional theatre.<br />

7. From operating, booking, or buying features<br />

for any of its theatres through any<br />

agent who is known by it to be also acting<br />

in such manner for any other exhibitor, independent<br />

or affiliate.<br />

rv<br />

2. Within one year from the entry of this<br />

decree the Government and each of the defendant<br />

exhibitors named in Section III of<br />

this decree shall submit respectively such<br />

plans for divestiture of theatre interests,<br />

other than those heretofore ordered to be<br />

divested, which they believe to be adequate<br />

to satisfy the requirements of the Supreme<br />

Court decision herein with respect to such<br />

divestiture. Upon the filing of such a plan<br />

the Government and the affected defendant<br />

shall have six months within which to file<br />

objections thereto and propose amended or<br />

alternative plans for accomplishing the same<br />

result. Such further proceedings with respect<br />

to such plans may then be had as the<br />

court may then order.<br />

3. No defendant distributor named in Section<br />

n of this decree, and no distributor<br />

company resulting from the divorcement ordered<br />

herein, shall engage in the exhibition<br />

business; and no defendant exhibitor named<br />

in Section ni of this decree, and no exhibitor<br />

company resulting from the divorcement<br />

ordered herein, shall engage in the<br />

distribution business, except that permission<br />

to a distributor company resulting from divorcement<br />

to engage in the exhibition business<br />

or to an exhibitor company resulting<br />

from divorcement to engage in the distribution<br />

business may be granted by the court<br />

upon notice to the United States and upon<br />

a showing that any such engagement shall<br />

not unreasonably restrain competition in the<br />

distribution or exhibition of motion pictures.<br />

4. No exhibitor company resulting from<br />

the divorcement ordered herein shall acquire<br />

directly or indirectly any interest in any theatre<br />

divested by any other defendant pursuant<br />

to any plan ordered under Paragraph 2<br />

of Section IV hereof or pursuant to Paragraph<br />

C 1 of Section II of the Consent Judgment<br />

as to the Paramount defendants entered<br />

March 3, 1949.<br />

Nothing contained in this decree shall be<br />

construed to limit, in any way whatsoever,<br />

the right of each major defendant bound by<br />

this decree, during the three years allowed<br />

for the completion of the plan of reorganization<br />

provided for in Section IV, to license,<br />

or in any way to provide for, the exhibition<br />

of any or all the motion pictures which it<br />

may at any time distribute, in such manner,<br />

and upon such terms, and subject to such<br />

conditions as may be satisfactory to it, in<br />

any theatre in which such defendant has a<br />

proprietary interest, either directly or through<br />

subsidiaries.<br />

1. Within sLx months from the entry of<br />

this decree each of the major defendants<br />

named in Sections II and III of this decree<br />

•shall submit a plan for the ultimate separation<br />

of its distribution and production business<br />

from its exhibition business. Upon the<br />

filing of such a plan, the Government shall<br />

VI<br />

have three months within which to file objections<br />

thereto and propose amended or altion<br />

n of this decree and any others who<br />

The defendant distributors named in Secternative<br />

plans for accomplishing the same are willing to file with the American Arbitration<br />

Association their consent to abide<br />

result. Such further proceedings with respect<br />

to such plans as the court may then by the rules of arbitration and to perform<br />

order shall then be had. Such plans shall, in the awards of arbitrators, are hereby authorized<br />

to set up an arbitration system<br />

any event, provide for the completion of such<br />

separation within three years from the date with an accompanying Appeal Board which<br />

of the entry of this decree.<br />

will become effective as soon as it may be<br />

organized, upon terms to be settled by the<br />

court upon notice to the parties to this<br />

action.<br />

VII<br />

The provisions of the existing consent decree<br />

are hereby declared to be of no further<br />

force or effect, except in so far as may be<br />

necessary to conclude arbitration proceedings<br />

now pending and to liquidate in an orderly<br />

manner the financial obligations of the defendants<br />

and the American Arbitration Association,<br />

incurred in the establishment of<br />

the consent decree arbitration systems.<br />

Existing awards and those made pursuant to<br />

pending proceedings shaU continue to be<br />

enforceable.<br />

vni<br />

1. For the purpose of securing compUance<br />

with this decree, and for no other purpose,<br />

duly authorized representatives of the Department<br />

of Justice shall, on written request<br />

of the Attorney General or an Assistant<br />

Attorney General, and on notice to<br />

any defendant bound by this decree, reasonable<br />

as to time and subject matter, made<br />

to such defendant at its principal office, and<br />

subject to any legally recognized privilege<br />

(a) be permitted reasonable access, during<br />

the office hours of such defendant, to all<br />

books, ledgers, accounts, correspondence,<br />

memoranda and other records and documents<br />

in the possession or under the control of<br />

such defendant, relating to any of the matters<br />

contained in this decree, and that during<br />

the times that the plaintiff shall desire<br />

such access, counsel for such defendant may<br />

be present, and Cb) subject to the reasonable<br />

convenience of such defendant, and<br />

without restraint or interference from it, be<br />

permitted to interview its officers or employees<br />

regarding any such matters, at which<br />

interviews counsel for the officer or employee<br />

interviewed and counsel for such defendant<br />

may be present. For the purpose of securing<br />

compliance with this decree any defendant<br />

upon the written request of the Attorney<br />

General, or an Assistant Attorney General,<br />

shall submit such reports with respect to any<br />

of the matters contained in this decree as<br />

from time to time may be necessary for the<br />

purpose of enforcement of this decree.<br />

2. Information obtained pursuant to the<br />

provisions of this Section shall not be divulged<br />

by any representative of the Department<br />

of Justice to any person other than a<br />

duly authorized representative of the Department<br />

of Justice, except in the course of<br />

legal proceedings to which the United States<br />

is<br />

a party, or as otherwise required by law.<br />

IX<br />

Jurisdiction of this cause is retained for<br />

the purpose of enabling any of the parties<br />

to this decree, and no others, to apply to the<br />

coiu-t at any time for such orders or direction<br />

as may be necessary or appropriate for<br />

the construction, modification, or carrying<br />

out of the same, for the enforcement of<br />

compliance therewith, and for the punishment<br />

of violations thereof, or for other or<br />

further relief.<br />

Dated: February 8, 1950.<br />


United States Circuit Judge<br />


United States District Judge<br />


United States District Judge<br />

xn. BOXOmCE<br />

:: February 11, 1950

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^-G-M's trade shovN^s<br />

>f RED SKELTON's<br />

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Can't Rely on Decisions<br />

Alone, He Says, to Win<br />

Free Market Fight<br />

WASHINGTON—Allied Board Chairman<br />

A. F. Myers warned this week that any<br />

relaxation of exhibitor vigilance at this<br />

stage of the battle for an open market<br />

for film "would be to snatch defeat from<br />

the jaws of victory." In his annual report<br />

to the Allied board, which met here<br />

Pi-iday and Saturday, he said the future<br />

is bright for exhibitors but that it<br />

would be folly to sit back and rely upon<br />

court decisions and other legal documents.<br />

Stressing the importance of Allied pressure<br />

for divorcement, he called for continued<br />

strong exhibitor organization as the surest<br />

safeguard for the gains made thus far. In<br />

general, lie was complimentary to the government<br />

in discussing the settlements<br />

achieved, but he did criticize the consent<br />

settlement in the Schine case.<br />


The conclusion of separate consent decrees<br />

in no way relieves the signatory parties<br />

from having the evidence heretofore brought<br />

out in the case used against them in federal<br />

court, Myers stressed. "The entry of<br />

separate decrees may make it a little awkward<br />

for private litigants desiring to use<br />

them as evidence, but since they could not<br />

have been entered but for the joint conspiracy,<br />

and since proof in support of the<br />

decrees was received both at the trial and<br />

after the Supreme Court's mandate had come<br />

down, it is not now seen how this maneuver<br />

can impair their effectiveness."<br />

Already, said Myers, "with their films no<br />

longer moving in fixed channels, the distributors<br />

are beginning to revive the lost<br />

art of salesmanship. The independent exhibitors<br />

are receiving more consideration than<br />

they have in many years, and the end is not<br />

in sight. We look forward with confidence<br />

to the day when the playing time on every<br />

screen will be at least as important to the<br />

distributor with a picture to sell as that particular<br />

feature is to the exhibitor."<br />

The Allied chairman .said the consent decrees<br />

entered in the Paramount and Schine<br />

cases could more properly be called "litigated<br />

decrees," since they follow court decisions.<br />

He recalled that he had in the past<br />

been critical of the widespread use of consent<br />

settlements, but conceded that "to apply<br />

the Supreme Court's doctrine to each<br />

community in which a major circuit operates<br />

would require the taking of much proof and<br />

the expenditure of much time—moreover,<br />

proof may no longer be available—and—the<br />

matter of regional divestiture will have lost<br />

some of its urgency. In the pending cases<br />

all we are entitled to ask is that an aggressive,<br />

bona fide effort be made to require<br />

the divestiture of enough theatres so<br />

\'.:At the segregated circuits will be exposed<br />

'Continued on next page)<br />

Phonevision Real Threat,<br />

Rembusch Tells Board<br />

WASHINGTON—Phonevision was termed<br />

by Allied television Chairman Trueman Rembusch<br />

"the greatest threat to exhibition conceived<br />

to date." Reporting to the Allied<br />

board on the current effect of video on the<br />

film business, Rembusch related that he and<br />

W. A. Carroll had been tremendously impressed<br />

by the possibilities of Phonevision<br />

as they viewed it during a demonstration<br />

in Chicago last month.<br />

The board was told also by President Wilbur<br />

Snaper of Allied of New Jersey that "the<br />

impact of television on the theatre business<br />

is becoming greater as each set is sold."<br />

Referring to the prospects for better TV<br />

programming, Snaper said, "I myself made<br />

a terrible error in judgment when I said if<br />

the worst competition we ever get is old<br />

films we'll be O.K. but now I find people<br />

stay and watch those, too."<br />

Gloomily he added, "television is going to<br />

grow and grow and grow and our customers<br />

are going to go and go and go. Good<br />

pictures alone are not the answer to TV."<br />


Warning of the danger of monopoly in<br />

theatre TV. Rembusch said Allied should join<br />

with other industry groups in asking the<br />

FCC for "suitable" frequencies for theatre<br />

TV. But he made it plain that he does not<br />

consider the microwave bands suggested in<br />

other quarters as suitable, since it would be<br />

extremely difficult and expensive to rural or<br />

even suburban theatres via microwave. He<br />

said the "powers that be in the motion picture<br />

industry" slept on TV until little more<br />

than a year ago, when suddenly they demanded<br />

action from their technicians.<br />

Technicians know that "microwaves are<br />

neither technically suitable nor economically<br />

suitable for general theatre TV," he reported.<br />

Because of coverage problems he said<br />

it would be necessary to have a separate<br />

transmitter for each theatre, with coverage<br />

limited to distances of 25 miles. Vast quantities<br />

of equipment and huge technical staffs<br />

would be required.<br />

"Large metropolitan theatres could use it,<br />

but adoption of microwaves for theatre TV<br />

precludes small rural subrun or suburban<br />

theatres receiving service because of attendant<br />

costs. Microwaves for theatre TV would<br />

mean a TV monopoly for the large affiliated<br />

theatres."<br />

Rembusch said the Zenith Radio Co., promoters<br />

of Phonevision, is ready to run a test<br />

of the system in 300 Chicago homes almost<br />

immediately now that the FCC has given<br />

the green light. The system furnishes programs<br />

to subscribers when they call their<br />

FCC Okays a Test<br />

For Phonevision<br />

WASHINGTON—While Trueman Rembusch,<br />

AUied's TV chairman was reporting<br />

to the Allied board, the FCC announced<br />

formally its approval for the 90-<br />

day test of Phonevision. Two commissioners<br />

who had previously voted to deny<br />

the testing until a general hearing was<br />

held reversed themselves, but Commissioner<br />

Edward M. Webster wrote a vigorous<br />

dissent from his colleagues.<br />

Commissioner Webster said this is the<br />

first step toward possible introduction of<br />

subscription TV and radio and that "such<br />

a momentous change in the American<br />

system of broadcasting" should not be<br />

taken without full hearing. If authorized<br />

on a continuing basis and successful, he<br />

said. "I do not believe that very much<br />

vision is required to see that—the best<br />

evening hours, every day in the week,<br />

will be devoted to subscription television<br />

rather than to free television programming.<br />

"Every television station license will be<br />

clamoring for a subscription television<br />

franchise and will be pounding on the<br />

commission's door for regulation insuring<br />

that will be no discrimination in the<br />

issuance of such franchises or the rates<br />

charged therefor. Television receiver<br />

owners will expect the commission to promulgate<br />

rules which will provide to each<br />

listener a choice of some free television<br />

programs during the best listening hours<br />

and which will insure that the listener<br />

be charged a reasonable and non-discriminatory<br />

fee for viewing television programs."<br />

Webster said the step is so important<br />

that it should perhaps be taken by Congress<br />

rather than by the FCC.<br />

telephone operators and ask for a release so<br />

that the Phonevision program can come in<br />

properly. In return the subscriber is billed<br />

on a monthly basis. Non-subscribers cannot<br />

get the programs because the electronic release<br />

signal is essential.<br />

"Zenith has interested some producers to a<br />

point where top reissues may be supplied for<br />

the test run." He explained that the Zenith<br />

proposal would return 50 per cent of the program<br />

intake to the producer—so that if<br />

50,000 subscribers tuned in for a film the<br />

return to the producer would be $25,000.<br />

12 BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

to, and the public will enjoy, substantial competition<br />

in all situations."<br />

The government has done an effective job,<br />

he wrote, in all instances but the Schine<br />

decree, "which must always rank as one of<br />

the government's poorest bargains." He referred<br />

to "woefully weak provisions for divestiture"<br />

and charged that the government<br />

lawyers had not actually been sufficiently<br />

familiar with the local situations involved in<br />

the Schine settlement.<br />

"It would be a travesty of justice and a<br />

reproach to all concerned if these proceedings<br />

should result merely in enabling the circuits<br />

involved to case of£ a lot of rundown,<br />

unprofitable theatres and to retain all<br />

the efficient, up-to-date ones."<br />


Exhibitors were told that distributors resort<br />

to competitive bidding practices to resolve<br />

competition between two or more independent<br />

exhibitors is absolutely unjustified<br />

"in any existing or prospective decree." What<br />

the court was seeking to wipe out when the<br />

idea of competitive bidding was first advanced,<br />

he said, "Favoritism to the affiliated<br />

circuits and discrimination against the independents.<br />

But the court went too far and<br />

ordered bidding in all competitive situations."<br />

That, Myers said, was the main reason the<br />

competitive bidding system was eliminated<br />

from the New York court's decree. But to<br />

prevent a renewal of this type of discrimination<br />

against which the case originally directed<br />

the New York court included its "antidiscrimination"<br />

clause. The purpose of this<br />

clause, he said was "to prevent discrimination<br />

by permitting independents to compete<br />

with the entrenched monopoly for preferred<br />

runs." It in a way requires competitive bidding.<br />

The Allied chieftain dwelt upon the court's<br />

requirement that licensing of features be on<br />

a "theatre-by-theatre" basis, observing that<br />

"discrimination is inherent in any contest<br />

between an independent exhibitor and a circuit.<br />

So the court ordered, in such a contest,<br />

that the pictures shall be licensed theatre-bytheatre;<br />

i.e., that each theatre shall stand on<br />

its own merits and not absorb merit or<br />

strength from other theatres in the chain."<br />

He also attacked any disposition on the<br />

part of distributors to license films solely on<br />

the basis of which distributor offers the most<br />

money, recalling the Supreme Court opinion<br />

that established business relationships should<br />

not be overturned lightly.<br />

"The sense of all this," he went on, "is that<br />

competitive bidding is merely a weapon by<br />

which an independent exhibitor may battle<br />

the circuits for a place in the sun. Independent<br />

exhibitors should resist to the utmost<br />

all efforts by the distributors to use competitive<br />

bidding as a means of putting one independent<br />

against another, or to disrupt harmonious<br />

competitive situations, merely as<br />

a means of increasing film rentals. Discrimination,<br />

like fraud, is hard to define but we<br />

recognize it when we see it. Even after divorcement<br />

has been effected, there will be a<br />

temptation to continue the old discriminatory<br />

methods of distribution. Independent exhibitors<br />

and their organizations will have to be<br />

alert to detect any hangover of former practices.<br />

This provision will be a pillar of<br />

strength to the independents in their efforts<br />

successfully to compete with the divorced circuits<br />

and the value of the words 'without<br />

discrimination' will become more important<br />

as time wears on."<br />


On the matter of arbitration. Myers al-<br />

Allied Actions<br />

Washington — The Allied board this<br />

week ratified the new COMPO, in the<br />

form outlined by the December meeting.<br />

Approval is with the notation that Allied<br />

surrenders no rights of independent action.<br />

Allied members will be urged by their<br />

board of directors not to show the Ingrid<br />

Bergman film "Stromboli," and a vigorous<br />

protest against its release has been directed<br />

to RKO President Ned E. Depinet.<br />

The Allied board voted Thursday to<br />

employ engineering and legal counsel to<br />

help it prepare for the FCC's theatre television<br />

hearing.<br />

Suggestions that the Allied constitution<br />

be amended to provide for a new post of<br />

vice-president and to reactivate the executive<br />

committee were voted down by<br />

the board.<br />

lowed that despite AUied's longstanding opposition<br />

there might be limited value to arbitration<br />

in clearance cases. He said he is<br />

not sure the distributors are still interested,<br />

but that there might be some point to having<br />

an Allied committee sound out distribution<br />

sentiment toward an inexpensive system of<br />

commercial arbitration for clearance and licensing<br />

disputes.<br />


On the matter of industry public relations,<br />

Myers suggested that in the view of reheadline<br />

stories -about the "private" lives of<br />

big boxoffice attractions that the so-called<br />

Finneran plan to force stars to keep their<br />

lives free of scandal be dusted off and reexamined.<br />

If the industry's "big brass" still<br />

finds it unworkable, he said, "let them produce<br />

a better one."<br />

He said the industry is coiirting disaster if<br />

it continues to ignore "flagrant violations<br />

of the moral code by those it has elevated to<br />

stardom."<br />

Brotherhood Week Drive<br />

Continues Climbing<br />

NEW YORK—All phases of the industry's<br />

effort in behalf of Brotherhood week are<br />

meeting with success, says Ted R. Gamble,<br />

national chairman of the motion picture<br />

division of the National Conference of Christians<br />

and Jews. A record number of branches<br />

have reported 100 per cent participation in<br />

the drive scheduled from February 19 to 26,<br />

he states.<br />

Six more branches have signed up all employes<br />

for membership contributions. They<br />

are: Paramount, Albany; RKO, Des Moines;<br />

Universal-International, Cleveland, and Film<br />

Classics, Chicago.<br />

"While I am very pleased with the results<br />

of the campaign to date," Gamble<br />

stated, "I would like to remind the industry<br />

of the importance of enlisting new members<br />

in the National Conference of Christians<br />

and Jews during Brotherhood Week. If we<br />

can get only ten new members from eacli<br />

theatre in the country as a result of this<br />

drive, we will have made an important contribution<br />

for a worthy fight against bigotry<br />

and racial discrimination," he said.<br />

Unnecessary Bidding<br />

Unsounl Says Levy<br />

SPRINGFIELD, ILL.—Producers are automatically<br />

throwing certain areas into competitive<br />

bidding whenever there is a request<br />

for it, Herman Levy, general counsel of the<br />

Theatre Owners of America, told United Theatre<br />

Owners of Illinois at the convention<br />

here Thursday (9). He said this was unnecessary,<br />

unwarranted and economically unsound.<br />

.<br />

"Further," he continued, "in the absence<br />

of extenuating circumstances, such use of<br />

competitive bidding would appear to be,<br />

prima facie at least, an attempt to obtain<br />

increased film rentals. There are legal and<br />

economically sound ways of providing product<br />

to competing exhibitors without resort<br />

to competitive bidding. These are well known<br />

to production and distribution.<br />

"No company should be willing to sit idly<br />

by watching an exhibitor pay more for film<br />

than his theatre grosses warrant. It is unsound,<br />

illogical and poor business. It may<br />

well result in that company's top pictures<br />

only being sold. The others may go unhid<br />

for—and not because of collusion between<br />

exhibitors, but because the theatres may decide<br />

to do without that product rather than<br />

to get involved in bidding. There is substantial<br />

evidence that this is already happening."<br />

Levy also discussed the Ascap problem.<br />

He said that if producers pay performing<br />

rights fees to Ascap and do not pass the<br />

charges along to exhibitors, everything will<br />

be fine.<br />

If they attempt to pass the charges along<br />

to exhibitors, there will be a "harrowing<br />

howl," he predicted.<br />

Levy's remarks were prompted by the fact<br />

that negotiations between Ascap and the<br />

Department of Justice for a revision of the<br />

1941 consent decree to bring Ascap's operations<br />

into conformity with the Judge Leibell<br />

decision in New York and the Judge Nordbye<br />

decision in Minneapolis are nearing completion.<br />

"At the present time Ascap seems to have<br />

no definite policy," Levy said. "The best<br />

available information is that it is not accepting<br />

payment for performance rights<br />

from exhibition. It has also come to my<br />

attention that production has been, and is,<br />

at the present time, agreeing to pay for performance<br />

rights at se\seral times more than<br />

exhibitors ever paid."<br />

Nat Nathanson Succeeds<br />

Schnitzer in UA Sales<br />

NEW YORK—Nat Nathanson, branch manager<br />

of the United Artists Chicago exchange,<br />

has been named to .succeed the late Edward<br />

M. Schnitzer as eastern and Canadian general<br />

sales manager by Gradwell L. Sears,<br />

president.<br />

Nathanson has been with United Artists<br />

since 1935 when he became a salesman at the<br />

Denver exchange. Two years later, he moved<br />

to the Chicago exchange in a similar po.st<br />

In 1941, Nathanson was named manager of<br />

the Milwaukee office, which he held until<br />

1944, when he returned to Chicago as branch<br />

manager. A year later, he was shifted to San<br />

Francisco, where he also held the post of<br />

branch manager. He returned to Chicago in<br />

1947 as branch manager. He is assistant chief<br />

barker of Chicago Tent No. 26, Variety Club.<br />

BOXOFFICE :; February 11, 1950 13

o/mr<br />

—The Exhibitor<br />

lifHILE IT'S HOT!<br />

!^<br />

EDWARD L. ALPERSON presents<br />

starring<br />

Wi mmmm<br />

•<br />

rod gameiion • marie Windsor<br />

WALLACE JACK LARRY Produced by Directed by<br />

Associate Producer<br />


lay by MAURICE GERAGHTY • Based upon a story bv Frank Grjber • Music by Dimitri Tiomkin • An Alson Production • Released thru Twentieth Century-Fox<br />

lo ^Md^rUZtf^- m^l. 2m ^

—<br />

Protests and Bookings<br />

Race on Stromboli'<br />

NEW YORK—At the weekend it appeared<br />

that a national race was in progress with<br />

RKO on one side trying to roll up as many<br />

bookings as possible for a February 15<br />

opening of "Stromboli." and with clergymen,<br />

civic groups and exhibitors on the<br />

other side trying to roll up national opposition<br />

to the booking of any Ingrid Bergman<br />

films.<br />

Observers agreed that women and the<br />

younger set among moviegoers would be the<br />

judges of Miss Bergman's future as a screen<br />

attraction. Public reactions to escapades of<br />

screen stars is unpredictable, as has been<br />

demonstrated in the Flynn, Mitchum and<br />

other cases.<br />


&ic Johnston, MPAA president, refused to<br />

make any comment in response to a request<br />

from a coast ministerial union that he attempt<br />

to bar "Stromboli" from the screen, and<br />

RKO went ahead with its plan for general<br />

key city openings February 15. This is the<br />

day on which, it is expected, Miss Bergman's<br />

Mexican divorce will become effective.<br />

In order to do this RKO canceled tradeshowings<br />

scheduled for February 14 in some<br />

places and February 15 in others. The sales<br />

department moved swiftly and set the New<br />

York opening for the Criterion Theatre and<br />

38 RKO houses with 300 bookings in other<br />

cities.<br />

In the meantime ministerial associations<br />

were publishing protests, individual clergymen<br />

were expressing themselves from the<br />

pulpit and by means of communications to<br />

newspapers, and columnists were having<br />

field days. From the trade standpoint interest<br />

centered in the decision of Interstate<br />

Circuit of Texas and of other smaller organizations<br />

not to play the film.<br />

Karl Hoblitzelle, president of the Interstate<br />

circuit, which operates more than 175<br />

theatres in Texas, issued a statement in<br />

which he declared that "We regret exceedingly<br />

the unfortunate circumstances and publicity<br />

which surround the picture. Without<br />

having any desire to act as self-appointed<br />

censors, we feel that we would be rendering<br />

our communities a disservice to exhibit<br />

this picture."<br />


In Indiana, TYueman Rembusch, president<br />

of A.ssociated Theatre Owners of Indiana,<br />

recommended that the picture not be played<br />

and J. p. Finneran, author of Allied's socalled<br />

Finneran plan for disciplining of film<br />

stars, announced that he would not book the<br />

picture into any of his 12 theatres.<br />

North Central Allied issued a bulletin in<br />

which it suggested that its members take<br />

newspaper space and radio time to inform<br />

patrons that they will not play the film,<br />

pointing out that if the film is played it<br />

will be the exhibitor who is blamed.<br />

In Ohio, the attorney general handed down<br />

an opinion that the state censor board is<br />

without authority to recall its approval of<br />

"Stromboli," originally given January 30. Dr.<br />

Clyde HLssong, chief state film censor, was<br />

told that there is no legal authority for<br />

the recall of a film because the state cannot<br />

Ban on Ingrid s Films i<br />

Spreading Over U.S. \<br />

ll„-"..lv<br />

:',~^^.:' huUfiiUi Tlieiitrr Cliitin<br />

American Women<br />

!^;u|<br />

Urged to Boycott |<br />

Ingrid's Pictures<br />

^<br />

The above reproduction of newspaper<br />

clippings is indicative of press reaction<br />

to the showing of Ingrid Bergman films.<br />

go into the private lives of characters in the<br />

cast. Dr. Hissong thought he had a legal<br />

right to recall the film although his original<br />

approval indicated there was nothing objectionable<br />

about the film itself.<br />

The Memphis Press- Scimitar editorially<br />

opposed the banning of the picture and other<br />

Bergman films, although the town's wellknown<br />

censor, Lloyd Binford, banned the<br />

film. "If the people want to stay away from<br />

the pictures to rebuke Ingrid Bergman and<br />

Roberto Rossellini for their conduct, they<br />

are free to do so," the newspaper commented.<br />

"But this is not a field for official public<br />

censors to enter. Official banning would tend<br />

to defeat its own purposes. The mere banning<br />

of a picture prejudices many people in<br />

favor of it and tends to heroize those who<br />

made it."<br />

During the week, there also was an attempt<br />

in the Texas legislature to introduce<br />

a resolution seeking to ban the picture in<br />

that state. By a 67-43 vote, the house refused<br />

to take immediate action on the legislation<br />

and referred it to a committee.<br />

Chicago Censor Okays<br />

Showing of Picture<br />

CHICAGO—The Chicago censor board has<br />

approved "Stromboli" for showing at the<br />

Grand Theatre, starting February 15.<br />

Police Captain Harry Fulmer, head of the<br />

board, commented: "It's the board's job to<br />

judge a film on its merits and not worry<br />

about the personal life of the actors. If we<br />

werp going to delve into the past of every<br />

Hollywood actor, we'd be eliminating about<br />

two-thirds of the films."<br />

Guilds Should Enforce<br />

Discipline: Sullivan<br />

SPRINGFIELD, ILL.—The responsbility<br />

for disciplining erring members of the industry<br />

rests with the guilds to which they<br />

belong because producer chastisement is<br />

ineffective, Gael Sullivan, Theatre Owners<br />

of America executive secretary, told<br />

the opening meeting of the annual convention<br />

of the United Theatre Owners<br />

of Illinois. He did not mention any individual<br />

by name.<br />

"Each segment of the industry has its<br />

own guild and its own definite obligation<br />

to its members—actors, directors, technicians<br />

and the others," he said. "Each<br />

guild has the right and the duty of selfdiscipline.<br />

Each guild must work aggressively<br />

to advance the welfare of its worthy,<br />

conscientious members. Each guild<br />

should have the grave responsibility to<br />

discipline those members whom they find<br />

to be fugitives from moral decency and<br />

offenders against good taste. That is<br />

where the real responsibility lies.<br />

"All the codes in creation will not help<br />

unless there is some penalty for flaunting<br />

those codes, and when any members of<br />

the separate guilds run out on their responsibility<br />

to the accepted canons of<br />

good taste and right acting, they should<br />

be answerable to their guilds and disciplined<br />

in line with their public offense<br />

and disciplined also in line with what<br />

that guild considers a public offense."<br />

Sullivan said that "Individual producer<br />

chastisement of any erring star is ineffective<br />

to prevent any star's further employment.<br />

Combined producer chastisement<br />

may well be a violation of the nation's<br />

laws."<br />

Ask Atlanta Court Ruling<br />

On Freedom of Screen<br />

ATLANTA—U.S. Judge Neil Andrews was<br />

asked this week to decide whether motion<br />

pictures come under the freedom of the<br />

press provision of the Constitution.<br />

Samuel I. Rosenman. New York, counsel<br />

for Louis DeRochemont and Film Classics,<br />

producer and distributor of "Lost Boundaries,"<br />

contended that motion pictures are entitled<br />

to the same privileges that newspapers and<br />

other publications receive. Christine Smith,<br />

city censor, and the board of directors of the<br />

Carnegie, through attorney J. M. B. Bloodworth,<br />

argued that films do not come under<br />

the freedom of the press provision and are<br />

subject to community censorship.<br />

Rosenman became nationally known as<br />

personal adviser to the late President Roosevelt.<br />

If Judge Andrews upholds Rosenman's<br />

view, the local board of film censors, and<br />

similar boards throughout the nation, possibly<br />

could be outlawed.<br />

DeRochemont is seeking an injunction<br />

against enforcement by the board of its banning<br />

the showing of the racial film on<br />

ground that it "would adversely affect the<br />

peace, morals and good order" of the city.<br />

The legal arguments involved a 35 -yearold<br />

decision of the Supreme Court in an<br />

Ohio case that motion pictures do not come<br />

under the press freedom clause. Rosenman<br />

argued that the points of the case have been<br />

swept away by the Supreme Court and asked<br />

Judge Andrews to "throw away this last<br />

obstacle."<br />

16 BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

,<br />

Mr. Martin Quigley takes pen in hand...<br />

.he legend, "Darryl F. Zanuck Presents," gains a new<br />

and brilliant lustre from its main-title position in association<br />

with this markedly different kind of motion<br />

picture. In the imposing storehouse of Zanuck productions<br />

there is nothing quite like "Three Came Home."<br />

While stark and realistic at times, it also has moments<br />

of quiet, restrained power that bespeak a harvest of<br />

both talent and experience.<br />

There is a story behind the story. An American<br />

woman, Agnes Newton Keith, born in Oak Park, Illinois,<br />

married a British consular agent and went to live<br />

in North Borneo. She wrote a book telling of her<br />

experiences when she, the lone American, and 79 Europeans<br />

became prisoners of the Japanese in the early<br />

days of the late war.<br />

^<br />

The book became a Book of the Month selection<br />

and gained a large reading public. It was distinctly<br />

out of the usual pattern of motion picture stories and<br />

there was little or no competition for it for screen<br />

purposes. But Zanuck determinedly acquired it and<br />

put in train a long series of preparations which included<br />

the photographing of considerable material in<br />

Borneo.<br />

The production which eventually ripened out of<br />

long and careful preparation is notable in its human<br />

that audiences long remember. In addition to the efforts<br />

by the principals two effective performances are contributed<br />

by Patric Knowles and Florence Desmond.<br />

The story in which Claudette Colbert plays the real<br />

life role of the author of the book is depicted untheatrically<br />

and with a great deal of genuineness. The<br />

Japanese captors are not made out as melodramatic<br />

fiends. They are dealt with much more severely by<br />

means of an authentic interpretation of the true facts<br />

of their behavior. Hayakawa gives a vivid portrayal<br />

of the Japanese militarist's confusion of loyalties,<br />

hatreds and devotions.<br />

There is an inspiring example of high courage in<br />

the manner in which the Colbert character and the<br />

Europeans meet the terror, torment and privation of<br />

the three years during which they are the captives of<br />

the oriental horde that once so savagely swept through<br />

the South Pacific.<br />

"Three Came Home" seems destined to make a<br />

sharp impress upon audiences — and upon current<br />

screen history as well.<br />

"^/^ also appeared as a<br />

Reader's Digest Feature, Mr. Quigley.<br />

impact. While studiously minding its own business in<br />

telling its story it becomes incidentally a striking argument<br />

against war and the inhumanities that war breeds.<br />

Two of the acting performances, by Claudette Colbert<br />

and the veteran Sessue Hayakawa, are of Academy<br />

award calibre. Nunnally Johnson makes distinguished<br />

contributions as the producer and the writer. The di^<br />

rection by Jean Negulesco is sharp, sensitive and<br />

adds up to many moments that are of the stuff<br />

World Premiere, February 20th, Astor Theatre, New York

—<br />

ilwaukee Suit Brings<br />

$1295,000 Verdict<br />

MILWAUKEE—The Towne Theatre<br />

here,<br />

owned by C. J. Pappas and his brother-inlaw<br />

Andrew M. Spheeris, was awarded damages<br />

of $1,295,000 in its antitrust suit against<br />

six major distributors and the two Warner<br />

Bros, theatre operating concerns.<br />

The decision of U.S. Judge John P. Barnes,<br />

handed down last week in Chicago, may have<br />

far-reaching effects on the clearance arrangement<br />

in Milwaukee, comparable to that<br />

which occurred in Chicago as a result of the<br />

Jack.son Park Theatre verdict.<br />

Defendants in the Towne case are Loew's,<br />

Inc.. Paramount Pictures Corp.. RKO, 20th<br />

Century-Fox, Warner Bros. Distributing<br />

Corp., Columbia, Warner Circuit<br />

ment Corp. and Warner Theatres.<br />

Manage-<br />



Judge Barnes also granted an injunction<br />

prohibiting the defendants from "further<br />

conspiracy to deprive" the Towne of first<br />

run pictures. The judge did not rule, however,<br />

on the Towne's petition that the motion<br />

picture companies be forced to divest<br />

themselves of their theatre ownership. An<br />

attache in the judge's office said a ruling<br />

might be made on that point later.<br />

In addition to the damages, the judge<br />

ruled that the Towne should be paid costs<br />

of its suit and attorney fees. Pappas and<br />

Spheeris said these costs would "run into<br />

.several hundred thousand dollars."<br />

B. P. Burnham, Chicago, counsel for Loew's,<br />

RKO and Columbia, indicated the verdict<br />

would be appealed.<br />

The attorney for the Towne Corp. was<br />

Thomas C. McConnell of Chicago, the same<br />

lawyer who broke the old Chicago clearance<br />

system in 1945 with a victory in the Jackson<br />

Park case.<br />

Commenting that no exhibitor could successfully<br />

operate a first run theatre in Milwaukee<br />

without "reasonable access" to the<br />

product of the defendant distributors, Judge<br />

Barnes gave the following summary:<br />


In July 1930, the defendant distributors<br />

made an agreement fixing the designation<br />

of first run theatres and clearances for runs<br />

of pictures. In July 1933, uniform zoning and<br />

clearance schedules were drafted for all motion<br />

picture theatres in Milwaukee zones and<br />

subzones.<br />

Subsequent to June 11, 1946, and pursuant<br />

to an opinion of the statutory court in New<br />

York they removed from their licensing<br />

agreement provisions fixing minimum admission<br />

prices. However, they directed branch<br />

managers to watch reductions in prices and<br />

advise the home office of their effects on<br />

theatres.<br />

Each chain also maintained that it was<br />

able to refuse pictures if uniform prices and<br />

clearance schedules were not maintained.<br />

As a result, the Towne was prevented from<br />

buying first run pictures.<br />

The purpose of the system established<br />

July 28, 1933, and carried on subsequent to<br />

June 11, 1946. was a combination and conspiracy<br />

to restrain trade, the judge held.<br />

On April 3, 1946, the Towne Corp. started<br />

to negotiate for the old Miller Theatre. Be-<br />

Towne Theatre, Milwaukee<br />

tween April 3 and April 18, the Towne tried<br />

to get first run pictures and was told that<br />

the Miller was a second run house and<br />

not entitled to first run pictures.<br />

On Aug. 15, 1946, the Miller Theatre was<br />

closed and the Towne Corp. remodeled it at a<br />

cost of $200,000. It reopened December 26,<br />

as the Towne Theatre. The Towne again<br />

asked the defendants for first run pictures<br />

and was refused.<br />

With the exception of a smaller number<br />

of seats, the theatre is comparable to other<br />

first run theatres in Milwaukee, and, the<br />

judge held, the number of seats was not important<br />

to the case. If they could have obtained<br />

first run pictures, without restraints,<br />

they could have grossed as much as other<br />

theatres, he held.<br />

Nevertheless, Judge Barnes ruled, the defendants<br />

knowingly entered into their conspiracy<br />

to restrain trade.<br />


The case was tried for six weeks last fall<br />

and winter and the judge took it under advisement.<br />

The Towne originally asked triple<br />

damages totaling $1,050,000. but Judge Barnes<br />

set damages at $431,959.42. totaling $1,295,-<br />

873.26 under the triple damage provisions of<br />

the law. Court attaches in Chicago said the<br />

judge based his decision on what the Towne<br />

might have grossed but did not.<br />

Milwaukee's leading theatremen in charge<br />

of exchanges here, testified. In his closing<br />

arguments, McConnell said the case was<br />

unique in one respect.<br />

"The ordinary conspiracy case," he said,<br />

"is established by inference and circumstantial<br />

evidence. Here we have produced direct<br />

evidence."<br />

Testimony during the trial frequently alluded<br />

to the "Wisconsin plan." This plan,<br />

according to testimony, was an agreement between<br />

Milwaukee movie distributors to allocate<br />

first run features and to set minimum<br />

admission prices.<br />

To Handle 'Francis' Promotion<br />

NEW YORK—Benjamin H. Serkowich has<br />

been engaged by Universal-International for<br />

special promotions on "Francis." He will work<br />

on the New York and other key city campaigns.<br />

Ask SIMPP Support<br />

In Fight on Decree<br />

LOS ANGELES—Charging a new form of<br />

monopoly in the motion picture industry<br />

"monopoly by nepotism"—the Independent<br />

Theatre Owners of Southern California and<br />

Arizona came out swinging in round two of<br />

its campaign of protest against the reportedly<br />

impending consent decree on behalf of 20th<br />

Century-Fox, whereunder Charles P. Skouras<br />

would be permitted to remain in control of<br />

National Theatres and its subsidiaries, while<br />

Spyros Skouras would continue as president<br />

of 20th Century-Fox.<br />

In a telegram directed to Ellis Arnall, president<br />

of the Society of Independent Motion<br />

Picture Producers, currently in New York, the<br />

ITO—through its general counsel, Fred<br />

Weller—sought SIMPP aid by calling for a<br />

united protest to the Department of Justice<br />

against divorcement consent decrees under<br />

U.S. vs. Paramount, which Weller contended<br />

would permit "the Skouras brothers—and<br />

other 'brothers' within the Big Five—to divide<br />

between themselves major motion pictui-e<br />

exhibition and distribution production interests."<br />

A few days earlier the ITO had protested<br />

the reported 20th Century-Fox decree in a<br />

telegram to Howard McGrath, U.S. attorney<br />

general, and Herbert Bergson, assistant attorney<br />

general in charge of the antitrust division.<br />

McGrath and Bergson were urged to<br />

give the matter their "earnest reconsideration"<br />

and were informed that the reports were<br />

"a severe shock to independent theatre<br />

owners."<br />

The ITO's telegram to Arnall charged that<br />

if the "Skourases, Warners, Balabans,<br />

Schencks and Loews were enabled to divide<br />

their respective companies' exhibition and<br />

distribution-production activities between<br />

them, there will result a series of monopolies<br />

out of reach of existing laws because they<br />

are, presumably, based upon love and affection,<br />

brother for brother."<br />

The communique attacked the "baleful effects<br />

of nepotism in Hollywood production<br />

organizations" and warned that the alleged<br />

"monopoly by nepotism" w^ould "gravely<br />

jeopardize independent producers as well as<br />

independent theatre owners."<br />

Ass'n of M. P. Producers<br />

Re-Elects All Officers<br />

HOLLYWOOD—All officers of the Ass'n<br />

of Motion Picture Producers were re-elected<br />

to serve through 1950 at the organization's<br />

annual meeting. At the helm are Eric Johnston,<br />

president: Y. Frank Freeman, board<br />

chairman: Charles S. Boren, vice-president<br />

in charge of industrial relations; B. B. Kahane<br />

and Louis K. Sidney, vice-presidents,<br />

and James S. Howie, secretary-treasurer.<br />

Two changes were made in board membership.<br />

Gordon E. Youngman replaces Leon<br />

Goldberg, for RKO Radio, and Robert Newman<br />

replaces Allen Wilson for Republic.<br />

20th-Fox Names 2 Judges<br />

NEW YORK—Ted Gamble, head of Gamble<br />

Enterprises and past Theatre Owners of<br />

America board chairman, and Reba Schwartz<br />

of the Capitol Theatre, Dover, Del., have<br />

joined Trueman Rembusch in accepting the<br />

invitation of 20th Century-Fox to judge the<br />

national "Mother Didn't Tell Me" contest.<br />

18<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

I<br />

<<br />

'<br />

U-l Campaigns to Sell<br />

The Public on a Mule<br />

—<br />

By J. M. JERAITLD<br />

NEW YORK—How do you make the American<br />

public want to see a mule?<br />

Answer that question blithely—and effectively,<br />

of course—and you can qualify as an<br />

expert merchandiser.<br />

How do you make the American public<br />

want to see a talking mule on the screen?<br />

Answer this one so that the advertising<br />

researchers will start talking about "wantto-see"<br />

ratios and "penetration" and you will<br />

really be going places as an answer man.<br />

Mules are not noted for their beauty, or<br />

their spirit. No mule ever appeared in a<br />

competitive exhibition. Usually they pull<br />

loads or carry them on their backs. At times<br />

they are obstinate—even mean. When a mule<br />

lays his ears back and lets his heels fly<br />

it's just as well if the target isn't within<br />

to see the picture and to cogitate. (That's<br />

what they do before coming up with ideas.)<br />

Finally, it was decided to show "Francis"<br />

(the quotes indicate the picture, not the mule)<br />

to as many moulders of thought as possible<br />

and to hold sneak previews in key centers<br />

for exhibitors. These were so numerous they<br />

broke the record set in "The Egg and I"<br />

campaign.<br />

Then it was agreed that the picture should<br />

be shown to the army in Germany. This<br />

was done with the help of the Air Force,<br />

which flew Jackie Coogan. Yvonne DeCarlo,<br />

Patricia Medina, Louis Andrews, Leslye Banning,<br />

Donald O'Connor and Peggy Castle,<br />

along with a number of correspondents, to<br />

Germany for personal appearances. Louella<br />

Parsons broadcasted from Germany to this<br />

country. Showings were put on in Frankfurt,<br />

Erding, Berlin, Purstenfeldbruch, Neuberg<br />

and Landsberg.<br />

range.<br />

Up to late September no mule ever jabbed<br />

at stuffed shirts, or punctured balloons, or<br />

TN the meantime the radio campaign gained<br />

kidded an army officer, or said all the things<br />

momentum in this country. Art Linkletter's<br />

"People Are Funny" program had a<br />

that a lot of GIs wanted to say while making<br />

the Asiatic jungles safe for monkeys and<br />

special contestant on the trip. Three successive<br />

ABC network shows plugged "Francis"<br />

unsafe for Japs.<br />

David Lipton, director of publicity and advertising<br />

for Universal-International, and<br />

two Sundays. Walter Winchell reported that<br />

Fred Allen had described the picture as the<br />

his aides were confronted by this mule problem.<br />

Simply telling people that Francis<br />

funniest he had ever seen. Allen remarked<br />

that it had been a tossup between Jack<br />

spelled with an I—was a talking mule, they<br />

Benny and Francis as to who should get<br />

figured, would be something like saying the<br />

the lead in the film, and "he was happy<br />

Empire State building tower had chromium<br />

that the jackass with talent had won."<br />

trimmings. The natural answer to that would<br />

The American premiere was held February<br />

be: "What of it?"<br />

3 at New Orleans, where David Stern, author<br />

Pictures need "names" and Francis was<br />

of the story, who also is publisher of the<br />

well, just a cognomen.<br />

New Orleans Item, resides. Tlie Crescent<br />

They went to work on "Francis" and before<br />

the beginning of February every im-<br />

City populace stopped chuckling the following<br />

weekend.<br />

portant radio commentator and hundreds of<br />

The slow buildup to this premiere was<br />

exhibitors had described "Francis" as the<br />

elaborate. Newsfiapermen received Muletide<br />

funniest picture they had ever seen. More<br />

greetings at Christmas. They received Muleimportant,<br />

from the trade viewpoint, William<br />

O-Grams before the German showing. They<br />

A. Scully, vice-president in charge of sales,<br />

received mule-shoe paperweights to hold<br />

was selling the picture on percentage.<br />

down the flow of publicity releases. Four<br />

Francis went on tour. Everywhere crowds<br />

of them would have been more effective.<br />

gathered to watch him flick an ear and to<br />

U.S. Attorney General J. Howard Mcwait<br />

for a wisecrack, but Fi'ancis was taciturn.<br />

Grath was host at a screening in the Academia<br />

Theatre of the MPAA in Washington.<br />

Let's go back to the start of the campaign.<br />

In September Lipton summoned the<br />

Even the Republicans liked the Democratic<br />

trademark.<br />

east and west coast ad staffs to the coast<br />

The American War Correspondents Ass'n<br />

Francis at the world premiere in New saw the film at the annual awards dinner<br />

Orleans, where the "star" participated in in the Hotel Pierre, New York, with many<br />

a March of Dimes campaign. The mule army and navy officers present. It is being<br />

will get to as many cities as possible as shown at all army installations in the U.S.<br />

part of the exploitation for the film. Members of the Washington press corps<br />

saw the film at the National Press club.<br />

New York press and radio representatives<br />

attended a screening at the Museum of<br />

Modern Art.<br />

Francis may need vitamins before he gets •<br />

back to his corral; the campaign has already<br />

had them.<br />

r-<br />

The hilarious talc of<br />

a Talking Army Mule<br />

...and a dumb 2nd Looic<br />

who darn<br />

wrecked the<br />

U. S. Army, gfe ^^ j4 TW>^^-<br />

\<br />

7<br />



• ZASU PITTS<br />

•<br />


^'i^to?'<br />

and "FVanciS" The-mtmsuml<br />

o ®

4ST,Wf<br />


m;'iL-{OiI:Ii[i<br />

»h n n maiiiii<br />

'Gone With The Wind' that promises to<br />

gross more than that record grosser."<br />


Please do not use ANY previous ppi<br />

measuring rod for what Paramoui<br />

sensational grosses now being re<br />

25 key engagements clearly indiae<br />

money attraction like<br />

CECIL B. De|||<br />

am$on<br />

I<br />

BROTHERHOOD WEEK— February 19-26.<br />

Brotherhood—for Peace and Freedom.<br />

Color byE<br />

Mille s SAMSON AND DELILAH • -• Hedy Lamair-Vi<br />

uiur by TECHNICOLOR • Produced and Directed by Cecil B DeMille • scr.tnpi.r by !.>•« l toky ir Fr«di<br />


.<br />

ture - however great - as a<br />

s greatest can do for you. The<br />

rded at every one of its first<br />

that there has never been a<br />

I LIE'S Paramount Masterpiece .<br />


Tell<br />

Your Congretiman To Vole<br />

To Repeol The Movie Ton<br />

Jijr<br />

Mature -George Sanders -Angela Lansbury • Henry Wilcoxon<br />

Prom orlglnBl triatminti by Harold Lamb and Vladimir Jabotlnaky<br />

• Baaad upon Iha hlalory oi Samaon and Dalllah In tha Holy Bibia, ludgaa 13-16

, and<br />

^^He^tcutcC S(^^€*tt4^<br />

Petitions Roll In<br />

rVEN in the present early stages of the<br />

ticket tax fight petitions are being<br />

signed by the hundreds of thousands and<br />

a second printing of several million has<br />

been made. They will be on their way to<br />

congressmen and senators in every district<br />

before long, tied in neat packages as fast<br />

as they come along.<br />

Already a number of congressmen have<br />

gone on record in writing in favor of outright<br />

repeal of the ticket tax. The weak<br />

link in the chain is in the house ways and<br />

means committee. Some of the Republican<br />

members favor repeal, but the Democratic<br />

members who feel called upon to support<br />

the administration tax policy are noncommittal.<br />

Some of them say their votes<br />

will be conditioned on finding substitute<br />

tax sources before the excise taxes are<br />

discarded.<br />

The campaign is gathering speed. Nothing<br />

like it has been attempted before. The<br />

nearest approach to the present technique<br />

was put on several weeks ago in<br />

Yonkers where a united protest from<br />

theatregoers was effective in two days.<br />

It is obvious that theatre patrons are<br />

all for repeal. If exhibitors persist in their<br />

efforts and do not become over-confident,<br />

the chances are good for action in Congress.<br />

In several cities newspapers have joined<br />

in the campaign by giving editorial support.<br />

The Daily Mirror in New York was<br />

the first. No exhibitor should fail to present<br />

his arguments to his local editor.<br />

We Stand Corrected<br />

JN THE January 14 issue of BOXOFFICE<br />

we stated in this column that the 1947<br />

Pennsylvania law permitting municipalities<br />

to tax a variety of things, including<br />

admissions, went through "without notice."<br />

R. F. Klingensmith, western Pennsylvania<br />

correspondent for BOXOFFICE,<br />

challenges this statement. He writes:<br />

"I want it remembered that Fred J.<br />

Herrington, veteran secretary of Allied<br />

MPTO of Western Pennsylvania, fought<br />

this bill every paragraph of the way for<br />

weeks, by personal interviews and contacts,<br />

telephone messages throughout the<br />

state, bulletins, telegrams. He pleaded for<br />

a uniform measure iwhen it became obvious<br />

the bill<br />

><br />

would pass he pleaded<br />

for a limit, as he visualized some political<br />

subdivisions going hog-wild with<br />

their new power of taxation (which is the<br />

power to destroy!. That happened, of<br />

course.<br />

"In 1949 the Permsylvania general assembly<br />

had to do just that, limit the<br />

total admission tax in any political subdivision<br />

to 10 per cent. This nullified the<br />

effectiveness of any ordinance or resolution<br />

which called for more than 10 per<br />

cent, or any measure which affixed 'or<br />

fraction thereof.'<br />

"That's what he fought for in 1947. He<br />

certainly brought the facts before exhibitors<br />

and other business groups. They<br />


were apathetic. Now they are hurt—very<br />

much so."<br />

We are glad to give Herrington full<br />

credit for his single-handed fight. Now<br />

that the results of the general apathy are<br />

known, it is to be hoped that future efforts<br />

of leaders like Herrington wiU receive<br />

general support.<br />

MPAA Restores Funds<br />

THE Motion Picture Ass'n of America decision<br />

to restore financial support for<br />

the annual award of Oscars by the Academy<br />

of Motion Picture Ai'ts and Sciences<br />

will be generally approved. The decision<br />

will disarm those outside critics who have<br />

been suggesting that the withdrawal of<br />

funds was due to the award to "Hamlet,"<br />

a British picture. It will help the industry<br />

effort to unite behind the Council of Motion<br />

Picture Organizations in an overall<br />

public relations program.<br />

If those producers who have been rushing<br />

pictures into a one-theatre showing on<br />

the coast simply for the purpose of qualifying<br />

will refrain from the practice, there<br />

will be better feeling all around.<br />

The publicity value of the awards is<br />

enormous.<br />

Black Plague<br />

JNTRIGUING caption, eh what? Leo F.<br />

Wolcott, chairman of the board of Allied<br />

of Iowa and Nebraska and at the same<br />

time author of some of our favorite literature,<br />

used it in the January 7 bulletin.<br />

Says Leo: "When you get a disease you<br />

attempt to get at the source of the trouble.<br />

Well, the black plague of the show business<br />

is auditing. What is the source of<br />

this dreaded disease? Nothing but percentage.<br />

It is very easy at this time of the<br />

year, a few bad grosses, a few bad days<br />

at below zero weather, not a handful of<br />

people in your theatre, and you get to<br />

thinking maybe percentage is OK. Just<br />

remember, if you don't want the black<br />

plague, do not sign percentage 'contracts.' "<br />

Another choice item: "Popcorn sales<br />

have for a long time been the measure in<br />

these midwest prau-ies of the popularity<br />

and drawing power of the stars. Personally,<br />

I'll stack good ol' Roy Rogers up against<br />

any of 'em. The 'class' stars, Colbert,<br />

Crawford, Davis and Garson, are the poorest<br />

popcorn sellers."<br />

No literary flourishes, no fancy verbiage<br />

—just the simple jotting down of thoughts<br />

of a grassroots philosopher with a talent<br />

for observing things close at hand.<br />

Dr. Handel Writes Book<br />

About Film Audiences<br />

NEW YORK—The University of Illinois<br />

Press has scheduled June as the tentative<br />

publication date of the book. "F^lm Audience<br />

Research." written by Dr. Leo A. Handel.<br />

MOM director of audience research.<br />

The book is the first on this subject and<br />

Dr. Handel has emphasized the sociological<br />

and psychological aspects in his study of<br />

motion picture audiences.<br />

Jock Lawrence Fills<br />

Lynn Farnol Post<br />

NEW YORK—J.<br />

B. L. "Jock" Lawrence ha.s<br />

been signed by Samuel Goldwyn Productions<br />

as vice - president in<br />

charge of public relations,<br />

publicity and advertising.<br />

He succeeds Lynn<br />

Farnol, who had been<br />

publicity and advertising<br />

director for Goldwyn<br />

for more than 22<br />

years. Farnol resigned<br />

Monday (6).<br />

Lawrence had been<br />

vice-president of the J.<br />

Arthur Rank Organization,<br />

Inc., since early J. B. L. Lawrence<br />

in 1945. The Rank office here recently dropped<br />

most of its staff and moved into Universal-<br />

International office space at Park avenue<br />

and 57th street. Lawrence has withdrawn<br />

as vice-president of the Rank organization,<br />

but will continue in an advisory capacity on<br />

public relations and as a member of the<br />

American board of directors.<br />

From 1933 to 1939 Lawrence was director<br />

of advertising and publicity and assistant<br />

to Goldwyn on the coast. Then he became<br />

executive secretary to the publicity directors'<br />

committee in Hollywood.<br />

During the war Lawrence was a colonel and<br />

served as chief public relations officer in<br />

the European theatre of operation under<br />

General Eisenhower. Prior to that, he was<br />

chief public relations planner for the combined<br />

operations headquarters of British commandos<br />

and American rangers.<br />

Farnol was a lieutenant-colonel with the<br />

air force public relations office during the<br />

war and is widely known both inside and<br />

outside the industry. During the period of his<br />

association with Goldwyn he has also been<br />

director of advertising and publicity for<br />

United Artists. He has been associated with<br />

Donahue & Coe, handling the Radio City<br />

Music Hall and other Rockefeller Center accounts.<br />

An Hour a Day Will<br />

Keep TV Worry Away<br />

CHICAGO — Harry M. Warner, on a<br />

stopover here this week, said there is so<br />

much loose talk in Hollywood on what<br />

television is going to do to the film<br />

business that he is contemplating the<br />

same ban he put into effect in the early<br />

1930s.<br />

"Those were the depression days," he<br />

said, "and the studios were in bad shape.<br />

All our employes talked about how bad<br />

conditions were. So we decided that if<br />

the employes would concentrate on their<br />

work instead of worrying about radio and<br />

the depression we might be able to make<br />

some good pictures and pull through. So<br />

we banned all discussions about the depression—except<br />

between 10 a. m. and<br />

11 a. m. on Thursdays. That was known<br />

as the "worry hour" for the week, during<br />

which we could all cry about conditions.<br />

"And that's what we're going to do<br />

now, but instead of depression talk, we'll<br />

make it no television talk," he said.<br />

22 BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

and<br />




I have read with care . thoroughly<br />

digested the words of Samuel Goldwyn in<br />

your January 28 issue concerning the terrible<br />

attitude of exliibitors toward exploiting<br />

and advertising pictures.<br />

We exhibitors always welcome constructive<br />

criticism from any member of our industry,<br />

and cherish it even more coming<br />

from such an artist as Sam Goldwyn.<br />

However. I think some of Mr. Goldwyn's<br />

comments were made in haste—without mucli<br />

thought—and I think we exhibitors have a<br />

right to explain our point of view.<br />


Mr. Goldwyn states in no uncertain terms<br />

that we do not properly advertise and exploit<br />

American pictures as we should. Since<br />

this maker of top-grade pictures is not next<br />

Perhaps Mr. Goldwyn is like AlexaiKier<br />

Hamilton in that he doesn't believe in the<br />

basic intelligence of the common man. Maybe<br />

he feels that you can go on telling them<br />

each picture is better than the last and<br />

fool them. But we who are next to the<br />

public, we who get the dissatisfied looks,<br />

we who have to listen to the off-color comments<br />

we can tell you from practical experience<br />

you can fool them once or twice,<br />

but. brother, that's all. You definitely can<br />

cry 'wolf!', which makes it bad when you<br />

do have a good one.<br />


I think Mr. Goldwyn has overlooked the<br />

one thing which has become so evident to<br />

the exhibitors in tlie last year or so. That<br />

is the fact that if you are playing what they<br />

want to see, all you have to do is tell them<br />

where it is and what time, and they'll go<br />

see it. On the other hand, if you have something<br />

they don't want to see, you can beat<br />

your head against the wall and scream until<br />

you're hoarse, and you will still just play to<br />

the u.shers and projectionist. It just shows<br />

they are picking them carefully. Why? Because<br />

they have been fooled too many times<br />

in the past.<br />

I certainly do not mean by this that the<br />

exhibitor should eliminate all exploitation<br />

quite the contrary. But we try to use a<br />

little common sense. Exploitation properly<br />

used can mean lots of dollars and cents, but<br />

exploitation used indiscriminately means<br />

nothing at all—and can even be injurious.<br />

In closing, I would like to say one thing<br />

to all the movie makers as well as Mr. Goldwyn.<br />

We are at a crossroads in our industry.<br />

Let's make sure we go the right way.<br />

Give us more "Male War Brides" and<br />

—<br />

"Yellow Ribbons" and "Battlegrounds"—give<br />

us more pictures that we don't have to exploit<br />

to get them in, and we will exploit<br />

them and we'll get back that goodwill of the<br />

public wliicli we have come close to losing.<br />

Don't oversell every picture you make, and<br />

try to make us believe that it's the biggest<br />

thing you ever did. If you're truthful, you'll<br />

see how quickly 99 out of 100 exhibitors fall<br />

in line and play ball. And believe us when<br />

we tell you we're all trying our best to help<br />

the industry that butters both your bread<br />

and mine, for what's good for one is good<br />

for all.<br />

Stop and realize, Mr. Goldwyn, that possibly<br />

exhibitors aren't stubborn, blockheaded<br />

jackasses—maybe they have a reason for what<br />

they are doing.<br />


American and Uptown Theatres,<br />

Mt. Carmel, 111.<br />

it through a defense article, by some one<br />

capable of refuting all the charges that are<br />

being hurled. Since another article in BOX-<br />

OFFICE said 20 per cent of the theatres are<br />

located in towns over 100,000. the remaining<br />

80 per cent are those exhibitors in towns of<br />

less than 100.000 of which we are one. Therefore.<br />

80 per cent of the criticism is directed<br />

to us small exhibitors.<br />

Let's take the article in question and feee<br />

how it could be refuted by a more capable<br />

per-son than I am. We'll tear it down by<br />

statements . . . "It is nothing short of disgraceful<br />

the way these pictures are being<br />

treated." As I recall it double features were<br />

resorted to because the exhibitor could not<br />

get strong enough pictures to get people in<br />

his theatre and therefore had to resort to<br />

bargain sale tactics. If the exhibitor had<br />

been able to get strong enough pictures to<br />

bring people in there would be no double features<br />

in theatres now.<br />

Now in regards to exploitation it says,<br />

"Goldwyn has just completed four features<br />

in one season." In our theatre we show 260<br />

different pictures in one year. Will Mr. Goldwyn<br />

be so kind as to tell me how that many<br />

pictures can possibly be exploited. It would<br />

hardly be fair play to exploit the four pictures<br />

of Ml-. Goldwyn's and not exploit the<br />

other producers' picture output.<br />

Another factor in regards to exploiting.pictures<br />

that must be taken into consideration<br />

here in the sticks. Does Mr. Goldwyn give<br />

reduced rentals if the picture is exploited?<br />

No. the film rental for a picture is based on<br />

the gro.ss. either anticipated or actual. The<br />

exhibitor is faced with tw-o problems—either<br />

exploit the picture to get Iris film rental<br />

back or exploit the picture with the distributor<br />

getting the benefit of the extra gross<br />

without sharing the extra cost of exploiting.<br />

Therefore, the exhibitor must exploit<br />

pictures that will return this extra cost to<br />

him. though there are a few exceptions such<br />

as super pictures which he plays simply to<br />

get patrons into the theatre to sell them on<br />

coming back in the future.<br />


In regards to the distributor and producer<br />

selling the picture for the exhibitor: May<br />

I ask if there is ever an advertisement in a<br />

magazine or radio announcement or anything<br />

whatsoever to indicate that the picture<br />

"Roseanna McCoy" is still being shown in<br />

the small theatres. You can search high and<br />

low and find nothing. Any poor exhibitor<br />

who didn't play it while it was hot is still<br />

faced with a selling job or take a chance<br />

on an empty house. But. suppose our friend<br />

the producer goes all out on a saturation<br />

campaign on a picture and lo it turns out<br />

to be a dud. Then, brother, the poor exhibitor<br />

who didn't play this picture prior to the<br />

fact it was nationally classed as a dud is<br />

their spunk. I don't see any sense in losing<br />

money on both ends of the business. Wish<br />

that we could do the same occasionally.<br />

No distributor that I have ever done busi-<br />

to the public every day. as we are. perhaps<br />

really up against it. He hasn't a chance of<br />

lie does not often have occasion to be around ANOTHER EXHIBITOR REPLY<br />

getting even.<br />

a theatre at the conclusion of the performance<br />

of some highly touted, heavily ex-<br />


In regards to Fox West Coast pulling the<br />

Ever since I have been able to read ..trade picture out because it did not do any popcorn<br />

ploited picture that has been sold to us at<br />

magazines I have resid the same old story or candy business. I can only say I glory in<br />

top terms, preferred time, and described as<br />

about exhibitors—the only change in the<br />

the biggest thing the company has ever done<br />

criticism being who said it. Never have I<br />

and is breaking records everywhere. Of<br />

read about the poor exhibitor defending himself<br />

or any exhibitor association saying any-<br />

course, we exhibitors all know without asking<br />

that each picture is doing 25 per cent<br />

thing in defense of the poor exhibitor or any<br />

to 50 per cent more business than the previous<br />

picture. Perhaps he has never seen<br />

exploited, all they ever ask is will you give<br />

ness with gives a hang about how the picture<br />

defense of any kind.<br />

is<br />

I have just finished reading the article<br />

the dissatisfied looks, nor heard the off-color<br />

this much rental for the picture? The rental<br />

in regards to the same criticism by Mr. Samuel<br />

remarks that we see and hear as they leave<br />

for us, and the exhibitor can get it back the<br />

—feeling our exploitation misled them.<br />

Goldwyn.<br />

best he can. If Mr. Goldwyn wants the exhibitor<br />

to exploit his pictures why doesn't<br />

Why don't you give the exhibitors' side of<br />

he make allowances for this when setting up<br />

liis rentals for the theatre, and make it encouraging<br />

for the exhibitor to get out and<br />

.sell the picture?<br />


Still 260 pictures is a lot of pictures and<br />

we still sell them the best we can and,<br />

brother, if the returns on these 260 give us<br />

enough to keep the wolf from our door we're<br />

thankful. And Mr. Goldwyn is worrying about<br />

four pictures.<br />

I believe that if you could get some capable<br />

exhibitor to defend the rest of us poor exhibitors<br />

it could be proved that most of the<br />

smoke comes from a producer or distributor<br />

covering up some bad product that the public<br />

doesn't want and. rather than go ahead and<br />

call it a dud. uses the excuse that the exhibitor<br />

isn't selling the picture.<br />

Ti-ust that you can understand why it<br />

makes me so hot to hear the same exhibitor<br />

taken over the fire by every one every so<br />

often.<br />

Swiss Theatre,<br />

Tell City. Ind.<br />


White Crocus Plans Film<br />

NEW YORK—"Edge of Innocence" has<br />

been selected as the title for the film White<br />

Crocus Productions will start shortly, according<br />

to Fred Pressburger and Peter<br />

Packer, production heads, who are also writing<br />

the scenario. It is being adapted from<br />

a novel by Packer. "White Crocus." Joseph<br />

Brun. recently elected to the American Society<br />

of Cinematographers, has been signed<br />

as cameraman.<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 23

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ton. Me. • Savoy, Northfield, Vt. • lotchis, Claremont, N.H. • loll ><br />

Keene, N.H. • Ployhouse, Randolph, Vt. • Eost Greenwich,<br />

Greenwich, R.I. • V^indsor, Windsor, Vt. • Ideal, Springfield,<br />

20th Century, Buffalo, N.Y. • Jefferson, Auburn, N.Y. • Fan<br />

Batovio, N.Y. • lafoyelte, Botovio, N.Y. • Capitol, Binghomlon, I<br />

State, Cortland, N.Y. •Regent, Dunkirk, N.Y. • Regent, Elmiro, I<br />

Genevo, Genevo, N.Y. •Temple, Geneva, N.Y. • Strand, Ithaca,<br />

Y. • Wintergorden, Jomeslown, N.Y. • Colarocl, Niagara Falls, I<br />

Havens, Oleon, N.Y. •<br />

K.Y. • Playhouse, Conandaigua, N.Y, • Bobcocic, Both, NY.A^<br />

lum. Perry, N.Y. • Elmwood, Penn Yon, N.Y.»Fo«, Coming,<br />

Si<br />

.rk, N.Y •Strond, Seneca Foils, NY. •Grond, w<br />

eneco, Salomonca, N.Y, •RIalt<br />

N.Y. • Riollo, lockporl, NY.<br />

:t|, Daylon, O. • Folate. ColuKlbui, O. • Puloce, Huntingloa,'<br />

Willlomson. W.^'a, • Var<br />

Athens. O, • Store, Springfield. O. • Wayne, Gr.<br />

Newark, O. • MiomI Weslern, Oxford. O. • Stole. Washington CT"'<br />



Hippodrome, Gloveriville, N.Y. -Olyi c, Watertown, N.Y. • Riolto,<br />

Glons Folli, N.Y. •Riollo, little Fo N.Y. •State, Tupper lake,<br />

N.Y. • SItond. Ogdensburg, N.Y. 'ontiac, Saranoc lake, N.Y.<br />

General Storke, Bennington, Vt. • . IRiolto, Potidam, N.Y. • lyric,<br />

Rouie'i Point. N.Y. • AmericQi), Conton, N.Y. • Riolto, Amsterdom,<br />

N.Y. -Slrond, Carthoge, N.Y. • Stole, Hamilton, N.Y. • Molone,<br />

lo, N.Y. •Oneonto, Oneonto, N.Y.<br />

N.Y. -Ho «ood, AuSoble Forki, N.Y. • Grolyn,<br />

iville, N.Y. •„Cat^ll, Cotskill, N.Y.<br />

Ployhouse,<br />

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So. Bend, Ind. 'Polm State, Detroit, I<br />

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Holland, Bellfontoine, C<br />

Md. 'College, New Haven, Conn.'M<br />

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Mayivillo, Ky. •<br />

Stote, Limo, O. • Modii<br />

M. Loew, Hartford, Conn. ' Copitol, Meriden, Conn. ' Poli, Norwich<br />

a. London, Ky.<br />

Poiomount, Sleubenville.<br />

Conn. • Empress, S. Norwolk, Conn. ' Ploio, Stomford, Conn. • Modi<br />

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son, Madison CiMfn. ' Soybij^k, Soybrook, Conr^ Barn Pittsburgh<br />

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. . Also<br />

. . "Operation<br />

. . For<br />

. . Rudy<br />

'i^oU^fewMd ^e^iont<br />

By<br />


Story Sales Climb to 12;<br />

MGM Buys Four Yarns<br />

With an impressive total of 12 sales recorded<br />

during the period, the story market<br />

broke wide open as MGM set the pace for<br />

the field by acquiring no less than four sub-<br />

jects. To Leo's lair went "The Loco Motive,"<br />

detective yarn by Craig Rice and Stuart<br />

Palmer, which is being scripted by William<br />

Bowers and will be produced by William H.<br />

Wright; "Darling, I'm Stuck," an original<br />

comedy about a Broadway hoofer, by Ruth<br />

Brooks Plippen, also to be produced by<br />

Wright; "This Is News," a newspaper-background<br />

yarn by Jerry Horwin. which was<br />

added to Nicholas Nayfack's production slate,<br />

with Irwin Gielgud set to script; and "When<br />

In Rome," by Robert Buckner, dealing with<br />

a priest who visits the Italian capital during<br />

Holy Year. Clarence Brown will produce and<br />

direct . . . Two properties went to RKO Radio.<br />

"Target." forthcoming magazine serial by<br />

Martin Goldsmith and Jack Leonard, will be<br />

produced by Stanley Rubin as a starring subject<br />

for Charles McGraw; "No Place Like<br />

Home," a historical western by William R.<br />

Cox and William R. Lipman, goes on the<br />

studio docket as a John Wayne topliner . .<br />

.<br />

To his production schedule at Columbia<br />

William Etozier added "The Nice Mrs. Gary."<br />

an original by Mary McCarthy . . . Producer<br />

Joe Kaufman acquired from Roy Del Ruth<br />

Productions a screen treatment of "The Lady<br />

and the Tiger," short story by Pi-ank Stockton<br />

for independent production.<br />

Prank Ross purchased "Save Your Kisses,"<br />

an original comedy by Ross and Robert<br />

Russell . . . Norma Productions—the Burt<br />

Lancaster-Harold Hecht company—picked up<br />

"Our Enemy, the Baby," by Hugo Butler and<br />

Jean Rouverol, and booked the authors to<br />

write the screenplay Pacific,"<br />

by George Waggner, went to War-<br />

SIGmNG THE DEAL—President Steve<br />

Broidy (seated) of Monogram affixes his<br />

signature to the contract whereby David<br />

Diamond (right) is bringing to the<br />

screen, for Monogram release, "A Modern<br />

Marriage," story of the problems arising<br />

from a young girl's frigidity in marriage.<br />

The subject bears the endorsement<br />

of the American Institute of Family Relations,<br />

of which Dr. Paul Popenoe (left)<br />

is the director, and is based on a case<br />

history from its files.<br />

ners, where it will be prepared as a costarring<br />

subject for John Wayne and Virginia<br />

Mayo . inclusion in the forthcoming<br />

"Queen for a Day." Robert Stillman<br />

Pi'oductions purchased "The Gossamer<br />

World." a .short story by Faith Baldwin.<br />

"Queen" will be Stillman's second project for<br />

United Artists release.<br />

Three Producers Pitching<br />

For Baseball Film Fare<br />

World leaders may fret over the H-bomb,<br />

the populace may stew over high taxes, the<br />

coal strike may cripple a vast segment of<br />

U.S. industrial production, but spring is just<br />

around the corner—which, to a substantial<br />

proportion of American citizenry, means just<br />

one thing:<br />

The 1950 baseball season is almost here.<br />

And, foreshadowing the crack of bats and<br />

the roar of "Kill the umpire!" from millions<br />

of throats that will ensue when the season<br />

gets under way, the magi of production are<br />

paying more than ordinary attention to the<br />

revenue possibilities inherent in film fare<br />

glorifying that great national pastime. Seldom,<br />

in recent years, has there been such<br />

widespread interest in baseball as the subject<br />

for screen entertainment.<br />

Over at Warners, for example, an early<br />

camera start has been set for "Elmer the<br />

Great." adapted from the widely read Ring<br />

Lardner story, and to insure authenticity as<br />

well as add exploitation value thereto, the<br />

studio has booked both the New York Yankees<br />

and the St. Louis Cardinals to appear<br />

in the picture.<br />

A similar move has been made by MGM,<br />

which signed 30 pro and semi-pro horsehiders<br />

to appear in diamond sequences in<br />

"Three Little Words," including stars of such<br />

teams as the Detroit Tigers, the Boston Red<br />

Sox, the Chicago White Sox and the Hollywood<br />

Stars.<br />

Eagle Lion, meantime, is readying "The<br />

Jackie Robinson Story," a biography of, and<br />

starring, the celebrated Negro athlete and<br />

Brooklyn Dodgers star; and Columbia has<br />

already completed, as a William Bendix<br />

topliner, a baseball comedy appropriately<br />

titled "Kill the Umpire."<br />

Armand Deutsch to Produce<br />

The Magnificent Yankee'<br />

Armand Deutsch has been set to produce<br />

MGM's "The Magnificent Yankee," starring<br />

.<br />

Louis Calhern in the film version of Emmet<br />

Lavery's Broadway play Mate replaces<br />

Leslie Fenton as megaphonist on<br />

"Montana Rides." with Fenton switched to<br />

Stephen Auer and Phil<br />

"The Jewel" . . .<br />

Ford are set as producer and director, respectively,<br />

on Republic's "State PoUce Patrol"<br />

. . "Tall Timber" will be Lindsley<br />

.<br />

Parsons' next production toplining Roddy<br />

McDowall for Monogram release . . 20th<br />

.<br />

Century-Fox's "Lydia Bailey." to be produced<br />

by Sol C. Siegel. is being .scripted by<br />

Charles O'Neal . . . Milton Krims is screenplaying<br />

"Christmas Present," from a novel<br />

by Margaret Cousins, for Producer Samuel<br />

Goldwyn.<br />


Toppers of Lippert Productions hold<br />

a sidewalk conference to discuss audience<br />

reactions after the first sneak preview<br />

of "The Baron of Arizona," staged<br />

at Fox West Coast's first run Ritz Theatre<br />

in Los Angeles. The chit-chatters,<br />

left to right: Al Grubstick, assistant<br />

sales chief; Arthur Greenblatt,<br />

general sales manager; William Pizor,<br />

vice-president in charge of foreign distribution;<br />

and President Robert L. Lippert.<br />

"The Baron" will be world-premiered<br />

March 1 at the Orpheum Theatre<br />

in Phoenix.<br />

Torero' Is Bullfight Subject<br />

On Republic-Wayne Slate<br />

Add another one to the bullfight cycle.<br />

Under terms of his ticket as an independent<br />

producer releasing through Republic, John<br />

Wayne will produce and star in "Torero," a<br />

matador melodrama, which he plans to shoot<br />

on locatidn in Mexico. Oscar Boetticher has<br />

been set to direct and Grant Withers will<br />

function as Wayne's associate producer. No<br />

starting date has been scheduled.<br />

The Wayne project is the third to embrace<br />

the not-so-gentle art of matching man<br />

against bull. Set for an early launching is<br />

"The Brave Bulls," which Robert Rossen will<br />

produce and direct for Columbia release,<br />

while MGM recently acquired "Montes, the<br />

Matador," which Jack Cummings will produce<br />

as a starring vehicle for Ricardo Montalban.<br />

'Condemned to Live' Set<br />

For Eagle Lion Release<br />

Current headline hysteria concerning socalled<br />

"mercy killings" have led Eagle Lion<br />

to capitalize thereon by setting a deal to<br />

release "Condemned to Live," an exploitation<br />

subject to be produced by Walter Jurmann.<br />

With shooting scheduled to begin<br />

in April, the script has been completed by<br />

Ken Britton. It will be filmed almost entirely<br />

on location in a typical, but as yet<br />

unselected, American small-town.<br />

Claudette Colbert Signed<br />

For 'All About Eve' Role<br />

Claudette Colbert was inked by 20th Century-Fox<br />

to co-star with Anne Baxter in "AH<br />

About Eve," being scripted and to be directed<br />

by Joseph Mankiewicz<br />

Productions booked Actor<br />

. . . Lippert<br />

Don Castle on a<br />

one-year ticket and .set him for the lead in<br />

"Highway Patrol."<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 27


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THE PLACE:<br />


THE STAR:<br />


UNDER<br />

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Produced and Directed by Roberto Rossellini • Released by RKO Radio Pictures


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'On the Town' Is January Winner<br />

Of <strong>Boxoffice</strong> Blue Ribbon Award<br />


J^ETRO-GOLDWYN-MAYER again carries off the BOXOFFICE Blue Ribbon Award<br />

honors, the January winner being "On the Town," sparkling screen musical comedy starring<br />

Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra. Jules Munshin. Betty Garrett, Ann Miller and Vera-<br />

Ellen. Patrons take a Cook's Tour of New York City with three lively sailors and their gals,<br />

whose singing and dancing spell entertainment for family audiences that enjoy its beauty<br />

of color and costume, its action and gay tunes as well as its light-hearted, episodic story.<br />

National Screen Council members voted it the picture currently playing which was most<br />

likely to prove pleasing as whole family entertainment, and was also outstanding in many<br />

respects. In addition to leading the dance sequences which form the top entertainment in<br />

the film. Gene Kelly acts as co-director.<br />

The review carried in BOXOFFICE, issue<br />

of December 10, 1949, described the picture<br />

in these terms: "MGM has turned out a<br />

lavish, sparkling musical comedy in Technicolor<br />

loaded with gay tunes, smart dancing<br />

and ticket-selling names. Gene Kelly, Frank<br />

Sinatra, Betty Garrett, Ann Miller, Jules<br />

Munshin and Vera-EUen recreate the characters<br />

of the Adolph Green-Betty Comden<br />

Broadway show that scored a hit several seasons<br />

back ... It rates A playing time and top<br />

budget advertising and exploitation . . . The<br />

dance sequences with Kelly, Miss Miller and<br />

Vera-Ellen are standouts."<br />

Delightful for the Family<br />

According to the MPAA Green Sheet,<br />

"Superlatives are needed to catch the flavor<br />

of warm, gay, beautifully-produced comedy<br />

which retains pleasing air of fantasy . . .<br />

a<br />

There is expert and novel dancing, tuneful<br />

singing and dialog that is fast and funny. The<br />

Bernstein music heightens the mood of a<br />

picture that is delightful entertainment for<br />

the whole family."<br />

In UNBIASED OPINIONS (Fox West Coast<br />

Theatres), the California PTA is quoted: "Recommended<br />

as light entertainment for the<br />

The eastern committee of<br />

family" . . .<br />

G.F.W.C. calls it, "delightful cinematic entertainment<br />

for the whole family" . Protestant<br />

Motion Picture Council mentions,<br />

"There are some fine dancing sequences by<br />

Gene Kelly and Vera-Ellen." And the Los Angeles<br />

Council of Jewish Women says "it proves<br />

Gabey<br />

Gene Kelly<br />

Chip<br />

Frank Sinatra<br />

Brunhilde Esterhazy Betty Garrett<br />

Claire Huddesen Ann Miller<br />

Ozsie<br />

Jules Munshin<br />

Executive Producer Louis B. Mayer<br />

Produced by<br />

Arthur Freed<br />

Directed by Gene Kelly, Stanley Donen<br />

Associate Producer<br />

Roger Edens<br />

Screenplay by lalso original by)<br />

Adolph Green, Betty Comden<br />

From Idea by<br />

Jerome Robbins<br />

Music by<br />

Leonard Bernstein<br />

Lyrics by Adolph Green,<br />

Betty Comden, Leonard Bernstein<br />

Musical Director<br />

Lennie Hayton<br />

Orchestrations by Conrad Salinger<br />

Vocal Arrangements by Saul Chaplin<br />

delightful entertainment for those who like<br />

good clean fun." According to the Southern<br />

California Council of Church Women: "Beautiful<br />

dancing, gay lyrics, and vivid Technicolor<br />

provide a rare treat for the young and<br />

young in heart."<br />

From the first run reports obtained on<br />

engagements in key cities, "On the Town"<br />

has been given an average of 154, with holdovers<br />

predominating. It is an 11-plus picture<br />

in the Review Digest, and it starts 1950 for<br />

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer with a winner — the<br />

company that won five out of the 12 Blue<br />

Ribbon awards for 1949. This will be<br />

the fifth Plaque received by Producer Arthur<br />

Freed and the third for actors Gene Kelly,<br />

Frank Sinatra and Ann Miller. Among the<br />

players, Betty Garrett and Jules Munshin<br />

now have two Blue Ribbons, Vera-Ellen a<br />

single. On the production staff, Stanley<br />

Donen, Adolph Green and Betty Comden now<br />

have two each.<br />

Ballots of the National Screen Council<br />

members contained comments in many instances,<br />

a few of which are given here:<br />

"A gay, bouncing comedy of sailors on the<br />

loose in the world's greatest fun city. What<br />

more could any family ask?" writes Russell<br />

Rhodes, New York Journal of Commerce. (He<br />

could be prejudiced, of course. Maybe we'd<br />

better quote from out-of-town members.)<br />

"Such gay fun." Elisabeth Murray, Long<br />

Beach Teachers' Ass'n . a musical it<br />

shows more originality than anything Hollywood<br />

has turned out in a long time."—Tom R.<br />

Gilliam jr., Fort Wayne Journal Gazette . . .<br />

"Any Gene Kelly movie can be depended<br />

The Cast<br />

upon as first rate entertainment."—Henry<br />

Decker, Frederick (Md.) News Post.<br />

"Wholesome entertainment, bright, catchy<br />

musical numbers that the teen-agers adored."<br />

—Mrs. W. H. Barker, San Antonio Motion<br />

Picture Council.<br />

Ivy Smith<br />

Mme. Dilyovska<br />

Lucy Shmeeler<br />

Professor<br />

Production Staii<br />

Vera-Ellen<br />

Florence Bates<br />

Alice Pearce<br />

George Meader<br />

Director of Photography<br />

Harold Rosson, A.S.C.<br />

Technicolor Color Coiisultants<br />

Henri Jaffa, James Gooch<br />

Art Directors<br />

Cedric Gibbons, Jack Martin Smith<br />

Fihn Editor Ralph E. Winters<br />

Recording Supervisor Douglas Shearer<br />

Set Decorations by Edwin B. Willis<br />

Associate<br />

Jack D. Moore<br />

Special Effects by Warren Newcombe<br />

Costumes by<br />

Helen Rose<br />

Hair Styles Designed bj/..Sydney Guilaroff<br />

Make-Up Created by<br />

Jack Dawn<br />

!J This Award is given each month by the National Screen Council on the basis of outstanding merit<br />

and suitability for family entertainment. Council membership comprises motion picture editors, radio<br />

film commentators, and representatives of bette- film councils, civic and educational organizations.

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1<br />

TV Building Audiences<br />

For Westerns: Lippert<br />

NEW YORK—The dynamic Robert L.<br />

Lippert,<br />

exhibitor and president of Lippert Productions,<br />

expounded on television's influence<br />

on audiences for westerns, the increase in<br />

drive-ins, the difficulties in securing independent<br />

financing and Samuel Goldwyn's recent<br />

gripes about exhibitors on his recent<br />

visit to Manhattan. Lippert. who came east<br />

to talk to exhibitors about his big-budget<br />

film. "The Baron of Arizona" started back<br />

west February 6 and gave luncheons for<br />

75 to 100 exhibitors and circuit buyers in<br />

Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago and<br />

Kansas City before February 11.<br />

The opening of "The Baron of Arizona"<br />

will be held in Phoenix. Ariz., March 1 with<br />

Vincent Price and Ellen Drew, stars of the<br />

picture, and other Hollywood stars present.<br />

Immediately after the opening the film is<br />

booked day-and-date in every theatre in<br />

Arizona. Lippert said. A $100,000 ad campaign<br />

will start in March and the picture<br />

will be plugged in 15 top radio shows starting<br />

late in February.<br />

Lippert believes that the film industry<br />

should "work with television instead of ignoring<br />

it" and should make television trailers<br />

plugging new releases. In Los Angeles,<br />

which has more television sets per person<br />

than any other city in the U.S., neighborhood<br />

theatre business is off 40 per cent and<br />

first runs off 20 per cent. However. "Hopalong<br />

Cassidy" has staged a comeback due<br />

to television and Lippert was influenced to<br />

make a series of westerns starring James<br />

Ellison and Russell Hayden (two former<br />

"Hopalong" stars) due to their popularity<br />

with kids at a recent personal appearance<br />

in the Los Angeles area.<br />

Drive-ins are also hurting business at regular<br />

theatres in the west and one of the<br />

Denver drive-ins is doing bigger business<br />

than any downtown spot there, he said. Theatre<br />

television will never compete with home<br />

sets, except in the rare cases of an outstanding<br />

sports event. Regarding Samuel<br />

Goldwyn's recent criticism of exhibitors. Lippert<br />

scoffed at it and classed the veteran<br />

producer as one who should step out of the<br />

industry in favor of "younger blood with new<br />

ideas."<br />

The independent producer is still finding<br />

it difficult to secure financing for his lowbudget<br />

films. Lippert gets most of his financing<br />

from private individuals or companies.<br />

Walter Heller Co. put up the money<br />

for seven of his recent films. Lippert claims<br />

he made a profit of $400,000. before taxes,<br />

for the first 11 months of 1949.<br />

Lippert. who owns or controls 64 theatres<br />

in northern California and Washington, also<br />

has bought out 11 of the 34 Screen Guild<br />

exchanges. The others are owned by franchiseholders.<br />

He recently put on seven more<br />

salesmen for the Lippert 1949-50 program<br />

and added a midwest division manager. Harris<br />

Dudelson. formerly with Eagle Lion.<br />

Dudelson will make his headquarters in<br />

Detroit.<br />

Star's Pulpit Appearance<br />

Gets Plenty Publicity<br />

NEW YORK—Colleen Townsend's appearance<br />

in Punxsutawney, Pa., where she<br />

preached from the pulpit of the local Presbyterian<br />

church Sunday (Feb. 5). brought a<br />

barrage of publicity for the 20th Century-Fox<br />

star, who recently announced that she was<br />

leaving the screen to devote herself to religion.<br />

Twenty-three wire service representatives,<br />

reporters and photographers attended the<br />

Punxsutawney event and special stories and<br />

pictures appeared in the Herald Tribune.<br />

Daily News. Compass. World Telegram and<br />

Journal American. Miss Townsend appeared<br />

in Punxsutawney at the opening of her latest<br />

picture, "When Willie Comes Marching-<br />

Home," February 4.<br />

Terrell Now Heads MGM Exploitation<br />

NEW YORK — Dan S. Terrell took ovei<br />

operation of the MGM exploitation depart-<br />

.„ ment on Monday (6),<br />

succeeding<br />

^^1^^<br />

WiUiam R.<br />

^^^^B^ Ferguson, who retired<br />

M after 30 years with the<br />

Fg^<br />

^I company. Terrell was<br />

m tPj *fcy If<br />

assistant to Ernest<br />

* Emerling, advertising<br />

and publicity head for<br />

Loew's, Inc. for the<br />

past four years.<br />

Dan S. Terrell<br />

Terrell has already<br />

held meetings with<br />

Frank Whitbeck, MGM<br />

studio advertising<br />

head, and Ralph<br />

Wheelwright, assistant to Howard Stickland.<br />

and plans to visit the Culver studio shortly<br />

for meetings with the publicity and advertising<br />

staffs.<br />

William R. Fergruson (left) is seen with<br />

J. Robert Rubin, Loew's vice-president<br />

(center) and Charles C. Moskowitz,<br />

Loew's vice-president and treasurer, at his<br />

farewell luncheon last week.<br />

Theatre<br />

Openings and<br />


Construction,<br />

Sales<br />

Alvin, Tex.—Roy Lambden and M. A. Matlock constructing<br />

Tex Theatre, 500 seats. To open in April.<br />

Berryville, Ark.—Site on Highway 62 selected by<br />

Mo-Kan Dnve-In, Inc., lor 200-car drive-in.<br />

Berryville, Ark.— J. Fred Brown has begun rebuilding<br />

of tire-destroyed Ozark.<br />

Blythe. Calii.—Bob Dunmgan building 500-car<br />

drive-in.<br />

Charlotte, N. C—70Q-seat, $100,000 Belvedere under<br />

way lor Herb, Hal and Art Sherman, Sherman Enter-<br />

Forest, Tex.—Rebuilding of the fire-destroyed Forest<br />

Thecrtre begun by co-owners Mrs. Nettie Brown<br />

and Central States Theatres Corp.<br />

Fort Worth, Tex.—Bids being taken by E. Foster<br />

J,<br />

i Son for $250,000, 1.000-seat Weslcliff.<br />

Honey Grove, Tex.—Work under way on 79J-seat<br />

Stale.<br />

Houston. Tex.—Construction started on $400,000<br />

shopping center to include theatre.<br />

North Fort Worth, Tex.—Line Harrington and as<br />

sociates building drive-in, with Jack Corgan as<br />

architect.<br />

Oil City, Pa,— Construction begun on drive-in for<br />

Arthur Kunes.<br />

Pratlville, Ala.—G. C. Coburn and sons Grover R.,<br />

I- T. and H. D. Coburn building $75,000 drive-in on<br />

Highway 31.<br />

Providence, R. I.— Liberty Theatre undergoing $60,-<br />

000 renovations for Samuel Homes.<br />

Tompkinsville, Ky.—Midstate Theatres, Inc., purchased<br />

site for construction of 1,000-seat theatre.<br />


Bryson City, N. C.—Gem opened by Gomer Martin.<br />

Miss.—525-seal Ritz opened by J. C.<br />

Moore<br />

Cuero. Tex.—$35,000 Cuero D: -In opened by<br />

Video Independent Theatres, Inc.<br />

Curtis, Neb.—425-seaf, $60,000 Star opened.<br />

De Land, Fla.—R. E. Hawker and H. W. Alexander<br />

opened 300-car drive-in.<br />

Elmer. N. J.—Star opened.<br />

Hermleigh. Tex.—Ken, 279 seats, opened by J. H.<br />

Hutcheson.<br />

Leesburg, Fla.—Carver, 300 seats, opened by R. A.<br />

Getford.<br />

Providence, R. I.— 1,000-seat Elmwood opened by<br />

Ralph Snider circuit.<br />

Salisbury, Pa.—750-seat Village opened by T. J.<br />

Cramblett.<br />

Sterling, Okla.—Friendship Theatre opened by Jim<br />

Mote alter rebuilding.<br />

Whitesburg, Ky.—300-seat Alene opened by Cumberland<br />

Amusement Co,<br />

SALES:<br />

Carnegie, Okla.—Nu-Sho sold to H. D. Cox and<br />

Clint Applewhite by George Payne.<br />

Carnegie, Okla.—H. D. Cox and Clint Applewhite<br />

purchased Liberty from Carl Hartman.<br />

Detroit, Mich.— Martin H. Popielarski has taken<br />

over the Forest from Edward Jacobson.<br />

Grand Rapids, Mich.—Albert May purchased Art<br />

from Milton lacobson.<br />

Harrison, Arlc.—250-car drive-in under way f'r<br />

Nichols (S Hinze purchased by Commonwealth Amusement<br />

Co.<br />

Mexico, Mo.—500-car Little Dixie Drive-ln, under<br />

construction, purchased by Frisina Amusement Co.<br />

Quitman, Ark.—Forace Kennedy bought Quitman<br />

Theatre.<br />

Racine. Wis.—Main Street purchased by Joseph J.<br />

Lee and Alvin Slutz from Standard Thealres.<br />

ry. Conn.—Raymond Joyce sold 460-seal Eno<br />

Me<br />

jle. Mo.—Henry Pickens purchased Semo from<br />

: A. Gilliland.<br />

Wakaw, Sosk.—240-seat Wakaw sold by George<br />

lerzowsky to Steve Sryniuck.<br />

Ten Republic Releases<br />

For February, March<br />

HOLLYWOOD—Republic will put in national<br />

release 10 features during the current<br />

month and March.<br />

This month's releases include "Gunmen of<br />

Abilene." February 6: "The Arizona Cowboy"<br />

(15); "Singing Guns" and "Tarnished" (28).<br />

The March lineup includes "Federal Agent at<br />

Large" (12); "Twilight in the Sierras" (22);<br />

"The House by the River" and "Code of the<br />

Silver Sage" (25); "Harbor of Missing Men"<br />

(26); and "The Vanishing Westerner" (31).<br />

32<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950


EDITOR<br />


Associate Editor<br />



^-(l5omb<br />

If the enthusiasm displayed by<br />

New York theatre managers can be<br />

accepted as a criterion, the effort<br />

to enlist public sympathy in the crusade<br />

to repeal the federal tax on<br />

admissions is succeeding.<br />

During the past week, inspection<br />

of theatres in this area revealed<br />

that the material furnished by the<br />

committee leading the repeal campaign<br />

is in good hands. The effort<br />

and result leave nothing to be desired.<br />

Nor does the enthusiasm of<br />

audiences after seeing trailers and<br />

newsreels urging public support.<br />

If the industry maintains this unified<br />

effort, continued support of<br />

news-disseminating agencies and<br />

rising public interest could provide<br />

Congress with a T-type of bomb,<br />

one with greater explosive force<br />

than any other fissionable product.<br />

* * *<br />

In this week's mail we received<br />

evidence of a promotion from an exhibitor<br />

on what he calls a piece of<br />

timely showmanship. The contributor<br />

writes that he feels he deserves<br />

"mention." We hasten to accede.<br />

To this exhibitor, the recent million-dollar<br />

holdup of the Brinks<br />

company in Boston and a booking<br />

two days later of a short subject<br />

titled, "So You Want to Get Rich,"<br />

was coincidental and offered opportunity<br />

for special exploitation.<br />

Whereupon he rushed to the newspaper<br />

office and inserted an advertisement<br />

asserting that the Boston<br />

robbery might have been "inspired"<br />

by "So You Want to Get Rich."<br />

For years, meddlers, reformers<br />

and crackpots have tried unsuccessfully<br />

to indict this industry as a contributing<br />

influence on delinquency<br />

and crime. Educators, psychiatrists<br />

and a free press have been our<br />

strongest allies in disproving these<br />

accusations.<br />

Every bit of film on the screen is<br />

deserving of exploitation. In our<br />

anxiety to prove we are showmen,<br />

let's first make a careful analysis of<br />

the effect each promotion will have<br />

on industry relations with the public.<br />

And let's be careful that in our<br />

eagerness, we do not furnish agencies<br />

hostile to our industry with ideas<br />

which can boomerang.<br />

Three Texas Showmen<br />

Win January Bonuses<br />

Bill McSpedden<br />

Julius Henderson<br />

Bill Hendrix<br />

Texas, the largest state, and the leading<br />

cotton and petroleum producing state, also<br />

produced a bumper crop of BOXOFFICE<br />

Bonus winners during January. Three exhibitors<br />

from the Lone Star state submitted outstanding<br />

ideas and promotions to the Showmandiser<br />

section and were each awarded $10<br />

and a Citation of Honor from BOXOFFICE.<br />

J. Jantz, a novice exhibitor operating the<br />

Fi-ost (Tex.) Theatre, developed a house program<br />

of special merit and several ingenious<br />

features. G. W. Amerine, who operates the<br />

Jewel at Humble, took top honors in the lobby<br />

display category. The most noteworthy newspaper<br />

advertisement submitted during the<br />

month came from James Alexander, manager<br />

of the Wallace Theatre, Sundown.<br />

Apparently showmanship developed regionally,<br />

with two Bonus winners representing<br />

North Carolina and an equal number from<br />

Ohio. O. D. Calhoun, owner-manager of the<br />

Carolina. Spruce Pine, N. C. led the entries<br />

in the General Tieup classification. Bill<br />

Hendrix, manager of the Rockingham Theatre,<br />

Reidsville, N. C was cited for exceptional<br />

showmanship promoting "Father Was a Fullback."<br />

A co-op ad earned a Bonus for Jack<br />

Mitchell, manager of the Weslin Theatre,<br />

Massillon, Ohio; and Millard Ochs. manager<br />

of the Strand, Akron, led all submissions for<br />

a campaign on "The Hasty Heart."<br />

An adaptation of an original idea in which<br />

two newspapers published a photo of several<br />

collie dogs watching a screening of "Master<br />

of Lassie" earned high commendation and a<br />

Bonus for an overseas contributor, C. H. G.<br />

Evill. manager of the Coliseum Cinema. Whitley<br />

Bay, Northumberland, England.<br />

Julius Henderson, manager of the Strand<br />

in Jacksonville. Fla.. earned a Bonus for a<br />

low-cost theatre front he created for "Mighty<br />

Joe Young."<br />

Skillful handling of an unusual newspaper<br />

plant by Bill McSpedden, manager of the<br />

Palace, Greenville, Ky.. earned a $10 Bonus<br />

and a Citation of Honor.<br />

The January Bonus was the 33rd consecu-<br />

monthly award of $100 offered by BOX-<br />

tive<br />

OFFICE for outstanding promotions or ideas<br />

administered by theatre managers, assistants<br />

and publicity managers in behalf of the boxoffice<br />

and public relations in behalf of the<br />

theatre. Bonuses of $10 plus a Citation of<br />

Honor are presented for theatre fronts, lobby<br />

displays, co-op ads and tieups and each individual<br />

facet of exploitation.<br />

Millard Ochs<br />

Jack Mitchell<br />

James Alexander<br />

G, W. Amerine<br />

BOXOFFICE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950 —49— 33

BOXOFFICE Bonus<br />

For Brotherhood Week<br />

• Offering special encouragement to theatremen during the Brotherhood<br />

week drive, February 19-26, BOXOFFICE will present a special Bonus<br />

and a Citation of Honor to the manager, assistant manager or theatre<br />

publicist who enrolls the greatest number of members during the 1950<br />

drive as a result of personal and theatre promotion.<br />

• Announcement of the special Brotherhood Bonus vnnner will be made<br />

in the March 11th issue of BOXOFFICE. The wirming manager will receive<br />

$10 and a Citation as evidence of outstanding support and achievement<br />

in behalf of the industry's participation in Brotherhood week.<br />

• Campaigns should be forwarded to: The Showmandiser, BOXOFFICE,<br />

9 Rockefeller Plaza, New York 20, N. Y. They should be postmarked no<br />

later than midnight, February 28. Attached to each campaign must be a<br />

copy of the report on enrollment of members which goes to the regional<br />

exhibitor chairman of the Brotherhood week committee.<br />

Score Guessing Snags<br />

Grid Game Broadcast<br />

Loren Parker, manager of the Liberty in<br />

Cumberland. Md.. tied up with a new radio<br />

station in the community to obtain plugs for<br />

"Easy Living" and "Apache Chief." Parker<br />

took advantage of the fact that the opening<br />

broadcast of the new station was the Los Angeles<br />

Rams vs. Philadelphia Eagles football<br />

game. He accordingly arranged a score-guessing<br />

contest, awarding passes to those coming<br />

ci-...sest to the actual score. Each time the<br />

contest was announced, the two film attractions<br />

and the Liberty playdates were mentioned.<br />

Another contest which paid off recently at<br />

the Liberty was a "wild tie" contest as an<br />

aftermath of the recent holiday season.<br />

Parker inyited all men who received loud ties<br />

for Christmas gifts to enter a free-for-all<br />

contest on the theatre stage. Guest tickets<br />

went to those with ties of the more flamboyant<br />

hues and patterns.<br />

Class A Entertainment<br />

Sold as 'Must See' List<br />

W. S. Baskin jr., manager of the Florida,<br />

Daytona Beach. Fla.. designated a recent<br />

week's attractions as "Class A entertainment<br />

with bookings of top hits for patrons' 'must<br />

see' list." The idea was advertised through<br />

all facets of promotion, and a special lobby<br />

display attracted favorable comments.<br />

To exploit "Always Leave Them Laughing,"<br />

an usher dressed in tuxedo jacket, top<br />

hat and a pair of patched trousers circulated<br />

around city streets, provoking laughter<br />

from pedestrians. A sign on his back<br />

announced the picture playdates.<br />

Plants 'Holiday' Story<br />

Andy Sette, manager of the Capitol. Springfield,<br />

Mass., got several breaks on "Holiday<br />

Affair" in the local dailies when be notified<br />

them that Wendell Corey, a featured player in<br />

the film, was at one time active in a dramatic<br />

stock company m Springfield.<br />

Paper Lauds Manager<br />

On 25th Anniversary<br />

When somebody tipped off the editor of the<br />

local newspaper that Harold Lee was observing<br />

his 25th anniversary as manager of the<br />

Babcock Theatre, Bath, N. Y., the surprised<br />

theatreman was not prepared for the fine<br />

publicity breaks which resulted. The newspaper<br />

ran a picture of Lee on the front page<br />

with his complete biography and highlights<br />

of his career since coming to Bath 25 years<br />

ago. Another portion of the front page was<br />

devoted to a three-column story covering<br />

some of the outstanding events of Lee's career.<br />

Pepsi Sponsors Circular<br />

Lou Merenbloom, manager of the Hippodrome,<br />

Corbin, Ky., used a herald to help sell<br />

his New Year's eve program that featured<br />

"She Wore a Yellow Ribbon." Merenbloom<br />

got the Pepsi Cola distributor to underwrite<br />

the cost of the herald in exchange for the<br />

back page.<br />

Dave lones, publicity director lor the Senate<br />

Theatre, Springfield, 111., tied up wfith Fred<br />

Astaire dance school and a local iurniture<br />

store to exploit "Jolson Sings Again." School<br />

instructors entertained pedestrians via this<br />

novel salute and dance routine in store window,<br />

at scheduled intervals.<br />

National Promotions<br />

Plus Local Tieups<br />

Exploit 'Mrs. Mike'<br />

Taking full advantage of national and local<br />

tiein possibilities. Jack Sidney, publicist for<br />

the Century Theatre, Baltimore, obtained<br />

extensive cooperation in the promotion of<br />

"Mrs. Mike."<br />

Two weeks prior to opening, Sidney used<br />

the screen trailer contest offering theatre<br />

tickets to patrons sending in the best letters<br />

describing the parts of the novel which had<br />

impressed them. A good response to this<br />

contest attested to widespread interest<br />

aroused.<br />

The Baltimore News-Post tied in with the<br />

theatre on a four-day contest in which readers<br />

were invited to submit letters on the<br />

"heart sacrifice" angle. A Savings Bond was<br />

awarded to the winner and theatre tickets<br />

were given as consolation prizes. Throughout<br />

the duration of the contest, the picture<br />

was well publicized through columns of free<br />

space.<br />

One of the most popular radio programs<br />

invited all persons in the city whose name<br />

is "Mrs. Mike ." . . to be guests of the management<br />

during the picture playdates. This<br />

was plugged daily and provided the picture<br />

with excellent publicity. Sidney landed free<br />

plugs on all the popular disk jockey shows<br />

which were interspersed with paid commercials.<br />

With all downtown stores featuring a<br />

January White Sale. Sidney made up special<br />

window streamers with a cut of Evelyn<br />

Keyes and copy: "'Mrs. Mike' says Save<br />

Now by buying at our January, etc." The<br />

bottom of the streamer was imprinted with<br />

the theatre name and the playdates.<br />

Another type of window streamer was made<br />

which was distributed by Standard Brands<br />

to all retailers in the area handling the<br />

products, which also carried full theatre<br />

credits. This tieup provided excellent coverage<br />

in Baltimore and throughout the metropolitan<br />

area.<br />

The Bantam Pocketbook tieup yielded 13<br />

attractive window displays including the Read<br />

Drug chain. Special advance lobby displays<br />

also helped to focus attention on the opening<br />

of the picture.<br />

Valentine for Stars<br />

Patrons of the Rivoli Theatre on Broadway,<br />

New York, are being asked to send their<br />

Valentine greetings to Hedy Lamarr and Victor<br />

Mature, stars of the current attraction,<br />

"Samson and Delilah." Manager Monte Salmon<br />

has set up a giant-size greeting card<br />

in the shape of a heart on the mezzanine<br />

foyer. Girls are asked to sign for Mature<br />

and the boys have an opportunity to express<br />

their sentiments towards Hedy.<br />

Marines See 'Jitna'<br />

A group of local marines were interested<br />

spectators at a screening of "Sands of Iwo<br />

Jima." arranged by Matt Saunders, manager<br />

of Loew's Poll Theatre. Bridgeport, Conn.<br />

The immediate result of the invitation performance<br />

was a three-column break in the<br />

local daily, with a photograph of the marines<br />

watching the show.<br />

34 —50— BOXOFFICE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950

Dodge Dealer Tieup<br />

Sells Extra Tickets<br />

For 'Splendor'<br />

Francis Lattin, manager of the Avalon<br />

Theatre in Easton, Md., made an excellent<br />

tieup recently with the local Dodge dealer<br />

in behalf of "Savage Splendor." The dealer<br />

purchased for distribution 414 children's<br />

tickets, good at matinees only, for which he<br />

paid the regular price. He supplied a new<br />

Dodge truck with an A-board on which<br />

Lattin posted a three-sheet on "Savage<br />

Splendor" and "Ichabod and Mr. Toad."<br />

Bannered with playdates, the truck toured<br />

the streets two days before opening and<br />

during the run.<br />

The dealer showrooms were plastered with<br />

three 40x60s and two one-sheets. The material<br />

was supplied by the Dodge manufacturers<br />

and Lattin had snipes made for them.<br />

The crowning part of the tieup were three<br />

superior newspaper co-op ads which the<br />

dealer paid for; one 4-column, 10-inch, another<br />

3x8 and the third 2x7.<br />

The free ticket deal rated a one-column<br />

story in the local daily.<br />

Cracker Contest Helps<br />

'McCoy' in Olympia, N.Y.<br />

Milt Baline, manager of the Olympic Theatre,<br />

Watertown, N. Y., took advantage of<br />

the national tieup with the Sunshine Biscuit<br />

Co. on "Roseanna McCoy." The Syracuse office<br />

of Sunshine sent a representative to<br />

Watertown to set up displays and crackerguessing<br />

contests in numerous markets.<br />

Shoppers were asked to guess the correct<br />

number of crackers in a jar and the first ten<br />

coming closest were awarded guest tickets to<br />

the Olympic.<br />

A square dance contest was held in the theatre<br />

between the local group and a championship<br />

4-H group. Music was furnished<br />

by a hillbilly band promoted by Baline.<br />

Cafe Feeds Newlyweds<br />

To Help 'Bride for Sale'<br />

Jerome Baker, manager of the RKO Coliseum<br />

Theatre, New York, used a novel tieup<br />

with a local restaurant on "Bride for Sale."<br />

The restaurant played host to all brides married<br />

during the two weeks prior to the opening<br />

of the picture, following which they were<br />

to be guests of the theatre to see "Bride for<br />

Sale."<br />

Baker publicized the stunt through lobby<br />

displays, a trailer, and a sign in the restaurant<br />

window. Marriage certificates were required<br />

to verify the wedding dates.<br />

'Hasty Heart' Co-Op Ad<br />

Sold in Danbury, Conn.<br />

Irving Hillman, manager of the Empress<br />

Theatre, Danbury, Conn., tied up with eight<br />

merchants for a full-page newspaper co-op<br />

ad on "The Hasty Heart" in the Danbury<br />

News-Times. Theatre copy and a large cut<br />

of Richard Todd consumed almost half the<br />

upper portion of the page. Tie-in copy read.<br />

"Ten years from now you'll remember the best<br />

performance of any year, etc. . . . and ten<br />

years from now you will still remember these<br />

merchants for their outstanding merchandise<br />

and service."<br />

Train Giveaway Zooms<br />

Candy Stand Sales<br />

H. G. Kempton. manager of the Gillioz,<br />

Monett, Mo., recently completed a<br />

successful promotion in which concession<br />

sales increased considerably over a sixweek<br />

period.<br />

Coupons were given away with each<br />

ten-cent purchase of candy, popcorn, hot<br />

dogs and soft drinks. Patrons dropped<br />

their coupons into a drum after filling<br />

in their name and address. An electric<br />

train was awarded to the lucky coupon<br />

holder at the conclusion of the six-week<br />

period.<br />

Concession sales boomed and on the<br />

day of the giveaway, the house attendance<br />

was far above average, with most<br />

of the younger population on hand In<br />

eager anticipation.<br />

Mystery Girl Quest<br />

Is Merchant Co-Op<br />

Two Markets Sponsor<br />

Country Store Night<br />

George Cameron, manager of the Holland<br />

Theatre in Bellefontaine, Ohio, tied up with<br />

two markets as sponsors of a Country Store<br />

night every Thursday during January. In<br />

addition to grocery baskets which will be<br />

awarded to lucky ticket holders, Cameron<br />

promoted the services of an orchestra to feature<br />

square dance music plus a demonstration<br />

and contest for square dancing. Cameron<br />

officiated at each Country Store night<br />

dressed in a "loud" outfit and boots supplied<br />

gratis by the Montgomery Ward store.<br />

For background atmosphere, a rustic setting<br />

was built and racks constructed on stage<br />

to display the prizes and groceries.<br />

Veterans, Guard Unit<br />

Stage Parade to Aid<br />

'Battleground'<br />

Murray L. Scharff, manager of Loew's<br />

State, Newark, N. J., enlisted the cooperation<br />

of the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign<br />

Wars and the National guard to stage<br />

a parade in behalf of "Battleground." Representatives<br />

from the various posts participated<br />

in the parade, and army air force<br />

carrier pigeons were released from the theatre<br />

marquee to add an effective note to<br />

the proceedings.<br />

War heroes who saw action in the Battle<br />

of the Bulge were guests of the theatre on<br />

opening day, where they were welcomed on<br />

the stage by the mayor of Newark. A-boards<br />

announcing the attraction were planted<br />

throughout the city, and shields on lighting<br />

poles solicited recruits for the army while<br />

calling attention to "Battleground" and the<br />

playdates.<br />

Window displays were promoted, tied In<br />

with Hershey's chocolate bars: radio was<br />

tapped for transcriptions over station WNJR;<br />

and teaser stories were planted in local newspapers<br />

reasonably in advance. A phonograph<br />

in the theatre lobby kept playing the<br />

Jody chant, heard throughout the picture,<br />

and on opening day wsis transferred to the<br />

army recruiting station.<br />

A Mystery Girl promotion, not unlike a<br />

Raffles quest, was worked by Fred Barthel,<br />

manager of the Margie Grand Theatre, Harlan,<br />

Ky., in conjunction with the retail division<br />

of the Chamber of Commerce. Barthel<br />

sold his idea on the basis of stimulating shopping<br />

Scharff was aided In this campaign by his<br />

on certain bargain days. The public assistants, Joe Fuller and Bernard Grasso.<br />

was asked to identify the girl in the following<br />

manner. On two specific days, she and<br />

an escort visited each participating store.<br />

Customers holding sales receipts were given<br />

the privilege of asking the girl one question<br />

School Aid and Windows,<br />

Lift 'Hamlet' in Glasgow<br />

to which her answer was simply "yes" or Lily Watt, manager of the Florida Cinema<br />

"no."<br />

in Glasgow, Scotland, used several facets of<br />

The customer was then urged to keep her promotion on "Hamlet." Window displays<br />

identity secret if he or she knew who she were arranged in eight stores and 25 shops<br />

was and submit a guess on a slip at the used interior hanging cards advertising the<br />

theatre. That evening the Mystery Girl was theatre dates. An artistic display was arranged<br />

unmasked on the stage of the Margie Grand<br />

in the waiting room of the theatre.<br />

by the mayor, and the winning customer was School headmasters directed that children<br />

presented prizes. The local newspaper and be informed of the Florida booking In their<br />

the radio station each contributed $50. Merchants'<br />

classrooms.<br />

gift awards pushed the total to $1,000. For another recent program consisting of<br />

All cooperating stores displayed signs and "A Song Is Born" and "40 Minutes at the<br />

advertised the tieup in their regular newspaper<br />

Zoo," posters were placed in pet shops, and<br />

and radio announcements. The paper Wilson's zoo displayed three separate signs<br />

and radio station cooperated by giving the with theatre copy. The Leisure library tied<br />

stunt plenty of free publicity.<br />

in with book displays on animals and Hall's<br />

The idea is adaptable in any type of community<br />

canteen plugged the pictures via still dischants<br />

and on any occasion when the merplays<br />

and color enlargements.<br />

are desirous of promoting a Bargain<br />

Day or Special Sales.<br />

Hometown Fetes General<br />

At 'Iwo Jima' Opening<br />

The historic flag which was used on Iwo<br />

Jima recently was flown from Camp Pendleton,<br />

Calif., to the Marine Corps museum<br />

at Quantico, Va., by Maj. Gen. G. B. Ersklne.<br />

The general stopped off at his hometown of<br />

Monroe, La., to be honor guest at the opening<br />

of "Sands of Iwo Jima" at the Paramount<br />

Theatre there. Melvin Greenblatt,<br />

manager of the Paramount, arranged a series<br />

of interviews for the general. Gold Star<br />

Mothers presented the visitor with a gift on<br />

the stage of the theatre. Several mayors of<br />

communities in the Monroe area were on<br />

hand to extend an official greeting when the<br />

general landed at the airport. The newspapers<br />

covered each event with stories and<br />

art plus mention of "Sands of Iwo Jima."<br />

BOXOFFICE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950 —51— 35

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Screenplay by Harry Brown— James Edward Granl • Story by Harry Brown<br />




. . and<br />

Novice Showmen Prove Ingenuity<br />

Can Substitute for Experience<br />

how the picture can help the child's educational<br />

experience.<br />

For "Task Force," they reported: "The<br />

importance of aircraft carriers is explained<br />

and a background into the services<br />

of the naval air reserve is given."<br />

They had this to say about "Riders of<br />

the Whistling Pines": 'TProblems of Forest<br />

Rangers and the importance of forest<br />

preservation, mixed with an entertaining,<br />

tuneful story." "Scene of the Crime" had<br />

this to recommend it: "The effectiveness<br />

of modem police methods and the futility<br />

of crime." "Slattery's Hurricane" offered<br />

the youngsters an educational insight to<br />

the workings and service of the navy and<br />

When Mr. and Mrs. Jantz purchased the<br />

Frost (Tex.) Theatre, they had high<br />

hopes, a detennination to succeed and no<br />

experience. Frost has a population around<br />

2,000. Experience is important in operating<br />

a small town theatre, but the Jantzes<br />

are already proving that success in theatre<br />

operation is mainly learning what<br />

kind of entertainment the townspeople<br />

like, providing that type of entertainment<br />

and servicing the theatre in a manner<br />

which appeals especially to family trade.<br />

One of their plans embraces a method<br />

of presenting each feature attraction to<br />

parents so that they can judge the suitability<br />

of the picture for their children.<br />

This is accomplished by publication of the weather bureau.<br />

a 12-page mimeographed monthly booklet The booklet cover is bound in a color<br />

prepared entirely by the couple.<br />

contrasting with the rest of the program.<br />

On each page, two features booked at It is used to emphasize special programs<br />

the Frost are reviewed by the Jantzes in or special holiday bookings and attractions.<br />

The text is written in a breezy,<br />

thumbnail form. Complete billing credits<br />

and playdates. the cast and a brief outline<br />

of the story theme are included. At that the Jantzes are homefolks. Personal<br />

personal style which reflects that the fact<br />

the bottom, a footnote provides an innovation.<br />

Uifder the heading, "Educa-<br />

interest help to increase its general ap-<br />

messages in the booklet and items of local<br />

tional Standpoint," parents are informed peal to theatre patrons.<br />

Screenings and Ads<br />

Launch The Idol'<br />

"The Fallen Idol" was presented at the<br />

Welton Theatre, formerly the Telenews, in<br />

Denver, as the recent holiday attraction with<br />

considerable fanfare and wide newspaper<br />

publicity promoted by Manager Ross McCausland.<br />

The newspapyer publicity began 11 days<br />

PM-ior to opening, with the regular ad campaign<br />

launched a week in advance. Screenings<br />

were held for newspaper and radio people<br />

and for numerous women's clubs and<br />

heads of the Film Arts Study group from<br />

Denver university. More than 100 persons<br />

attended the screenings.<br />

A special invitational opening performance<br />

was held for a group comprising state and<br />

city officials, British consulate members and<br />

a selected list of British subjects obtained<br />

from the consul.<br />

A special theatre front consisting of blowups<br />

and still boards was constructed for eurrent<br />

use.<br />

PTA 14 Miles Away Runs<br />

Benefit on 'Columbus'<br />

George Cameron, manager of the Holland<br />

Theatre, Bellefontaine, Ohio, found it difficult<br />

getting local organizations to tackle a benefit<br />

performance of "Christopher Columbus." He<br />

accordingly traveled 14 miles to another community<br />

to set up a benefit with the Parent-<br />

Teacher Ass'n which sought funds to send the<br />

school senior class to Washington next spring.<br />

The school superintendent arranged to have<br />

buses bring the townspeople in on two successive<br />

nights since no other transportation<br />

to Bellefontaine was available except private<br />

car.<br />

Big Parade Highlights<br />

Portland, Ore., 'Iwo Jima'<br />

Highlight of the campaign for "Sands of<br />

Iwo Jima" at the Broadway in Portland, Ore.,<br />

was a parade promoted by Jack Matlack, general<br />

manager and advertising director for<br />

the J. J. Parker Theatres. The parade included<br />

a marine corps band, color guard,<br />

platoons of marching men, and motorized<br />

units with trucks, weapons, tanks, etc. The<br />

procession paraded the full length of Broadway,<br />

which is the main downtown street in<br />

Portland, halting in front of the Broadway<br />

Theatre to salute the showing of "Sands of<br />

Iwo Jima." Thoiisands of people were attracted<br />

to the demonstration with resulting<br />

effect at the boxoffice.<br />

Postal Cards Displace<br />

More Costly Programs<br />

Norman Lofthus, manager of the California<br />

Theatre in Santa Barbara, recently discontinued<br />

house programs in favor of a direct<br />

mail. Lofthus changed after an analysis disclosed<br />

that programs cost an average of 5<br />

cents each including delivery whUe the postal<br />

cards, imprinted and mailed, cost $1.80 a<br />

hundred. Reaction to the new type of advertising<br />

has been favorable.<br />

Free Plugs for Smiley<br />

The appearance of Smiley Burnette at the<br />

Milford (Del. I Theatre was well publicized<br />

by Manager Harold DeGraw. Free radio<br />

plugs were promoted from local disk jockeys<br />

ten days in advance. One hundred window<br />

cards were distributed, and there were publicity<br />

stories published in eight daily and<br />

weekly newspapers. The master of ceremonies<br />

of the vaudeville show made announcements<br />

two weeks in advance.<br />

Newspaper Promotion<br />

Gets Women's Interest<br />

For 'All King's Men'<br />

Morris Rosenthal, manager of the Poll<br />

^<br />

Theatre in New Haven, went after the ^«<br />

women's patronage to help "All the King's<br />

Men." He used a direct approach to get<br />

space on the women's page of the New Haven<br />

Journal-Courier.<br />

The newspaper regularly runs a news brief<br />

in Feminine Topics section among which are<br />

advertising paragraphs. The section editor<br />

offered theatre passes to persons who found<br />

their names scattered throughout the section.<br />

Each time a winner was paragraphed,<br />

the picture and playdates were mentioned<br />

and the first paragraph gave complete details<br />

with another fine plug for the show.<br />

Libraries distributed bookmarks carrying<br />

picture credits and by displayed posters listing<br />

prize-winning Pulitzer plays and books<br />

with "All the King's Men" included.<br />

A music store helped distribute 10,000 lucky<br />

numbered heralds and devoted a full-window<br />

display to the theatre attraction. Window<br />

cards were distributed and special posters<br />

tied in with the February issue of Esquire<br />

were displayed at newsstands.<br />

Signs with art illustration were placed in<br />

downtown hotels, restaurants and at bus<br />

stations. The Pulitzer award to the author<br />

of "All the King's Men" made it possible<br />

for Rosenthal to promote announcements<br />

over the Yale university radio station which<br />

also pipes music and comments into all<br />

dormitory rooms.<br />

^^<br />

The New Haven Sunday Register ran a ^~j<br />

special feature story on the Pulitzer angle ^^<br />

and both daily and weekly publications ran<br />

advance art and stories heralding the Poll<br />

engagement.<br />

Animated Lobby Displays<br />

Help 'Wheel' and 'Lover'<br />

An animated lobby display helped to promote<br />

advance interest in "The Big Wheel"<br />

for Al Hatoff. manager of the Park, Brooklyn.<br />

A lithograph from the picture was<br />

placed in the lobby, topped with a Stop<br />

and Go sign distinguished by green and<br />

red lights and copy: "STOP for your safety's<br />

sake, look both ways when crossing at street<br />

comers . GO to see one of the year's<br />

big hits, etc.. etc." The red and green bulbs<br />

flashed at intervals, helping to attract people<br />

to the display.<br />

For "The Great Lover," a three-sheet was<br />

placed on display, with the tip of Bob Hope's<br />

nose converted into a transparency. At intervals,<br />

a flasher bulb lit up the proboscis,<br />

drawing humorous chuckles from onlookers.<br />

Lip Imprint Adds Color<br />

To Miami 'Kiss' Heralds<br />

Herb Rubenstein added a "handy" idea to<br />

a herald on "That Midnight Kiss" which<br />

captured the fancy of Miamians and stimulated<br />

extra business at the local Center Theatre.<br />

Circulars were imprinted with a regular<br />

display ad cut from the press book. A rubber<br />

stamp was then prepared and in each corner<br />

of the herald, a red imprint was affixed. The<br />

extra color gave the handbills a bit of novelty<br />

and attracted unusual attention.<br />

o<br />

38<br />

BOXOFHCE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950





Annual Dance Revue on Salt<br />

Lake Stage<br />

Every year a local dance school stages a revue at the Utah Theatre in Salt Lake City.<br />

Manager Charles Pincus made the tieup several years ago. The show has been built<br />

into one oi the more popular attractions in the city. The most recent program included<br />

lull stage settings, a cast of almost 200 children and a full orchestra of students. The<br />

show was staged for four days during the recent holidays. Because of its great local<br />

appeal, the show rates strong support from the press and radio stations. Parents and<br />

relatives of the children who are in the show make up a good portion of the audience.<br />

Pictured is the complete cast on the Utah stage in the finale.<br />

Campaign on 'Jolson'<br />

Beats Competition<br />

strong competition for "Jolson Sings Again"<br />

when it played the Russell Theatre. Maysville.<br />

Ky.. inspired Manager Ben Tureman to<br />

put on a forceful campaign which resulted in<br />

exceptional business. Tureman planted a 16-<br />

minute transcription of Jolson songs with the<br />

disk jockey on the local radio station. Fifty<br />

window cards were planted locally and in<br />

surrounding towns. A 40x60 was placed In the<br />

theatre lobby, cards with picture playdates<br />

were put in restrooms. and all theatre employes<br />

wore cardboard badges imprinted with<br />

picture copy.<br />

A block of tickets was sold to a supermarket<br />

for distribution as gifts to employes. Several<br />

disk jockey shows featured Jolson records with<br />

picture and playdate credits.<br />

The largest record store In town tied up<br />

for a colorful window exhibit of Jolson records,<br />

and in addition featured them over a<br />

public address system with an amplifier on<br />

the main street.<br />

Talent Search Garners<br />

Profits at Three Shows<br />

A search-for-talent contest, the first of a<br />

series to be introduced at the Rialto Theatre,<br />

Amsterdam, N. Y., was launched recently by<br />

Manager Fielding O'Kelly. A 40x60 lobby<br />

board Invited entries 18 days in advance.<br />

O'Kelly also combed students of the senior<br />

high school and obtained talent with a large<br />

popular following. Tryouts were held at the<br />

theatre and entrants were lined up for a<br />

three-week show.<br />

Names of the students were plugged in<br />

newspaper ads for two days and through the<br />

regular theatre advertising facets. As a grand<br />

prize, O'Kelly promoted a $40 wrist watch,<br />

and merchandise certificates for runnersup.<br />

Horsey-Type Ballyhoo<br />

Exploits 'Seabiscuit'<br />

To exploit "The Story of Seabiscuit," Johnny<br />

Manuela, manager of the Strand Theatre.<br />

Cumberland, Md., borrowed a horse costume<br />

of the type which has to be manned by two<br />

persons, and used it as a comic street ballyhoo.<br />

For "The Great Lover," Manuela located a<br />

small Mexican burro and had a theatre employe<br />

lead the animal around town with a<br />

sign reading, "I'm the only jackass in town<br />

who's going to miss seeing Bob Hope in 'The<br />

Great Lover.' "<br />

Oriental Rug Display Aids<br />

'Bagdad' in Hamilton, Ont.<br />

Ken Davies, assistant at the Palace in Hamilton,<br />

Ont., promoted an attractive window<br />

display on "Bagdad." Davies arranged with<br />

a carpet firm for a display of oriental rugs<br />

in its main window. In the foreground, a<br />

life-size cutout figure of the dancing star of<br />

the film gave a realistic touch to the display.<br />

The title in huge cutout letters was placed<br />

against the front of the window, and at the<br />

extreme right a sign on an easel read, "Come<br />

away on a magic carpet to 'Bagdad,' etc."<br />

Toledo Exhibitors Run<br />

'I Am Movie Fan' Co-Op<br />

Recently the Toledo (Ohioi Blade observed<br />

the approach of the halfway mark of the<br />

20th century with a special edition. Twentyfour<br />

exhibitors subscribed for a quarter-page<br />

newspaper co-op ad using the copy of "I Am<br />

a Movie Fan." which has received wide propagation<br />

since it first appeared on the cover<br />

of BOXOFFICE several months ago. The incident<br />

was one of the rare occasions when<br />

theatres have pooled their resources in a<br />

united effort for public relations in Telodo.<br />

Civic Activity Plus<br />

Rogers Club Keep<br />

Business Good<br />

A. J. Kalberer. manager of the Indiana in<br />

^^<br />

Washington. Ind., has launched a campaign<br />

^J<br />

designed to keep the theatre in the forefront ^^<br />

of local activities by giving all organizations,<br />

civic clubs, etc.. a helping hand. Business<br />

has been good, according to Kalberer, and is<br />

probably accounted for by a succession of late<br />

promotions.<br />

A Roy Rogers Riding club formed some time<br />

back has weekly meetings at a Saturday<br />

morning show. Children have manifested a<br />

keen interest in the roundup meetings of the<br />

sroup which has consistently grown and fills<br />

the house each week.<br />


A mammoth post card w-as mailed to Roy<br />

Rogers with signatures of all the members.<br />

For over a week, the card was on display in<br />

the theatre lobby and the greetings were<br />

mailed to the star in Hollywood. Receipt<br />

of the post card was acknowledged in a personal<br />

letter to "Ranch Foreman" Kalberer.<br />

Rogers also sent the club photos of himself<br />

posing with the card.<br />

The Washington Herald runs a Roy Rogers<br />

comic strip every day. Kalberer approached<br />

the editor of the paper and obtained permission<br />

to publicize the weekly meetings of the<br />

Rogers club at the Indiana in a special notice<br />

over the top of the daily syndicate feature.<br />

To sustain interest each week, contests and<br />

competitions are staged at the theatre. Under<br />

proper supervision, boxing bouts for boys and<br />

^^<br />

a baby-doll contest for girls proved highly fl<br />

successful. These were publicized in advance<br />

of the meeting and in display signs out front.<br />

At another meeting of the club, Jeanne La-<br />

Duke, a 12-year-old 4-H girl who has a part<br />

in "The Green Promise," was invited to meet<br />

members of the club from the theatre stage,<br />

at which the young thespian was welcomed<br />

by Mayor Ralph Burris and presented a bouquet<br />

and various other gifts as a token from<br />

the city.<br />


A dog and monkey show presented for members<br />

of the club as an added attraction drew<br />

a re :crd -breaking crowd and received wide<br />

publicity in art and stories in the Washington<br />

Democrat and the Washington Herald.<br />

Kalberer recently was appointed county<br />

campaign director of the annual fund-raising<br />

drive for the National Foundation for Infantile<br />

Paralysis. Under Kalberer's guidance and<br />

experience, the entire community was set up<br />

to collect the greatest sum ever achieved for<br />

this purpose.<br />

Kalberer participates in various other community<br />

enterprises. He assisted the Fraternal<br />

Order of Police in obtaining a band, stage<br />

show and dance for a special fund-raising<br />

drive. The program was presented on the<br />

stage of the Indiana Theatre on two consecutive<br />

days.<br />

In conjunction with the Indiana's Christ-<br />

^^<br />

mas show, Kalberer obtained the voluntary Q j<br />

services of the Glee club from Washington<br />

Catholic High school. The group presented<br />

"The Wondrous Story" in four tableau scenes<br />

with music and vocal accompaniment. The<br />

stage presentation helped to attract added<br />

patronage to the theatre and created goodwill<br />

\^ith the school faculty.<br />

40<br />

BOXOFFICE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950

French Exhibit and Tower Replica<br />

Focus Attenfion on Eiffel Tower<br />

The personal appearance of Franchot Tone<br />

at the opening of "The Man on the Eiffel<br />

Tower" provided extra publicity breaks for<br />

Ansel Winston, manager of the RKO Palace,<br />

Chicago.<br />

Winston arranged a schedule for the Hollywood<br />

visitor which included personal appearances<br />

on the Palace stage at each performance<br />

on opening day, an interview on the<br />

Welcome, Travelers network radio show, an<br />

interview on the Breakfast Club show and a<br />

broadcast on the Let's Have F\tn program.<br />

Tone also appeared on Tony Oilman's television<br />

show over WENR-TV, and at the La<br />

Salle hotel to officially open a "France Come.i<br />

to You" exhibit, resulting in picture breaks<br />

in the Herald-American and the Sun-Times.<br />

In a tieup with Bond's department store.<br />

Tone made an appearance there where he<br />

interviewed 50 members of the Charm sorority.<br />

This event was plugged on Bond's air show<br />

every day a week in advance, with newspaper<br />

ads in all Chicago papers announcing it. The<br />

star also distributed 2,000 autographed photo.s<br />

to store customers, with complete theatre<br />

imprint.<br />

The TWA Airlines cooperated by providing<br />

a novel lobby display consisting of an eightfoot<br />

replica of the Eiffel tower, a large map<br />

of Paris pointing out various landmarks, and<br />

French flags and posters. Two uniformed<br />

hostesses representing TWA were in attendance<br />

at this exhibit during peak hours. Displays<br />

of "The Man on the Eiffel Tower" were<br />

also installed at both TWA offices in the<br />

Loop district.<br />

The sponsors of the "France Comes to You"<br />

exhibit extended further cooperation by installing<br />

displays plugging the picture playdates<br />

in 60 travel agencies throughout the<br />

Chicago area. Heralds plugging the picture<br />

were inserted in special programs distributed<br />

at the exhibit.<br />

Tone's personal appearances and interviews<br />

were covered by all Chicago newspapers, resulting<br />

in several stories, photos and column<br />

breaks, with mention of the picture's engagement<br />

at the Palace.<br />

Al St. John in Person<br />

Provides Coop Angle<br />

For Theatre, Stores<br />

Aside from his duties as manager of the<br />

Elkton (Va.) Theatre, Lurty C. Taylor doubles<br />

in brass as district manager for operations<br />

in three other towns in the Valley, one of<br />

which is the Stanley (Va.) Theatre.<br />

Lurty had an opportunity recently to book<br />

Al "Fuzzy" St. John and his Musical Rangers<br />

for a stage appearance. He approached the<br />

merchants of Stanley, told them he would<br />

bring a Hollywood actor to town "in person"<br />

on the last Saturday of the holiday shopping<br />

season, and asked for their support in exploiting<br />

the event, in view of the fact that they<br />

would reap rich rewards from extra business.<br />

The Merchants Ass'n called a meeting, a3<br />

a result of which Taylor was provided enough<br />

funds to run a full-page spread in the Page<br />

county paper and pay for 20, 100-word spot<br />

ads on WSVA. the powerful radio station in<br />

Harrisonburg which covers the entire state<br />

of Virginia.<br />

Taylor laid out the full-page ad which was<br />

completely devoted to the St. John personal<br />

appearance, and had it ready to hit on Thursday,<br />

the same day he began blasting the radio<br />

with announcements. When Saturday rolled<br />

along, the people came from miles around to<br />

see the show.<br />

The results were highly successful, Taylor<br />

reporting that he had "patrons hanging from<br />

the rafters."<br />




PTA-Sponsored Series<br />

Fills Theatres on<br />

II Saturdays<br />

Louis Orlove, MGM exploiteer in Wisconsin<br />

and Minnesota, is calling to exhibitors' attention<br />

a stunt conceived by Elmer Brennan,<br />

district manager for Standard Theatres,<br />

Green Bay, Wis.<br />

Brennan, enlisting the Green Bay school<br />

superintendent's cooperation, put over a PTAapproved<br />

film show plan running for 11<br />

weeks, with a $1 "season ticket" good for all<br />

11 shows. The school superintendent wrote<br />

letters to all principals, asking them to cooperate<br />

and assist. Mimeographed letters<br />

were sent by Brennan to all parents. They<br />

had subscription coupons attached.<br />

On the first Saturday Brennan had $500 in<br />

admissions sold for the 900-seat Bay Theatre,<br />

and it was also necessary to utilize the Packer<br />

Theatre. Additional "subscriptions" poured<br />

in, particularly after Brennan sent out post<br />

cards to parents, telling them of the heavy<br />

demand and warning that soon more tickets<br />

wouldn't be available. The final result was<br />

that Brennan sold 3,000 tickets at $1 each<br />

and had to use three theatres, instead of two.<br />

"This is what I call good showmanship, and<br />

I'd say Brennan hit on a formula that really<br />

hit and spelled good public relations," commented<br />

Orlove.<br />


Special "reminder" circulars were used by<br />

Murray Melnberg, manager of the Rltz Theatre,<br />

Brooklyn, on "Pinky." They were imprinted,<br />

"Tie this string around your finger<br />

to remind you, etc." Pieces of cord were<br />

stapled to the cards and were then distributed<br />

throughout the neighborhood.<br />

Ken Carter, manager of the Madison Theatre,<br />

Richmond, Ky., tied up with the jukebox<br />

dealer to place cards throughout the county<br />

plugging Jolson records and the playdates for<br />

"Jolson Sings Again." Window displays were<br />

set with music shops centered around the<br />

Jolson albums.<br />

A false front was built under the direction<br />

of Sam George, manager of the Paramount<br />

Theatre in Atlanta, for "Samson and<br />

Delilah." On both sides of the entrance<br />

large display pieces were built, using three-<br />

Sheet Utho cutouts with title and cast in<br />

cutout letters. An overhead banner and a<br />

valance aroimd the outer edge of the marquee<br />

provided additional flash. Near the boxoffice,<br />

a large billboard included highlights<br />

of production scenes with captions giving<br />

details of the action.<br />

. . . Nuff Sed!"<br />

Elihu M. Glass, owner-manager of the Majestic,<br />

West Springfield, Mass., ran special<br />

ads in the local dailies on "I Was a Male War<br />

Bride," headed "It's Here<br />

Copy comprised a personal postscript from<br />

the management to the effect, "If you see<br />

only one picture a year, this is the one to see."<br />

Neighborhood Merchants Support<br />

Theatre 'Dimes Collections<br />

The National Foundation for Infantile<br />

Paralysis received strong support from Harold<br />

Grott, manager of the Rialto, Baltimore, as a<br />

result of his aggressive drive to collect funds.<br />

Grott displayed a novel combination poster<br />

and game board in the theatre lobby, much<br />

on the order of a pinball machine. Patrons<br />

were invited to insert coins and try their skill<br />

at directing the coins into a crutch lined with<br />

nails on the regular March of Dimes poster.<br />

If the coin landed in the proper position, a<br />

red light was automatically illuminated and<br />

the patron was presented a pass to the theatre.<br />

The device was set into a large display,<br />

tied in with the March of Dimes and an explanation<br />

that all money collected would be<br />

contributed to the fund.<br />

The large amount of money which dropped<br />

into the device was visible to the public<br />

through a glass frame, and attracted such<br />

great attention in the neighborhood that one<br />

of the merchants on the block volunteered<br />

to give a prize to the person estimating the<br />

nearest figure to the actual amount of money<br />

collected at the conclusion of the drive.<br />

Encouraged by the merchant's interest,<br />

Grott contacted the other shopkeepers in the<br />

neighborhood and obtained prizes from each<br />

one on the block where the theatre is situated.<br />

A secondary sign was then placed near the<br />

display, explaining to the public how the<br />

prizes would be awarded. Envelopes were<br />

made available in which they could enclose<br />

42<br />

a contribution to the fund and an estimate<br />

of the amount which would ultimately be<br />

collected.<br />

The stunt was exceptionally successful and<br />

helped to raise a sum of money for the March<br />

of Dimes far in excess of any previous drive.<br />

—58—<br />

Exhibit and Windows<br />

Plus Marine Co-Op<br />

Sell 'Iwo Jima'<br />

Arthur Keenan, manager of the Strand, ^^<br />

Lowell, Mass., was fortunate in securing the C^<br />

services of one of the three living survivors ^^<br />

of the flag-raising on Iwo Jima, for a personal<br />

appearance in connection with the<br />

opening of "Sands of Iwo Jima." The marine<br />

hero, a native of Manchester, N. H., appears<br />

in the picture and cariie down on opening<br />

night to greet patrons of the Strand in<br />

Lowell.<br />

Keenan obtained the full cooperation of<br />

the local Marine Corps league, the state<br />

department of the Marine league and marine<br />

recruiting officers. Thirty marines in<br />

uniform with colors and color guard marched<br />

through the audience to the stage opening<br />

night to open officially the stage presentation.<br />

The audience was addressed by the<br />

marine commandant who introduced state<br />

and city executives in addition to local heroes<br />

who had served on Iwo Jima.<br />

The marine recruiting services suppUed<br />

souvenirs of Japanese and marine fighting<br />

equipment for lobby and window displays.<br />

Recruiting A-boards were sniped, and Keenan<br />

used additional lltho posters in regular<br />

billing spots throughout the area.<br />

The newspaper cooperated by running a<br />

coloring contest a week in advance, and<br />

furnished advance publicity which enabled<br />

the picture to open its engagement with capacity<br />

business.<br />

Jap Currency Imprinted<br />

With Lucky Pass Numbers<br />

Lucky numbered heralds representing Japanese<br />

invasion currency were distributed by<br />

Bill GoUer, manager of the Tower, Mianii,<br />

as advance exploitation for "Tokyo Joe." Fifty<br />

numbers were posted on a board in the theatre<br />

lobby and people whose numbers matched<br />

those listed received a free pass. Instructions<br />

printed on the currency advised people to<br />

check numbers in the Tower lobby. Reverse<br />

side of the heralds carried a cut advertising<br />

the picture playdates.<br />

Passes /or Yule Displays<br />

Irving Cantor, manager of the Auburn<br />

(N.Y.) Theatre, rewarded home owners having<br />

the most novel and attractive Christmas<br />

decorations with passes, rating feature stories<br />

and photos in the local paper. Cantor drove<br />

around the city after dark, stopping at homes<br />

which had the most striking holiday displays,<br />

introduced himself to the occupants, and with<br />

a cheerful "Merry Christmas," handed them<br />

a pass to see "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon."<br />

S Promotes 'Adam's Rib'<br />

George Sawyer, manager of the Victory in<br />

New London, Conn., promoted a newspaper ^^<br />

co-op ad on "Adam's Rib." An insurance C_J<br />

broker sponsored the ad which was topped ^^<br />

with "Are you insured for laugh assurance?"<br />

Novelty cards were distributed to pedestrians<br />

with copy: "Who Wears the Pants In Your<br />

Family?" Sawyer promoted several thousand<br />

sticks of chewing gum, and pasted them to<br />

the cards,<br />

BOXOFFICE Showmiandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950<br />


D<br />

Roosevelt in Miami<br />

Opens With Fanfare<br />

And 'Battleground'<br />

Edmund Linder, manager of the Roosevelt,<br />

the newest theatre to open in Miami Beach,<br />

civic, army and Hollywood personalities<br />

broadcasting from the lobby over WKAT on<br />

opening night.<br />

A sign measuring 30x15 feet was stretched<br />

across the building facade announcing the<br />

twin premiere. Two hundred window cards<br />

were distributed throughout the area and<br />

smaller cards were placed in hotels and stores<br />

which normally cannot display the regular<br />

cards.<br />

Two hundred copies of the study guide on<br />

"Battleground" were distributed to English<br />

teachers of, the Miami schools. The army<br />

provided A-boards for posters plugging the<br />

picture and opening, illumination for the<br />

theatre exterior on opening night, radar and<br />

other equipment for outside display and a<br />

band to play as the guests arrived.<br />

Opening night proceeds were donated to<br />

the National Children's Cardiac Home. The<br />

organization handled the advance sale of<br />

ticlcets, and much publicity and goodwill was<br />

derived from this.<br />

Exhibit of Tiny Ships<br />

Borrowed for 'Sailor'<br />

As the result of a tieup with the navy, a<br />

set of miniature ships and an eight-foot<br />

cruiser, valued at $4,000, were loaned to Joseph<br />

Geller, manager of the Castle Theatre,<br />

Irvington, N. J., for a lobby display in connection<br />

with his booking of "The Lady Takes<br />

a Sailor." Geller, with the aid of two naval<br />

keyed his opening campaign to the local premiere<br />

of "Battleground," with numerous tieups<br />

helping to focus attention on the dual tive display that the navy took photographs<br />

officers, arranged such an unusually attrac-<br />

event.<br />

of it for its private collection, and many<br />

A tremendous newspaper and radio campaign<br />

presaged the opening with<br />

patrons were moved to remark about the<br />

leading<br />

Winners Shore $250 Prize<br />

In 'Beautiful' Contest<br />

Ted Flodis, manager of the Pilgrim, Bronx,<br />

N. Y., staged a beautiful doll contest in conjunction<br />

with his booking of "Oh, You Beautiful<br />

Doll." The promotion was staged on a<br />

balloting basis. Children entered their dolls<br />

which were displayed in the lobby with an<br />

entry number. Patrons were invited to vote<br />

for their choice. Two local merchants sponsored<br />

the tieup and contributed $250 in prizes<br />

for 15 winners. Winners were presented oit<br />

the stage during the current showing of the<br />

picture.<br />

11<br />

THIS<br />

has outgrossed any<br />

picture played at this /^<br />

theatre during my six >^<br />

years with the company.* f<br />

Says:<br />

T. G. PROPHET, Mgr.<br />


interesting exhibit. Pamphlets were distributed<br />

in the lobby by navy personnel to aid<br />

in enlisting recruits.<br />

Interests Women<br />

In 'Battleground'<br />

Dorris Moss Pearl, publicist for the Adams<br />

Theatre, Detroit, concentrated her sales<br />

campaign for "Battleground" on the feminine<br />

angle, helped by the personal appearance of<br />

Denise Darcel at five scheduled performances.<br />

Mrs. Pearl arranged for interviews with the<br />

star on various women's radio shows and by<br />

reporters and columnists who have special<br />

appeal for women in their columns.<br />

Miss Darcel appeared at the Grand River<br />

Chevrolet factory, leading to three full-pages<br />

of cooperative advertising by dealers and a<br />

sales piece mailed to 4,000 car owners.<br />

your pafroiis eyesl<br />


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more often .. .amazingly fine sound rendition .. .softer,<br />

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BOXOFFICE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950<br />

—59— 43

Zenith Distributor Tieup Spreads<br />

Interest in 'Jolson<br />

at Savannah<br />

Mm<br />

Leslie Swaebe, manager of the Avon Theatre,<br />

Savannah, Ga., contacted the distributor<br />

of Zenith radios and obtained nine excellent<br />

window displays in music and record shops<br />

throughout the city to publicize "Jolson Sings<br />

Again."<br />

Each of the music stores devoted a complete<br />

window to the display. Set against a black<br />

background, cutout hands, eyes, mouth and<br />

bowtie covered with metallics gave the general<br />

idea of the famous Jolson pose. In the<br />

foreground was a life-size cutout of Larry<br />

Parks in a singing pose, and a large sign calling<br />

attention to the theatre dates. From the<br />

top of the window to the bottom, production<br />

stills were placed in orderly array, along with<br />

albums of Jolson song hits.<br />

The Zenith distributor provided special<br />

window cards which were also displayed, and<br />

many of these were placed in other windows<br />

throughout the city. The Decca Record Co.<br />

supplied Jolson records to juke boxes, the<br />

latter tagged with stickers, and additional<br />

records were furnished to disk jockeys on<br />

three radio stations. According to Swaebe,<br />

although no money was spent for radio promotion,<br />

free plugs received in connection with<br />

the records netted greater coverage than a<br />

paid campaign.<br />

Menu imprints in downtown restaurants<br />

and soda fountains also helped to promote<br />

the playdates.<br />

Swaebe had a print of the picture flown to<br />

Savannah by the Delta Airlines, and after the<br />

newspaper refused to run the photo, he had

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By having RCA arrange for the construction,<br />

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An RCA "PACKAGED" Drive-In<br />

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—<br />

Co-Op and Baby Derby<br />

Exploit 'War Bride'<br />

And 'On Town'<br />

Spencer Steinhurst, manager of the Weis<br />

Theatre. Savannah. Ga., promoted a full-page<br />

merchant Co-Op ad in his campaign for<br />

"I Was a Male War Bride." The ad included<br />

a six-column cut on the film, topped<br />

by a streamer reading, "For the merriest<br />

comedy of the season, etc. . . For bigger,<br />

.<br />

better values, patronize these local merchants."<br />

Among other things, Steinhurst invited all<br />

war brides in the city to be guests on opening<br />

night. A 24-sheet cutout of the pictorial<br />

illustration was placed in the lobby.<br />

With "On the Town" booked as a New<br />

Year attraction, Steinhurst tied up with a<br />

number of merchants to give the first baby<br />

born on New Year's day a considerable<br />

amount of gifts "On the Town." A special<br />

promotion tied in with the picture booking.<br />

In addition to providing the gifts which included<br />

milk, a layette, shoes, baby clothes,<br />

a ring and a savings account, the cooperating<br />

merchants paid for a full-page newspaper<br />

advertisement advertising the baby derby,<br />

with a fine plug for "On the Town." The<br />

Savannah Morning News and the Evening<br />

Press ran newspaper stories publicizing the<br />

derby and the picture playdates.<br />

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Style Show Triples Take<br />

At Fitzgerald, Ga., Grand<br />

T. C. Laird, manager of the Grand Theatre,<br />

Fitzgerald, Ga., staged a full-scale fashion<br />

revue in conjunction with the local department<br />

store which tripled the theatre gross<br />

and was so successful that the sponsor immediately<br />

agreed to undertake a spring fashion<br />

show.<br />

The winter revue, in addition to exhibiting<br />

the newest styles, included entertainers obtained<br />

locally at no cost. The sponsor advertised<br />

generously through newspapers, radio<br />

spot armouncements, and provided 3,000 oversize<br />

handbills for door-to-door distribution.<br />

The theatre played up the show through<br />

its usual facets of advertising, trailer, lobby<br />

and newspaper.<br />

Local Queen Is Selected<br />

As 'Vanity' Sidelight<br />

When the "Vanities of 1950" stage attraction<br />

was booked at the Wallace Theatre, Andrews,<br />

Tex., Manager A. J. Burleson conducted<br />

a local queen contest to stimulate<br />

interest.<br />

Patrons of the theatre were invited to cast<br />

ballots to determine the most popular girl in<br />

Andrews. On opening night of "Vanities,"<br />

the queen was announced and presented a<br />

bouquet by the cast of the show. Window<br />

cards, newspaper ads and a lobby display<br />

helped to focus attention on the contest. Fifteen<br />

girls were nominated for the title as an<br />

indication of the public interest aroused.<br />

Heralds, Direct Mail<br />

Promote 'Intruders'<br />

Bud Sommers, manager of the Rialto Theatre,<br />

Amsterdam, N. Y., ordered a threecolumn<br />

mat on "Intruders In the Dust," had<br />

it imprinted locally, sold the back page to<br />

an advertiser and had them distributed<br />

door-to-door. A mailing list of doctors, ntu-ses<br />

and members of women's clubs was circularized<br />

and three local stores devoted full<br />

window displays to exploitation for the picture.<br />

An usher dressed in an impressive black<br />

outfit with mask, ballyhooed the playdates<br />

with a sign reading: "Death Stalks Its<br />

Victims, etc."<br />


(Continaed from inside back cover)<br />


Comic books again available as premiums, giveaways<br />

at jour kiddy shows. Large variety latest<br />

48-page newsstand editions. Comics Premium Co.,<br />

412B Greemvich St.. New York City.<br />

Bingo with more action. $2.75 thousand cards.<br />

Also other games. Novelty Games Co., 1434 Bedford<br />

Ave., Brooklyn. N. Y.<br />

Bingo die-cut cards, two colors, 75 or 100 numbers.<br />

$3 per M. Premium Products, 354 W. 44th<br />

St.. New York 18.<br />

Giveaway everything now, dinnerware to cars!<br />

Merchant advertising tie-up. No cost to theatre.<br />

Interstate Theatre Service, 1115 East Armour,<br />

K. C.. Mo.<br />

Dishes are back! Beautiful 44-piece set. Average<br />

cost 10c piece. Arkansas Equipment Co.,<br />

Sulphur Springs. Ark.<br />

Comic books proven the most successful method<br />

of attracting the "small fry" to their Saturday<br />

matinees- Always large variety and latest popular<br />

title-^ all Sold on newsstands at lOc; $22.50<br />

per 1.000, F.O.B. New York City. Dumont Sales,<br />

15 Park How, New York City.<br />

Dartavray: Two sensational new theatre games<br />

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start now. Over 200 theatres now using our games.<br />

No theatre too big or too small. Write or wire<br />

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Cliair-ity liegins at S.O.S. We're practically<br />

giving 'em away. 271 sturdy veneer folding chairs.<br />

$2.95: 293 rebuilt panelback spring cushion, only<br />

2.0(|i» $4.05; late American 7-ply veneers, lllie<br />

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list. Dept. C. S.O.S. Cinema Supply Corp.,<br />

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Patch-0-Seat ctmaii. I'atchlng cloth, solvent,<br />

e lc. l''ensin Seating Co., CMcago 5.<br />

Tishten loose chairs with Permastone anctior<br />

cement. Fensln Seating Co., Ctllcago 5.<br />

Chair supplies. Everything for theatre .Aairs.<br />

rensin Seating Co., Chicago 5.<br />

Used cliairs, guaranteed good. Advise quantity<br />

wanted- Photographs mailed with quotation. Fensln<br />

Sgitlng Co., Chicago 8.<br />

No more torn seats: Repair with the original<br />

Patch-A-Soat. Complete kit. $6. General Chair<br />

Co.. gilcago 22. III.<br />

Chair Parts: We fumish most any part you require.<br />

Send sample for price, brackets, backs<br />

and seats. General Chair Co.. 1308 Elston Ave..<br />

Ctiicago 22. 111.<br />

Several thousand used opera chairs now in<br />

stock. Can furnish any amount you reqirest. Full<br />

upholstered back. Insert panelback, boxsprlng and<br />

spring edge seat. Write for photo and state<br />

amount and Incline. We also manufacture new<br />

chairs. General Chair Co., 1308-22 Elston Ave..<br />

Chicago 22. III.<br />

Many years In the seating business is your<br />

guarantee. Good used chairs are not too plentiful<br />

but we have the pick. Full upholstered, panel<br />

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size 18x21-inch chairs. Our prices are lowest.<br />

Write for exact photo and price. We Inrnish parts<br />

for all makes. Send sample. Good quality plastic<br />

coated leatherette 25x26-lnch. all colors, 55c ea.<br />

Ctllcago Used Chair Mart, 829 South State St.,<br />

Chlc.igo 5. 111.<br />

No more loose chairs: Get "Flrmastone" \nchor<br />

cement, $5 per box. General Chair Co., Chicago<br />

22. 111.<br />

nple for quotation.<br />


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46<br />

— 62 — BOXOFFICE Showmandiser :: Feb. 11, 1950

Mayfair Corp. Files<br />

$1320,000 Lawsuit<br />

PHILADELPHIA—The Mayfair Amusement<br />

Corp. has filed an antitrust case in federal<br />

court here, naming the eight major film distributors<br />

and seeking triple damages of<br />

$1,320,000. The action was launched by Lewis<br />

and Sadie Sablosky. Marion Fox and Myrtle<br />

Singer, making up the Mayfair company.<br />

They claim the film companies are guilty<br />

of criminal conspiracy because of an alleged<br />

combination to deprive the 805-seat Penypak<br />

Theatre of product on key run basis. They<br />

say that the Penypak is situated in a metropolitan<br />

section in northeast Philadelphia and<br />

is not in substantial competition with any<br />

other key run houses. The clo.sest competition,<br />

they allege, are Stanley Warners' Circle<br />

and Paramounfs Roosevelt, both more than<br />

three miles from the Penypak.<br />

They charge they have been trying to get<br />

product on a key run basis since acquiring<br />

the theatre in 1939. The house was built in<br />

1929 and was known as the Holme. It had<br />

1,400 seats until it was renovated by the<br />

present owners in 1941 who charged its name<br />

to the Penypak and reduced the seating<br />

capacity to 900.<br />

They allege that the reduction in capacity<br />

was necessitated by "wrongful conduct of the<br />

defendants," and say that they plan to expand<br />

back to 1,400 seats by removing partition<br />

walls which were installed in the renovation.<br />

Plaintiffs charge that it is unfair to discriminate<br />

against the Penypak by placing it<br />

on a clearance basis of seven days after the<br />

1,372-seat Liberty Theatre in the Tacony section<br />

of town. They allege that the Liberty<br />

gets product seven days after the key rims.<br />

Further, plaintiffs state, when the Penypak<br />

was leased to SW Theatres, the theatre was<br />

on a day-and-date basis with the Liberty from<br />

1929 to 1936.<br />

Defendants in the case are Paramount Film<br />

Distributing Corp., RKO. Warners Distributing<br />

Corp., Columbia, Universal, United Artists.<br />

Loew's, Inc., and 20th-Fox.<br />

Distributors Are Targets<br />

At Allied Convention<br />

PHILADELPHIA—Distributors were blamed<br />

for the poor relationship between film distributors<br />

and exhibitors at the recent meeting<br />

of the Allied Exhibitors of Eastern Pennsylvania.<br />

Members charged that the film<br />

exchanges were "woefully undermanned."<br />

They declared that film sale.smen called on<br />

them "very infrequently," but that branch<br />

managers visited them even less.<br />

The exhibitors said that all major exchanges<br />

except UA called for percentage deals instead<br />

of permitting them a choice of flat<br />

rentals. Some said that 20th-Fox also allowed<br />

them their choice of deals.<br />

Newspaper Cooperation Is<br />

To Boost Theatre Attendance<br />

NEW YORK—A cooperative effort to<br />

stimulate film theatre attendance has been<br />

worked out between the New York Journal-<br />

American and the advertising and publicity<br />

directors committee of the Motion Picture<br />

Ass'n The committee is now trying to extend<br />

it nationally.<br />

The New York tieup was made by Silas<br />

F. Seadler. advertising manager for MGM,<br />

in behalf of the picture companies. It consists<br />

of a series of ads contributed by the<br />

Journal-American. Each advertisement reproduced<br />

a still from a forthcoming picture<br />

and carries the slogan— "Let's Go to the<br />

Movies," with copy urging frequent attendance<br />

and citing the film services of the<br />

newspaper.<br />

Copy for the ads is along the following<br />

lines:<br />

Let's Go to the Movies:<br />

Entertainment is a tonic for everyone—and<br />

movies are good entertainment.<br />

The Journal-American is outstanding<br />

in its coverage of Hollywood<br />

in news and photos. Read Louella Parson's<br />

column and Rose Pelswick's reviews<br />

of the new films. Let's make<br />

'Let's go to the movies' a family phrase<br />

... a family habit.<br />

Advertisements have already appeared In<br />

behalf of "The Hasty Heart" (MGM)<br />

"Deadly Is the Female" (UA), "Blue Gra.ss<br />

of Kentucky" (Mono), "Ambush" (MGM)<br />

and "Samson and Delilah" (Para).<br />

The publicity directors committee will<br />

circularize all field men, theatre repre-<br />

Civil Liberties Affiliate<br />

Assails 'Stromboli' Din<br />

NEW YORK—The National Council of<br />

Freedom From Censorship, an affiliate of the<br />

American Civil Liberties union, has protested<br />

the demands of various groups throughout<br />

the country to ban the exhibition of "Stromboli."<br />

Elmer Rice, chairman of the council,<br />

.sent telegrams to Sidney K. Rogell, production<br />

chief at RKO, and to Eric Johnston,<br />

president of MPAA, in which he termed the<br />

group demands "an outrageous and illegal<br />

denial of free speech and expression as guaranteed<br />

by the First amendment."<br />

Rogell protested that the issue opened new<br />

channels of censorship activity against the<br />

personal lives of film participants and not<br />

against the contents of the film itself. He<br />

stated that "films, like speech or written<br />

statements, must stand or fall on what the.v<br />

show and say, not on the personal conduct<br />

of the picture's stars."<br />

Started<br />



sentatives and exchange affiliations with<br />

reproductions of the Journal-American ads<br />

urging that they be brought to the attention<br />

of local newspapers to duplicate the<br />

plan. It is believed that with the spread<br />

of this nationwide propaganda the industry<br />

will get effective stimulation of theatre<br />

attendance.<br />

Highway Billboard Control<br />

Is Sought in Four Bills<br />

ALBANY—Pour bills<br />

which would establish<br />

control of billboards along highways and<br />

roads in New York have been reintroduced<br />

by Senator Thomas C. Desmond. Pointing<br />

out that the state spends $400,000 annually to<br />

advertise its scenic and recreational advantages.<br />

Desmond said that the exploitation<br />

program is being handicapped by outdoor<br />

advertising which increasingly is lining highways<br />

and roads.<br />

The four bills would ban billboards on the<br />

New York to Buffalo highway, restrict billboards<br />

on all local roads designated as scenic<br />

routes by counties, cities, towns and villages,<br />

require the licensing of outdoor advertisers<br />

and the payment of fees based on sizes of<br />

boards used, and establish commercial and<br />

non-commercial areas on highways for locations<br />

of billboards.<br />

Philco Corp. Executive<br />

Blasts Proposed TV Tax<br />

PHILADELPHIA—Courtney Pitt, vice-president<br />

in charge of finance for Philco Corp.,<br />

said here recently that the 10 per cent excise<br />

tax on television sets proposed by Secretary<br />

of the Treasury John W. Snyder would<br />

"undo part of the progress already made in<br />

bringing the price of television within reach<br />

of every family in the United States."<br />

Legion Auxiliary Leader<br />

Calls for Film Boycott<br />

ATLANTIC CITY—Mrs. Dorothy Pearl of<br />

Detroit, former national president of the<br />

American Legion women's auxiliary, was<br />

loudly cheered when she called for a boycott<br />

of films featuring stars involved in moral<br />

scandals. Her address was made before the<br />

23rd Area B child welfare conference of the<br />

American Legion and affiliated organizations<br />

at the convention in the President hotel here.<br />

Bingo Bill Reintroduced<br />

In lersey Legislature<br />

TRENTON—Robert Vogel, state .senator,<br />

has reintroduced a bill to legalize bingo<br />

playing in churches and civic auditoriums.<br />

The measure was defeated by organized New<br />

Jersey theatre owners in the 1949 session,<br />

many exhibitors believe that it will not<br />

come up for vole by the legislature during<br />

1950.<br />

BOXOFTICE :: February 11, 1950 47

. . . W.<br />

. . Harry<br />

I<br />

I<br />

. . Don<br />

.<br />

"<br />

Syracuse<br />

:<br />


prrol FljTUi, who has been wortong in India<br />

on MGM's •'Kim," arrived on the lie de<br />

France February 9 en route to Hollywood<br />

where the picture will be completed. Victor<br />

FTamcen. French screen actor: Henri Diamant<br />

Berger. FYench film producer: Andre Halley<br />

des Fontaines, president of the Association of<br />

Movie Producers of Paris, and Joan BlondeU<br />

came in on the same boat . . . H. C. Potter<br />

.vho has been directing MGM's "The Miniver<br />

Story" in England, flew in from London and<br />

Compton Bennett, another MGM director,<br />

arrived on the way to Hollywood.<br />

George Kochifer. BUI Shanks and Bill Watson,<br />

of the "King Solomon's Mines" production<br />

unit working in South Africa, came in<br />

by plane en route to the coast . . . Agnes<br />

Newton Keith, author of "Three Came Home."<br />

which will open at the Astor February 20.<br />

will fly in from her home in Borneo to attend<br />

the event . . . Frederick Badden. Powell Weill<br />

and N. A. Bronsten. English film producers,<br />

flew west to discuss deals with several Hollywood<br />

writers . . . Frederick N. Polangin. vicepresident<br />

in charge of the Los Angeles office<br />

of Buchanan & Co.. was here for conferences<br />

with United Artists home office executives<br />

on campaigns for new releases.<br />

Samuel H. Stiefel, producer of "Quicksand"<br />

for UA release, was here for talks with Edward<br />

J. Peskay, his representative, and UA<br />

officials on the picture's March release . . .<br />

Carroll Puciato. Realart manager in charge<br />

of exchange operations, was back from a twoweek<br />

tour of Philadelphia, Washington, Cincinnati,<br />

Indianapolis and other exchanges.<br />

Paul X. Lazarus jr., executive assistant to<br />

Gradwell Sears at United Artists, has postponed<br />

his trip to the west coast indefinitely<br />

C. Gehring. 20th-Fos assistant general<br />

sales manager, left for Dallas to conduct sales<br />

meetings there . M. Warner arrived<br />

with Mrs. Warner for a Manhattan stay . . .<br />

Eddie Ruff. New England di\-ision manager<br />

for Motion Picture Sales Corp., conferred with<br />

NeU Agnew and Charles Casanave on the<br />

Anna Magnani film. "'Volcano" . . R. M.<br />

.<br />

Sa\-ini. president of Astor Pictures, returned<br />

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BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 49

Congressman Pledge<br />

Tax Drive Support<br />

NEW YORK—Fifteen New York congressmen<br />

had pledged unconditional support of<br />

the admissions tax repeal campaign by<br />

Wednesday (8), according to Harry Brandt,<br />

ITOA president. Tliey are Leonard W. Hall,<br />

L. Gary Clemente, Louis B, Heller, Edna F,<br />

Kelly. Eugene J. Keough, John J. Rooney,<br />

Donald L. O'Toole, Abraham J, Multer,<br />

Emanuel Celler, James J. Murphy, Frederic<br />

R. Coudert jr.. Jacob K. Javits, Isidore Dollinger.<br />

Anthony F. Tauriello and Daniel A<br />

Reed.<br />

Five of them went on record at a February<br />

4 meeting with Brooklyn exhibitors after<br />

hearing reports on curtailed theatre operations<br />

and theatre closings. Emanuel Pi-isch,<br />

chairman of the tax committee of the Metropolitan<br />

Motion Picture Theatres Ass'n, said.<br />

Frisch said exhibitors will step up the campaign<br />

by bombarding Congressman Walter A.<br />

Lynch, New York member of the House ways<br />

and means committee, with messages urging<br />

tax repeal, and will also concentrate on Congressman<br />

Joseph L. Pfeifer and James J. Heffernan,<br />

who had not gone on record. Newspapers,<br />

radio stations and other media will<br />

cooperate in the overall campaign.<br />

Further progress on campaign plans was<br />

made at a February 6 meeting of exhibitors<br />

attended by Walter Brecher, Oscar A. Doob,<br />

Eugene Picker. Ernest Emerling, Russell V.<br />

Downing. Harry Goldberg. Leslie Schwartz.<br />

Edward N. Rugoff. Sam Rosen. Edward L.<br />

Fabian, Louis Goldberg, Nat Lapkin, Harold<br />

Fischer, O. R. McMahon. Fred Lakeman.<br />

Harry Mandel, Robert K. Shapiro, Jack Mc-<br />

Inerney. Louis Weber. Vernon Hammer. Peter<br />

Fink. M. O. Strausberg. D. John Phillips,<br />

Harry Brandt, Joshua Goldberg and Morton<br />

Sunshine.<br />

Stockholders Help Asked<br />

In Ticket Tax Campaign<br />

NEW YORK—Stockholders in film companies<br />

are being urged to send letters to<br />

congressmen in support of the campaign for<br />

repeal of the admissions tax. The COMPO<br />

committee has sent out appeals for this<br />

support.<br />

Warner Bros, included a tax message in<br />

its annual statement to stockholders. Loew's,<br />

Inc., and 20th Century-Fox will include letters<br />

when they send out dividend checks.<br />

Eastman Kodak Employes<br />

Get $191,000 for Ideas<br />

ROCHESTER—The Eastman Kodak Co.<br />

paid out $191,000 for suggestions submitted<br />

by company employes in 1949. During the<br />

year the organization adopted 9,711 ideas,<br />

almost a third of those submitted.<br />

This is an alltime record for the suggestion<br />

system which has been in operation<br />

for 51 years. More than $900,000 has been<br />

paid out in that time.<br />

Holiday in Home Offices<br />

NEW YORK—MGM, 20th Century-Fox and<br />

Loew's home offices will be closed on Monday<br />

1 131 in observance of Lincoln's birthday.<br />

Monogram. Warner Bros., Paramount, Columbia,<br />

United Artists and RKO will close down<br />

at 1 p. m., and Eagle Lion will remain open<br />

all day.<br />

Tax Repeal Drive<br />

Gains Momentum:<br />

New York City Projecfionists Waive<br />

Overtime on Tax Trailer Showings<br />

NEW YORK—Projectionists will waive all<br />

overtime payments in connection with the<br />

showing of trailers attacking the admissions<br />

tax. according to Herman Gelber, president<br />

of the lATSE local 306. He made the pledge<br />

at a meeting of representatives of the three<br />

New York exhibitor associations and the distributor<br />

chairman which is planning its part<br />

in the excise tax campaign. Gelber said all<br />

labor organizations, both AFL and CIO. will<br />

cooperate with management in the fight.<br />

At the meting were Sam E. Diamond. New<br />

York distributor chairman; Wilbur Snaper.<br />

president of Allied of New Jersey; D. John<br />

Phillips and Morton Sunshine, executive directors<br />

of MMPTA and ITOA respectively.<br />

The following appointments to the distributors<br />

committee have been made: Nat Cohn<br />

and Saul Trauner, Columbia; Harrison Duddleson.<br />

Eagle Lion; George Waldman. Film<br />

Classics; Jack Bowen. Ralph Pielow and Lou<br />

Allerhand. MGM; Nat Purst, Monogram;<br />

Myron Sattler and Henry Randall. Paramount;<br />

William Murphy and Robert Fannon,<br />

Republic; Lou Gruenberg and Phil Hodes,<br />

RKO; Dave Schmer. Screen Guild; Martin<br />

Moskowitz. 20th Century-Fox; Abe Dickstein,<br />

United Artists; David Levy. Universal-International;<br />

Norman Ayres and Ben Abner,<br />

Warner Bros.; Harold Bennett, National<br />

Screen Service.<br />

Variety Clubs Joining<br />

In Tax Repeal Fight<br />

DALLAS—R. J. "Bob" O'Donnell. international<br />

chief barker of Variety Clubs, is lining<br />

up the full strength of the 35 tents in the<br />

U. S. in the campaign to repeal the theatre<br />

excise tax. A petition will be sent all members<br />

of the house ways and means committee,<br />

O'Donnell has asked that individual tents<br />

cooperate with state and regional exhibitor<br />

organizations in their areas in getting thousands<br />

of additional petitions to Congress.<br />

"The increasing importance and strength<br />

of the Variety Club membership in the motion<br />

picture industry." O'Donnell said, "is rapidly<br />

being recognized by all branched of the industry<br />

as a powerful weapon that can be utilized<br />

for the benefit of the industry in any<br />

effort that is important to our business. As<br />

one of the constituent members of COMPO,<br />

we are lined up solidly behind that organization<br />

to further their aims and purposes.<br />

Tills tax battle simply serves to emphasize<br />

again how important the Variety Clubs<br />

are to the industry. We are confident that<br />

the combined elements of all the organizations<br />

and individual exhibitors working for<br />

the repeal of the excise tax will add up to<br />

enough strength to insure some action being<br />

taken along with the repeal of other excise<br />

taxes."<br />

Newark Theatres Issue<br />

Petitions for Tax Repeal<br />

KTEWARK—While local newspapers have<br />

run very little publicity on the campaign for<br />

the federal amusement tax repeal, all theatres<br />

are participating in the industrywide<br />

drive by distributing forms to be filled out<br />

by patrons and to be used as a petition<br />

against the tax. Proctor's and other houses<br />

plan to incorporate in their theatre ads a<br />

request to fight for repeal. Joseph Gibson,<br />

manager of the Broad, sends out forms by<br />

registered mail to Robert C. Hendrickson and<br />

H. Alexander Smith, senators from New<br />

Jersey. Other theatres mail the forms in<br />

allotments of 300. 400 and 500 to New Jersey<br />

congressmen.<br />

Practically all theatres report an excellent<br />

response in the few days the forms have been<br />

placed in the lobby. Most theatres have run<br />

trailers. Ushers in Warner's houses are wearing<br />

tags on their sleeves, calling attention<br />

to the drive.<br />

Attendance Decline Due<br />

To Tax, Bookers Find<br />

NEW YORK—Repeal of the "punitive" 20<br />

per cent admissions tax would "undoubtedly<br />

result in increased business, increased employment<br />

of personnel, increased taxes on<br />

profits and a healthier economy throughout<br />

the industry," according to a resolution adopted<br />

by the Motion Picture Bookers club of<br />

New York, which called on Congress to give<br />

priority to action on the admissions levy.<br />

The 135 members, who book 950 theatres in<br />

the metropolitan New York and New Jersey<br />

area and represent every distributor in the<br />

area, found "from actual experience" that<br />

the tax is the main reason for a decline in<br />

attendarice, that the industry needs a "shot<br />

in the arm" and that Congress is in a position<br />

to give much needed relief by a repeal<br />

or rollback of the tax.<br />

"Our livelihoods are imperiled by this<br />

onerous tax on admissions." the resolution<br />

said. It told Congress that the tax hits lowincome<br />

groups and "works an inequity in that<br />

it increases as the family increases, regardless<br />

of the family income." Harold Margolis.<br />

president, signed the resolution.<br />

Legitimate Theatre Men<br />

Join Excise Tax Fight<br />

NEW YORK — Actors Equity Ass'n. the<br />

League of New York Theatres and the Committee<br />

of Theatrical Producers have joined<br />

the battle on the federal admissions tax.<br />

Equity is cooperating with lATSE in calling<br />

on theatre audiences to send protests to Congress.<br />

The producer committee, headed by<br />

Robert E. Sherwood. Oscar Hammerstein II,<br />

Leland Hayward, Gilbert Miller. Howard<br />

Lindsay and Herman Shumlin, is studying the<br />

relation of the tax to production. James F.<br />

Reilly, executive director of the league, is<br />

making plans for a theatre campaign with<br />

the Committee for the Reduction of Excise<br />

Taxes, which represents many industries.<br />

'Wall' Opening Feb. 17<br />

PHILADELPHIA—U-I's 'Outside the Wall."<br />

which was shot in part on location here, win<br />

open at the Aldine Theatre February 17<br />

backed by an intensive promotional campaign<br />

handled by Abe Bernstein.<br />



Also available with Exit Panels<br />

Arrows may be either right or left.<br />


729 Baltimore<br />

Kansas City, Mo.<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950 51

. . . Messrs.<br />

. . Mr.<br />

. . The<br />

. . Ray<br />

. . Joan<br />

. . John<br />


Oidney Lust's office reports construction has<br />

started on a shopping center at New<br />

Hampshire avenue and East West Highway<br />

in Prince George county. The center is being<br />

built by Kass Realty Co. for New Hampshii-e<br />

Shopping Center. Inc.. and was designed by<br />

James F. Hogan. local architect. Outstanding<br />

in the new shopping center is the modern<br />

design of a group of buildings including<br />

a 1.500-seat theatre to be leased by Lusf<br />

Enterprises. It will have an entii-e glass lobby<br />

through which may be seen a mural executed<br />

in architectural concrete. A large marquee<br />

covers the approach to the ticket booth and<br />

the entrance so that the entrance of the<br />

theatre is protected from the weather. There<br />

will be vaudeville shows presented throughout<br />

the season, and the theatre is equipped for<br />

the presentation of television. Hogan says<br />

the theatre will be ready for occupancy on<br />

or before Sept. 1. 1950.<br />

The Variety Club women's committee, under<br />

the direction of Mrs. Araline Adams, is<br />

making big plans for the Valentine card<br />

party and tea which will be held in the clubrooms<br />

Tuesday 1 14 1 ... Leon Makover, chairman<br />

of the entertainment committee of Tent<br />

11, and Jerry Adams, chairman of the house<br />

committee, are responsible for the successful<br />

Valentine party held in the clubrooms Saturday<br />

night . . . Board of governors met February<br />

6 . . . Happy birthday to barkers Ervin<br />

Ornstein, Fritz Hoffman, Lloyd J. Wineland.<br />

Frank Fletcher, Max Rosenberg, Edward Norris.<br />

Mac Mannes. Joseph Zamoiski and James<br />

Neu.<br />

The annual Tent 11 Brotherhood luncheon<br />

will be held at the Mayflower hotel Monday<br />

1 20 1. Speakers will be Chester M. Bowles,<br />

governor of Connecticut, and Col. William<br />

McCraw. executive director of Variety Club<br />

International. In addition, there will be entertainment<br />

arranged by Joel Margolis, Arnold<br />

Fine and Morgan Baer.<br />

Columbia Manager Ben Caplon and his wife<br />

are in Florida vacationing. They took with<br />

them greetings from Filmrow to Mr. and<br />

Mrs. Earl Taylor, who are residing in Miami<br />

Beach . . . It's a boy for the Jerry Prices,<br />

UA manager . and Mrs. Buck Stover.<br />

Alexandria Amusement Co., have returned<br />

from a Miami Beach vacation.<br />

Kenneth Clem has taken over the Earle<br />

Theatre, Taneytown, Md., from Max Goodman<br />

. Eyrey, field supervisor for Warner<br />

Bros, contact department, was in town<br />

. . . Vince Dougherty,<br />

pinch-hitting for C. E. McGowan, who was<br />

vacationing in Florida<br />

U-I salesman, spends several hours in the<br />

office each day now and soon will be out<br />

on the road again . . Eilleen Olivier, husband<br />

.<br />

and son, leave Sunday for a<br />

two-week<br />

vacation in New Orleans. She plans to attend<br />

the Mardi Gras.<br />

. . .<br />

Myron Mills, son of Equity's Bernie Mills,<br />

planning a spring wedding with Joan Alice<br />

is<br />

Mrs. Mary Margaret<br />

Weil of Hewlett, L. I . . .<br />

Ludwig, formerly with Republic, died recently.<br />

She was residing in the Canal zone at the<br />

time . Wheeler, daughter of Mr. and<br />

Mrs. Sam Wheeler, Screen Guild, graduated<br />

with honors from Wilson High school<br />

May Feldman entertained her brother Si and<br />

his daughter Rita en route home from Florida<br />

to Rochester. N. Y.<br />

.<br />

Frank Boucher is the busiest man in town<br />

these days with the opening of the K-B<br />

Amusement Co.'s latest theatre, the Flower<br />

in Silver Spring, Md. Barrymore<br />

jr. was a visitor Henderson and<br />

Ham Durkee<br />

.<br />

were<br />

. . Billy<br />

here. They operate the<br />

Washington and Baltimore Film Express and<br />

this was one of their rare visits to Filmrow<br />

New Theatre to Be Built<br />

In Mount Vernon Plaza<br />

MOUNT VERNON, N. Y.—A 600-seat<br />

. . . Florence Garden, Fred Rohrs' secretary,<br />

is looking for a new car. Having trouble<br />

with her old Buick, she says, but daily riders<br />

Sally Myers and Sara Young are not complaining.<br />

theatre<br />

will be part of a railroad shopping center<br />

to be built here this spring by the Schein-<br />

Cohen Co., construction firm of Mount Vernon<br />

and White Plains. The New York, New<br />

Haven & Hartford Railroad Co., in conjunction<br />

with the Mount Vernon city administration,<br />

originally proposed the idea to the<br />

. . Miss<br />

.<br />

Louis Bernheimer says his Sylvan Theatre<br />

will be converted into a Negro house<br />

Mike Leventhal and Bill<br />

builders.<br />

March 1 . . .<br />

Allen came over from Baltimore<br />

Thompson<br />

to attend<br />

the Allied meetings<br />

the Schine circuit<br />

.<br />

home office recently<br />

of<br />

became<br />

Gus Lampe. Schine<br />

Mrs. Torrey . . . district manager, appeared as a talent scout<br />

on Arthur Godfrey's television talent show<br />

Branscome and Chitwook were westbound side of the tracks.<br />

in town buying and booking for their Sky-<br />

View Drive-In, Marion, Va. Robert<br />

Levines came in from Norfolk to buy for their<br />

Portsmouth and Norfolk theatres. Head<br />

booker Evelyn Butler was a member of the<br />

party.<br />


and Junction Boxes. For new jobs or replacements<br />

caused from theft or vandalism<br />


729 Baltimore<br />

Kansas City, Mo.<br />

It is believed that, outside of large cities,<br />

this will be the first time a theatre has<br />

ever been a part of a railroad station arcade.<br />

The entire station will be rebuilt and the new<br />

development will occupy 108,000 square feet<br />

of property owned by the railroad on the<br />

There will be facilities for approximately<br />

35 shops, a bus terminal, a department store,<br />

and roof and basement parking, in addition<br />

to the theatre. Patrons will be protected in<br />

bad weather, whether arriving by train, bus<br />

or car. Boak & Road, New York City, are<br />

the architects.<br />

Exhibitors in 70 Cities<br />

To See 'Riding High'<br />

NEW YORK—Paramount will hold approximately<br />

70 additional exhibitor screenings of<br />

the Frank Capra production, "Riding High,"<br />

in cities other than exchange cities between<br />

February 14 and 28, according to A. W.<br />

Schwalberg, distribution head. The exhibitor<br />

screenings in the 32 exchange cities were held<br />

from January 6 to 30.<br />

In most cases, the showings will be in the<br />

form of sneak previews for the general public<br />

with only the exhibitors knowing that "Riding<br />

High" will be shown at the theatres.<br />

James Hendel Named<br />

EL District Manager<br />

NEW YORK—James Hendel, Pittsburgh<br />

manager for Eagle Lion, has been promoted<br />

to New York district<br />

manager by William J.<br />

Heineman, vice-president<br />

in charge of distribution.<br />

John Zomnir,<br />

sales manager at<br />

Pittsburgh, has been<br />

promoted to manager<br />

there. Hendel entered<br />

1^<br />

the film industry in<br />

1938 as salesman for<br />

United Artists at<br />

Cleveland. In 1941, he<br />

was promoted to<br />

Cleveland manager James Hendel<br />

where he remained until 1944. For six<br />

months he was with Universal, then in 1945<br />

he joined PRC as Pittsburgh manager. Shortly<br />

after, he was promoted to PRC district<br />

manager of the Pittsburgh, Cleveland and<br />

Cincinnati territory. He retained this post<br />

until PRC was absorbed by Eagle Lion in<br />

1947 when he was named Pittsburgh manager.<br />

Zomnir entered the industry with MGM<br />

in the Pittsburgh, where he was shipping<br />

clerk, then student booker, head booker and,<br />

finally, office manager. In 1945 he joined<br />

PRC as salesman in Pittsburgh under Hendel<br />

and was promoted to branch manager when<br />

Hendel became district manager.<br />

Area Distribution Heads<br />

Named to Aid Tax Drive<br />

NEW YORK — Distribution forces aiding<br />

the COMPO federal tax repeal campaign have<br />

now been organized and exchange area chairmen<br />

have been selected, according to Andy<br />

W. Smith jr., distribution chairman for the<br />

industry. The area chairmen are:<br />

Albany, John Bullwinkel; Atlanta, Clyde<br />

Goodson: Boston, Jim Connolly; Buffalo,<br />

Dave Miller: Charlotte, Al Duren; Chicago,<br />

Tom Gilliam; Cincinnati, J. S. Abrose: Cleveland,<br />

Oscar Ruby; Dallas, Phil Longdon;<br />

Denver, R. C. HiU; Des Moines, Jim Veldes;<br />

Detroit, W. D. Woods; Indianapolis, G. R.<br />

Frank; Kansas City, James W. Lewis; Los<br />

Angeles, Jack Laughlin; Memphis, Ed Williamson;<br />

Milwaukee, John G. Kemptgen;<br />

Minneapolis, William H. Workman; New Haven,<br />

Arthur Greenfield; New Orleans, C.<br />

James Bryant; New York, Sam Diamond;<br />

Oklahoma City, Ralph B. WUliams; Omaha,<br />

Harold Johnson; Philadelphia, William Mansell;<br />

Pittsburgh, Saal Gottlieb; Portland,<br />

Ralph Amacher; St. Louis, Ned Steinberg;<br />

Salt Lake City, Gifford Davidson; San Francisco,<br />

Neal East; Seattle, A. J. Sullivan;<br />

Tampa, Harold Laird; Washington, D. C, Joseph<br />

Brecheen.<br />

Joe Wolhandler to Para.<br />

NEW YORK—Joe Wolhandler has been<br />

taken on the Paramount publicity staff by<br />

Max E. Youngstein, advertising-publicityexploitation<br />

director, and will work under<br />

Mort Nathanson, pubhcity manager. Wolhandler<br />

was formerly with United Artists<br />

and has handled publicity for many foreign<br />

films.<br />

52 BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 1950

. . The<br />

. . Monogram<br />

. . The<br />

. . Milton<br />

. . Jack<br />

. . Milton<br />

New Eslimales Sheet P H I L AD E LP H I A<br />

Lists 17 Pictures<br />

NEW YORK—Among 17 pictures on the<br />

green list of joint estimates of current films,<br />

issued for the period ending January 31, are<br />

four from Columbia, two each from RKO,<br />

Republic, United Artists and Universal-International,<br />

and one each from MGM, Paramount,<br />

20th Century-Fox and Warner Bros.<br />

Tliere is also •'Tlie Titan," story of Michelangelo,<br />

which is not credited with having a<br />

distributor as yet. One is recommended for<br />

children's programs and three are listed as<br />

acceptable.<br />

Tlie list follows: "Davy Crockett, Indian<br />

Scout" (UAi, which is recommended both<br />

for the family and children's programs: "East<br />

Side, West Side" (MGM), rated for adults;<br />

"The Man on the Eiffel Tower" (RKO).<br />

recommended for adults and young people<br />

over 12 years of age: "Montana" (WB), rated<br />

for family and as acceptable for children's<br />

programs: "Twelve O'clock High" (20th-<br />

Foxi, rated as exceptional and recommended<br />

for adults and young people over 12 years of<br />

age: "The Nevadan" (Col) recommended for<br />

adults and young people; "The Rugged<br />

O'Riordans" (U-I), recommended for the<br />

family: "The Titan," recommended for<br />

adults and young people: "My Foolish Heart"<br />

(RKO), recommended for adult and young<br />

people; "The Blonde Bandit" (Rep), recommended<br />

for adults and young people:<br />

"Borderline" (U-I), recommended for adults<br />

and young people: "Captain China" (Para),<br />

recommended for adults and young people:<br />

"Cow Town" (Col), recommended for the<br />

family and acceptable for children's programs:<br />

"Deadly Is the Female" (UA), recommended<br />

for adults; "Gii-ls' School" (Col),<br />

recommended for the family; "Pioneer Marshal"<br />

(Rep), recommended for the family,<br />

and "Trail of the Rustlers" (Col), recommended<br />

for the family and acceptable for<br />

children's programs.<br />

Reade Circuit Conducts<br />

Jersey Newsreel Survey<br />

NEW YORK—The Walter Reade circuit<br />

is conducting a theatre-by-theatre survey in<br />

its Jersey houses as to whether the average<br />

patron still wants to see newsreels. The<br />

MPAA is conducting a similar poll in metropolitan<br />

New York houses.<br />

Reade theatre managers personally interview<br />

patrons. The initial response is that a<br />

majority still are interested in the reels.<br />

The survey will continue several months,<br />

according to Walter Reade jr., head of the<br />

circuit. The chain was among the first to<br />

cancel newsreels in a number of houses shortly<br />

after spot news on television began to<br />

be felt. Reade now is convinced that the<br />

reels "have gone a long way in doing a<br />

better job."<br />

MGM Signs Bob Sherwood<br />

NEW YORK—Bob Sherwood, now appearing<br />

in the Broadway play, "Mr. Roberts,"<br />

has been signed to a long-term contract by<br />

MGM after screen tests here directed by Al<br />

Altman, studio talent representative. Sherwood<br />

will report to the studio February 15<br />

and his first role will probably be in "Running<br />

of the Tide," film version of Esther<br />

Forbes' novel.<br />

TTniversal-International is rushing extra<br />

prints of "Outside the Wall," which concerns<br />

a $1,000,000 robbery, in order to ca.sh<br />

in on the recent Brink's robbery . . . Bernie<br />

Haines, who is building a new theatre in<br />

Sellersville, disclosed that he will give a lifetime<br />

pass to the person submitting the best<br />

name for the house . Pix showed<br />

"Lost Youth" and "Merchant of Slaves" first<br />

run in this area . . . Scenario, a new audience<br />

participation quiz show with a $750 weekly<br />

jackpot, opened Thursday (9) in more than<br />

30 houses.<br />

.<br />

Melvin Fox was said to be planning to<br />

build a theatre at Fourth and Spruce. Some<br />

exhibitors claim that the deal hinges on<br />

whether the Dock street area will be developed<br />

into a residential .section . . Lex<br />

.<br />

Barker, the new "Tarzan" was in town recently<br />

Irving Coopersmith has been<br />

. . . appointed feature booker, and Muriel Marlin,<br />

shorts booker for the Allied Motion Picture<br />

Booking Service Philadelphia Home<br />

and School council discussed the place of<br />

motion pictures in the visual education programs<br />

of schools, and the part they can play<br />

in adult education through home and school<br />

associations at a meeting Tuesday (7).<br />

A film which is being reissued by an independent<br />

exchange was .shown on television<br />

Sunday (5). This situation is drawing<br />

the anger of various industryites . . .<br />

Gloria Newman, 20th-Pox switchboard operator,<br />

. has resigned is distributing<br />

Whip Wilson comic books to exhibitors<br />

Mike Katz, Monogram salesman,<br />

. . . Dave Yaffe of<br />

was ill . . . The<br />

was on sick leave . . . the Y & Y Supply Co. also<br />

Paramount Decorating Co. is repainting the<br />

Plaza Theatre in Washington,<br />

William Goldman is constructing a drivein<br />

theatre near Pottstown . . . Holiday magazine<br />

will have a story on William Goldman's<br />

fight against the majors in its next<br />


Sullivan,<br />

former secretary of the navy, presents<br />

a Brotherhood award to Barney<br />

Balaban, Paramount president, at the<br />

Brotherhood luncheon held last week at<br />

the Waldorf hotel in New York City.<br />

George Murphy, film actor, and Maxwell<br />

Anderson, playwright, also were honored.<br />

K&B Theatres opened its new<br />

issue . . .<br />

Flower Theatre Thursday (9> in Tacoma<br />

Park. Md. . Goldman, <strong>Boxoffice</strong><br />

Pictures booker, brought back gifts from<br />

Florida for the office staff . . James Reimel,<br />

,<br />

EL booker, who co-authored "My Heart's<br />

Aflame" with John A. MacKay, won a weekly<br />

prize in the Top Tunes contest on KYW.<br />

Bill Brooker, Paramount exploiteer, went<br />

to Pittsburgh to help in exploiting "Samson<br />

and Delilah," which opens at the Warner<br />

Theatre there February 23. Betty Wagner,<br />

secretary to Brooker, disclo.sed her engagement<br />

on her 19th birthday . Hale,<br />

Paramount, has lined up a campaign for<br />

plugging "Samson and Delilah." He arranged<br />

a tieup with Samson tools and secured<br />

165 window displays, full-page cooperative<br />

newspaper advertisements, 250,000<br />

two-page colored circulars, and hundreds of<br />

three sheets on a fleet of S-B-S trucks.<br />

Milton Hale is going upstate for Paramount<br />

to help in the exploitation of "Dear<br />

Wife," "Thelma Jordon" and "Captain<br />

China" . Schosberg. who was on<br />

Vine street last week, is building a drive-in<br />

near Coatesville. It is expected to be ready<br />

April 1 . . . Lou Colantuona, manager of the<br />

Keystone Tlieatre, was a winner of a $25<br />

bond in 20th-Fox's "Father Was a F^iUback"<br />

exploitation contest.<br />


—ALBANY—<br />

Telco, Inc.: Sound equipment, machinery<br />

and television, in Buffalo: $100,000; Jo-seph<br />

M. Crotty, 232 Tuscarora Rd.; Peter J. Crotty,<br />

78 Milford St.; Alice T. Nediak, 114 Eckhert<br />

St., Buffalo.<br />

Four Star Productions: Motion picture<br />

films in New York; $1,000, $1 par value.<br />

Governor Films: Motion pictures, in New<br />

York; 200 shares, no par.<br />

Israel Classics: Motion picture and recording<br />

business in New York; 1,000 shares,<br />

no par.<br />

B. P. Schulberg Productions: To provide<br />

entertainment and to produce radio and television<br />

programs; 200 .shares, 100 "A" at $100<br />

par and 10 "B" at no par.<br />

Visual Educational Building Corp.: Realty<br />

and building business in New York; 100<br />

shares, no par.<br />

Daniels' High Speed Motion Picture Corp.:<br />

Photographic equipment in Rochester; 200<br />

shares, no par; Victor J. Daniels, 395 Barry<br />

Rd.; Richard B. Secrest, 103 Landon'Pkway;<br />

Ell.sworth Van Graafeiland, 36 Allerton St.,<br />

Rochester.<br />

Trovatore' Opens<br />

'II<br />

NEW YORK—Roberto Tarchiana. Italian<br />

ambassador, and wife, Arturo and Mrs. Toscanini<br />

and Licia Albanese, Jarmila Novotna,<br />

Salvatore Baccaloni and Ri.se Stevens of the<br />

Metropolitan Opera attended the opening of<br />

"II Ti-ovatore" at the Little CineMet February<br />

8. The picture stars Enzo Mascherini. currently<br />

appearing with the Metropolitan<br />

Opera. A ballet short, "Graduation Ball,"<br />

was on the program.<br />

BOXOFFICE ;: February 11, 1950 53

. . . Charles<br />

.<br />

-NOW!<br />

. . George<br />

. .<br />

. . Pranchot<br />

. .<br />

. .<br />


The Variety Club entertained with a Valentine<br />

party Saturday night (11) in its clubrooms.<br />

Following a dinner, a program Included<br />

dancing and other entertainment.<br />

Elmer F. Lux is chief barker . H.<br />

Gammel. president of Gammel Theatres and<br />

western New York MPTO head, and his wife<br />

Eddie Meade of Shea Theatres here and<br />

Arthur Castner, Seneca, Salamanca, were<br />

winners of $25 bonds from 20th-Fox for exploitation<br />

campaigns for "Father Was a<br />

Fullback."<br />

Rollin Palmer, in his Courier-Express column,<br />

pointed out two persons of local interest<br />

in the cast of "Samson and Delilah," currently<br />

at the Center Theatre. When Dick<br />

Condon brought the special display on the<br />

film to the Statler. Palmer was invited to<br />

view it. He recognized Buffalo's popular stock<br />

company idol of other days, William Farnum,<br />

and a currently popular local wrestler. Wee<br />

Willie Davis, who often appears on local<br />

wrestling cards. Palmer used a long story<br />

on two men in his column on the opening day<br />

of the Cecil B. DeMille masterpiece.<br />

Schine's Auburn Theatre is celebrating the<br />

first anniversary of its vaudeville-film policy.<br />

Vaudeville was revived in the Auburn just a<br />

year ago after a lapse of nearly 30 years, and<br />

it has been popular with local theatregoers<br />

E. Daniels, new manager of the<br />

Kenmore Theatre, is a graduate of Harvard<br />

and has a degree from the Harvard Graduate<br />

School of Business Administration. Daniels,<br />

who is a native of Connellsville, Pa., served<br />

47 months in the U. S. naval reserve after<br />

completing his college studies.<br />

Frank H. Bassett, manager of the Clean<br />

Theatre for the last year, has been named<br />

manager of the Bailey, a Dipson neighborhood<br />

house here. Before going to Clean, Bassett<br />

managed Dipson theatres in Hornell.<br />

Joe E. Brown will bring his show, now on<br />

a nationwide tour, to Kleinhans Music Hall<br />

February 21. The presentation here will be<br />

sponsored by the Kiwanis club and will be<br />

staged for the benefit of its Underprivileged<br />

Children's club . . . Elmer F. Lux, general<br />

manager of Darnell Theatres. Inc., has been<br />

named a director of Kleinhans Music Hall<br />

Management, Inc., for a three-year term .<br />

Joseph F. Szell, former manager of the Palace<br />

Magic<br />

NO PERFORATIONS: 20^ More Light and Better Vision<br />


Screen<br />

of the future<br />

.<br />

Custom Screen<br />

•Potent applied for<br />

in Lockport. has been transferred to the West<br />

End Theatre in Rochester, and he has been<br />

replaced by George Secord, former manager<br />

of the Palace in Lockport.<br />

William C. Gehring, 20th-Fox assistant<br />

general sales manager, was here for a conference<br />

w'ith Charlie Kosco, branch manager<br />

. . . Anthony Quinn, film player who was here<br />

last week as a member of the cast of "A<br />

Streetcar Named Desire," said in a local interview<br />

that he thinks producers should consider<br />

films more as a form of art. He would<br />

like to see such classics as Tolstoy's "War<br />

and Peace" on the screen. Quinn is a sonin-law<br />

of Cecil B. DeMille, whose "Samson<br />

and Delilah" is current at the Center.<br />

Ed Don George, former wrestler and now<br />

operator of the U State Athletic club here,<br />

booked the Gene Autry show now touring the<br />

nation for 14 performances in New York,<br />

Pennsylvania, and Ontario, Canada .<br />

"Stromboli," the much-discussed Ingrid Bergman<br />

film, was to have its initial showing here<br />

February 15 at the 20th Century Theatre .<br />

Friends here of James Whitmore. who appears<br />

in "Battleground," were pleased to learn that<br />

the former Buffalonian will play one of the<br />

principal roles in "The Next Voice You Hear"<br />

soon to be made by MGM.<br />

Al Pierce, manager of Shea's Bellevue in<br />

Niagara Falls, is cooperating with merchants<br />

there by offering guest tickets to persons<br />

whose names and addresses are inserted in<br />

advertisements urging shoppers to trade in<br />

their home community . Tone,<br />

film player who is a native of Niagara Falls,<br />

recently visited relatives there. F. Jerome<br />

Tone jr.. his brother, is vice-president of the<br />

Carborundum Co. While in this area. Tone<br />

made personal appearances in connection<br />

with showings of "The Man on the Eiffel<br />

Tower."<br />

UA Workers Get Awards<br />

NEW YORK — Hyman Perlowitz of the<br />

United Artists foreign department and Jack<br />

Wright, company porter, were awarded Saks<br />

Fifth Avenue $25 gift certificates for their<br />

faithfulness to duty during 1949. Both had<br />

perfect punctuality and attendance records.<br />

Robert Goldfarb, personnel director, made the<br />

awards.<br />

Installed<br />


Gloversville, N. Y.<br />

By JOE HORNSTEIN, Inc.<br />

630 Ninth Ave. Theatre Equipment Specialists New York City<br />

at<br />

Funeral Services Held<br />

For E. M. Schnitzer<br />

NEW YORK—Funeral services were held<br />

Sunday morning (5i at Riverside Memorial<br />

Chapel for Edward M. Schnitzer. 56. eastern<br />

"<br />

.^IHKfev<br />

Edward M. Schnitzer<br />

and Canadian sales<br />

^ manager of United<br />

^^^^JBP^k Artists, who died Feb-<br />

^m ^ ruary 2 of a heart at-<br />

^P J tack while preparing to<br />

T -T^Sf^- 4^<br />

leave for a vacation<br />

with Vitalis L. Chahf,<br />

—1^ a member of the UA<br />

-^"i"-'<br />

^^ board of directors.<br />

^^^^j^^ ^ Burial was in Beth<br />

^^^H^*^^^^^ David cemetery.<br />

^^^^^^Ml^^B Schnitzer a mem-<br />

^B^BBHB^W^<br />

years in the industry.<br />

ber of the Motion Picture<br />

Pioneers and a<br />

veteran of almost 30<br />

He was active in charitable<br />

drives and had served as assistant<br />

chairman of the distributors division of the<br />

War Activities Committee. Born in Poland,<br />

he came to this country at an early age, and<br />

after becoming successful in the ornamental<br />

feather business and as a hotel resort operator,<br />

he entered the film industry in 1922 as<br />

an associate of Samuel Seidler.<br />

Schnitzer joined Commonwealth Pictures<br />

in 1923 and Producers Distributing Corp. in<br />

1924. The following year he joined Fox, becoming<br />

branch manager of the New York and<br />

Brooklyn territories. In 1932 he left Fox to<br />

become New "^ork manager for World Wide,<br />

in which post he continued until Fox took<br />

over distribution. On March 20, 1933, he<br />

joined Columbia as New York exchange head,<br />

and in 1936 went to Republic as eastern district<br />

manager. Two years later he joined<br />

Warner Bros, as eastern district manager. He<br />

joined United Artists in January 1942, holding<br />

the posts of eastern district manager and<br />

western division sales manager until 1946,<br />

when he became eastern and Canadian sales<br />

manager.<br />

He leaves his wife. Mrs. Rose Schnitzer; a<br />

son. Gerald Schnitzer. of Hollywood; a daughter,<br />

Mrs. Lawrence Parsly; a brother. Louis<br />

Schnitzer; four sisters, Mrs. Samuel Rinzler,<br />

Mrs. William Schutzer, Mrs. Jack Bernstein,<br />

Mrs. William Morel, and four grandchildren.<br />

Robert L. Lippert Speaks<br />

To Buffalo Theatremen<br />

BUFFALO—Robert L. Lippert, San Francisco,<br />

head of Lippert Productions, w-as a<br />

guest at a luncheon given at the Statler hotel<br />

here by William P. Rosenow. general manager<br />

of the Screen Guild branch here. Pi-oduction<br />

problems in Hollywood were discussed by Lippert<br />

in a talk. He invited exhibitors who were<br />

interested to buy stock in the Lippert organization,<br />

pledging that the full resources of<br />

the company are being devoted to production<br />

of better product.<br />

Lippert was accompanied here by Arthur<br />

Greenblatt, general sales manager of the<br />

company. Among those attending the luncheon<br />

were Robert T. Murphy, Max Yellen and<br />

Sam Yellen, 20th-century Theatre; Spance<br />

Balser and Jerry Westergren, Basil Theatres;<br />

James H. Eshelman and Charles B. Taylor,<br />

Paramount Theatres; Marion Gueth, MPTO<br />

of New York secretary; Eleanor Paradeis,<br />

Screen Guild office manager; Al Heckler jr..<br />

Screen Guild, M\Ton Gross, Schine Theatres.<br />

BOXOFFICE :: February 11, 195C

. . Others<br />

. . The<br />

Tax Repeal Meeting A L B A N Y<br />

Tuesday in Albany<br />

ALBANY—A luncheon meeting of Albany<br />

exchange area exhibitors will be held at<br />

Jack's Restaurant here Tuesday (14) to coordinate<br />

local effort to repeal the federal<br />

ticket tax with that of the COMPO taxation<br />

committee. Leonard L. Rosenthal, general<br />

counsel for the Albany TOA. sent letters<br />

to exhibitors urging attendance and stressing<br />

that the area drive should be tied up<br />

with national campaign "to make certain we<br />

are assuming our responsibility with sufficient<br />

vigor and coverage."<br />

The TOA counsel that the interest of all<br />

exhibitors, large and small, will be affected<br />

by the outcome of the fight to repeal the<br />

20 per cent admission tax. For this reason,<br />

he declared, it is imperative that each exhibitor<br />

order a tax protest trailer, protest<br />

cards, one sheet, repeal stickers for boxoffice<br />

windows and