kitparkerfilms

Posts Tagged ‘television

Medallion had some good movies, and some junk.  I purchased the Medallion TV Enterprises library in 2008.

John Hertz Ettlinger (1924-1993) served in the U.S. Army Signal Corps during WWII, and began his show business career as the manager of a movie theatre in New York.  His entrée into television was as a salesman for KTLA in Los Angeles; he subsequently co-owned KUDO in Las Vegas.

In 1954 he formed television syndicator, Medallion TV Enterprises, and operated it until his death.  Ettlinger was the grandson of John D. Hertz, founder of the largest cab company (Yellow Cab in Chicago), and Hertz Car Rental.  In his files I could only find one time John Hertz Ettlinger used his middle name, “Hertz,” preferring the made-up initial “A” for an unknown reason.

His heyday was in the 1960s when his top money-makers were the John Wayne/Batjac collection including “High and the Mighty” (WB/1954), a series of Italian sword and sandal “epics” that were inexplicably popular at the time, and a collection of grade-B and C horror films, including those produced by the infamous Jerry Warren, that seemed to appear on every Creature Features in the country.

Ettlinger proudly displayed his Beverly Hills address on the business stationery, he said he was one of the founders and an Associate Member of NATPE (National Association of Broadcasters) and MIP-TV, this gave him plenty of tax write-off’s for his many trips to Europe, particularly Cannes, where he was a fixture at the annual festival (and even died there!.)  Given Ettlinger’s presumed wealth, Medallion might have been equal parts hobby and business, particularly during the 1980s when TV syndication had declined precipitously.

In the early years of Medallion, Ettlinger produced short programming and commercials.  He made deals with producers to rep their libraries to television for a sales commission.  Years later, whenever possible, he purchased the copyrights to the pictures he had only represented.  This was a particularly good move — not only was he relieved of paying royalties for television, but a new and unanticipated cash cow came along later…home video…free of royalties.

Medallion’s first offerings were known as the “Governor Westerns.” [Somebody please tell me what those were].  In 1959 the company started to take off with a batch of Jack Broder productions, “Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla” (Realart/1951), etc., a series of 1940s PRC “Billy the Kid” westerns starring Buster Crabbe, a few Hal Roach features such as “Captain Caution” (UA/1940).  His  crown jewel was “A Walk in the Sun” (Fox/1945).

As the years went by Medallion would lose libraries and pick up others.

He earned a reputation, mostly undeserved, as someone who attempted to resurrect copyrights to movies that may have been in the public domain by adding copyright “©” symbols to his movies that did not originally appear on general release.  His files show that when this was done inappropriately, the Copyright Office indeed rejected the applications.  I didn’t add any of those movies to my library.

Renewing someone else’s copyright at the very end of the last year of initial copyright protection was an illegal way that pirates would secure copyright renewals to pictures they didn’t own, something I had heard for decades that Ettlinger was guilty of.

However, Ettlinger’s secretary was fastidious about sending paperwork to Medallion’s Washington DC copyright law firm to register or renew copyrights.   Although the secretary may have sent in the requests in September, October and November, for example, the law firm often waited until December to submit renewals to the Copyright Office.  An odd, suspicious, and I’d say risky, way of renewing copyrights, but Ettlinger never threw away a piece of paper, and the correspondence between him and his attorney’s show that he acted above board in such situations.

Ettlinger also purchased abandoned negatives from laboratories in a variation of “Storage Wars.”  This was for the physical elements only, with no rights conveyed.  However, again borne out by my examination of the Medallion files, in order to clear title, Ettlinger subsequently purchased copyrights from the producers or financiers (often The Walter E. Heller Co. and Ideal Factoring) who foreclosed on bankrupt pictures.

In 1993 John Ettlinger died, and the assets of his company were sold to Parasol Group Limited, which Nathan Sassover controlled.  Sassover proceeded to market the Medallion Library, and augmented it by producing various TV series of varying quality by adding new matter to footage in the public domain as with his “Drama Classics” and “The 40s.”  He also produced wholly original productions, including “The Adventures of Dynamo Duck.”  Apparently the programs sold very well in Europe until the public domain issue came to light, and licensees realized they paid a lot of money for very little exclusive programming.

Parasol then sold to Applause Networks, Inc. which became Internet Broadcast Networks, Inc., later known as, Mediacom Entertainment, Inc., and Sassover became CEO, President and Secretary of Mediacom.  [Maybe two people care about this, but I’ll go on]  Mediacom sold to Branded Media, which was financed by Group III Capital, Inc.

Neither Branded or Group III were very familiar with the motion picture and television business.  Impressed with Mediacom’s balance sheet, they were unaware  that a large percentage of the library was essentially in the public domain, or to which distribution rights had reverted to the producers.

Group III claimed there was a diversion of funds by Parasol, Sassover and another man, and sued.  They were awarded treble damages ($7,900,236) plus interest and attorney’s fees.  I found no evidence that Group III received any of that money.

Subsequently, Branded sold the library to EMN Acquisition Corp., which was in the business of placing advertising at airports.  They knew even less of the business than Branded Media.

In 2007 I wanted to repatriate negatives to three movies produced by John Champion (brother of Gower);  “Hellgate” (Lippert/1951), “Panhandle” (AA/1948) and “Shotgun” (AA/1955).  A fourth, “Dragonfly Squadron” (AA/1954), was sought by Jeff Joseph of SabuCat Productions, who wanted to restore it in 3D.

The problem was a $250,000 storage bill at FilmBond in Burbank CA, where thousands of reels of Medallion material, including the Champion movies, had languished for many years.  It took a year to eventually gain release of those materials, and that is how I was introduced to EMN, who made a pennies-on-the-dollar deal with FilmBond for the release of all of the elements.

In 2008 I purchased the library from EMN, and VCI Entertainment has released most on DVD.  I gave the public domain material, plus the negative to “Dragonfly Squadron,” and the thousands of cans of film that was either in the public domain, or where rights had previously expired, to Jeff Joseph of SabuCat Productions.

The following makes up most of the Kit Parker Films Medallion TV Enterprises Collection, some of which have territorial restrictions.

 

Actors and Sin
Assault of the Rebel Girls aka Cuban Rebel Girls
Attack of the Mayan Mummy
Breakdown
Celebrity Billiards
The Crawling Hand
Creature of the Walking Dead
Curse of the Stone Hand
Death on the Four Poster
Dinah East
Escape from Sahara
Eye Witness aka Your Witness
Fabulous Fraud
Farmer’s Daughter
Four Fast Guns
Four in a Jeep
Gay Intruders
House of Black Death
How to Succeed with Girls
I’ll See You in Hell
Island of Desire
Jungle Hell
Let’s Live Again
Love From Paris
Man Beast
Monster From the Ocean Floor
Moscow Nights aka Les nuits Moscovites
Nature Girl and the Slaver
Nine Miles to Noon
Nylon Noose
Outlaw Women
Panhandle
Passport for a Corpse
The Rebel Son aka Rebel Son of Tarus Bulba
Sea Devils
Serpent Island
Slasher aka Cosh Boy
Slime People
Sputnik
Summer Run
Summer Storm
Thunder in Carolina
Twilight Women aka Another Chance aka Women of Twilight
Two Colonels
Uncle Vanya
Untamed Women
Violent and the Damned
Wall of Fury
Wild World of Batwoman
Yesterday and Today

*These titles were distributed by Medallion; I purchased them from the producers.

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Continued from my previous blog, “Who Was Craig Kennedy?”

 

“Craig Kennedy, Criminologist”

Series Episodes

(in alphabetical order)

 

“*” Denotes this episode is part of the DVD collection sold by VCI Entertainment.  http://store.vcientertainment.com/product/craig/520

Adrian Weiss produced, and screenplay credits are shared by Ande Lamb, Sherman L. Lowe and Al Martin

 

Title/Year/Director

 

1313 HIDDEN LANE ROAD * 1953    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy), Sydney Mason, Mary Adams, Coulter Irwin, Patricia Wright

Craig Kennedy (Donald Woods) finds himself in an uncomfortable position between a gullible matron (Liz Slifer) with a guilt complex, and a racketeering combine with a yen for $200,000 in cash.

 

THE AMATEUR GHOST * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Suzanne Dalbert (Princess Henrietta)|Tom Hubbard (Professor Zachary)|Liz Slifer (Mrs. Anna Collins)|Lane Bradford (Martin Collins)|Stephen Chase (Hemingway)

A photograph of a crusading councilman with two hoodlums threatens his career until Craig Kennedy conducts some experiments in trick photography.

 

THE BIG SHAKEDOWN * 1952    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Sherry Moreland (Janes Winters)|Jack Mulhall (William Kendall)|Bob Curtis (Mike Grady)|Jack Kruschen (Jack Brown)|Tom Hubbard (Dennis Phillips)

A photograph of a crusading councilman with two hoodlums threatens his career until Craig Kennedy conducts some experiments in trick photography.

 

THE CASE OF FLEMING LEWIS * 1952    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Suzanne Dalbert (Mrs. Fleming Lewis)|Tom Hubbard (Norman Lewis)|Lane Bradford (Harvey Lewis)|Stephen Chase (Wallace Lewis)|Jack Mulhall (Fleming Lewis)|Norval Mitchell (Thomas Woodward)

A planned fishing trip turns into a murder mystery when a wealthy chemist, Fleming Lewis (Jack Mulhall), who is host to Craig Kennedy (Donald Woods), Evening Star reporter Walter Jameson (Lewis Wilson) and police Inspector J. J. Burke (Sydney Mason), is killed.

 

DEAD RIGHT 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Pamela Duncan (Abigail Wyndham)|James Guilfoyle (Tris Wyndham)|Karen King (Gertrude Smith)|Michael Road (Gregory Wyndham)|William Justine (Hal Stevens)|Craig Woods (Eddie Finley)

The weakling nephew of a Texas cattleman attempts to kill Craig Kennedy when he is framed for an attempted murder and a consummated robbery.

 

THE FALSE CLAIMANT * 1952    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Trudy Marshall (Alice Woodwine)|Jack Mulhall (James Kelly)|Edna Holland (Mrs. Richards)|Paul Newlan (Dan Sprague)|Tom Hubbard (Floyd Sprague)

An amnesia victim, a gardener who hates flowers and green grass, and a million-dollar art collection are involved in this episode.

 

FILE 1313 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Patricia Wright (Alberta Seward)|Russ Conway (Frank Haines)|William Hreen (Emmett Thacker)|Valerie Vernon (Mrs. Emmett Thacker)|Joseph Rocca (Steve Carter)

Craig Kennedy is slugged as he interrupts two intruders who are rifling the files in his office. Kennedy’s File 1313, dealing with his investigation of an involved electronic device, disappears.

 

FORMULA FOR MURDER * 1952    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Suzanne Dalbert (Jean Rogers)|Stephen Chase (Dr. Armstrong)|Bettie Best (Wilma Gray)|Tom Hubbard (Peter Allen)|Lane Bradford (Tom Workman)|George Pierrone (Jack Priester)

A blond actress and a glamorous brunette both claim the love of a murdered research dietician, but Craig Kennedy brews his own formula for justice when he proves that professed love can be greed and jealousy, and that avarice not only leads to crime, but to poison as well.

 

FUGITIVE MONEY * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Sandra Spence (Edith Mills)|Glase Lohman (Howard Baker)|Phyllis Coates (Natalie Larkin)|William Justine (Olan Harby)|Chuck Lanson (Lane Bradford)|Tom Hubbard (Robert White)

A blonde walks into Craig Kennedy’s office, plunks down $50,000 in cash on his desk, and offers him the whole amount if he will find her fiance. But the money is hot and sought by the police along with the missing boy friend.

 

THE GOLDEN DAGGER 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Dana Wilson (Sandra Whitney)|Glenn Strange (Del Whitney)|Ralph Byrd (Rocky Lane)|Stephen Chase (Carl Benson)

Strange hieroglyphics on a golden dagger provide a motive for murder. Crag Kennedy, called upon to translate the markings on the evil-omened knife, is drawn into a bizarre mystery when a collector of antiques is shot to death.

 

I  HATE MONEY 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Mary Adams (Mrs. Ethel Jardine)|Michael Hale (Emery Jardine)|Tom McKee (Martin Glover)|Coulter Irwin (Denver Bryant)

Craig Kennedy assumes the role of a tramp to probe the mystery of why an old man prefers to live in a hobo’s shack rather than accept a half-million dollar inheritance.

 

INDIAN GIVER * 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Maura Murphy (Ella Randolph)|Edward Clark (Henry Waters)|William Justine (Dan Logan)|Betty Ball (Mrs. Miller)|Barry Brooks (Ben Miller)|Craig Woods (Jay Duncan)

Craig Kennedy, Inspector Burke and reporter Walter Jameson uncover a plot to smuggle a revolutionary steel formula out of the country.

 

THE KID BROTHER 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Richard Beals (Bobby “Butch” Moore)|Gloria Talbot (Della Cameron)|Richard Grant (Ken Moore)|William Justine (Harry Ferris)|Gilbert Frye (Charley Baker)

The cooperation of a youngster and Craig Kennedy’s examination of an apparently innocent letter bring an incipient crime career to a sudden end.

 

THE LATE CORPSE * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Copper Johnson (Trudy Miller)|Lane Bradford (Noel Young)|Alice Rolph (Betty Parker)|Tom Hubbard (Tom Parker)|William Justine (Rex Gordon)

Craig Kennedy’s knowledge of minerals and precious stones uncovers a cruel hoax, which takes Kennedy from a desert in Mexico to a lavish penthouse in an American city.

 

THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Trudy Marshall ( Faith Clay)|Jack Mulhall (Captain Clay)|Edna Holland (Mrs. Patterson)|Milburn Morante (“Barnacle”)|Lane Bradford (Duke Dunlap)|Tom Hubbard (Ray West)

Kennedy and his friend, reporter Walter Jameson, pose as a couple of seafaring men to save an old man from murder, as Kennedy’s skills pay off as he unravels the mystery of a hoodlum who forces the operator of a Lonely Hearts Club to furnish him with a groom for a  brunette beauty.

 

THE MUMMY’S SECRET 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Charlotte Fletcher (Shirley Douglas)|Jack George (“Big Talk”  Watkins)|Jeanne Dean (Helen Logan)|Barry Brooks (Alex Gordon)|Craig Woods (“Dude” Haley)

In a holiday mood, Craig Kenney, Inspector Burke and Walt Jameson  visit a carnival and find mystery, danger and suspense involving a group of weird sideshow mummies.

 

MURDER ON A MILLION 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Charmienne Harker (Ann Waller)|Perry Ivans (Alfred Pomeroy)|Valerie Vernon (Selena Pyke)|William Justine (Robbins)|Fred Kohler Jr. (Steve Callan)|Dennis Moore (Jack Draper)

An elderly inventor falls wounded at the door of Craig Kennedy’s crime laboratory and a short time later, Inspector Burke finds the wounded man’s partner shot to death in his palatial home.

 

MURDER ON STAGE NINE * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Sherry Moreland (Karen Day)|Jack Mulhall (Director Martin)|Nancy Saunders (Margaret White)|Bob Curtis (Producer Wilde)|Ted Adams (Prop Man, Kemp)|Tom Hubbard (Bob Ferrell)|Rod Normond (Thomas Spencer)|Ewing Brown (Extra Electrician)

Murder is performed before the eyes of dozens of witnesses on a Hollywood motion picture set when a killer switches a real gun for a prop gun.

 

MURDER PREFERRED * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Elizabeth Root (Miss Thompson)|William Justine (Johnny Lane)|Erin Selwyn (Loraine Trend)|Tom Hubbard (Frank Trend)|Lane Bradford (Paul Lawson)

Craig Kennedy hears the murder shots as a  gambler makes a phone appeal for help that is too late. Kennedy use his training in psychology to translate some apparently illegible doodlings on a page of a phone book into the thoughts which occupied the mind of the murdered man during his last living moments.

 

THE MYSTERY BULLET 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Helen Chapman (Pamela Hunter)|Bert Arnold (Brad Donlan)|Mara Corday (Mae Gibson)|Robin Morse ( Stony Evans)|Barry Brooks (Jack Gibson)

An ingenious murder device baffles Inspector Burke when a racketeering plumber is shot to death as there are no rifling marks on the death bullet. Time to call Craig Kennedy.

 

THE SECRET WILL 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Trudy Marshall (Mary Hudson)|Edna Holland (Zenobia Bean)|Stanley Waxman (John Turner)|Jack Mulhall (Earl Norden)|Tom Hubbard (Glenn Graham)

A would-be-murderer demands payment for killing a victim, but the victim is still very much alive. Craig Kennedy unravels the mystery of a criminal who hunts his victims with a bow-and-arrow.

 

STRANGE DESTINY * 1951    Harry Fraser

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Sherry Moreland (Elsa Hoffman)|Stanley Waxman (Dr. Preston)|Bob Curtis (Henry Henderson)|Jack Mulhall (Burt Simmons)|Tom Hubbard (Sgt. Jackson)

A phony doctor, a notorious smuggler, and a sultry secretary combine their talents to outwit U. S. Customs officials by the use of a plaster cast.

 

TALL, DARK AND DEAD 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Mara Corday (Greta Varden)|Bert Arnold (Lester Gardner)|Barry Brooks (Jimmy Ankers)|Judd Holdren (Raney Daniels)|Robin Morse (Tom Hendry)

Craig Kennedy investigates the murder of a well-known stage actor, and it gets bizarre when the same actor is later shot at the door of Kennedy’s laboratory.

 

THERE’S MONEY IN IT 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Mary Adams (Mrs. C. Alcott Crockett)|Tom McKee (Mike Savage)|William Green (Jasper Kinney)|Patricia Wright (Mildred Kinney)|Coulter Irwin (Kenneth Crockett)|Gregg Rogers (Earl Rater)

Craig Kennedy, Inspector Burke and reporter Walt Jameson match wits with a clever gang that attempts to pass off some glass beads as the famous Von Anton Diamond Necklace.

 

THE TRAP 1953    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Valerie Vernon (Georgette Benoit)|William Justine (Bill Brand)|Alice Rolph (Mrs. Brand)|Craig Woods (Jack Laird)|Barry Brooks (Harry Carter)

Craig Kennedy poses as a tramp to solve a mystery that centers on a jewel theft and the character weakness of a two-timing wife.

THE VANISHER 1952    Adrian Weiss

Donald Woods (Craig Kennedy)|Sydney Mason (Inspector J.J. Burke)|Lewis Wilson (Walter Jameson)|Mara Corday (Lucille Merrill)|Will Orlean (“Okay” Oliver)|Bert Arnold (Dave Hollis)|Jack Lomas (Roddy Vender)

When a notorious gangster is killed by a rival hoodlum, Craig Kennedy assumes the murdered man’s identity to trap the killer.

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 .

 

 


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