Beyond Ballyhoo: Motion Picture Promotion and Gimmicks

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McFarland, Jan 1, 2001 - Performing Arts - 253 pages
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William Castle, for instance, was a master promoter. In one scheme involving The Tingler, Vincent Price warns in the movie that "the only way to stop the monster is to scream. That's the signal to the projectionist to throw the switch. Under ten or twelve seats were some electric motors, war surplus things that Castle got a bargain on. The motors vibrated the seat, in the hope of scaring a scream out of someone. Just in case it didn't Castle planted someone in the audience to get the screams rolling." This book is about flamboyant promotion, the con artist side of the movie world--everything the ballyhoo boys did to separate the customer from the price of a movie ticket--Emergo, HypnoVista, 3-D, Wide Screen, Cinemagic, Duo-Vision, Dynamation, Smell-O-Vision, plenty more. Supporting the text are 107 photos and illustrations, some never-before-published, and a filmography.

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Glaring error regarding "Flesh For Frankestein" in which the author cites Joe Dallesandro as the actor who played Frankenstein (it was Udo Kier---Dallesandro plays a peasant stud-hero). Such sloppy fact checking is a no-no in my book. I don't care how minor it seems. If there is one easily corrected error their could be several. 


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Eight Spots Before Your Ears
The Good Old Days

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About the author (2001)

Mark Thomas McGee is retired and lives in Duarte, California. He has also written several books about the unstable world of low-budget filmmaking.

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