Almost all movie buffs today know about the industry journals of the Golden Age of the Cinema– Daily Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, The Motion Picture Herald, etc. IN ADDITION to these weekly publications, some companies also produced what were called yearbooks.
Yearbooks existed between 1916 and 1964. These annuals cataloged films that were released, highlighted events, provided comprehensive listings of companies and personnel, reprinted company financial statements, and had ads from the studios, their suppliers and vendors, stars, producers, and directors.
Since these Books were published by industry trade magazines there was a tacit understanding that the purchase of advertising would help ensure that no negative coverage about the studio or its films would appear in the trade weeklies.
The best known was The Film Daily Year Book, published in New York. He had an in-depth look at production and distribution. It also listed every movie theater in the United States.
Another was Quigley Publications’ Motion Picture Almanac. And yet another was The Hollywood Reporter’s Motion Picture Production Encyclopedia. Great Britain had the Kine Year Book, documenting that country’s film industry.
Recently a friend of Joe’s, Chris Clark, came across a 1949 edition of The Motion Picture Production Encyclopedia covering the years 1944 to 1948 and sent it on to us. It is fascinating to read and for the next few weeks we’re going to share some highlights with you.
As we’ve noted,all sorts of people and companies advertised in these yearbooks — producers such as Popkin, pictured above, and performers such as Von Zell, below.