Movie-TV Competition

January 18, 1957

Report Outline
Use of Movies on Television Programs
Intermingling of Movie and TV Interests
Decade of Theater-Home Screen Rivalry

Use of Movies on Television Programs

Release to television of several thousand Hollywood movies of relatively recent vintage has opened a new phase in the struggle between the two media—movies and TV—for domination of the mass entertainment market. While continuing to fight each other on most fronts, the two industries appear to have taken an important step toward an eventual joining of forces. The deals which unlocked the old-film vaults of the major studios accentuated an already evident trend toward an interlacing of economic interests. Elements in each industry, however, view that trend as detrimental to the future of both forms of entertainment.

The most pessimistic of the critics foresee an end to television's unique role as a communications medium offering a balanced fare of live and filmed entertainment, news and public events programs. They fear that the home television set will become little more than a technological replacement of the movie house projector. They suggest also that development of subscription TV, which would bring special programs, including current movies, to home viewers for a fee, would make the influence of film producers over the content of television entertainment still more pervasive. Meanwhile, local movie theaters would be limited in practice to showing for the most part only exceptionally spectacular films aimed at the luxury market.

Release of Hollywood Features for TV Showing

Around $100 million worth of feature movies, many of them yesterday's top box-office attractions, have become available recently for commercial showing on television. According to Billboard, Dec. 29, more than 2,700 feature films were released in 1956 for use on television. This was ten times the number of movies turned over to TV in 1955 and constituted more than two-thirds of the total number made available to the newer medium in all previous years. Outstanding among such transactions of the past year or so have been the following:

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Feb. 19, 2021  Hollywood and COVID-19
Apr. 11, 2014  Future of TV
Nov. 09, 2012  Indecency on Television
Aug. 27, 2010  Reality TV
Jun. 20, 2008  Transition to Digital TV
Feb. 16, 2007  Television's Future
Mar. 18, 2005  Celebrity Culture
Oct. 29, 1999  Public Broadcasting
Aug. 15, 1997  Children's Television
Dec. 23, 1994  The Future of Television
Mar. 26, 1993  TV Violence
Sep. 18, 1992  Public Broadcasting
Oct. 04, 1991  Pay-Per-View
Feb. 17, 1989  A High-Tech, High-Stakes HDTV Gamble
Dec. 27, 1985  Cable Television Coming of Age
Sep. 07, 1984  New Era in TV Sports
Sep. 24, 1982  Cable TV's Future
Apr. 24, 1981  Public Broadcasting's Uncertain Future
May 09, 1980  Television in the Eighties
Oct. 25, 1972  Public Broadcasting in Britain and America
Mar. 26, 1971  Video Revolution: Cassettes and Recorders
Sep. 09, 1970  Cable Television: The Coming Medium
May 15, 1968  Television and Politics
Mar. 01, 1967  Financing of Educational TV
Dec. 16, 1964  Community Antenna Television
Oct. 21, 1964  Sports on Television
Feb. 28, 1962  Expansion of Educational Television
Aug. 28, 1957  Television in the Schools
Jan. 18, 1957  Movie-TV Competition
Sep. 06, 1955  Television and the 1956 Campaign
May 18, 1954  Educational Television
Sep. 03, 1953  Changing Fortunes of the Movie Business
Apr. 20, 1953  Televising Congress
May 31, 1951  Television in Education
Jan. 26, 1949  Television Boom
Jul. 12, 1944  Television
Movies and Entertainment
Radio and Television