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A 20th Century Fox Retrospective Scrapbook : 1935


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20th Century Fox was born as part of a merger in 1935 between the Fox Film company, a 20 year old maker of films, long a major player in the film industry and the upstart 20th Century Pictures, an enormously successful independent producer at United Artists. The first steps of this new company were hesitant. In the first full year of the merger, a major star died and the depression was still at its height, but brighter days would be ahead.....

These were the first releases of 20th Century Fox in the fledgling days after the merger in 1935.

July 31, 1935: Dante's Inferno, a drama starring Spencer Tracy (who after this was en route to MGM) and Claire Trevor

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August 30, 1935, Redheads on Parade, a musical starring John Boles and Dixie Lee

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September 6, 1935, Steamboat Round the Bend, a comedy directed by John Ford. Star Will Rogers died a few weeks before its release in a plane crash. His final film would be released a few months later.

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September 13, 1935, The Gay Deception, the first Oscar-nominated film released after the merger. It was a romantic comedy starring Francis Lederer and Frances Dee.

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September 20, 1935, Thunder in the Night, a crime saga with Edmund Lowe

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September 27, 1935, Thunder Mountain (another week, another Thunder film), a B-western based on a Zane Grey story with George O'Brien and Barbara Fritchie

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October 4, 1935, Here's to Romance, a musical starring Nino Martini, Genevieve Tobin, and Anita Louise.

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October 14, 1935, Charlie Chan in Shanghai, the 9th in the series started under the old Fox label, starring Warner Oland.

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October 18, 1935, This is the Life, a family comedy with Jane Withers

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October 25, 1935... two films this day. A remake of Way Down East with Rochelle Hudson and Henry Fonda, and Bad Boy, a B-Comedy with James Dunn, 10 years before his Oscar win....

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November 1, 1935, Music is Magic. Needless to say a musical. 'Twas the last film to be released that was filmed before the merger completely came together. Also was the last film for star Bebe Daniels. Star Alice Faye would soon become a major star in her own right.

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November 8, 1935, Metropolitan, an operatic musical with Lawrence Tibbitt. The first completely filmed after the merger, and thus, the first full fledged 20th Century Fox film.....

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November 15, 1935, Thanks a Million, a musical starring two stars loaned from WB: Dick Powell and Ann Dvorak (although it seems Miss Dvorak was beginning to freelance)

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November 22, 1935, In Old Kentucky, the swansong film for Will Rogers. It was a walloping hit.

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November 29, 1935, another 2 film day. The A-Film was The Man who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo, a romantic comedy with Ronald Colman and Joan Bennett. The B movie was Navy Wife, with 3 main players whose careers would all blossom in years to come: Claire Trevor, Ralph Bellamy, and Jane Darwell.

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December 6, 1935, Show Them No Mercy, a crime film whose title seems to have been applied to its poster since top-billed Rochelle Hudson is nowhere to be found on it......

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December 13, 1935, Your Uncle Dudley, a rare starring vehicle for Edward Everett Horton.

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December 20, 1935, Whispering Smith Speaks, an action B with George O'Brien, back again

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December 27, 1935, The Littlest Rebel, the year's final release starring the company's biggest star, Shirley Temple. it was a little to late to be a Christmas present, but it was very much welcomed by the accountants anyway.

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1 hour ago, CinemaInternational said:

Bad Boy, a B-Comedy with James Dunn, 10 years before his Oscar win....

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I wonder if the title was meant to remind viewers of 1931's Bad Girl, another Fox Film that starred James Dunn. It was a big hit, and it was nominated for Best Picture, as well as winning the Best Director Oscar for Frank Borzage.

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39 minutes ago, CinemaInternational said:

1936 will most likely appear on Monday. i hope to do much of Fox's history with these eventually. As long as there is interest.

Yes, there's interest. Please keep doing these. I enjoy reading about the company's yearly history.

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16 minutes ago, DougieB said:

I had to laugh when the ad for Dante's Inferno touted "the world's most beautiful sinners." That's a pitch worthy of DeMille for sure.

The phrase also seems like something that would have been touted during the precode era.

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Looking through the entries for 1935, there are more films than I would have thought that are lost. I guess that is a result of the famous Fox vault fire of 1937? Most films from other studios from that same year  - Paramount, Universal, WB, MGM, Columbia - still survive with the highest number of casualties in the silent era and at the dawn of sound 1928-1930.

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6 minutes ago, calvinnme said:

Looking through the entries for 1935, there are more films than I would have thought that are lost. I guess that is a result of the famous Fox vault fire of 1937? Most films from other studios from that same year  - Paramount, Universal, WB, MGM, Columbia - still survive with the highest number of casualties in the silent era and at the dawn of sound 1928-1930.

Which ones from 1935 (mentioned in the original post) are lost?

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Just now, TopBilled said:

Which ones from 1935 (mentioned in the original post) are lost?

Redheads on Parade appears to be lost. Another one - don't remember which one- survives as a nitrate print at UCLA that is not slated for preservation. But most of the ones I found by going to imdb and finding Fox films with less than ten votes that do not have a single review. Now, that does not necessarily equate to "lost", but it is a good indicator. By the way, why would somebody vote for a lost film? Then I started looking for a particular film with James Dunn in it. It was made in the early 30s - 1931-1935 - and I can remember the plot, but I can't remember the title. And I started seeing how many of Dunn's Fox films appear to be lost.

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1 minute ago, calvinnme said:

Redheads on Parade appears to be lost. Another one - don't remember which one- survives as a nitrate print at UCLA that is not slated for preservation. But most of the ones I found by going to imdb and finding Fox films with less than ten votes that do not have a single review. Now, that does not necessarily equate to "lost", but it is a good indicator. By the way, why would somebody vote for a lost film? Then I started looking for a particular film with James Dunn in it. It was made in the early 30s - 1931-1935 - and I can remember the plot, but I can't remember the title. And I started seeing how many of Dunn's Fox films appear to be lost.

I don't think these films are lost. They are just not being made available for home video. Someone at Fox has decided they would not be profitable to revive.

REDHEADS ON PARADE, however, was restored. It screened at the Cinecon Film Festival in 2016:

http://onlyinhollywood.org/rare-restored-films-return-to-the-big-screen-at-hollywoods-cinecon-classic-film-festival/

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Just now, TopBilled said:

I don't think these films are lost. They are just not being made available for home video. Someone at Fox has decided they would not be profitable to revive.

REDHEADS ON PARADE, however, was restored. It screened at the Cinecon Film Festival in 2016:

http://onlyinhollywood.org/rare-restored-films-return-to-the-big-screen-at-hollywoods-cinecon-classic-film-festival/

I've seen a bunch of Fox films that are not ever going to be on DVD and were never on VHS, so I know what you're talking about there. That's great news about Redheads on Parade. I'm surprised nobody at Cinecon 2016 ever  reviewed it on imdb.

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If the James Dunn films had Tyrone Power or Marilyn Monroe in them, they'd certainly be pulled from the vault, given costly restorations and marketed to home video consumers.

The main reason some of these films stay in the vault is because they don't have marketable stars in them. Stars that were big back in the day, like James Dunn, but have very little value with today's audiences.

Forgotten stars leads to forgotten films. That's the reality in a business that is obsessed with household names.

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