Variety (Oct 1948)

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Wetlneaday, October 6« 1948 Same Old Polling Story, They Vote for Singles But Only Buy Duals Hecently-publicized request'.] from customers that double-billing > 'Can't Do Both a Public Relations And Merchandizing Job'-Cheyfitz The 82,000.000 all-mclustry pub-*—- - ^fS.S'^J^Tl^ Grinieff Nonconunittal, nick's ad-puh chief, received a less- than warm welcome this \veck from Edward T, Cheyfitz, aide to Mo- tion Picture Assn. of Americas Reported r-- proxy Eric Johnston and the lat- interest in Republic Pictures, held,- poi,cy has resulted in only one ter's mouthpiece on p,a. tactics. jjy company prexy Herbert J.; thing—a tremendous drop in bubi- This in the language of the GovernmeBt brleJ, is specJfliiJtilly how , * ,'^!'c,ur/^!,Vni'e the Justice Oepartment Anli-Trusl Division wants the 1946 decree l^^ir ■ire'be^ng viewed disparag-' amended to bS it in line with the Supreme Court ruling of last May. mclv by top circuit officials. Thty; The court was asked to J-estrain the Big Five "from further per- - , . , prexy Chcylitz, who has been meeting apparently in a state of: ness. S"fo S^^S%ub^ic^^;^-'Lt 'J:cJes GrinL.,who-s been' lUustrative of the The court was asked to enjoin the defendants: "From continuing to own or acquiring any beneficial interest in any customer, theatre, whether in fee or shares of stock, or otherwise, in conjunction j^oasi w K"" (he t7ontinfi for a group of film men, requests, which have cropped up! \rith"Vnother "defendant.'.. From acquiring a beneficial interest in any lations, questions t^e value the hu^; ^^j^r to sailing i periodically from the tunc tlie first ^i^^^^^.^ .^hidi is an actUal or potential compeUtor of any theatre in MacNamara plan w'"l%'«™'^^Pf Tom Ne'^ York Saturday (2) on' filmery embarked on a dual policy ^,,hich the acquiring defendant owns a beneficial interest and from »HoH^L«^M to thf sub he Queen Mary. , as a competitive gimmick, was a 1 acquiring motion picture theatres in any location unless the acquiring Af«f A «?npi!^ he^ioves the 1 conducted last week by the i defendant shall show to the satisfaction of the court, and the cpui? ject." MPAA official believes the , pievio^^^^^^ Trenton (N.J.) Evening Times shall first find, that such acquisition will not unduly restrain competi- plan, calling for a new studio code | yates that among t and extensive spending in all in-'comprise the syndicate were ex- formational media, "will fall be-1 jyietroite Al Lichtman tween two chairs because it at-;Neil Agnew, recently tempts two things—to do a public prexy of Sclznick Releasing Or- relations job and the same time ganization. On the other hand, merchandise product." i upon arriving in New York last Among the essentials of the Mac-, ^yggk £i-om a Paris vacation, Agnew Namara program, which Cheyfitz denied that he was in on any- Re- doubts is the former's contention public deal. that four misconceptions ,held by ] sidestepping the Republic situ- the public about Hollywood are Grinieff declared that in a hurting the boxoftice. Four factors , trip to Europe he'll listed by the Selznickite are theK, ^ production venture in beliefs that Hollywood is red , . mapping i„ asso- that films arc ""moral as well as ' pgbst Film of Austria, their participants; that Hollywood 1 ^. ^ransworld Film Co. also has Is extravagant land that Ho W^^^ film-making plans in Aus- lans are .screwball in their thinking., ^^.^ ■■-'.\-:Marli«t;Analysis;;-,:.■.■■„•. "1 question the premise that mis- .conceptions about Hollywood keep people from the boxofficc," Chey- Jitz said. "Perhaps a thorough market analysis miglit throw light on the subject of product pro- motion. Why people stay away from theatres is guesswork at the pres- ent time. There can be many rea- sons. Maybe people over 30 want to stay home lather than go out." "Institutional advertising aimed at fostering more attendance be- fore we ascertain why people of certain age groups do not go to films is not getting the most for our money," Cheyfitz declared. "We must learn the reasons first and we must also first make up our minds what we want the public to think of us." Otherwise, Cheyfitz believes "we Ppllsters Omitted the nuinber of at wfell as l^ox poppers; questioned, but re- resigned vorlei that D9% of those stopped 6 inquiring reporter votjsd lot single feature*; 26® sitill .waiit double bills, and 15% voiced no opinion.'.■ .■■ ■' ■■„■■■■■■ ':■./:, ■ . .i Consensu^ of the"«^ tors' questioned: on their .reaction to the poll was that "it's the same old stpry-7--the public votes single! but any bouse thati tri^S it dies a qtjictc; deaito."; iff was lioted thit; fibew^s ha^ft tified , the sapie idea riecifentlj' at one of it? nab^ in the Brpnx, N.if ^Gui^^^^ bvenybeliningly in fa>^pr of single features Vibiit whien • the house 'attempted it, the payees wallsed put complaining of hjivibg beert cheated) sortie- even* asking , for; i ;refiiOidi; ' .y. ;r''-.-'p.. "0- ■ t^ea'. jnigh't^ thisatrcss; through decidejd - tO ■ switch to::, single' bilfe at'the ..same timei since the eiistom. ers always . point 'to a cOnip.eting house plaj;ii)g duallers . iii their cheating complaints. Gircuit execs pointed out, though; tliat. the • cur; . retit antitriisf suit m^kes it legally. ' ibipbssible for tli^m to gettbg^ther ^ . ,, , ,, i for such a move. Thus; they see no FoUowmg a one-month study of ^,g^ ^ „,,tio„„,ide changeover to the U. S. film scene, Sj dney I single features. tion in the exhibition of feature motion pictures." The court Is asked to en,ioin the defendants: "Prom making or enforcing any agreement which restricts the right of any other exhibitor to acquire a motion picture theatre . .From voting stock directly or indirectly held by it in any of the eorp.-i; tions named . V., or otherwise exercising any control over the business of such corporations, except for the purpose of disposing of its interest therein." Brit. Pix Should Woo0ver-3I)U.S. Fans-Syd Wynne "After six months from the enti-y of this judgment, each of the five major distributors shall be prohibited from licensing for exhibition in theatres in which another major distributor owns a financial interest, in the following towns, a total number of feature films which exceeds one-half of those released by it during any consecutive six months' period, for a total period of five years" (list of town& given). "After six months from the entry of, this judgment each of the five major distributors shall be prohibited from licensing on first' run in theatres in which another major defendant owns a half interest, in the following towns, a total number of feature: films which exceeds one-i half of the feature films released by it during any consecutive six months' period, for a total period of five years" (another list of town.s and large, cities given in which the. government alleges the majors monopolize first run). ">Vithin,one year froin'the entry of this judgment each pf thcmajpr defendants' shall submit a plan for the ultimate separation-p£ its dis- ■ tWbutipb; and prbdtictioh business from all theatre ow^ ing cbrpot-ations in- ,which it bwnk istpickj ptlier than those named in Paragraph lO of: Section 11 iiefeof. Upon the; fiUng of swC^^^ goveiTBrneHt, shall have six months within:^^hifch to file pbjectiohs ti^ere^ , ,. I . V .■, to and propose amended or alternative plans for accomiplishing the: Wynne, J. Arthur Ranks public I Trenton newspaper poll, inciden-| same result. Such further proceedings with respect to sUch plans as tally, pointed up the fact that most ^ the court may then order shall then be had. Such plan shall, in any relations chief, is taking !)ack to London a proposal that British films make a concentrated drive on the over-30 age bracket in the maVbe knocking ■'ourselves out for U. S. Mindful of a recent Gallup nothing." He nhinks it is quite poll which indicated that only ^.^^^ ^^,gy ^y^^ p^^,, likely that the public likes the in-1 of the "adulf lover 30), also found that the largest-, prefer- dustry as it i.s To change the pub-, ^ j .bUc are regular film- , ence for single features (73%) was lie s viewpoint of Hollywood may .„ - j Ti » „ exoressed bv those under .10 lose as many customers as it gains,, goers, Wynne considers that group expiess ea Py tho se undei dO. he averred. "I say thi? just to as the best setup for an institu- show that there are two sides to | ^jp„ai ^^ive to build patronage on the question," MPAAer said. , ^^^^^ ^^^^^^^ ^.^^^ ^^^^ Saturday (2) with his wife, aboard the Queen Mary. ' Rank's publicity stopper will dis- cuss the idea with his two su- ot the non-film going public, now j event, provide for completion of such separation within five years from estimated at some 55,000,000, is , the date of the entry of this judgment. found among people over 30 None "Within one year from the entry of this judgmeht the government of those questioned under 30 tailed ] and the exhibitor defendants shall also submit such plans for divcsti- to voice an opinion, while 23% of, ture of theatre interests, other, than those divested by Section HI all those polled over 50 did not, hereof, which they believe to be adequate to satisfy the requirements of the:Supreme Court decision herein with respect to such divestiture^ Upon the entry of such a plan the government and tlie alTected defendant shall have six months within which to file objections thereto and propose amended or alternative plans for accomplishing the same rpsult. Such further proceedings with respect to such plans may then be had as the court may then order." MACNAMARA STARTS INSTITUTIONAL ADS Works—Not Words Use ot radio, tilms and newspa- pers may all be good. Cheyfitz 6aid, "but men are known by their Te^^'^o'tis^rv TtwnkinTTi'P«"o^ Rank and John Davis , v^ulc/be'iett^rfor' the'St^ , Wynne thinks the over-30 group^ I film to tackle all inlernal problems and' "'"ch American film biggies have . . -. ,„.,„„.„ , . unite all groups before it can hope been pu«lmg on how to win to O, Selznitk, is mapping a broad to have good public relations. . MPAA has had a longrange pro gram of its own "for some time, now, according to Cheifilz. "There has been no publicity on it and we don't want any. We believe such "At any time after three years from the entry of this Judgment any defendant which has submitted a plan... .may petition the Court to sus- Materializing in part his Indus- effective date of such plan or the taking of any steps to tij-wide plan for a renewed pub-i,*^*^ * " "P®" ground that actual divestiture of theatre inter- ne relations drive in- behalf ofduring that period has made such plan unnecessary, in whole or entertainment Paul Mac-!''^''*' ProyWe adequate competition in the distribution and ex- Namara, ad-pub chief for David "'"'l'"" «f nlms," , the theatres: is the best target for | institutional ad campaign in sev British'' j mports because the lat- ter pix speoiaiize in a slower tempo and a more adult approach. Every objection raised by the younger set. accu.slomed as it is program is 'more efl'ective with-' to Hollywood's ia.ster tempo, could out fanfare." With that end in mind, MPAA Jias promoted forma- tion ot the Motion Picture Industry Council in Hollywood tltrough which all groups are discussing ways of solving their own prob- lems, he said Youth Month drive, backed by Theatre Owners ot America, is another example tContinued on page 18) of LOEW-PAR SPLiniNG UP 13 BUFFALO HOUSES Buffalo, Oct. 5, An event of major importance in the Buffalo sector is expected vithin the next few weeks. The Lopw—Pai amount pooled opera- tion of 13 houses including four first-run Buffalo showcases, cur- rently being, supervised by Vincent: B. McFaul, will be broken "P ] now'cJstVng 150,OoTpw^ shortly be a potent lure lor the- young- sters' older bi-others and sisters, accordin!; to Wynne. ' Press Relations British publicist expressed him- self as .sold on the new $2,000,000 yearly public relations plan pre- sented to the industry by Paul i i(,t less MacNamara, David O. Selznick's' ad-pub head. He ties MacNa- niara's .suggestion to lure non- fllmgoers to American theatres with his own ideas on the subject. "Our organization, in England, has done the very thing which MacNamai'a is proposing here," Wynne said. ''We'found that the British public had no idea of the film Industry nor did the higher- llian-avcrapc in intelligence con- sider films ii.s adult enleriainmenl. We went into an educational and in.stitulumal campaign which is .;,]. Under details being woikcd out, understood Pax- and Loews will ; divide the hou^e? each faking o\er personal operation of their; own. McFaul, It's said, has a minority interest in the company which will be bought out. It is believed that the Para- mount-Loew pool is the last large operation of its t.^pe in the U. S, Four main stem theatres involved ere the Buffalo, Great Lakes, Hip- podrome and Teck. Six other are in Bufl'alo and three in outlying suburbs. , ,.,, 000) yearly eral key cities. Firat phase of the promotion teed off in Southern Colilornia last week \'\ith a big •advertising splash m conjunction j with the mass booking ot "Mr. | IJlandings Builds His Dream House" in 37 firstrun and nabe' Fox-West theatres Copy lor the full page ads in the daily press only incidentally plugged "Blandings" with the ■ donnnani pilch being: "Movies are , .something the whole family can' enjoy, and they cost the folks a ' money , than , other things • like night baseball, hot rod racing and bowling." Some of the ads, ran photos of the local theatre i ; managers in order to "personalize" ( the film industry. Coin for the ad! promolioii. which totalled slightly ' over $10,000, was shared equally ; by tbe Selznick organization and , (lie theatre chain. Similar campaign is being aimed • at the Detroit area, depending on whether a large number of siimil- laneou-s bookings can be nego-1 tiated An ad splurge of that sue would be unusual in Detroit i since "Blandings" is slated for the ] subsequent-runs there, MacNa-' "We think the reason boxofficc mara is also planning to follow up grosses have not fallen off as mucli in England as they have over here is a direct result of that cam- paign,'" Wynne declared. "Fre- quent sa.npling of British patron- age .showed us that our public re- lations campaign iia-ji induced those who-stayed away from films to come to the tliealres. That's the reason, we believe, why attend- ance is holding up. It is simply a matter of - reaching untapped audi- with in.stitutional ads in several other keys, including Chicago, Washington and Cleveland, cnces I:- N. Y. to Europe Jesse Greer Jacques Grinieft' Bernard Guro Norman Kjrasna Eddie Mannix II. T. Low?-Paster Sidney ,Wyn^f, . L. A. to N. Y. Fay Bainter ■ Sammy Cahn Bob Cobb Kobert Cummings Jean Dalrymple Russell y. Downing Margaret Ettinger Jack Forrester Rose Goldstein Edmund Gwenn : .loan Harris Van Heflin Russell Holman Marlita Hunt Sam Katz Martin Lewis Florence Marly Frances Marion Geprge Murphy ZaSu Pitts Jane Powell Everett Riskin Mickey Rooney Don Searle : Adela Rogers St. John Sidney N. Strotz Harold Swisher Marta Toren . Hal B. Wallis Larry Weingarten W. Lee Wilder N. Y. to L. A. Irving Berlin Roman Bohnen Jerry Devine Norman Prescott Steve Gibiion Jolly Joyce Abe Lastfogel Joel Marston Tbelma Bitter ,.Hon'a;-d Yq,ui]|g , ^ • American Films Outdraw Beliind Czech 'Curtain' iPrague, Oct. 5. Despite political barriers in this "iron curtain" nation, American pictures have pulled, greater at- tendance in Czechoslovakia than the films of any other country, ac- cording ■ to figures . disclosed in Filmove Zpravodajstvi, a govern- ment film publication. Of the 150,000,000 paid admissions during the last 12-month period, Holly- wood product drew 50,000.000: with : Czech films garnering 42.000,000 and Russian and English pix run- ning a poor third and fourth with 22.500,000 and 21,500,000. French films have been complete; flops in this country, accounting for only 1,300,000 tabs despite the fact that the number of French re- leases numbered only three less than the Europe to N. Y. Nigel Bruce - - Harry Foster John Golden Harry Green Adelaide Hall Rex Harrison Prince Littler Mary and James MacArthur Adolph Nantz Maria Neglia Lilli Palmer Terence Hattigan Joyce Redman Anger Reyes Harry Roy Jimmy Savo - Arthur Schnabel J. Arthur Warner