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KEEPING TABS ON TELEVISION
Bell System Plans: In reply to numer¬ ous recent inquiries, American Telephone and Telegraph Company, recently issued an outline of the Bell System’s tentative post-war plans for television network facilities. Plans call for the construction within the next few years of a large amount of coaxial cable which will he suitable for television transmission. When coaxial facilities are being constructed for telephone purposes, the Bell System Com¬ panies would be glad to provide additional conductors for television if then it appears likely that there will be a demand for such facilities sufficient to justify the large ad¬ ditional investment. The Bell System will also be glad to consider on their merits any requests for television facilities over routes where coaxial cable is not being planned during this period for telephone purposes. Equipment now developed will give a one-way televhion channel of 2.7 mega¬ cycles in width. Future technical devel¬ opments will increase this to 4.0 mega¬ cycles, and also provide for simultaneous use of a single coaxial unit to transmit a television channel and a large number of telephone channels. Depending upon the speed of the growth of the television in¬ dustry, it may be necessary for users to do some sharing of television network facilities for a few years. In addition to its program for the construction of coaxial cable, the Bell System is planning a com¬ mercial trial between New York and Bos¬ ton of a radio relay system which will be suitable for the transmission of television as well as telephone messages. The state¬ ment concluded by saying the Bell System wishes to do anything it can practically to cooperate in the development and ex¬ tension of television, just as it has cooper¬ ated in the distribution of sound programs. The tentative program of coaxial cable routes of the Bell System and approxi¬ mate dates at which television transmis¬ sion facilities might be made available, if demand justifies their provision, and man¬ ufactured cable and equipment can be secured, in accordance with present tenta¬ tive program for extension of principal coaxial cable or equivalent routes for tele¬ phone purposes is 1945, New York-Washington; 1946, New York-Boston, Washington-Cbarlotte, N. C., Chicago-Terre Haute, Ind.-St. Louis, Mo., Los Angeles-Phoenix, Ariz.; 1947, Cbicago-Toledo, O. -Cleveland, O. -Buffalo, N. Y., and a large part of the Southern Transcontinental Route; and 1948-1950, the complete Southern Trans¬ continental route. Additional sections might be advanced into this period should important television requirements arise which would warrant routes or sections being installed well ahead of telephone requirements, )
A NEW DEVELOPMENT in carbon technique by National Carbon Company makes an immense advance toward making color television available on full-size screens in theatres installing Socophony “Super¬ sonic” television projections, the only tele¬ vision projectors known to be able to use carbon arc lamps as a light source. Ac¬ cording to Arthur Levey, president, Scophony Corporation of America, “This new technological advance brings immeasur¬ ably nearer the day when movie audiences will be able to fully appreciate the realism, clarity, and life of color television as an added attraction supplementing the \isual
Tele Deal Indicated
HOLLYWOOD — Niles Trammell, president. National Broadcasting Com¬ pany, declared in a press conference last week that NBC expects to con¬ tract with film producers for films to be made solely for television.
John F. Royal, chief of the com¬ pany’s television work, said some film companies have agreed to sell NBC some short subjects and newsreel film.
Trammell revealed that NBC and RCA have spent $10,000,000 on tele¬ vision research and experiments, and, during the next five years, expect to spend the same sum on equipment and personnel.
film programs of motion picture theatres. Paramount and 20th Century-Fox, through association with SCA, have not only in¬ sured the television future of thousands of picture theatres but have also thereby guaranteed the public patronizing their theatres of the finest television i)erformance.s plus assurance of Scophony’s latest developments and refinements in this very important field.”
The RECENTLY FORMED Television Produc¬ ers Association, whose aims are listed as the advancement of television as an art. improvement of television programs and interchange of ideas between producers and video engineers, conducted its first public meeting at the Hotel Pennsylvania, New York, recently. Offices of the asso¬ ciation, of which Bud Gamble is chairman, are at 1440 Broadway, Room 70.
A SYMPOSIUM on television will be one of the highlights of the sessions of the 55th semi-annual technical conference of the Society of Motion Picture Engineers to be held from April 17-19 at the Hotel Penn¬ sylvania, New York. Listed as speakers are Worthington Miner, manager, tele¬ vision department, Columbia Broadcasting System and Wyllis Cooper, member, pro¬ gram department, NBC.
Niles Trammell, president, NBC, said in Hollywood last week that the Demo¬ cratic and Republican national conventions would be shown by television this year with plans calling for the filming of the conventions, flying of the film to New York and the televising of it there. Tram¬ mell said, “The War and Navy Depart¬ ments have given us equal status as a news distributing agency with the news¬ reels in war pictures, but we intend to allow the newsreels to distribute first.” A national hook-up in television may not be accomplished until five or six years after the war, Trammell said, but broadcasts will be made between Los Angeles and Phoenix, Arizona, probably by 1946, with California and the eastern seaboard having television programs from Hollywood and New York soon after the war, when re¬ ceiving sets will be on the market.
Two Warnerites Promoted
New York — Two Warnerites now on leave for Army service have been pro¬ moted to lieutenant-colonels, according to word reaching the Warner Brothers home office last week.
One is Lieutenant Colonel Jack Mulhall, formerly district manager for StanleyWarner in the Philadelphia territory, and at present on the fighting front in Italy. Other is Lieutenant Colonel Frank E. Cahill, Jr., the circuit’s director of sound and projection, now stationed in Washing¬ ton with the Signal Corps.
Hollywood — Twentieth Century-Fox has purchased the screen rights to “Typhoon,” story of Japanese treachery. Ernst Lubitsch will produce. . . . Stanley Prager has been assigned by 20th CenturyFox to a featured role in “Take It Or Leave It,” which will star Phil Baker. . . . “Elizabeth Kenny” will go before the cameras not later than November 1 whh Rosplind Russfll in the leading role, it was officially announced. . . . Ralph Lewis, 27, has been signed to a long-term contract by Monogram. . . . Best-dressed woman in films is Alexis Smith, Warner star, soon to be seen in “The Adventures of Mark Twain,” according to the Fashion Acad¬ emy. . . . Raoul Walsh has been given a long-term contract by Warners, and as¬ signed to direct Errol Flynn in “San Antonio.”
Leon Fromkess, chief of production for PRC, announced that William K. Howard, who did “Johnny Come Lately,” will direct “When the Lights Come On Again.” . . . “The Adventures Of Sinbad the Sailor’’ will come to the screen as a lavish RKO Technicolor nroduction, the .studio has an¬ nounced. Ellis St. Joseph has been as¬ signed to write the screen play for the film to be made under the supervision of Jack Gross. . . . George Jessel has been assigned to produce “O. Henry” for 20th Century-Fox. . . . Frank Tours has been signed as the new musical director for Producers Corporation of America, Sig Schlacer, president, has revealed. . . . Jennifer Jones has been chosen by the 20th Century-Fox to play the title role in the forthcoming production of “Laura,” which Rouben Mamoulian will direct.
Andy Clyde has been signed by Colum¬ bia to star in a series of two reel comedies for the 1944-45 season. . . . Jane Frazee has been given the feminine lead in “Under Western Skies,” second of the spe¬ cial westerns being offered by Columbia this season. . . . Columbia has obtained from the J. Stuart Blackton estate some priceless historic footage of early Vitagraph, Biograph, and Essanay pictures which will be incorporated into special Screen Snapshots release devoted to the 50th anniversary of the film industry, to be celebrated next month. , . . James Dunn and Wanda McKay have been signed for the leading roles in “Leave It To the Irish,” Monogram murder mystery, which Wil¬ liam Beaudine is directing for producer Lindsley Parsons.
William Cagney Productions announced the purchase of Ensign Charles Marquis Warren’s novel, “Only the Valiant,” for film adaptation. James Cagney will star, for UA release. . . . Kay Boyle’s “Ava¬ lanche” has been purchased by RKO. . . . Kay Aldridge is leaving the Ruth Gordon show “Over 21,” to return to Hollywood for Republic’s new serial, ‘ Haunted Harbor.” . . . Constance Moore has been signed for a part in Republic’s “Atlantic City.”. . . Marc Cramer has been signed to a long¬ term RKO contract and will play an im¬ portant part in the studio’s “That Hunter Girl,” romantic comedy, to co-star Alan Marshall and Laraine Day.
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March 29, 1944