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No Dedication to Mr. Laurel and Mr. Hardy in THE GREAT RACE!!


Nicko
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Hi All,

 

Can somebody please tell me why the title card featuring the words "For Mr.Laurel and Mr. Hardy" was cut from the opening title sequence in your recent showing of THE GREAT RACE? It was blatantly skipped over after the Overture was finished.

 

Inquiring minds want to know.

 

Thanks,

Nick Santa Maria

Laurel and Hardy Fan

 

 

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Welcome to the boards, Nick. Since it's been TCM's policy, ever since day one, not to edit the films they show, THE GREAT RACE would have been shown exactly as they received it. If that title card was edited out then your question could probably only be answered by the film's distributor and I'm not even sure they would have an answer for you.

 

There have been occasions, in the past, where TCM has run an edited film, but in those cases it's because the distributor sent them the wrong version . Even so, while I can understand an error like that happening, I can't imagine why a four-second title card would be edited from original version the film. It doesn't make sense.

 

 

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These days, you never know. Maybe some Bozo objected, claiming that he has the rights to Laurel and Hardy.

 

By that I mean Larry Harmon (the original Bozo albeit not the creator of the character) who has made Laurel and Hardy cartoons and even a feature film using their names and images.

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> {quote:title=clore wrote:}{quote} These days, you never know. Maybe some Bozo objected, claiming that he has the rights to Laurel and Hardy.

>

 

 

You know, the same thought crossed my mind, but not knowing for sure I didn't bring it up. Think I'll try to do some research on it.

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> {quote:title=Nicko wrote:

> }{quote}Hi All,

>

> Can somebody please tell me why the title card featuring the words "For Mr.Laurel and Mr. Hardy" was cut from the opening title sequence in your recent showing of THE GREAT RACE? It was blatantly skipped over after the Overture was finished.

>

> Inquiring minds want to know.

>

> Thanks,

> Nick Santa Maria

> Laurel and Hardy Fan

Hi Nick,

 

Yes, I noticed that too! I thought I was imagining it! - Thanks for confirming.

I'd never seen that cut from the movie before.

Very strange (and very disappointing!) But I'd be surprised if the reason really is the Harmon possibility. But I can't think of any other reason. Just very strange...

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> {quote:title=markfp2 wrote:}{quote}

>

> You know, the same thought crossed my mind, but not knowing for sure I didn't bring it up. Think I'll try to do some research on it.

>

 

 

 

I just offered up the only thing that crossed my mind as to why something that only appeared for a few seconds would be deleted. I can't claim to have noticed the last time that I saw the film, perhaps six years ago, whether it was there or not. Harmon had been deceased for what, three or four years now so if he had an objection, it had to have happened further back than that.

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So this remains a mystery for the ages. It couldn't be Harmon since (as posted below) he passed on a while back. Could it be whomever it was who inherited his fortune? I just don't get it. Did the distributors (which seems to be Warners) feel that Stan and Babe were too obscure to include? It really does confuse me. It's such a touching tribute from Blake Edwards, a man who clearly was inspired by and loved the boys.

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I don't know all the legal gobble-de-****, but I think whomever "owned" the rights to the Laurel and Hardy name( which I would have imagined could only be THEIR survivors) could only object to their names being used at the point of production of the movie. Personally, if I owned those rights, I couldn't object to the names being used in a dedication. If I obtained those rights several years after the movie's release, the objection would seem too little too late and pointless. And I can't imagine anybody with a human heart and soul making a fuss over four seconds.

 

 

Of course, I didn't know this Mr. Harmon personally. Just because he played Bozo the Clown doesn't mean he was a fun guy in his personal life. Many guys played Bozo on many a regional television production. The guy who played Bozo in Detroit later became "OOPSY the Clown" when the viewership for Bozo began to wane. And the dude who did Bozo on the CBC staion across the river was said to be a real prick when off camera. This could be the case with Harmon for all we here really know.

 

 

There are only three theories I can come up with. Either the copy TCM obtained had the four second dedication snipped unintentionally somehow. The second is that maybe family members never saw the movie until many years later, and felt the movie really stunk and didn't want the connection, or that the copy TCM accquired was from some syndicate, who offers up film "packages" to local TV stations, where time is money and pennies make dollars, and unknowingly got back an edited copy.

 

 

Otherwise, I'm at a loss.

 

 

Sepiatone

 

 

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I understand your concern about the missing dedication title card. Still, you've got it better than Laurel and Hardy fans do in Canada. TCM doesn't even broadcast any of their Roach classics up here because they don't know who has the rights to show their material in our country.

 

So while you can't see a title card with Laurel and Hardy's names on it, we can't see Laurel and Hardy!

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> {quote:title=Sepiatone wrote:}{quote}

>

> Come on over, man. You can even SNEAK over.

>

No need to sneak over. Canadians are most welcome in this country especially when they come to shop. We love those "loonies". ;)

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  • 3 weeks later...

 

 

How strange that one of the prints TCM recently aired didn’t have the wonderful blue dedication card to Laurel and Hardy. Something is very much amiss with this situation that would require a bit of explanation. The film itself did have a rather peculiar history, in that its distribution was at times scattered about in what was a road-show release in some cities, while in others it ended up lacking the whole overture and intermission treatment. Somehow, with so much money and time spent by Warner Brothers to give it the old “Around The World in Eighty Days,” or “Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines,” sort of try, it simply didn’t work out and the film was quickly shoved aside and nearly forgotten. The DVD copy I have contains the dedication and the magic lantern soundtrack sequence is totally correct, corresponding to the images on the opening credits. As far as I'm concern, it's a wonderfully produced film and should have received more consideration, by both the critics and public at large.

 

 

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{font:arial, helvetica, sans-serif}

 

*From Ray Faiola:*

*They seem to have perpetual problems with the opening of this picture. When the DVD came out, the soundtrack was improperly mixed and the magic lantern audience was cheering Jack Lemmon and booing Tony Curtis!!*

 

I talked to someone at Warners recently and they said the sound problem was using the wrong track. I guess there were prints made where Jack Lemmon or Tony Curtis got first billing, and they picked the alternate (wrong) track for the DVD. It has been fixed on the DVD a few years ago, so if you order it, it should be correct. I am hoping for a Blu Ray. And the dedication is on the DVD.

{font}

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  • 4 months later...
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