[Hollywood] / (New York): [Columbia Pictures] / (Polygraphic Company of America), [ca. 1940]. First Edition. Hardcover. Folio. 18.5” x 12.25” approx. Metallic gold paper covered boards with titles printed in red and blue. Rubbing to boards. Some light wear at spine ends. Interior bright and sharp. In original brown card mailer, worn at edges with moderate damp-staining (not effecting book) at one end. 50pp. Very good overall. Very good. Item #16761
Lavish promotional book of full-bleed and -color lithographed illustrations advertising upcoming programs for Columbia Pictures' 1940-1941 season. Likely distributed to theater owners and clearly produced well in advance of actual production, the book contains a disclaimer stating that properties may not be produced precisely as advertised. And indeed, most of the films advertised did not make it into theaters, or did so with different stars or under different titles. Of the films included, 11 appear to be completely unrealized, with most of the remaining either produced under different titles, with different principals, or both. Most of the pictures rely heavily on Columbia's roster of contract players: Cary Grant, Loretta Young, Melvyn Douglas, Jean Arthur, etc. Star directors like Charles Vidor also feature prominently. While many of the pictures seem well on their way to production — with directors, writers and stars attached — some seem to be little more than ideas, such as “Canal Zone” or “I Joined the Bund,” with generic titles evoking timely topics. In addition, a handful of CBS radio plays are advertised as well, including Ellery Queen and Blondie. An uncommon look into film marketing and production at the height of the studio era. Only two holdings in OCLC; especially rare with original mailer.