Record #96

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MPPDA (Committee on Public Relations)
Reel 1
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MPPDA - Public Relations Committee
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Famous Players-Lasky (FPL) abandon block-booking from 11-01-1923 - possibilities for community activity promoting more worthwhile picturesOutline of Famous Players-Lasky's proposed plan to abandon block-booking in favour of pre-release try-out exhibition zones. Donaldson believes that they will sell each picture solely on the basis of the public demand as expressed at the box office, and feels this presents a great opportunity for the Committee to influence distribution.6 film synopses.


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Long Description:

"The 'block-booking' system has long been considered in the industry a block to progress. Under it an exhibitor, in order to secure a picture which he wished, was forced to take a number of other producers of lesser calibre. The new sales plan sweeps this aside and sells pictures on individual merit. In order successfully to carry out the plan the country has been divided into a adequate number of exhibition zones and a number of theatres in each zone chosen for what is termed a pre-release demonstration. The exhibitor bases his selection of pictures upon the actual appeal to the public as evidenced by box-office receipts at the demonstrations in his zone. This announcement is of major importance not only to the industry but to this committee. ... It is obvious that community film activity in the cities of demonstration, by increasing the attendance at films deemed worthwhile, may now become effective not alone in the particular city but throughout the whole territory. This policy further encourages us because the exhibitor is given a free rein in his choice of pictures. He can therefore meet the needs of the community reflected by community leaders, better than heretofore.

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