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Patrick, Warren A. (ed.) / Show world
(July 17, 1909)

Exhibitors elated at Murdock's move,   p. 5


Page 5

THE SHOW WORLD
EXHIBITORS ELATED
5
AT MURDOCK'S MOVE
Sincc tie exclusive announcement
in lat week's issue to the effect that
hei in n"ea n:1' icting and Pro-
jlucing Com-
any would es-
blish its own
11n  exchanges
.tuntry, thelfhnm
%orid has been
ct agog. Let-
rs  and  tele-
rams of con-
ratulation have
ooded the offi-
ces of the com-
pany in this city
and   the   big
force of stenog-
raphers   have
been compelled
to work o ver
J. J. Murdock.    time. In some
quarters it was
hinted that Murdock "did not know
what he was up against" and that
lie had best listen to the sound (?)
advice of men of more experience
in the film industry. The would-
be advisers were thanked for their
well meant   interest,  but  J.  J.
Murdock appeared to know exactly
what he was about. In several in-
stances lie was offered a half or full
interest in exchanges already estab-
lished, but these lie refused upon the
grounds that he desired to equip his
exchanges with new material from
stock to fittings. His advertisement
asking for experienced film  men to
handle his exchanges elicited hun-
dreds of replies and were the Show
World permitted to publish some of
these the film industry would   be
astounded. The clerical force of the
company is now engaged in replying
to these applications and it is believed
that within a very short time the an-
nouncement of the opening of the first
batch of exchanges will be made.
Meanwhile the company continues its
request for men believing that the
greater the number of applications
the greater the assurance of obtain-
ing the best men in the field.
Issue Forced Upon Them.
As was stated in last week's issue
the opening of international exchanges
had, from the beginning, been repug-
nant to the company and the condi-
tion was only forced by repeated
treacheries upon the part of film ex-
changes, who, purporting to handle
tie international stock were giving
the exhibitor the "double cross."
With characteristic celerity and en-
dre, Muirdock jumped into the breach
with what result remains to be seen.
When asked for a statement of the
situation to date, Mr. Murdock said:
"Since our announcement of last
week that we would open exchanges
in the leading cities of the country
we have been flooded with letters
and telegrams congratulating ts upon
our determination.  Exhibitors are
particularly happy, judging by their
expressions, to know that they cani
at last obtain the films for which they
have been asking.
"Ever since otur first release day
we have been receiving letters from
exhibitors requesting us to supply
then direct, but as the exchanges were
established and they had agreed to
play fair with the exhibitor, we natur-
ally believed that it would be advan-
taecos to the exchanges to give the
exhibitors what they asked and paid
for.
How Exchanges Benefitted.
II Inmost lines of business the mid-
dleniei are anxious to avail themselves
o the benefits to be derived from the
mnanutfactutrers' advertising. The In-
ternational Projectingatnd ProduTcing
ConTany was organized with a vast
catal -Its ramifications extend into
nearly all the great cities of the
International Projecting and Producing Company
Flooded with Letters and Telegrams of Con-
gratulation from Theater Managers
Throughout the Country-Ex-
changes an Early Reality
United States. It is broader in scope
than any similar organization in the
world. Thousands of dollars have
been expended in organization and in
advertising. This perfected organiza-
tion and this advertising expenditure
was not entirely for the advantage of
the International company, but for
the profit of those exchanges affili-
ated with it.
"We cannot now, and never will, be
able to appreciate why it is that the
exchange man-who is the middleman
of the film trade-would work to his
own disadvantage: why he would
continue, week after week, in attempt-
ing to deceive not only the exhibitors,
but the International company by
forcing upon the exhibitor a variety
of old, shoddy, cheap, duped films
under the International label.
"We have never objected to the ex-
changes getting rid of their old stock,
nor handling goods of other manu-
facturers. We did not ask for an ex-
elusive contract, but we do and al-
ways did object to the exchanges en-
deavoring to deceive the exhibitor
under the cover of the International
name. The exhibitor is the sufferer
as much as we are.
"We have kept in very close touch
with the film situation in all parts of
the country. We have watched its
development. We recall the time
when a man could change a store
front and put out a sign 'Admission
Five Cents-Moving Pictures,' and
could draw an audience, but the pub-
lic has been educated in the moving
picture business as in all lines of
amusements and it refuses to patron-
ize the inferior picture show. It is
not that the public values its nickel
more highly than it did a few years
ago, but that it refuses to waste its
time in looking upon shoddy films.
Public Knows Good Films.
"You cannot teach an old dog new
tricks, butt those exhibitors who are
succeeding today are those who have
discovered that the public knows the
value of high class films and will not
have other grades at any price.
"In organizing the International
company we foresaw that in order to
meet competition and to attain suc-
cess we would have to handle none
but the best films produced in the
world, and every exhibitor who has
been able to secure continuous In-
ternational service  has  felt the
strength of our product through his
box office receipts.
"But the position of the unfortunate
exhibitor, who, dealing with an ex-
change which did not treat him hon-
estly, may be found in the following
paragraphs which are excerpts from
one of the hundreds of letters of com-
plaint from exhibitors, which we are
receiving daily: 'From your first re-
lease day, we made a contract with
the (blank) exchange, whereby they
were to furnish us twelve reels abso-
lutely second run a week, and for
which we paid $100 weekly. We have
been upholding our end of the con-
tract and paying for the service. The
first four or five weeks the service was
excellent, in fact, the best subjects
that have ever been shown in this
city. But soon we noticed the con-
dition of the film was not the best,
having more or less rain and scratches
in them and we considered that we
were not receiving second run and
many of the subjects were those of
manufacturers other than those you
advertise. We soon discovered that
we were getting goods two and three
years old, with brand new titles and
the service gradually went from bad
to worse. We became thoroughly
disgusted, gave up and arranged with
an exchange which guaranteed to
furnish us with strictly International
films, but this exchange also per-
sisted in sending us the worst lot of
punk junk and not one of the sub-
jects was from the manufacturers that
your firm represents.
Wants International Film.
"The proposition of independence
with us is this-I have never been
able to have supplied to me good pic-
tures all the time. I get them pos-
sibly for a week or two weeks and
then they switch into a lot of cheap,
shoddy, duped stuff. I am  a very
close observer of your company and
read all your advertisements as to
Independent exchanges and know
that your films are all right and as
good as anybody can buy. I am not
in a position to open a film exchange
or to buy films, but I do want and am
willing to pay for first-class second
run film. I write this letter to you
to see if won are not willing to use
your good offices to get some one to
furnish me the films which you handle
exclusively. I want only two reels
shipped per day-twelve reels a week,
as we do not operate Sundays, and if
you can put me in touch with some
one I would greatly appreciate it as
I have got to make a change quick.
I have one of the finest moving pic-
ture theaters in the United States,
which cost over $20,000, and I must
have the goods or I can't get the
money.'
"We have tried in every conceiv-
able way, but one, to remedy this utin-
fortunate condition. We have talked
AT CHICAGOTHEATERS
"The Blue Mouse" is in its last
weeks at the Garrick.
"A Gentleman from Mississippi"
continues to amuse large crowds at
the Grand.
"The Candy Shop" is still well pa-
tronized at the Studebaker.
"The Traveling Salesman" still dis-
plays his goods at the Illinois and
advance sales are encouraging.
"The Tenderfoot" holds forth at the
Colonial.
The Johnson-Burns finht pictures
are being shown at the Columbia on
the North Side.
M. Lawrence Fagan will produce
"The Man" at the Whitney on Aug.
9. The play was acted for a week at
Richmond this summer and the stock
comprany made a big hit with it.
Raymond Hitchcock is seen in "The
Yankee Consul" at the Sans Souci
Theater this week and is having good
sized crowds.
The Empire will open Aug. 7 with
"The Lady Buccaneers."
The cast for "The Beauty Spot,"
which will be one of the early at-
tractions at the Garrick Theater, will
comprise:   Jefferson  De  Angelis,
George J. MacFarlane, Viola Gillet,
Frank Doaie. Jacques Kruger, Alf
DeBall, Isabella D'Armond, Minerva
Coverdale. Jean  Newcomb, Harry
Tebbitt. Francis Tyler, Morgan Wil-
1iams, Lillian Wiggins and   Grace
Walton.
Klimt's Players open at the Acad-
eny on July 25.
to many exchange men; we have tried
to convince them that it is to their
own best interests to give their cli-
ents what their clients demanded.
Some exchanges are securing the en-
tire output of the International com-
pany, and when supplying a customer
with other goods than International
they explain what the goods are,
which is perfectly satisfactory to all
parties concerned, but those who per-
sist in obtaining money under false
pretenses will not be tolerated.
The Duper Must Go.
"The duper is the parasite of the
film business and should be shunned
like the white plague by every man
interested in any way in the film in-
dustry, not only does he knock down
the house that he lives in, but he
does a vital harm to the entire in-
dustry.
"Weeks ago I said that the duper
must go, but I did not think it would
be necessary for our company to take
the important step it has taken in the
past week, in order to assist in his
elimination. I believed that the ex-
changes would listen to reason and
that they would assist me in this
necessary step and not be a party to
this despicable traffic in other peo-
ple's brains. But so many of the ex-
changes refused to be convinced that
it was to their own advantage to sup-
ply the exhibitor with what he wanted
that we have been forced in this tre-
mendous enterprise. We use the word
tremendous for the reason that it is
a big undertaking to establish ex-
changes in all parts of the United
States and we want to assure the ex-
hibitor that we have thought very
carefully before concluding to take
the step.
"Having first assured ourselves that
there were enough experienced men
in the film business conversant with
all its details that could be secured
to handle the principle branches, we
made up our mind that the only way
to supply the exhibitor with Interna-
tional service was to supply him di-
rect in those localities where the ex-
changes have persisted in forcing
junk upon the unwilling exhibitor
under the guise of International film.
"Since our advertisement appeared
in last week's issue of The Show
World. we have received applications
from many competent men. We still
have openings for others.
All New Stock.
"We will establish enough ex-
changes to be able to supply ex-
hibitors in every part of the United
States and Canada where there is a
demand for International film and ex-
hibitors are unable to secure the
service. There will be no chance for
an exhibitor to get old films. Every
release day we have disposed of all
subjects that were released and have
no old stock on hand. Only brand
new subjects that we have received
and are continuously arriving from
the European market will be sent out.
Under the present rule with the man-
ufacturers none of the goods we have
now ready to be released will be
shown in any other country until re-
leased in the United   States and
Canada.
"Some of the subjects we are about
to release will be a revelation and we
expect to disprove Solomon's saw
that 'there is nothing new under the
sti,' by presenting new thoughts and
themes so carefully worked out as to
acting, stage setting and general de-
tail that they will cause the most
blase habitue of the moving picture
theaters to sit tip and take notice.
"All has been carefully planned and
before we announced our intention to
open exchanges we had the goods to
work with. Many letters and tele-
grams have been received from ex-
changes who desired to sell all or a
half interest to us. buit we wish to
state that we want nothing old and
that each of our exchaties will have
brand new stock."
itly 17, 1909.
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