Publix Opinion (Jan 3, 1930)

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SELLING ‘SHOW OF SHOWS’ By A. P, WAXMAN, Advertising Director, Warner Brothers 1.—Technicolor is something to play up in your advertising. The Saturday Evening Post and fan magazines will carry smash advertisements by Technicolor specifying ‘“‘“Show of Shows” an other Warner Bros. pictures done in Technicolor. — 2.—Seventy-seven stars afford 77 centers from which to radiate promotion and publicity. Capitalize on the individual popularity of these stars—each one has a tremendous following and ‘“‘They Are All Here.”’ 3.—‘From Shakespeare to Jazz’’ tells the story in few words. Every development of entertainment the stage or screen has ever accomplished is found in the various episodes of “Show of Shows’’. The whole sweep of amusements is indicated in the truthful slogan: ‘‘From Shakespeare to Jazz’. 4.—-Costuming that will give the women folks heart-burn as they see floods of gorgeous color picking out every shade and tone in the rich texture; every line of pattern, every oddity in design. 5.—One thousand chorus girls. Count ’em yourself. Invite your audience to count ’em. Hollywood’s cream of beauty —the pick and choice of girlhood and none recruited from the “Army of Extras.’”’ Every girl a dancer. Every, girl a singer. Every girl a PEACH! \ 6. Crack’’ he was first heard speaking from the screen in “Show of Shows’’. In towns where this picture is first there will be found a great asset in advertising. ‘“‘“Barrymmore’s Voice Heard Now for the First Time from the Screen.’’ 7.—The scenery and production challenge the eye to believe what it sees. The combination of color, costuming, sets and accoutrements of these tremendous settings will leave the audience marvelling no matter how high their expectations may be. Nothing has ever equalled this production. 8.—Warner Bros. and Vitaphone offer ‘“‘Show of Shows’ as the crowning achievement in the advance in modern photoplaying they have always led and pioneered. The ‘““Know How’’ is blazoned on every set'and scene. The public gets the benefit of a prodigal expenditure of money——and every dollar is in sight to be admired and to thrill the amazed beholder. Although John Barrymore’s first picture is ‘‘General Times Square Listens To Paramount Song Hits When a huge Christmas tree and a number! of public-address loudspeakers were erected in Times Square, the busiest part of New York City, arrangements were made with the Hotel Astor, which Synthetic Radio Broadcasting, Effective : eS Bloomington, Illinois, has no } federal licensed radio station. Un 4 wy able to take advantage, therefore a of any radio tie-ups, City Manager } Ralph W. Lawler made use of an o ingenious mechanical stunt to give him the same advantages. In six of the leading restaurants and confectioners shops, radio loud speakers were installed. These were connected by leased telephone wires to one of the Publix theatres in the town, where, by means of an old and amplifying unit, a microphone, and. an electric reproducer, it was possible to “broadcast”? record music to the various restaurants throughout the town. Of course, the proper songs and the Publix theatres were plugged. { : The stunt was accomplished at nothing more than a cost of $8.00 per month for each’ wire. Showmen Outsmart Billposter Ruling John Joseph and A. L. Burks, of Publix-Balaban & Katz advertising department, pulled a nifty in Chicago, where window cards cannot, be used by theatres unless _ avail themsleves of the exceptionally good advertising afforded by time when everybody is peering into windows) and yet unwilling to pay out good money for bill posters, the two B & K showmen _ went to the various businessmen’s association meetings and sold the merchants on putting the cards in their windows themselves. Since the cards were sponsored by the businessmen’s association, services of bill posters were not required. Over 1,500 windows were used in various parts of town. -|was to supply the music for the broadcast, for the use of such Paramount song hits as “Sweeter Than Sweet,’’ ‘‘Ain’tcha,’’ “I Have To Have You,’ and “Dream Lovers.” : This bit of exploitation work was done by Sam Baron, of the Famous Music Corp., the music PUBLIX OPINION, WEEK OF JANUARY 3rp, 1930 LONDON WRITER | PRAISES TUNES — FROM TALKIES For those Publix theatre managers who have not given full attention to the matter of exploiting the song hits from sound pictures, the following article which appeared in the December 15 issue of “The Observer,’ London’s conservative and popular newspaper, should be of some inspiration for the future: “The very fact that tunes from the talkies have given the public something reproduceable in their own lives, something that can be sung, whistled, danced to, made personal and familiar, has brought about increased popularity of pictures. “With hardly an exception, the sound pictures that have broken records, the sound pictures that the crowds remember and talk about, are the films with a good tune to clinch them. The film with a tune comes away with the audience and is revived at every grapple with the cadences, every mental repetition of a half-elusive phrase.” The song hits from sound pictures have taken England by storm. There is not a dance and music hall orchestra, variety artist, and radio broadcasting station, that does not get repeat requests for these songs. At the same time the sheet music and gramophone shops have done a heavy business, capitalizing on the popularity and tunefulness of the songs, and incidentally plugging the pictures in their window displays, house organs, and newspaper advertisements. Melodic songs from sound pictures will always be popular, and it is by virtue of this popularity that theatre managers can effect a tie-up with music stores, music a bill poster is hired. Anxious to. publishing concern affiliated with | publishers, and phonograph record Paramount. Se te a hi i i a etotertek , hehe AR? At th a manufacturers. af SHORT REVIEWS OF SHORT FEATURES = by Louis Notarius Publix Theatres Booking Department Jetololeiololeieioleeiileleiielelefeieiejeieieleioieieieieteiaiuteelteioitedeieteioioteioios VITAPHONE 3239-39 The FLATTERING WORD (21 min.) A two reel prize play let written by George Kelly. The star is Harrison Ford. It consists of bright satire on the adventures of an actor on tour. Clever comedy — sparkling dialogue and deft characterization. Has elements of sophistication and may; be used to advantage in the better houses with’ a feature of the slapstick type. 3280 AT THE CHURCH FESTIVAL (10, min.) This comedy is car ried mainly by Dick Henderson; known to| vaudeville fans as the roly-poly comedian. Here we find the actor invited to deliver a lecture to a group of church elders. He immediately gets off his subject and beging to wise-crack and vulgarize in an attempt to draw a laugh. The camera moves from one elder to the other in close-ups; and the solemn expression of each face as the comedy is delivered should prove very amusing. Henderson’s jokes are not the best; but his delivery is fast and he displays a clear, appealing voice in the several numbers which he sings. Fair comedy as an opener for the show. 928 YORKE & JOHNSON in CRINOLINE CLASSICS (7 min.) Tw 3334 ALWAYS FAITHFUL with Blanche Sweet. 3335 FOR SALE with Gregory Ratoff. this medium around Christmas |. 2640 THE BARBER SHOP CHORD (8 min.) charming ladies with pleasing soprano voices. Their repertory consists of high-class ballads and they finish with a novel rendition of ST. LOUIS BLUES in operatic style. These two ladies have appeared in Publix Units successfully. Their act is class all the way thru, and should prove fine entertainment in the best houses. Warner Bros. considered it good enough to open with GENERAL CRACK in New York. : (10 min.) This is Blanche Sweet’s first talking picture and can be exploited from that angle. Her role is that of a wife who finds indiscretion the better: part of marriage. It is a domestic drama that has a decided punch and unusual suspense which holds the interest from beginning to end. \ Ai good, strong sketch that may be used with a comedy feature. ; (6 min.) A comedy that is full of novel gags. It portrays the activities of a salesman, with a decided accent, who forces his way into the office of his prospect, and annoyingly offers to sell anything from a shoe-lace to Carter’s Liver Pills. He is the pest of pests. His delivery is fast and funny. Ratoff appeared in such stage successes as KIBITZER, CASTLES IN THE AIR and TENTH AVENUE. A good comedy that will go well with a dramatic feature. x A novelty that is surefire. A barber resorts to NIGHT CLUB methods to draw patrons. Upon entering, each customer is asked by a floorwalker in full dress, what he desires. If it’s a shave—does he want a dance or song with it? Each request is granted, and then winds up with an ensemble by both barbers, manicurist and patrons, in a sure-fire finish. Great closing Act. 3669 DANCE OF THE PAPER DOLLS—A Technicolor Flash. (9 min.) A famous song hit is brought to life. All the char f f SKIRT SHY—Langdon (20 min.) SELLING “THE,STREET OF CHANCE” By Russell Holman, Advertising Manager, Paramount Pictures You always knew William Powell would give a truly great performance in a swell picture built around him. This is it! (Not a bad piece of copy for adveristing it.) You get the same thrill out of looking at ‘‘The Street of Chance’ as you got when you first saw ‘‘Underworld.’”’ A sense of strong, red-meat, gripping entertainment, with everything VITALLY REAL as a sock on the nose! This show, Powell’s first starring film, will do for him what “Underworld” did for Bancroft. You’re witnessing the birth of a mighty box office star, brothers! Bill Powell. They’ll be hanging on the lobby ropes to see ‘‘Street of Chance’’ by the third day of its run. And they’ll be asking by the hundreds, ‘‘(When’s he coming again ?’’ I heard some of the boys say when they left the projection room, “It’s a great picture, but will it get the women?’” They said the same thing about ‘Underworld’. 1930’s women don’t go for cream puffs; they eat meat. In case you don’t know the story of ‘Street of Chance,’’ Powell’s a big-time gambler in it. Like Rothstein. He’ll bet a hundred grand on a cut of thd cards. It’s in his blood, like a disease. It wrecked his marriage to a beautiful girl. He’s ruthless but square. He has another gambler bumped off for welching and doesn’t flicker an eyelash. But he also stakes a newsboy’s wife to three years in Saranac. Powell’s kid brother has got gambling in his blood too. The kid marries a fine girl and brings her to New York because he wants to play the great “Natural’ Davis. ‘Natural’ is Powell, though the kid doesn’t know it. Powell sees the kid and his marriage start to go the same heart-breaking route that he and his have gone. Powell determines to head him off at all costs. To do it, he has to welch in the biggest gambling game of his career. And Powell’s bumped off for it. ‘Bet you 50 to 1 that I croak,’’ mumbles Powell to the ambulance interne as they rush him down Broadway to the hospital. ‘‘You’re on’’, says the interne.: And a few: minutes later Powell’s dying whisper ’comes up from the ambulance floor, ‘“You lose—doc’’. Sell Powell as per the first paragraph above. Remind them of his fine performances in ‘Interference’, ‘‘Canary’’, ““Greene”’, “Four Feathers’, ‘Pointed Heels’ and the others. They demanded him as a star—now they’ve got him! The Lovable Bad Man of the Screen. The Finest Voice in the Talkies. The 1930Type Star. Screendom’s Most Polished Actor. Sell the women: What does it mean to be a big-time gambler’s wife? Never knowing when he leaves you whether he’s coming back a millionaire or a pauper—or at all. In the picture Powell’s wife tells how he went out to the corner for five minutes to ’phone his mother and got back three days later with $200,000 won at stud poker. His Wife vs. the Game. Playing the game! of love with loaded dice. Hearts—are they something to love with or something to fill a flush with? Sell the title: ‘“‘The Street of Chance’’ is Broadway. Not the Broadway of the lights and theatres. Not the Broadway of the gunmen and the racketeers. But the Broadway where shadows in green eye shades risk a fortune on a roll of the dice: where grim-faced men gather in guarded rooms; where Nerve is King and the Goddess. of Chance is Queen and Death rewards the Weakling. Map the Street of Chance and mark on it the hotel where ‘‘Natural’”’ Davis got his, the apartment where his wife waited, the hotel where the Big Game took place; Larry’s. Sell the story: He risked his brother, his wife and his life on accard. Did he win? The King of the Street of Chance. Fate loaded the dice. Htc. Selling the supporting cast: Regis Toomey, Jean Arthur (Rogers new girl friend in ‘‘“Halfway to Heaven’’), Kay Francis (never so beautiful as here). They’re all good. Get a newsboy, like the kid, in the picture, to hand passerbys cards reading: The Bigi Game’s on at the Rialto Theatre. Stud Poker. ‘Natural’ Davis is playing. Maybe they’ll let you tag the street the theatre’s on as THE STREET OF CHANCE, putting signs on telephone poles, ete. Merchant tie-up: Get all the stores on the shopping street of the town to come into a co-op page under the heading NOT “THE STREET OF CHANCE” BUT “THE STREET OF SURE VALUES”. Window tie-up: Show the various hands in the Big Poker Game in the picture; Powell’s, Toomey’s, Dorgan’s and the rest. A store selling playing cards might give this a window. The stills are swell. Many of them fine for cut-outs. Show big heads and shoulders of Powell silhouetted against Times Square, Broadway, etc. Must stop now. Have already run longer than usual. You’ll understand the reason when and if you’ve seen “‘The Street of Chance’. It ranks with the season’s best. Let’s give it the break and get the jack it deserves! acters of DANCE OF THE PAPER DOLLS do their stuff. Consists of forty (40) talented children in a peppy revue. Gorgeous seenes; A perfect rainbow of color, which is far above the average: One of the best things done in the line of shorts and should prove an excellent subject for Xmas. Sure-fire anywhere. EDUCATIONAL 1668: MAD HOUSE (18 min.) This is a two reel knockout comedy which takes place in the apartment of a married couple. It is rough and tumble all the way thru. Eddie Lambert, of vaudeville fame, plays the lead, making use of his Jewish dialect to advantage. Good hokum with a feature of the dramatic type. METRO GREAT GOBS—Chase (21 min.) Charlie Chase again demonstrates his ability as a comedian in the role of a sailor. Contains the elements of hokum, song and, dance that will prove excellent entertainment for the ‘‘B’’ houses. Here again we have Langdon in the role of a simpleton. The subject contains ai lot of slap-stick situations. Landon posing as a woman and mistaken for the girl of a jealous suitor, goes thru a lot of knockabout antics that should appeal to children. The picture as a whole is somewhat slow and is only fairly amusing. _ =