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4 years ago

Boxoffice-December.20.1952

. I 58 Subjects, with

. I 58 Subjects, with Emphasis on Color Highlights U-I's Shorts Program by Lantz Steps Up Cartoon Output, While Band Series Will Get a New Dress and a New Name IRVING SOCHIN Short Subjects Soles Manager In a program marked by diversity to meet the ever-changing demands of its exhibitor customers, Universal Pictures Co. will release 58 short subjects and 104 issues of the Universal-International Newsreel during the year 1952-53. Greater emphasis than ever before will be placed on the use of color in the company's short subjects program, which has been developed following a survey of exhibitor preference from coast to coast. material in the field. Rounding out the program will be twc special two-rselers with the subject mattei not yet determined but of the same audience appeeJ as such subjects as "Fun at tht Zoo" and "Danger Under the Sea," both oi' which have attracted nationwide attention i An all-out promotion campaign is being' developed around a special Technicolor two-reeler being called "The Most Beautifu.' Girls in the World," filmed at the Pasadena j "Miss Universe" beauty pageant last June This subject is being hailed as a potential' business builder and has extra boxoffict' appeal for all exhibitors. Innovations also are being planned iiil the promotion of the company s short sub jects. The Musical Featurette, The Eartl and Its Peoples and the color cartoon series will have special accessories including e; three-column mat containing ads, stills anc publicity which will be available from National Screen Service or through local Universal office. New Color Parade Series Highlighting the stepped up emphasis on color features, Universal is introducing a new series to be called "The U-I Color Parade" which will consist of eight single reelers. These shorts will be on a wide variety of subjects and the production program will be kept flexible so as to make the individual releases as timely as possible, crammed with action and dealing with material of a general nature with the widest possible audience appeal. In keeping with the growing importance of color cartoons and the ever-increasing demand by the theatre-going public, Walter Lantz is increasing the number of Technicolor subjects he will supply for release from six to 13, by the addition of seven special films to the six Woody Woodpecker subjects. These new subjects which are made possible by the expansion of Lantz's studio facilities, will be varied in material, some based on well-known fables, others suggested by popular picture themes. Exhibitors are being aided in their promotion of the Woody Woodpecker subjects by the fact that Woody has now become a syndicated cartoon feature in newspapers from coast to coast as well as a cartoon book character on a regular basis. Overhaul Band Series To meet the growing tendency of exhibitors to book a good entertainment short instead of a second feature, I'nivcrsal has overhauled its poi)ular Name Band Musical Series and instead will release 13 two-reel Musical Featurettes. Instead of just having bands play musical numbers as in the past, there will be more production and conlituiity in this series. Already going into release arc the first two subjects in this series— the first featuring Xavier Cugat and his orchestra and Ablic Lane and the second, Don Cornell. A complete story line has been worked into a new Iwo-reeler in this series currently in prochiclion and featuring' Aiulv ,in

' I Two »n»il|i s "Fiiii atllel lilllg ?eaiillastl5 ilasani. estra ki *6 plaiK aufsslion. Tcarlooi ies indiijj ijaiiui roiijlili ta e tecoriiiii! ilO an k' eiio«gli, E: 5 30 piec« n, i was fc Tie upsk' ay aulo an; ir knies t 'iislsjiitb e,'' Aid i' ' isn't in syii t let tlie ordisenled to I'.l itedattief.'J id tirived iment fie! sed irom liliie" H -f ;yfree,"ii« t. i Donald, jtal nff tif- [ Bergen ais llij ire and Mtc and iurprised i redoubts'* :eally a m"" ,n"iial«>-' on ba'e F: a'ail' estraV' ravel ited by ^^ is fi' i; Tie lit" ori ns,il leri' Immortal Art' Series Heads 20th-Fox Short Subject Release List Terrytoons, Mel Allen Sports Reels Among Total of 51 Films A scrio (if .-icvcn art >iibjf(ts in Ti-clmicolor dealing with llic inaslcrwork.H aixl lives i)f wmld-iciiciwiH'il artists, licatis tlir list «>f 2t)tli Cciilury-Fox's shorts scheduh' for 1952-53, which embraces a total of 51 subjects. Three of these art subjects already have been iircrcicascd. 'I'licv arc "(iMrtaiii (lail" (art of Dci-'asi: "1 HcmcndxT ihc (dory" (art of Hollici'liil and "Lights i[i llio W'itidow" (art of Vcrmeerl. Others in the group set are "Birth of Venus" (art of the Rennaissancpl ; "Joy of Living" (art of Renoir I; "The \ oung Inituortal" (art of Rapi.a.'i I and "The Night Watch" (art of Reinlirandt I . Producer of tlie series is Marilyn Silvcrslonc, who headed a unit which photograjihcd the paintings in leading American and European art galleries. Terrytoons will be hack with a full slate of .'?() cartoons in Technicolor, using the Terry Bears. Mighty IMouse. Heckle and Jeckic and other characters. Twenty-six of the total will be new. the other four, reissues. Terrytoons' licensing program is still expanding; available for theatre exploitation use are the comic books, paint and cut-out books and other novelties. Complete lists and tie-in information is available from Paul Terrv Studios, New Rochelle, N. Y. Six new^ sports reels will be available, with top-rated sportscaster Mel Allen narrating actual events of national coverage and some of the interesting sidelights. Something new from Movietone News, which will issue the regular lOl newsrcels. is a special series of six ten-minute reels dealing with headline news events ca|)tured on film. Included will he happenings like the burning of the Hindenburg. the Texas City disaster and the Mt. Vesuvius eruption. Rounding out this schedule will be two reissues of l^w Lehr featurcttes. Band Sfars and Stripes' Confesf Ends February 28 Kxhibitors plaving "."^lars and Stripes Forever" before the end of February still liave time to get local high school andor college bands entered in the nationwide Jand contest which 20th-Fox is running in conjunction with the marine corps. national winners—one each in the nigh school and college classification— will le selected by a panel of three judges in Mew York. I'rizes include an engraved ;rophy for each band, and a record album jf John Phillip Sousa music to each band member. Simple contest regulations require com- Lantz Talks About Woody Woodpecker, The Bird That Never Lays An Egg by WALTER LANTZ Wood) W oodpci ker, as every astute exhibitor knows, is one of the greatest laughprovokers of all time. He was planned that way. Our claim that W'oodv is the Nations Nimdier Otic Laugh BirtI is no idle boast; u worldwide popularity proves our ilaim. He's a great bet for go-getter exhibitors who want to bolster an ailing boxoffice and I can think of no better wav than by tieing with his merchandising products. In most cities and towns there are stores selling Woody XS'oodpecker games, (iolden Books, albums on Capitol Records, \'iew Masters, kerchiefs, masquerade costumes, balloons. New Funnies magazines. Speaking of the magazines reminds me that in the November 1952 issue of Parents' Magazine, Jesse L. Murrell. D.D.. who is chairman of the Cincinnati Committee on the Evaluation of Comic Books, gives an A-rating to the three magazines from the Lantz studio: \^'oody Woodpecker. Andy Panda and New Funnies. This A-stamp of approval is a thing much prized by us and it indicates that there is nothing objectionable in them and that they are suitable for children and young teenagers. Exhibitors should bear this in mind when tieing in w ith our cartoon merchandise. It is a valuable selling point with ])arents and parentteacher groups everywhere. peting bands to forward their own recordings of "Stars and Stripes Forever'" and one o|)tional Sousa selection to the nearest marine headquarters. Exhibitors can tie in plavdates with local band music and mardiing. and with marine corps recruiting headquarters, which have been alerted to cooperate with theatres. Exhibitors Responding to 'Medal Of Honor' Lnitcd .\rlists reports good exhibitor response to its series of half-hour featureltes on Congressional Aledal of Hcmor winners, produced by W. R. Frank and Vi illiam Dean both as theatre program entertainment and as an industry public relations gesture. The four in the series already have been completed. They are: the story of Civil War hero Julius l^angbein. featuring Dee Pollack: the story of I'.S. navy Lieut. Richmond Pearson Hobson. featuring Steve Broidv; the story of the only woman ever I'll locale the "lioiw .ind -.liir>-i« wlirri- tlir Woody U'lMtdpifker ilrmt can Im* pur' hnwrd thoulfl Iw a timple rnaltrr. \Uo. artanfiing coo[M'rnlivr neH«|iu[MT ndvi-rtivetnmtJi. lobby and window di