Publix Opinion (Jan 31, 1930)

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PUBLIX OPINION, WEEK OF JANUARY 31st, 1930. SELLING ‘NEW YORK NIGHTS’ by BRUCE GALLUP Advertising Director, United Artists ' (Not for Publication) Norma Talmadge has been one of the biggest and most consistent box-office stand-bys of the screen. Most of her pictures have been in the special class and many of them have been Big Specials. In “New York Nights” she talks on the screen for the first time. The Norma Talmadge voice emphasizes all the appeal and charm that are characteristic of the star’s screen personality. As a singing, talking player she lives up to everything that might be expected of her—and more! You can safely underline Miss Talmadge’s dialogue voice as being a revelation. And her first talking vehicle is of the type everybody enjoys. Action, comedy, thrills, romance, conflict, surprises, whoopee parties, jazz-mad moderns at play, life along the Great White Way in the theatre, the night clubs and among the racketeers—with these, ‘‘New York Nights’ has every ingredient that goes to make a big success of the day. And this is the angle to emphasize in your campaign. But make your approach through the star. For example: “Norma Talmadge is a Broadway show girl. The screen’s great emotional actress as a jazz-mad modern in a story of the stage, the night clubs and ‘Tin Pan Alley.’ Norma Talmadge plays a talking, singing chorine idolized by the gay boys of Broadway and the lords of the racketeer underworld. The screen’s great female star the life of the party in a riotous story of today. A brand new Norma greater than ever.’’ Color your copy with atmosphere. Visualize the picture’s setting. Broadway, the magic lane of romance and song.... the street of a million failures and successes. ..a million laughs © and tears....the glittering pathway to glory as the setting for a romance of the Great White Way. Comedy, drama, jazzmania and the loves and heartaches of showfolk. The picture is full of names with box-office pull. Gilbert Roland, the lead, has played opposite Norma Talmadge in some of her biggest pictures. John Wray is the New York stage star, starred in ‘“‘Nightstick,”’ ‘“‘Three Live Ghosts,” and “Silence,’”’ which plays were made into successful pictures. Lilyan Tashman, at one time a Ziegfeld Follies headliner, is today a big favorite with the movie-goers. Her most notable recent success was as the adventuress in Ronald Colman’s “Bulldog Drummond.” The picture is based on the actionful stage success, “‘Tin Pan Alley,” by Hugh Stanislaus Stange. An intimate picture of the life of Broadway’s gay folk, the piece was a big hit in New York and on tour. Lewis Milestone «is the director. The critics have classed him with Lubitsch and Chaplin on the strength of his direction of “The Cave Man,” “The Racket,” and “Two Arabian Knights.” The title is a natural for tie-ups and properly exploited will result in capacity business. Get over the New York atmosphere in your marquee and lobby displays. Prepare special ballyhoos about New York night life. Have local merchants hold a “New York Nights” bargain day. Tie up with song dealers and record dealers. The theme song is ‘‘A Year From Today,” and is already one of the outstanding theme song hits. It was written by Al Jolson, and is published by Irving Berlin Inc. Get this number on the air. Have it played in local restaurants, dance halls and in your theatre. “New York Nights” is from every angle, sure-fire modern entertainment. Go after it hammer and tongs; it will reward every bit of showmanship exerted on it. Soe te oe he he Sh Sh Se Sc Si i SS SS i es Ss i Oe i Os Os Ss Se Oe he es oe Se ok ‘SHORT REVIEWS OF SHORT FEATURES : Publix Theatres Booking Department seltoleloleoeinieieoinieieieleeieee ieee CHORDS OF MEMORY (11 min.) This is a high class Bruce Scenic with a little story to hold it together. The blind father reminisces to his daughter’s suitor, and, as he does so, he recalls the scenes of the days when he could see; a violin and harp play old popular ballads that he loves, with beautiful hills, valleys, vast seas, sun sets, etc., which are symbolic of the music. The subject is ‘class’ all the way through and is worthy of the best houses. SALT WATER BALLADS (11 min.) Here again we get a Bruce Scenic which contains comedy elements. A rough-neck crew is stranded on an island which to them seems miles from civilization. Lacking food, the captain decides that one must be thrown into a boiling caldron to serve as their repast. He makes it a condition that each one sings and he who is disliked the most should suffer. Among the crew is an Irishman, a Dutchman, a Jew, a Yankee, etc., and each renders a song typical of his own nationality. The island turns out to be nothing but a real estate development and the motley crew is ordered from the grounds by a local policeman. Combines laughs with beautiful natural sets. Should go well as an opening number with a feature containing the elements of ‘class.’ WANDERLUST (11 min.) Here again we have a Scenic that has a lot of heart appeal. Shows a log cabin in the hills with unusually beautiful panoramic effects in the distance. While beautiful natural scenery is presented, a father tells the story of the wonders of nature and the reasons why people have the wanderlust, to his little inquisitive son. A subject worthy of the best houses; has ‘class’ written all over it. THE RUBE (10 min.) Jimmy Barry, who takes the main part in this subject, has had it adapted to the screen exactly as it was presented on the vaudeville stage for many years. The rube comes into the dressing room of a soubrette and in typical fashion makes love to her. Of course, she laughs him off, but he succeeds in getting a kiss before he leaves. The punch comes when the stage another frame saying, ‘‘Right! SPECIAL TRAILER USED TO SELL LOVE PARADE The remarkable results obtained at the Paramount Theatre New Haven, by Eugene A. Curtis, through the use of a unique trailer on “The Love Parade” prompts PUBLIX OPINION to suggest a careful study of the report below with a view to duplicating it when the Chevalier photoplay comes to your theatre. The trailer in question was used two weeks before playdate and preceded the regular trailer by | one week. It was made by using parts of the ‘‘Innocents of Paris’’ | trailer together with silent frames made locally. The trailer started with the frame reading ‘‘Do you remember this great personality who appeared at this theatre a few months ago?’ Then followed a close up taken from the end of the sound trailer in which Chevalier says, ‘“‘Thank you, Messieurs and mesdames, etc.’ Then came It is Maurice Chevalier who made such a tremendous hit in ‘Innocents of Paris’.’”’ This followed by another silent frame reading, ‘‘It was Chevalier who first introduced that great song hit ‘Louise’ ”’ and after that cut in with the portion. of the old trailer in which Chevalier sings ‘Louise.’ “Do You Remember?’’ Then more silent frames reading; ‘‘Watch for announcement soon of ‘The Love Parade’! Chevalier’s newest production’—“It was Chevalier who sang. these roguish French songs’? — Sound portion of trailer with the song “Valentine’—‘‘In ‘The Love Parade’ Chevalier introduces many new and catchy song hits which are already sweeping the country” —‘‘Always the perfect lover’ — “Chevalier makes dashing, daring love to all the girls in ‘The Love Parade’!”—‘“‘And_ particularly to ‘|his charming new leading lady, Jeanette MacDonald, star of many Broadway musical hits.” After this came another silent) frame reading, “Do you remember this—’’ after which cut in shot of Chevalier coming down the stairs, and the close-up of him as he sings “It’s a Habit of Mine.” Followed by other frames with the following copy, ‘‘But wait until you see ‘The Love Parade’—‘‘New York has been paying from $2.00 to $11.00 for seats weeks in advance of this great production.”’— “You will see ‘The Love Parade’ here at regular prices’’—‘‘Watch for further announcements about Maurice Chevalier in ‘The Love Parade’.”’ Box-Office Value In the opinion of many who saw the trailer, it had more boxoffice value than the National Sereen Trailer which ran the following: week. Part of the value of the foregoing to theatre managers is that trailers made up in a similar fashion can include copy, and shots especially suited to local conditions. It is suggested that those who plan an additional SELLING ‘DANGEROUS PARADISE’ By RUSSELL HOLMAN, Advertising Manager, Paramount Pictures (Not For Publication) It shouldn’t be hard to sell Nancy Carroll and Richard Arlen as lovers in ‘‘Dangerous Paradise,’’ with Warner Oland hee them with as jolly a bevy of bruisers as ever slit a roat. ; Carroll has just clicked marvelously in ‘‘Sweetie.’’ Arlen has pleased in ‘‘Virginian’’ and ‘“‘Burning Up.’ Oland is known for “Dr. Fu” and his role in ‘“‘The Mighty.’’ In addition, you-have Gustav von Seyffertitz, whom your regulars know as always a swell actor; Francis MacDonald, Arlen’s handsome rival in ‘‘Burning Up’’; and a couple of others, good but unknown. “Dangerous Paradise’ is adapted loosely from Joseph Conrad’s novel, “‘Victory,’’ but I wouldn’t tell anybody about that. Conrad’s stuff is largely psychological and in transferring it to the screen, which is essentially a medium of motion, plenty of changes have to be made. Conrad fans, who are usually nearer fanatics than fans, will be sore. To the others Conrad’s name doesn’t signify anything. So why bring him up in your advertising or publicity? Incidentally, the second sentence in this paragraph is the explanation that should be offered to Conrad fans who read his name on the screen main title and don’t like the changes from his original story. Sell principally the names in the cast and the title. The tendency in selling Carroll is to link her with ‘‘Sweetie.’’ In doing so you should bear in mind that you have the Carroll show, “Honey,” coming along in a few months; ‘“‘Honey”’ is a singing romance much nearer. to the ‘Sweetie’ type than “Dangerous Paradise’ is. In fact ‘‘Honey”’ is being deliberately concocted as ‘“‘Sweetie’s’’ successor. Don’t jeopardise your sale of “Honey” by leading people to believe that ‘‘Dangerous Paradise” is the ‘‘Sweetie’ kind of show. Carroll sings one song in ‘‘Dangerous Paradise’’—a song called ‘“‘Smiling Eyes” but the song is quite incidental. “Dangerous Paradise’ is strong, red meat drama mixed with a love story between Carroll and Arlen. I would link Carroll with ‘‘Sweetie,’’ but I would do it something like this: You loved Nancy Carroll in ‘‘Sweetie’’; now come and see her use her charms to win Richard Arlen’s love and life in ‘‘Dangerous Paradise.’’ Or: ‘‘Sweetie’s’’ graduated from college; now she’s in love with Richard Arlen on a tropical isle. Or: It’s dangerous to be too many men’s ‘Sweetie’; Nancy Carroll finds out in ‘‘Dangerous Paradise.” General copy: Her profession is to charm men; but the one man she loves, hates her! Or: Nancy Carroll as a modern Eve and Richard Arlen as a handsome Adam in a ‘‘Dangerous Paradise.” Or: One man killed for her; one man died for her; one man divorced his wife for her; one man went to prison for her; one man hated her—AND HIM SHE LOVED WITH ALL HER HEART! Or: What would you do if a man came to you at night and said deliberately, ‘“‘I intend to rob you of your fortune and your wife’’—and you knew that h could do it? Exploitation: Get a cablegram blank and type on it a message from Dangerous Paradise Island: Alone and in love on a tropical island. Threatened by the three worst cutthroats in the South Seas. Please send help! (Signed) Nancy Carroll. Richard Arlen. Or: Nancy plays the fiddle in a ladies’ orchestra at the start of the picture; you might tell them they are going to, hear one of the few ladies’ bands in existence, and this one straight from the South Seas. : Remember: This is Carroll’s first official starring picture. Good copy like: Now the hit of ‘‘Abie’s Irish Rose,” ‘‘Shopworn Angel’ and “Sweetie” is a star. Or: “Sweetie’s a star now! Directed by William A. Wellman, who made ‘Wings.’ trailer on ‘The Love Parade’ like the one described, do not follow DISRAFL AND SALLY implicitly the details outlined but deviate sufficiently to suit popular fancy in the theatre for which it RECEIVE EDITORI AL is to be prepared. In addition to the above, Curtis introduced a variation in the Love Parade trailer for a special midnight preview. He did it by shutting off sound toward the end of the trailer and announcing the midnight performance over the public announcement system. Although this was practically all the advertising used to sell the midnight performance, the results were better than anticipated. nn, ————— SSS manager accosts him at the door and pays a debt, which, as he explains, the rube won. the same force on the screen. While a great finish on the stage, it lacks However, the subject as a whole is entertaining and worthy of a number two spot in the front show of a program containing either a dramatic or comedy drama fea ture. TITO SCHIPA No. 2 (7 min.) atic star renders several arias. over his songs with feeling. This is a number in which the oper He has a pleasing voice and puts} This type of subject has not wide appeal but may be booked to advantage in spots where opera is appreciated. METRO SONG WRITERS REVUE (20 min.) As the name implies, this is a review composed of all the outstanding song writers of Amer ica. Gus Edwards, Fischer, Brown and five others, whose tunes Americans hum throughout the year, sit at individual pianos; each one is introduced to the audience by Jack Benny by means of smart wise-cracking. Gus Edwards starts off with an old favorite and each one in succession does his bit. The introduction of fe male personality singers and ballet dancers all tend to round out a first class flash act that may close any bill to great advantage. Entertaining all the way through and should go over big. COMMENT PUBLIX OPINION has constantly urged every manager to promote editorials on certain pictures because newspaper writers are only too anxious to give credit where credit is due. How easily it can be done was brought to the attention of Your Editor by a letter from City Manager R. F. Emig of Davenport, Iowa. In that city, the editor of the Davenport. Democrat and Leader lauded both “Disraeli” and ‘‘Sally,’ then playing at two Publix theatres. In addition he wrote to Emig stating, “I couldn’t refrain from the enclosed editorial comment.”’ When you get a picture worthy of comment, invite the editorial writer of your paper as well as the movie-reviewer to see the show. Intimate in your letter of invitation that the progress of the industry, or the excellence of the particular picture is deserving of comment. The whole hearted response you will get if your judgment has been right, will not only be reflected in the newspaper columns but in box-office returns. Hop to it and send us the clip sheets!