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John Wayne made six features for Universal in 1936-1937: Sea Spoilers, Conflict, California Straight Ahead, I Cover the War, Idol of the Crowds and Adventure's End.

All of them were re-released around 1949-1950 and then disappeared. I don't believe they were ever released to television, and have certainly never been shown on cable, at least in USA. Considering the interest in Wayne these days, it's curious that these six have never been resurrected. What is the problem?

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It's not really all that unusual for films to be missing in a library or an actor's canon.


Universal has undergone some major corporate changes in the last two years and are now owned by General Electric, the same company that owns NBC.


Many of the jobs, especially in the vaults, the libraries and such, were consolidated and many of the older, long time employees either took a buy-out or retired.


It usually takes someone like a Ron Haver (who made it his mission in life to restore Garland's Star is Born) or more recently, a Dennis Millay and Charles Tabash, two TCM employees who tracked down six long missing RKO films.


It helps to have someone with a good knowledge of film and film history and too often today in the Home Entertainment Departments of some of the studios and in their vaults, they just don't have the expertise.


And without the expertise, they sometimes barely know what films they actually own.

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I understand what you are saying, but I would have thought the "magic" name of John Wayne above the title would have gotten bells ringing by now even among the least enlightened. What are the titles of the "six long missing RKO films"?

My (hopeful) guesses would be: Case of Sergeant Grischa (1930), Hit the Deck (1930), Young Donovan's Kid (1931), The Monkey's Paw (1933), The Past of Mary Holmes (1933), and West of the Pecos (1934).

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Someone on this board a couple of years ago mentioned "Curtain Call at Cactus Creek" (1950), a Vincent Price film from Universal that seems to have fallen off the face of the earth. That studio is sitting on countless films, TV movies and TV series in every genre (except maybe '30s-'40s horror films) that have haven't seen the light of day in syndication in decades, much less home video.


According to the thread below, the six previously unavailable RKO films, scheduled to air on TCM in 2007, are:


Double Harness (1933), One Man?s Journey (1933), Rafter Romance (1933), Stingaree (1934), Living on Love (1937) and A Man to Remember (1938)



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