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 Posted:   May 28, 2012 - 12:10 PM   
 By:   John Black   (Member)

I don't recall the film playing Seattle on a roadshow basis. The roadshows I recall attending at that time were BEN-HUR, SOUTH PACIFIC, and WINDJAMMER (I'm not 100% certain that the latter two were hardticket, but I think they were).

I did see THE BIG FISHERMAN second-run at two different theaters. I'd like to see it again, but only in widescreen format.

 
 
 Posted:   May 28, 2012 - 12:17 PM   
 By:   Bob Bryden   (Member)

Love to see a release of this film on home video and a score cd. Thanks for posting about this little-thought of gem.

 
 
 Posted:   May 28, 2012 - 3:31 PM   
 By:   paul rossen   (Member)

The Big Fisherman played roadshow in NYC at The Rivoli Theater. The Rivoli was home to a good number of roadshow films including Cleopatra, The Sound of Music, The Sand Pebbles, West Side Story among many others...

 
 Posted:   May 28, 2012 - 4:18 PM   
 By:   CH-CD   (Member)

This is the only 65mm shot film I've never seen. I don't even recall seeing any publicity about it in 1959. As far as I can establish it wasn't shown in London in 70mm (was it shown at all?). Reviewers described it as plodding and too reverential but nevertheless it would be interesting to see it so that I can cross that one off my unseen list!

"The Big Fisherman" DID play in London. I don't have the exact starting date, but it followed "Solomon & Sheba" into the Astoria, Charing Cross Road - opening either at the end of April, or start of May, 1960. It ran there until July 6th, 1960.

As you can see from this ad, it was shown on a continuous performance basis, and was billed as Panavision....although the small print in another listing states "Camera 65 - Panavision".

The only time I saw it was during it's one week run in our city (Sheffield), and I can't remember if it had Overture,Intermission,etc.



 
 
 Posted:   May 28, 2012 - 8:59 PM   
 By:   Doug Raynes   (Member)

This is the only 65mm shot film I've never seen. I don't even recall seeing any publicity about it in 1959. As far as I can establish it wasn't shown in London in 70mm (was it shown at all?). Reviewers described it as plodding and too reverential but nevertheless it would be interesting to see it so that I can cross that one off my unseen list!

"The Big Fisherman" DID play in London. I don't have the exact starting date, but it followed "Solomon & Sheba" into the Astoria, Charing Cross Road - opening either at the end of April, or start of May, 1960. It ran there until July 6th, 1960.

As you can see from this ad, it was shown on a continuous performance basis, and was billed as Panavision....although the small print in another listing states "Camera 65 - Panavision".

The only time I saw it was during it's one week run in our city (Sheffield), and I can't remember if it had Overture,Intermission,etc.



Thanks CH-CD. I knew I could rely on you to have UK information. The ad says continuous performances so it wasn't a road show. It's not listed as being shown in 70mm in a complete list I have of all London 70mm showings.

 
 
 Posted:   May 28, 2012 - 8:59 PM   
 By:   Doug Raynes   (Member)

Duplicate! Don't know how that happened but I am not on my usual home internet!

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2012 - 12:02 AM   
 By:   Sigerson Holmes   (Member)

Some more BF reading . . .

http://www.in70mm.com/newsletter/1997/51/fisherman/index.htm

http://widescreenmovies.org/Highlights/epic.htm

http://www.widescreenmuseum.com/widescreen/wingsp1.htm


The 02/19/09 post by Ross Anderson (scroll down) at this site . . .

http://www.cartoonbrew.com/disney/disneys-forgotten-live-action-releases-1957-59.html

. . . sounds like Roy Disney had some influence over the making of the film, not just its distribution.

 
 
 Posted:   May 29, 2012 - 6:40 AM   
 By:   Rozsaphile   (Member)

Buena Vista seems like an interesting subject. It sounds as if Disney was trying to recreate the sort of vertical integration (of production and distribution) that had been abolished by the famous Paramount consent decree of 1948. I guess the difference was that Disney did not own a theater chain.

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2012 - 9:17 AM   
 By:   CH-CD   (Member)



Thanks CH-CD. I knew I could rely on you to have UK information. The ad says continuous performances so it wasn't a road show. It's not listed as being shown in 70mm in a complete list I have of all London 70mm showings.

You're welcome Doug. Sorry I can't remember more about how it was presented. It obviously didn't leave much of an impression ???

Still love to see it again though.

 
 Posted:   May 29, 2012 - 9:39 AM   
 By:   chriss   (Member)



I'm surprised to see the names of Universal's Gershenson and Tamkin in the opening credits.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 8:17 AM   
 By:   roadshowfan   (Member)



I'm surprised to see the names of Universal's Gershenson and Tamkin in the opening credits.


I've always wondered what this elusive score was like and imagined it to be a great and sumptuous undiscovered gem, but I must confess after sampling the youtube video I found the music really quite starchy and uninspiring and, dare I say it, rather dull, especially when compared to the mighty Ben-Hur composed the same year. Does anyone else agree, or am I being too harsh?

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 8:36 AM   
 By:   Bob Bryden   (Member)

I'd love to see a proper release of this film and score.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 8:51 AM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

Never saw THE BIG FISHERMAN, but I really liked the Alex North score to the later film about his footwear.

 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 3:47 PM   
 By:   Sigerson Holmes   (Member)

Malotte's BF is a pleasant score, but I believe the film really needed something much more powerful and dramatically effective to put the story over. I don't know if it could have made the film into any more of a hit (the competition of "Ben-Hur" at the box office that year may have been overwhelming at any rate), but a better score could have helped make up for some shortcomings, particularly in the writing department, IMHO.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 3:55 PM   
 By:   James Corry   (Member)

This is for "CH-CD"....

Do you still live in Sheffield? If so, is the big Sheffield Odeon still there and open? I lived in Chesterfield for several months and used to go into Sheffield quite frequently....I first saw "Where Eagles Dare" at the Sheffield Odeon in 70mm; that was an experience I'll NEVER forget....!

J.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 4:31 PM   
 By:   Rozsaphile   (Member)

I meant to thank the person who made the movie visible here -- for a time. Alas, it was a dispiriting encounter. All I had of the movie was a couple of brilliant images in the Technicolor of my mind. The rest had been forgotten. And in a few moments I could see why: the film is indeed forgettable. Perhaps it's best to let the picture remain in memory only.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 5:36 PM   
 By:   philiperic   (Member)

It is a pleasant score, but I believe the film really needed something much more powerful and dramatically effective to put it over. I don't know if it could have made the film into any more of a hit (the competition of "Ben-Hur" at the box office that year may have been overwhelming at any rate), but a better score could have helped make up for some shortcomings, particularly in the writing department, IMHO.

I agree that a score by a better composer such as Miklos Rozsa or Alfred Newman would have definitely made this better - look what Rozsa did for SODOM AND G0MORRAH. The actors for the most part give good performances, especially Howard Keel and Beulah Bondi .

I cannot agree that it is better to hold this in memory - mediorce or worse, it stills deserves restoration and release on BR - it was a multi million dollar film .

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 22, 2012 - 6:27 PM   
 By:   Joe Caps   (Member)

there is, indeed, an uncut stereo 70mm print n Library of congress. But it is pink and fading rapidly.

LOC also has a longer roadshow version of Greatest story Ever Told. some 25 longer than the current dvd.
I would lke to see a longer version of GSET with all of newmans music restored and at the proper volume. It would really help that film.

Big Fisherman is a misfire all the way. No script, no score, very stiff wooden acting from allconceerned.

BTW, you hear constatntly that so and so decided that Christ face or voice not actually be seen in their film.
This was not for artistic reasons but for money.
the second biggest audience outside the US was great britain. GB had a law that Jesus could not actually be seen in a film.

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 23, 2012 - 2:10 AM   
 By:   Doug Raynes   (Member)

This is for "CH-CD"....

Do you still live in Sheffield? If so, is the big Sheffield Odeon still there and open? I lived in Chesterfield for several months and used to go into Sheffield quite frequently....I first saw "Where Eagles Dare" at the Sheffield Odeon in 70mm; that was an experience I'll NEVER forget....!

J.


I lived in Sheffield for 8 years from the mid '60s and still have connections there. The Odeon was a wonderful cinema and was mainly a 70mm roadshow cinema when I first moved there. The demise of such films led to it becoming a bingo house in 1971 and it was subsequently demolished - very sad. Even sadder, was the demolition of the magnificent ABC cinema (opened by Richard Todd in 1961 for the World premiere of DON'T BOTHER TO KNOCK) which was one of the finest and most advanced cinemas in the country

 
 
 Posted:   Oct 23, 2012 - 2:29 AM   
 By:   Doug Raynes   (Member)


the second biggest audience outside the US was great britain. GB had a law that Jesus could not actually be seen in a film.


There was no law which said Jesus could not be seen in a film. When it was first set up in the early part of the 20th century the British Board of Film Censors had numerous rules which stated what could or could not be seen on film and the physical appearance of Christ was something which was not considered acceptable (a vast range of other things were not acceptable including "indecorous dancing"). The BBFC rules had no basis in law and certainly by 1959 at the time of THE BIG FISHERMAN that rule no longer applied in any case, although there was a sensitivity in showing Jesus' face. I think KING OF KINGS (1961) was the first film to portray Jesus' face in a film.

 
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