Wednesday, November 7, 2012

It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World - the CBC Cinema Verite Documentary (1963)

In anticipation of the 1963 launch of Stanley Kramer's It's a Mad Mad Mad World, United Artists spent close to four hundred thousand dollars in promotion, flying international media to Hollywood, putting them up at the Beverly Hilton, and tossing them a lavish party with comedians mingling about. Among the international media was a film crew from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. In the States, Mad World's free infomercial came in the form of a cast appearance on the two-hour Jerry Lewis Show, a notorious and disastrous, short-lived ABC talk program. Dick Shawn, Jonathan Winters, Carl Reiner, Sid Caesar, Ethel Merman and plenty of others cavorted on Jerry's stage for the full 120 minutes. Back in Canada, the CBC's stark, black and white, cinema verite style documentary aired once and then vanished forever. If the eight minute selection below is any indication... it must be pretty amazing - and overripe for rediscovery.

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