Record #646

Record Type:
Mr Will H. Hays, President, MPPDA
MPPDA (Executive Committee)
Reel 7
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Sound pictures
Additional text in Transcription.

Hays summarizes factors currently causing change in the industry (including "censoring of dialogue with sound pictures by legalized and volunteer boards of censors') and asks if there are any other matters which need to be added to the list. Palfreyman replies with several suggestions.


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Long Description:

Hays to Borthwick, DeBra, Dickinson, Herron, Hess, McKenzie, Milliken, Palfreyman, Pettijohn, Russell, Trotti, Wilkinson, 7 September 1929: "In addition to the sudden advent of sound with pictures as an obvious cause creating definite new and complex economic conditions, it is claimed that such changed conditions are also the result of various other factors including the expansion of chain operated theatres; the use of the Standard Exhibition Contract and arbitration as therein provided for; the censoring of dialogue with sound pictures by legalized and volunteer boards of censors; the insistence that none but members of the Actors Equity Association be employed to make pictures; the royalty charged for public performances of copyrighted reproducing apparatus to exhibitors; the increased cost of their distribution -- which claims have raised questions of fact. With return of this memorandum, please add below any additional factors that you have heard claimed as causes of the changed condition and difficulties in the industry. W.H.H."Memo from Palfreyman to Hays 16 September 1929: "1. The ever increasing protection demands of first-run theatres. 2. The demands of organized labor for more operators in the projection booths, more musicians in the theatres and for full time pay for part time work. 3. The increased admission prices necessary for sound pictures shutting off attendance in towns where industrial depression exists (i.e. coal mining towns in Pennsylvania). 4. The stronger stimuli the audience receives from sound pictures tends to cut down attendance on the part of the more rabid fans. Once a week satisfies their hunger for entertainment." D.P.

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