kitparkerfilms

Posts Tagged ‘Classic Films

Sins

The following movies were eventually released on good quality DVD’s:

 

APACHE RIFLES (Admiral-Fox/1964)

Picture and sound track were a jumbled mess. Technician at VCI eventually matched everything up.  (I still owe someone a steak dinner!)

 

THE COWBOY (Lippert/1954)

35mm color negative ruined by mold. Used 16mm color “EK” (print from the original color negative) for the DVD.  Black and white duplicate negative and color “separation negatives” survive.  BTW, I had a blast producing the commentary track with the authentic old cowboys who were the stars of the film.

 

THE GLASS TOMB (Hammer-Lippert/1955)

Original 35mm material missing. Used 35mm release print borrowed from the British Film Archive

 

THE GREAT JESSE JAMES RAID (Lippert/1954)

35mm color material missing. Used a 16mm color “EK.” 35mm black and white negative survives.

 

LIKE IT IS (Psychedelic Fever) (Lima/1968)

Missing sound track. Used audio from a bootleg VHS bought on eBay.  Sometimes pirates serve a useful purpose!

 

MAN BEAST (API/1956)

Master 35mm material was cut for release in the UK and the excised scenes scrapped. Used missing footage found in a 35mm US release print.  Scenes that were deleted prior to its US theatrical release were found in a Spanish dubbed print and are included as a Special Feature on the DVD.

 

MASSACRE (Lippert-Fox/1956)

Color camera negative survived – without titles. Used titles off a like-new 1956 16mm color print I bought from a collector on eBay.  Not the first time a film collector has saved the day.

 

MONSTER FROM THE OCEAN FLOOR (Palo Alto-Lippert/1954)

35mm sound track decomposed. Used track from 16mm Armed Forces negative, which was longer than the theatrical release version. Extra scenes are part of the DVD special features.

 

MR. DISTRICT ATTORNEY (Republic/1941)

Nitrate picture and track negative decomposed. Used a “fine grain” master print borrowed from the British Film Institute

 

OUTLAW WOMEN (Howco/1952)

Original 35mm Cinecolor material decomposed. Used mint 35mm Cinecolor print

 

SEA DEVILS (Coronado-RKO/1953)

Combined 3-strip Technicolor negatives located at Technicolour in London and restored by Canal+, owner of Eastern Hemisphere distribution rights.

 

SHOTGUN (Champion-Allied Artists/1955)

Badly faded camera negative was all that survived. VCI technician was able to bring the color back to life in a tedious process of correcting the color scene by scene. (Another steak dinner, this one due Doug at Film and Video Transfers)

 

SINS OF JEZEBEL (Lippert/1954)

Original 35mm color negative missing. Used mint 35mm AnscoColor print labeled “Roadshow Version”.  Could find no difference between the Roadshow and Regular release; not surprising given its penurious producer, Robert L. Lippert.   Note:  Fortunately AnscoColor, unlike widely used Eastman Color, does not tend to fade.

 

STRANGER ON HORSEBACK (Goldstein-UA/1955)

No color film elements known to exist. Used 35mm AnscoColor release print borrowed from the British Film Institute.  16mm black and white negative survives.

 

THUNDER IN CAROLINA (Howco/1962)

As with “Apache Rifles,” picture and sound track were a jumbled mess. Technician at VCI eventually matched everything up.  (Guess I owe three steak dinners.)

To order on DVD, visit our site –

www.sprocketvault.com

Keep up to date with our new Sprocket Vault releases by liking us on Facebook www.facebook.com/sprocketvault/

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When I think of movies like “Hellgate” (Lippert/1952), directed by Charles Marquis Warren, and “The Tall Texan” (Lippert/1953), directed by Elmo Williams (Oscar-winning film editor on “High Noon”), I marvel at how  directors like that were able to produce really entertaining films on a minimal budget (and an even more minimal shooting schedule.)

David Schecter does the same, only he thinks of the composers, in this case, Paul Dunlap and Bert Schefter.

“Monstrous Movie Music” is the name of David’s company.  He specializes in producing CD’s with music scores from lower-tier science fiction films, but there are a few “A” features as well. These movies were helped immeasurably by the gifted composers, who like their director and producer counterparts, relegated to the demands of low budgets and extremely tight production schedules.

Some bring back fond memories of my going to the movies as a kid at the State and Rio Theatres in Monterey, CA:  “The Blob” (Paramount/1958) composed by Ralph Carmichael; “The Last Man on Earth” (AIP/1964), composed by Paul Sawtell and Bert Schefter; “The Brain From the Planet Arous” (Howco/1957), composed by Walter Greene.  I remember as the end title on “Arous” came on the screen and thinking I’d just wasted $.50.  My disappointment was forgotten after watching the co-feature, “The Alligator People” (API-Fox/1959), composed by Irving Gertz, exemplifying there is no accounting for the taste of an 11-year-old.

David Schecter is a champion of composers, especially the lesser-known ones, many of whom he knew personally, and dedicates himself to making their scores available.  He and his staff have gone to the trouble of re-recording the scores utilizing renowned symphony orchestras in Poland and Slovakia when they aren’t releasing original soundtracks.  He write superb liner notes as well.

Monstrous Movie Music:

http://www.mmmrecordings.com/index.htmlb

The movies themselves are available on DVD from VCI Entertainment:

http://kitparker.com/buy.php

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“Hellgate,” starring Sterling Hayden, Joan Leslie, Ward Bond, and James Arness (one of my favorites), directed by Charles Marquis Warren, is part of the two-disc DVD collection titled, “Darn Good Westerns”  Volume 1, featuring five additional titles, “Panhandle” (Allied Artists/1948) with Rod Cameron, in “glowing Sepiatone,” and four from Lippert Pictures, “Fangs of the Wild” (1954),  with Charles Chaplin, Jr., and underrated actress Margia Dean in one of her best roles, “The Train to Tombstone” (1950) which is a Don “Red” Barry western, “Operation Haylift” (1950) with Bill Williams and Ann Rutherford, and “Wildfire – The Story of a Horse” (1945) starring Bob Steele, in Cinecolor, which was the first production from legendary exhibitor turned producer, Robert L. Lippert.

“The Tall Texan,” is a solid western starring Lloyd Bridges and Lee J. Cobb, with cool special features, including “The Making of ‘The Tall Texan’” by Elmo Williams (still alive at age 100!); audio reminiscences by Ross May, a wrangler for the movie; the original theatrical trailer, and Chapter 1 from “Secret Agent X-9” (1945).

On the subject of Elmo Williams, I highly recommend “The Cowboy” (Lippert/1954), a feature length documentary filmed in color.  Both “The Tall Texan” and “The Cowboy” were made in Deming NM where in 2005 my wife Donna and I went to produce the commentary featuring reminiscences of four of the original cowboys who starred in the film.  Listening to these authentic cowboys fifty years later is a hoot…worthy of a blog of its own.

*Usually credited as a Lippert production, it was actually an independent film from producer by John C.  Champion (brother of Gower), under his Commander Films banner.  Champion also produced “Panhandle.”

http://fiftieswesterns.wordpress.com/2013/04/02/50s-western-scores-by-paul-dunlap-and-bert-shefter/

Visit our website to order DVDs –

www.sprocketvault.com

Keep up to date with our new Sprocket Vault releases by liking us on Facebook www.facebook.com/sprocketvault/

Also, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLHjjG-o5Ny5BDykgVBzdrQ .

 

 

Distributing revivals of classic films is an art in and of itself; an art in which we excelled.

Periodically studios would take back a classic or specialty film from us so they could do their own reissue.  Their plan was to generate publicity to launch a home video release, with the hope of also making money at the box-office.

Sometimes they got the publicity they wanted, but the small fortune they spent on marketing doomed any possibility of making money selling tickets.  

CBS is not a company associated with feature films, but they had a motion picture division in the 1970s, Cinema Center Films, that released 30 feature films including “A Man Called Horse,” was by far the most well known.  In the late 1980s we obtained both theatrical and non-theatrical rights to all 30, and theatrical rights to their crown jewel, “My Fair Lady.”

CBS funded the original Broadway show and licensed motion picture rights to Warner Bros. for $5 million enabling them to produce and release a film, with all rights to be transferred to CBS 7 years after its theatrical release.   (An incredible deal for CBS)

In 1993 we were working on reissuing MFL with new prints in a roll-out commencing at our best premiere venue, Film Forum, in New York City.   However, unbeknownst to us, CBS was restoring the movie and had a deal to release it theatrically by 20th Century-Fox in both 35mm and 70mm.  Naturally this caused friction because we had been assigned the theatrical rights and were working on our own release.  However, we worked out a fair deal and Fox was allowed to release it, with rights reverting to us after 60 days.   

Fox was a master of distributing and marketing first run movies and, as with all the major studios, had no idea how to reissue classics. Consequently MFL played at inappropriate theatres for that type of picture.  Box-office was, at best lackluster despite very hefty marketing expenses.  One exception was at New York City’s mighty Ziegfeld Theatre were it did very good business ($75,000 for the first weekend as I recall) which may sound like a lot of money, but after extremely high marketing costs, and theatre, expenses were deducted, the engagement became awash in a sea of red.  

When we got the picture back it had already played in major cities for weeks, but we went right back and placed the show in those same cities at what we knew from experience to be the right venues in the right part of town.  In virtually every case we out-grossed the theatres where it previously played first-run with Fox.

 

The best example is in San Francisco where Fox opened MFL at a good first-run upscale house and supported it with another big ad campaign.  I believe their gross was under $10,000 for the first week and, of course, declined the subsequent 2 weeks.   Two months later we opened it at the ideal venue for that type of picture, The Castro, and grossed $50,000+ in one week, with virtually no advertising costs and, again, after the movie had played for weeks at the other theatre.   

I’m not casting dispersions on Fox or CBS, as they may well have been thrilled with the publicity, and be damned with associated costs (called a “bought gross” in motion picture distribution parlay), but rather to point out that no matter how much money is thrown into marketing a revival, selling tickets is predicated upon placing the show at the right venue which we were masters at.

Most of the theatres we played didn’t pay for advertising, but put the word out using their in-house efforts such as printed calendars and close relationships with the press.   The maestro of marketing is Bruce Goldstein of NYC’s Film Forum.  He could (and can) be depended upon to garner more exposure in the media than any deep pocketed studio could ever hope to with their older films.

I’m proud of my past record/history in exposing classic films to movie lovers in the way they were meant to be shown…in 35mm.

Visit our website to order DVDs from the Kit Parker Films Collection –

www.sprocketvault.com

Keep up to date with our new Sprocket Vault releases by liking us on Facebook www.facebook.com/sprocketvault/

Also, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLHjjG-o5Ny5BDykgVBzdrQ .

 

 

Who produced or co-produced almost 250 feature films and is virtually unknown today?

That man is Robert L. Lippert (1909-1976), who did just that in 25 years, from 1945-1969.

Between 1945-1956 he also distributed more than 100 of his own productions (most of which are owned by my company, Kit Parker Holdings, LLC) and another 100 films produced by others.

Compiling this filmography more difficult because some Lippert films made after 1959 were not credited to any of his production companies.

Titles in bold are Lippert productions or co-productions.  The rest were produced by others and only distributed by Lippert.

Key: R: Reissue, D: Distributor only, TV: Independent production purchased outright by Lippert expressly for use on television.

Distributors: LP: Lippert Pictures, SG: Screen Guild Productions (subsequently known as  Lippert Pictures), RS:  RegalScope (Regal Films), API: Associated Producers, Inc., Fox: 20th Century-Fox, ARC: American Releasing (later known as AIP, American International Pictures), WB: Warner Bros. RS and API are Lippert production companies financed by Fox.

“Hammer”:  Lippert Pictures-Exclusive Films/Hammer Films co-productions

Italicized titles are owned by Kit Parker Films and available on DVD from http://www.sprocketvault.com

 

  • 13 FIGHTING MEN (1960) API-Fox
  • 20,000 EYES (1961) API-Fox
  • ABDUCTORS, THE (1957) RS-Fox
  • ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN, THE (1957) Buzz Productions/Hammer, Fox
  • ACTORS AND SIN (1952) Limited TV distribution rights only, LP-D
  • AIR PATROL (1962) API-Fox
  • AIR STRIKE  (1955) LP
  • ALASKA PASSAGE (1959) API-Fox
  • ALI BABA NIGHTS (R-1953) UK: Chu Chin Chow, 1934, LP-D
  • ALLIGATOR PEOPLE, THE (1959) API-Fox
  • AMBUSH AT CIMARRON PASS (1958) RS-Fox
  • APACHE CHIEF (1950) LP
  • APACHE WARRIOR (1957) RS-Fox
  • ARSON, INC. (1950) LP
  • AS YOU WERE (1951) LP
  • BACHELOR IN PARIS (1952) UK: Song of Paris, LP-D
  • BACK DOOR TO HELL (1964) US-Philippines, Fox
  • BACK FROM THE DEAD (1957) RS-Fox
  • BAD BLONDE (1953) UK: Flanagan Boy, Hammer, LP
  • BADLANDS OF MONTANA (1957) RS-Fox
  • BANDIT ISLAND (1953) 3-D Short Subject, LP
  • BANDIT QUEEN, THE (1950) LP
  • BAR 20 JUSTICE (R-1947) 1938, SG-D
  • BARON OF ARIZONA, THE (1950) LP  (DVD: Criterion Collection) *
  • BATTLE AT BLOODY BEACH, THE (1961) Fox
  • BELLS OF SAN FERNANDO (1947) SG
  • BIG CHASE, THE (1954) LP
  • BIG SHOW, THE (1961) API-Fox
  • BLACK GLOVE, THE (1954) UK: Face the Music, Hammer, LP
  • BLACK PIRATES, THE (1954) US-Mexico, LP
  • BLACK WHIP, THE (1956) RS-Fox
  • BLACKOUT (1954) UK: Murder by Proxy, Hammer, LP
  • BLOOD AND STEEL (1959) API-Fox
  • BLOOD ARROW (1958) RS-Fox
  • BORDER RANGERS (1950) LP
  • BORDER VIGILANTES (R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • BORDERLAND (R-1946) 1937, SG-D
  • BOY! WHAT A GIRL! (1947) SG-D
  • BROKEN LAND (1962) API-Fox
  • BUFFALOBILL RIDES AGAIN (1947) SG-D
  • BURNING CROSS, THE (1947) SG-D
  • BUSH PILOT (1947) SG-D
  • CABINET OF CALIGARI (1962) LP-Fox
  • CALL IT MURDER (R-1947) Orig.: Midnight, 1934, SG-D
  • CALL OF THE FOREST(1949) LP-D
  • CAPTAIN KIDD (R-1952) 1945, LP-D
  • CASE OF THE BABY SITTER (1947) Featurette, SG
  • CASSIDY OF BAR 20 (R-1947) 1938, SG-D
  • CATTLE EMPIRE (1958) Fox
  • CHINA GATE (1957) Fox
  • COLLEGE CAPERS (1953) 3D short subject, LP
  • COLORADO RANGER – TV: Guns of Justice (1950) LP
  • COME BE MY VICTIM, half-hour TV abridgement of Danger Zone (1951), LP
  • CONVICTS AT LARGE (1938) LP-TV
  • COPPER SKY (1957) RS-Fox
  • COWBOY, THE (1954) LP
  • CREEPING UNKNOWN, THE (1965) UK: Quatermass Xperiment, Hammer, UA
  • CROOKED RIVER – TV: The Last Bullet (1950) LP
  • CURIOUS ADVENTURES OF MR. WONDERBIRD, THE (1953) France: Bergère et le ramoneur, 1952, Dubbed, LP-D
  • CURSE OF THE FLY (1965) Fox
  • DALTON GANG, THE (1949) LP
  • DANGER ZONE (1951) LP
  • DAY IN THE COUNTRY, A (1953) 3-D short subject filmed in 1941 as Stereo-Laffs, LP-D
  • DAY MARS INVADED EARTH, THE (1963) API-Fox
  • DEADLY GAME, THE (1954) UK, Third Party Risk, Hammer, LP
  • DEATH VALLEY (1947) SG
  • DEERSLAYER, THE (1958) Fox
  • DEPUTY MARSHAL (1949) LP
  • DESERT HELL (1958) RS-Fox
  • DESIRE IN THE DUST (1960) Fox
  • DESPERADOES ARE IN TOWN, THE (1956) RS-Fox
  • DOG OF FLANDERS, A (1959) Fox
  • DRAGON OF DEATH, half-hour TV abridgement of Mask of the Dragon (1951), LP
  • EARTH DIES SCREAMING, THE (1964) UK, Fox
  • ENEMY FROM SPACE (1957) UK, Quatermass 2, UA
  • ESCAPE FROM RED ROCK (1957) RS-Fox
  • EVERYBODY’S DANCIN’ (1950) LP
  • FAMILY AFFAIR (1956) UK: Life with the Lyons, 1954, LP-D
  • FANGS OF THE WILD aka Follow the Hunter (1954) LP
  • FAST ON THE DRAW – TV: Sudden Death (1950) LP
  • FBI GIRL (1951) LP
  • FELICIA (1964) API-Fox
  • FINGERPRINTS DON’T LIE (1951) LP
  • FINGERPRINTS, half-hour TV abridgement of Fingerprints Don’t Lie (1951), LP
  • FIRE ALARM (1932) Orig.: Flames  LP-TV
  • FIREBRAND, THE (1962) API-Fox
  • FIVE GATES TO HELL (1959) Fox
  • FLAMING FRONTIER  (1958) Canada, Fox
  • FLESH AND LEATHER, half-hour TV abridgement of Stop That Cab (1951), LP
  • FLIGHT TO FURY (1964) US-Philippines, Feature Film Corp. of America
  • FLIGHT TO NOWHERE (1947) SG
  • FLY, THE (1958)
  • FORTUNE IN DIAMONDS, A (1951)UK: The Adventurers, LP-D
  • FORTY GUNS (1957) Fox
  • FRANCIS OF ASSISI (1961) API provided guided only, Fox
  • FRECKLES (1960) API-Fox
  • FRONTIER GAMBLER (1956) ARC
  • FRONTIER GUN (1958) RS-Fox
  • FRONTIERSMEN, THE (R-1947) 1938, SG-D
  • FROZEN ALIVE (1964) Germany: Der Fall X701, Feature Films of America
  • G.I. JANE (1951) LP
  • GAMBLER AND THE LADY (1952) UK, Hammer, LP
  • GANG WAR (1958) RS-Fox
  • GHOST DIVER (1957) RS-Fox
  • GHOST SHIP (1952) UK, 1951, LP-D
  • GIRL FROM CALGARY, THE (1932)  LP-TV
  • GLASS TOMB, THE (1955) UK: The Glass Cage, Hammer, LP
  • GOD IS MY PARTNER (1957) RS-Fox
  • GOD’S COUNTRY (1947) SG
  • GRAND CANYON (1949) LP
  • GREAT JESSE JAMES RAID, THE (1953) LP
  • GREAT WHITE HUNTER, THE (R-1953) Orig.: The Macomber Affair,1947, LP-D
  • GUNFIRE (1950) LP
  • HAND OF DEATH , THE (1962) API-Fox
  • HARBOR LIGHTS (1963) API-Fox
  • HARPOON (1948) SG-D
  • HAT BOX MYSTERY, THE (1947) Featurette, SG
  • HEART OFARIZONA(R-1948) 1938, SG-D
  • HEAT WAVE (1954) UK, House Across the Lake, Hammer, LP
  • HELL HARBOR(1930)  LP-TV
  • HELL ON DEVIL’S ISLAND (1957) RS-Fox
  • HELLGATE (1952) LP-D
  • HER ENLISTED MAN (R-1935) Orig.: Red Salute,1935, SG-D
  • HERE COME THE JETS (1959) API-Fox
  • HIDDEN GOLD (R-1948) SG-D
  • HIGH POWERED RIFLE, THE (1960) Fox
  • HIGHWAY 13 (1948) SG
  • HI-JACKED (1950) LP
  • HILLS OF OLDWYOMING(R-1946) 1937, SG-D
  • HOLIDAY RHYTHM (1950) LP
  • HOLLYWOODBARN DANCE (1947) SG-D
  • HOLLYWOODTHRILL-MAKERS (1954) LP-D
  • HOLLYWOOD VARIETIES (1950) LP
  • HOPALONG CASSIDY ENTERS (R-1946) Orig.: Hop-a-long Cassidy, 1935, SG-D
  • HOPALONG CASSIDY RETURNS (R-1946) 1936, SG-D
  • HOPALONG RIDES AGAIN (R-1946) 1937, SG-D
  • HORROR OF IT ALL, THE (1964) UK, Fox
  • HOSTILE COUNTRY – TV: Outlaw Fury (1950) LP
  • HOUSE OF THE DAMNED (1963) API-Fox
  • I SHOT BILLY THE KID (1950) LP
  • I SHOT JESSE JAMES (1949) LP (DVD: Criterion Collection)
  • I’LL GET YOU (1953) UK: Escape Route, LP
  • IN OLD MEXICO(R-1948) 1938, SG-D
  • IRON MASK, THE (R-1953) 1929, Silent, with added sound track, LP-D
  • IT HAPPENED IN ATHENS (1962) Fox
  • JEWELS OF JEOPARDY, half-hour TV abridgement of The Roaring City (1951), LP
  • JOHNNY THE GIANT KILLER (1953) France, Jeannot l’intrépide, Dubbed, LP-D
  • JUNGLE GODDESS (1948) SG
  • JUNGLE, THE (1952) LP
  • KENTUCKY JUBILEE (1951) LP
  • KILLER DILL (1947) SG-D
  • KING DINOSAUR (1955) LP
  • KING OF THE TURF (R-1948) 1939, SG-D
  • KRONOS (1957) RS-Fox
  • LAST MAN ON EARTH (1964) Italy-USA, AIP
  • LAST OF THE WILD HORSES, THE  (1948) LP
  • LAST SHOT YOU HEAR (1969) UK, Fox
  • LAW OF THE PAMPAS (R-1948) 1939, SG-D
  • LAW OF THE SEA (1931)  LP-TV
  • LEAVE IT TO THE MARINES (1951) LP
  • LIMPING MAN, THE (1953) UK, LP-D
  • LITTLE BIG HORN (1951) LP
  • LITTLE SAVAGE (1959) US-Mexico, API-Fox
  • LITTLE SHEPERD OF KINGDOM COME (1961) API-Fox
  • LOAN SHARK (1952) LP
  • LONE TEXAN (1959) RS-Fox
  • LONESOME TRAIL, THE (1955) LP
  • LONG FALL, THE, half-hour TV abridgement of Pr 23 (1951), LP
  • LONG ROPE, THE (1961) API-Fox
  • LOST CONTINENT, THE (1951) LP
  • LURE OF THE SWAMP (1957) RS-Fox
  • MAN BAIT (1952) UK: The Last Page, Hammer, LP
  • MAN FROM CAIRO, THE (1953) Italy-UK-USA, Guidance only, LP
  • MARCH OF THE WOODEN SOLDIERS (R-1950) Orig.: Babes in Toyland, 1934, LP-D
  • MARK OF THE LASH (1948) SG-D
  • MARSHAL OF HELDORADO – TV: Blazing Guns (1950) LP
  • MASK OF THE DRAGON (1951) LP
  • MASSACRE (1956) Fox
  • MIRACLE INHARLEM(1948) SG-D
  • MISS ANNIE ROONEY (R-1948) 1942, SG-D
  • MISSING WITNESS, THE, half-hour TV abridgement of Fingerprints Don’t Lie (1951), LP
  • MONSTER FROM THE OCEAN FLOOR (1954) LP-D
  • MORO WITCH DOCTOR (1964) Philippines: Amok, API-Fox
  • MOTOR PATROL (1950) LP
  • MOZART STORY (1948) Germany-Austria: Wen die Gotter lieben, Dubbed, SG-D
  • MR. ROBINSON CRUSOE (R-1953) LP-D
  • MR. WALKIE TALKIE (1952)
  • MURDER GAME (1965) UK, LP-Fox
  • MURDER, INC. (1960) Fox
  • MY DOG SHEP (1947) SG
  • NAVAJO (1952) LP-D
  • NIGHT TRAIN TO PARIS (1964) UK, Fox
  • NORMAN CONQUEST (1953) UK:MarkPlaza605, LP-D
  • NORTH OF THE BORDER (1947) Featurette, SG
  • NORTH OF THERIO GRANDE (R-1946) 1937, SG-D
  • NORTHWEST TRAIL (1945) SG
  • OMOO-OMOO THE SHARK GOD (1949) LP-D
  • ON FOUR WHEELS, half-hour TV abridgement of Stop That Cab (1951), LP
  • OPERATION HAYLIFT (1950) LP
  • OREGON TRAIL (1959) Fox
  • ORIENTAL CLUE, THE half-hour TV abridgement of Mask of the Dragon (1951), LP
  • OUTLAW COUNTRY (1949) SG
  • OUTLAW WOMEN (1952) LP-D
  • OUTLAWS IN THE DESERT (R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • PAID TO KILL (1954) UK, Five Days, Hammer, LP-D
  • PARTNERS OF THE PLAINS (R-1948) 1938, SG-D
  • PERILS OF THE JUNGLE (1953) LP -D
  • PHANTOM OF THE JUNGLE (1955) LP-D
  • PIER 23 (1951) LP
  • PIER OF PERIL, half-hour TV abridgement of Pier 23 (1951), LP
  • PIRATE SUBMARINE (1952) France: Casabianca,1951, dubbed, LP-D
  • PIRATES ON HORSEBACK (R-1946) 1941, SG
  • PRAIRIE, THE (1947) SG-D
  • PLUNDER ROAD (1957) RS-Fox
  • POLICE COURT (1932)  LP-TV
  • POLICE NURSE (1963) API-Fox
  • PRIDE OF THE WEST (R-1947) 1938, SG-D
  • PROJECT MOON BASE (1953) LP-D
  • PURPLE HILLS, THE (1961) API-Fox
  • QUEEN OF SHEBA, THE (1952) Italy: La Regina di Saba, 1952, Dubbed, LP-D
  • QUEEN OF THE AMAZONS (1947) SG
  • QUIET GUN, THE (1957) RS-Fox
  • RACE FOR LIFE (1954) UK: Mask of Dust, Hammer, LP
  • RACKETEERS (R-1948) Orig.: People’s Enemy, 1935, SG-D
  • RADAR SECRET SERVICE (1950) LP
  • RAIDERS FROM BENEATH THE SEA (1964) Fox
  • RANGE WAR (R-1948) 1938, SG-D
  • RED DESERT (1949) LP
  • RENEGADE GIRL (1947) SG
  • RENEGADE TRAIL (R-1948) 1939, SG-D
  • RETURN OF GILBERT AND SULLIVAN, THE (1952) (Short Subject)UK, LP-D
  • RETURN OF JESSE JAMES, THE (1950) LP
  • RETURN OF MR. MOTO (1965) UK, Fox
  • RETURN OF THE FLY (1959) API-Fox
  • RETURN OF WILDFIRE, THE (1948) SG
  • RIDE A VIOLENT MILE (1957) RS-Fox
  • RIDERS OF THE TIMBERLINE (R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • RIMFIRE (1948) LP
  • RINGSIDE (1949) LP
  • RIVER BEAT (1954) UK, LP
  • ROAD TO THE BIG HOUSE (1947) SG-D
  • ROARING CITY (1951) LP
  • ROCKABILLY BABY (1957) RS-Fox
  • ROCKETSHIP X-M (1950) LP
  • ROLLING HOME (1947) SG
  • ROOKIE, THE (1959) (oversaw production) Fox
  • RUSTLER’S VALLEY (R-1946) 1937, SG-D
  • S.O.S. SUBMARINE (1948) Italy: Uomini sui fondo, 1941, Dubbed, SG-D
  • SAD HORSE, THE (1959) API-Fox
  • SANTA FE MARSHAL (R-1948) 1940, SG-D
  • SAVAGE DRUMS (1951) LP
  • SCARED TO DEATH (1947) SG
  • SCOTLAND YARD INSPECTOR (1952) UK: Lady in the Fog, Hammer, LP
  • SECRET OF THE PURPLE REEF, THE (1960) API-Fox
  • SECRET OF THE WASTELANDS (R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • SECRET PEOPLE, THE (1952)UK, LP-D
  • SEPIA CINDERELLA (1947) SG-D
  • SEVEN WOMEN FROM HELL (1961) API-Fox
  • SHADOW MAN, THE (1953) UK: Street of Shadows, Hammer, LP
  • SHE DEVIL (1957) RS-Fox
  • SHEP COMES HOME (1948)
  • SHOOT TO KILL (1947) SG-D
  • SHOWDOWN AT BOOT HILL (1958) RS-Fox
  • SHOWDOWN AT SUNUP (1949) Short subject, LP
  • SIEGE, THE (1954)Spain, 1950, Agustina de Aragón, 1950, dubbed, LP-D
  • SIERRA BARON (1958) Fox
  • SILENT CALL, THE (1961) API-Fox
  • SILENT RAIDERS (1954) LP-D
  • SILVER ON THE SAGE (R-1947) 1939, SG-D
  • SILVER STAR (1955) LP
  • SIMBA (1955) LP-D
  • SINS OF JEZEBEL (1953) LP
  • SISTERS IN CRIME, half-hour TV abridgement of The Roaring City  (1951), LP
  • SKY HIGH (1951) LP
  • SKY LINER (1949) LP
  • SLASHER, THE (1953) UK: Cosh Boy, LP-D
  • SLIGHTLY DANGEROUS (1950)UK, LP-D
  • SNIPER’S RIDGE (1961) API-Fox
  • SON OF A BADMAN (1949) LP-D
  • SON OF BILLY THE KID (1948) LP-D
  • SON OF ROBIN HOOD (1958) Fox
  • SPACE MASTER X-7 (1958) RS-Fox
  • SPACEWAYS (1953) UK, Hammer, LP
  • SQUARE DANCE JUBILEE (1949) LP
  • STAGECOACH TO FURY (1956) RS/Fox
  • STAGECOACH WAR (R-1948) 1940, SG-D
  • STEEL HELMET, THE (1951) LP (DVD: Criterion Collection)
  • STICK TO YOUR GUNS (R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • STOLEN FACE (1952) UK, Hammer, LP
  • STOP THAT CAB (1951) LP
  • STORM RIDER, THE (1957) RS-Fox
  • STREET IS MY BEAT, half-hour TV abridgement of Stop That Cab (1951), L
  • STRONGHOLD (1952) Mexico-USA co-production, LP-D
  • SUNSET TRAIL (R-1947) 1939, SG-D
  • SUPERMAN AND THE MOLE-MEN (1952) LP
  • SURF PARTY (1964) API-Fox
  • SWINGIN’ ALONG aka Double Trouble aka Johnny One Note (1961) Fox
  • TALES OF ROBIN HOOD (1951) LP
  • TALL LIE aka For Men Only (1952) LP
  • TALL TEXAN, THE (1953) LP
  • TERROR SHIP (1954)UK: Dangerous Voyage, LP-D
  • TERROR STREET (1953) UK: 36 Hours, Hammer, LP
  • TESS OF THE STORM COUNTRY (1960) Fox
  • TEXAS TRAIL (R-1947) 1937, SG-D
  • THAT TENNESSE BEAT (1966) Fox
  • THAT’S MY BOY aka Forbidden Music (R-1948)UK: Land Without Music, 1936, LP-D
  • THERE IS NO ESCAPE (1948) SG-D
  • THEY WERE SO YOUNG (1954) W. Germany-USA, LP
  • THIRD VOICE, THE (1960) Fox
  • THREE DESPERATE MEN (1951) LP
  • THREE MEN FROM TEXAS(R-1946) 1940, SG-D
  • THUNDER IN THE PINES (1948) SG
  • THUNDER ISLAND (1963) API-Fox
  • THUNDER OVER SANGOLAND (1955) LP-D
  • THUNDER PASS (1954) LP
  • THUNDERING JETS (1958) RS-Fox
  • TOUGH ASSIGNMENT (1949) LP
  • TRAIL DUST (R-1946) 1936, SG-D
  • TRAIL OF THE MOUNTIES (1947) Featurette, SG
  • TRAIN TO TOMBSTONE (1950) LP
  • TREASURE OF MONTE CRISTO (1949) LP
  • TROMBA: THE TIGERMAN (1952)Germany: Tromba, 1949, Dubbed, LP-D
  • TWELVE HOURS TO KILL (1960) API-Fox
  • TWILIGHT ON THE TRAIL (R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • TWILIGHT WOMEN (1953) UK: Women of Twilight, TV title: Another Chance, LP-D
  • TWO LITTLE BEARS (1961) Fox
  • UNDER FIRE (1957) RS-Fox
  • UNDERCOVER AGENT (1953)UK: Counterspy, LP-D
  • UNHOLY FOUR, THE (1954) UK: The Stranger Came Home, Hammer, LP
  • UNKNOWN TERROR, THE (1957) RS-Fox
  • UNKNOWN WORLD (1951) LP-D
  • VALLEY OF THE EAGLES (1951)UK:ValleyofEagles, LP-D
  • VALLEY OF THE REDWOODS (1960) API-Fox
  • VARIETIES ON PARADE (1951) LP
  • VILLA (1958) Fox
  • WALK A TIGHTROPE (1964) US-UK, API-Paramount
  • WALK TALL (1960) API-Fox
  • WAYNE MURDER CASE, THE (1932) Orig.: A Strange Adventure  LP-TV
  • WE WANT A CHILD! (1954)Denmark: Viv vil ha’ et bam, Dubbed, LP-D
  • WEST OF THE BRAZOS (1950) LP
  • WESTERN PACIFIC AGENT (1950) LP
  • WHERE THE NORTH BEGINS (1947) Featurette, SG
  • WHITE FIRE (1954)UK: Three Steps to the Gallows, 1953, LP-D
  • WHITE GODDESS (1953) LP-D
  • WHITE PHANTOM (1949) Short subject, LP
  • WIDE OPEN TOWN(R-1946) 1941, SG-D
  • WILD ON THE BEACH (1965) Fox
  • WILDFIRE (1945) SG
  • WINGS OF DANGER (1952) UK; Dead on Course, Hammer, LP
  • WITCHCRAFT (1964) UK, Fox
  • WOLF DOG (1958) RS-Fox
  • WOMAN WHO WOULDN’T DIE, THE (1965) UK, WB
  • WOMANHUNT aka WOMAN HUNT (1962) API-Fox
  • WOMEN OF PITCAIRN ISLAND, THE (1956) RS-Fox
  • YELLOW CANARY, THE (1963) Fox
  • YES SIR, MR. BONES! (1951) LP
  • YOUNG AND DANGEROUS (1957) RS-Fox
  • YOUNG GUNS OF TEXAS (1962) API-Fox
  • YOUNG JESSE JAMES (1960) API-Fox
  • YOUNG SWINGERS, THE (1963) API-Fox

Sources:  Motion Picture Herald, Film Daily Yearbook,U.S. Copyright Office, Maury Dexter, Robert L. Lippert, Jr. and the Kit Parker Films-Lippert Collection at the Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Visit our website to order DVDs from the Kit Parker Films Collection –

www.sprocketvault.com

Keep up to date with our new Sprocket Vault releases by liking us on Facebook www.facebook.com/sprocketvault/

Also, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLHjjG-o5Ny5BDykgVBzdrQ .

Bill Blair (1930-2006) was more than a film buff, he was a film nut.

Unlike my other two “Film Friends I Miss,” Bill never wrote an autobiography.  He was modest, so it would have been out of character for him.  Fortunately, his son, Bob, wrote an affectionate, biographical piece on his father and his brainchild, we all know today as VCI Entertainment.  Combining Bill’s biography with VCI’s history made sense to me since Bill and VCI were so intertwined that sometimes it wasn’t always possible for me to separate the man from the business.

Bill Blair-Biography/VCI Entertainment-history:

http://vcientertainment.com/about_us.php

It was almost four decades ago when I first spoke with Bill, two years after I founded my 16mm (Bill called it “16 em em”) library, Kit Parker Films.  This was before there was such a thing as home video.  All I had to offer were movies in the public domain, so it was important to move up a notch by offering copyrighted ones.  No one was willing to sell me any, at least that I could afford.

Bill founded United Films, also a 16mm distributor, only big-time, renting out many copyrighted movies from major studios.  I called and asked if he would sell me several “A-” RKO movies.  He agreed, even gave me a real good deal, especially considering it put me in competition with him for those movies.  He was a nice man to do that, and, as you can see, I never forgot it.   He let me buy more movies, and then more.   It didn’t take long for me to realize that Bill worked with me not only because he was a nice guy, but because he knew I was a kindred spirit…a film nut…just like him.  A friendship developed, that would which continue for over 30 years, right up until his passing.

Some time later we couldn’t come to an agreement on the price of some Dick Tracy serials.  Somehow he worked into the conversation that he had, as he called it, a “bad ticker.”  I took that to mean exactly what he wanted me to, that he really didn’t care if the deal went through or not, because he wasn’t going to be around much longer to care about it.  I figured out years later that he was saying that to make me worry about losing the deal for fear he really didn’t care.  Bill got his way, even though he wanted the deal as much as me. It was just one of his ways of negotiating.  He tried the “bad ticker” routine later on, but by then I had caught on.  If I pressed him I wonder if he would have grasped his chest pretending to have a heart attack, just like Fred G. Sanford did in “Sanford and Son”?

BTW, he did have a bad (physical) heart, but it managed to serve him well for  another three decades-.

Another of his mid-west style negotiating tactics was to speak real slow and work into the conversation that he was just a “Slow mule from Oklahoma,” or just plain “Okie.”  This was to get you to think he was a rube ripe for the picking, but in reality, at the end of the day, he’d end up with all the chips!

I don’t want to paint Bill as someone who took advantage of a 25 year old’s naïveté.  The extra money he got from me was peanuts.  He loved toying with me because I think I reminded Bill of himself at the same age…a kid who “had” to have those movies.

Later in the 1970s VCI got out of the 16mm film business and VCI became the first firm to produce movies specifically for the video market.  In fact, they made the very first one.  Don’t ask me the names because I’ve been pretty successful at erasing his made-for-video movies completely from my mind.  He asked me what I thought of an early one…all I could say was it was “innovative.”

Ten years later he produced a picture called “The Last Slumber Party,” which was really gawd awful.  Again he asked me what I thought, and I just paused until he blinked, and admitted, “I know, I know, it’s a piece of s**t.”

I didn’t actually meet Bill in person until around 2000.  As expected, he was modest and unassuming, and I already knew he had the bedside manner of a country doctor.    By now I had a reputation for clearing rights to hard to find movies, and helped him get some of his favorites, such as the Benedict Bogeaus collection**.  Coincidently, they were “A-” RKO releases he had wanted for years, and it was as if I gave him the moon…just the way I felt when I got those other “A-” RKO’s from him three decades before.  Believe me; I was just as happy to help him, because it gave me a chance to make him really happy.  After all, he always was good to me.

Bill was beyond being a film buff, he was a film nut, and his enthusiasm was absolutely infectious.  Film buffs, and nuts, alike; owe a lot to him and his team for locating, restoring and releasing hard to find movie favorites on DVD.  His sons inherited that passion, and continue searching out the movies Bill always wanted, but were always just out of his grasp.   I know he appreciates that.

Bill Blair lived his dream, made his passion a vocation, got to work with all the movies he wanted, and was loved by his family, employees, and people like me.

I miss Bill Blair.

——————

The Benedict Bogeaus RKO Collection, all in Technicolor: “Appointment in Honduras,” “Silver Lode,” “Passion,” “Cattle Queen of Montana,” “Escape toBurma,” “Pearlof the South Pacific,” “Tennessee’s Partner,” and “Slightly Scarlet.”  I recommend them.  Check them out at http://www.sprocketvault.com

and…

Visit our website to order DVDs from the Kit Parker Films Collection –

www.sprocketvault.com

Keep up to date with our new Sprocket Vault releases by liking us on Facebook www.facebook.com/sprocketvault/

Also, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLHjjG-o5Ny5BDykgVBzdrQ


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