Magnetic Video Corporation

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Magnetic Video Corporation is the birthplace of home video as we know it today.

History[edit]

The company was established in 1968 as an audio duplication facility in the Detroit suburb of Farmington Hills, Michigan by Andre Blay. Blay was an ambitious filmmaker who had always wanted to duplicate movies on videocassette. He had a problem though: not only was the technology not advanced enough yet, the majors were skeptical because of something called analog piracy (the predecessor vice to digital piracy).

Then came Sony's Betamax, in 1975, and then JVC's VHS format, one year later. One month after VHS was introduced to the States, Blay managed to reach an agreement with 20th Century Fox, represented by their telecommunications director Steve Roberts, to distribute 50 films from the company for a down payment of between $250,000 and $500,000 plus royalties. Roberts had Fox go through and look for 50 films in their library to release on video; and all of them had to have already been broadcast on television before being released on home video. Blay also established the Video Club of America in order to sell the titles directly to consumers by mail.

That same year, George Atkinson bought one Betamax and one VHS copy of each of the first 50 movie titles from Magnetic Video that were then being sold to the public and established the Video Station rental company from a storefront in Los Angeles. He charged $50 for an "annual membership" and $100 for a "lifetime membership," which provided the opportunity to rent the videos for $10 a day. This and similar video stores were a success, and Magnetic Video took off, with Blay crossing the Atlantic to form "Magnetic Video UK" in 1978. Not long after, Magnetic Video branched into Australia, trading under "Magnetic Video Australia". In March 1979, Fox saw how successful the Magnetic Video Corporation was turning out to be, and purchased it outright; Mr. Blay remained president until late 1981, when he left to form Blay Video.

But Fox wasn't the only company Magnetic had dealings with.

In 1978, Blay acquired the rights to material released by Viacom International (including seven films featuring Elvis Presley, three films featuring Jerry Lewis, and Terrytoon cartoon compilations and sports tapes), RBC Films (specifically, their Charlie Chaplin library), and Avco Embassy Pictures Corporation.

Distribution of films from Brut Productions, Bill Burrud Productions, and Pathé followed in 1979.

ABC Video Enterprises, ITC Entertainment, and the American Film Theatre joined Magnetic in 1980, and so did United Artists Corporation (including films that were originally distributed by Warner Bros.) in 1981.

in January 1982, after Andre Blay left the company to form Blay Video (which would, ironically, become Embassy's home video division), Magnetic received a new name: Twentieth Century-Fox Video. Since then, they have taken on the names CBS/Fox Video (during that era, they also utilized the sublabels Key Video and Playhouse Video) and FoxVideo (utilizing the FoxVideo name for Fox movies, while CBS/Fox was relegated to BBC Video and other miscellaneous titles), before settling on their current name, 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, in 1998.

During the company's final year, they also had a short-lived sports division called "Magnetic Video Sports", and a short-lived LaserDisc division. There were also international branches in the UK, the South Pacific, and Australia. Magnetic Video was also a duplicator for early tapes released by Paramount Home Video and MCA Videocassette, Inc.

In the United States alone, over 400 different releases were produced by Magnetic Video Corporation over the course of 5 years from 1977 to 1982.

Library[edit]

Fall 1977 (The first 50 titles)[edit]

Catalog number Title Country of origin Original year Length Version MPAA rating Film format Tape count Tape break placement (if applicable) Color Released Note(s)
1001 Hello, Dolly! USA 1969 148 min 35mm general release version G Todd AO 2 During the restaurant scene Color November 1977 Original 1968 MPAA rating card intact at the start.
1002 Fantastic Voyage USA 1966 100 min Standard version PG CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1003 Von Ryan's Express USA 1965 117 min Standard version PG Panavision (some scenes filmed in CinemaScope) 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1004 The King and I USA 1956 133 min CinemaScope 55 version G CinemaScope 55 2 Just after fading to black after the line "So do I, oh, so do I!" (Version #2) Color November 1977 TBD
1005 Patton USA 1970 170 min 35mm general release version PG Dimension 150 2 Just after the line "Give me a swift kick in the ass." (original)
After the slapping scene (reprint)
Color November 1977 TBD
1006 The Hustler USA 1961 135 min Standard version PG CinemaScope 2 TBD Black and white November 1977 The entire film is presented unsqueezed.
1007 The Agony and the Ecstasy USA 1965 140 min 35mm general release version PG Todd AO 2 TBD Color November 1977 TBD
1008 Cleopatra Switzerland/UK/USA 1963 ?? min 35mm general release version G Todd AO 2 TBD Color November 1977 TBD
1009 The French Connection USA 1971 104 min Standard version R Matted 1.85 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1010 The Only Game in Town USA 1970 113 min Standard version PG Matted 1.85 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1011 The Day the Earth Stood Still USA 1951 92 min Standard version G Academy 1 N/A Black and white November 1977 TBD
1012 Hombre USA 1967 111 min Standard version PG Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1013 Beneath the Planet of the Apes USA 1970 95 min Standard version G Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 Original 1970 MPAA rating card intact at the end.
1014 The Desert Fox USA 1951 87 min Standard version NR Academy 1 N/A Black and white November 1977 TBD
1015 The Boston Strangler USA 1968 116 min Standard version R Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1016 Can Can USA 1960 131 min Standard version NR Todd AO 2 Right before "Come Along with Me" (original)
During the climactic courtroom scene (reprint)
Color November 1977 TBD
1017 Tora! Tora! Tora! Japan/USA 1970 144 min TBD G Panavision 2 TBD Color November 1977 TBD
1018 The Detective USA 1968 114 min Standard version R Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1019 Gentlemen Prefer Blondes USA 1953 91 min Standard version NR Academy 1 N/A Technicolor November 1977 TBD
1020 The Bible Italy/USA 1966 174 min TBD NR Dimension 150 2 TBD Color November 1977 TBD
1021 The Longest Day USA 1962 178 min Multilingual version NR CinemaScope 2 TBD Black and white November 1977 TBD
1022 The Robe USA 1953 135 min TBD NR CinemaScope 2 TBD Technicolor November 1977 TBD
1023 How to Marry a Millionaire USA 1953 95 min Standard version NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Technicolor November 1977 TBD
1024 The Grapes of Wrath USA 1940 129 min Standard version NR Academy 2 TBD Black and white November 1977 TBD
1025 Doctor Dolittle USA 1967 152 min TBD G Todd AO 2 (pre-1981)
1 (post-1981)
TBD (pre-1981)
N/A (post-1981)
Color November 1977 TBD
1026 The Panic in Needle Park USA 1971 110 min TBD TBD Matted 1.85 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1027 The Marriage of a Young Stockbroker USA 1971 95 min TBD R TBD 1 N/A Color November 1977 As of 2021, it remains the only film among the first 50 yet to be released on DVD or Blu-ray anywhere in the world.
1028 Vanishing Point USA 1971 99 min TBD PG Matted 1.85 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1029 The Sand Pebbles USA 1966 195 min TBD NR Panavision 2 TBD Color November 1977 TBD
1030 State Fair USA 1962 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1031 Bus Stop USA 1956 94 min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 The entire film is presented unsqueezed.
1032 Three Coins in the Fountain USA 1954 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Technicolor November 1977 TBD
1033 Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines UK 1965 138 min TBD NR Todd-AO 2 TBD Color November 1977 TBD
1034 The Song of Bernadette USA 1943 ?? min TBD NR Academy 1 N/A Black and white November 1977 TBD
1035 How to Steal a Million USA 1966 ?? min TBD NR Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1036 From the Terrace USA 1960 ?? min TBD NR TBD 1 CinemaScope Color November 1977 TBD
1037 How Green Was My Valley USA 1941 ?? min TBD NR Academy 1 N/A Black and white November 1977 TBD
1038 M*A*S*H USA 1970 116 min TBD R TBD 1 Panavision Color November 1977 Original 1970 MPAA rating card intact at the end.
1039 Love is a Many Splendored Thing USA 1955 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1040 Anastasia USA 1956 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1041 Boy on a Dolphin USA 1957 110 min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1042 The Hot Rock USA 1972 101 min TBD PG Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1043 The Seven Year Itch USA 1955 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1044 Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea USA 1961 ?? min Seven Arts television version NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1045 The Long Hot Summer USA 1958 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1046 The Paper Chase USA 1973 ?? min TBD PG Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1047 Valley of the Dolls USA 1967 ?? min TBD NR Panavision 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1048 Carmen Jones USA 1954 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD
1049 The Razor's Edge USA 1946 ?? min TBD NR Academy 1 N/A Black and white November 1977 TBD
1050 A Farewell to Arms USA 1957 ?? min TBD NR CinemaScope 1 N/A Color November 1977 TBD

Spring 1978[edit]

Catalog number Title Country of origin Original year Length Version MPAA rating Film format Tape count Tape break placement (if applicable) Color Released Note(s)
2001 Blue Hawaii
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1961 101 min TBD NR Panavision 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "V of Doom" logo intact at the end.
2002 Fun in Acapulco
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1963 97 min TBD NR Matted 1.85 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "Silent V of Doom" logo intact at the end.
2003 G.I. Blues
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1960 104 min TBD NR Matted 1.85 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "V of Doom" logo intact at the end.
2004 Girls! Girls! Girls!
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1962 106 min TBD NR Matted 1.85 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "V of Pinball" logo intact at the end.
2005 King Creole
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1958 115 min TBD NR Academy 1 N/A Black and white 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "V of Pinball" logo intact at the end.
2006 Paradise, Hawaiian Style
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1966 91 min TBD NR Matted 1.66 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "V of Doom" logo intact at the end.
2007 Roustabout
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1964 100 min TBD NR Techniscope 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 TBD

Fall 1978[edit]

Catalog number Title Country of origin Original year Length Version MPAA rating Film format Tape count Tape break placement (if applicable) Color Released Note(s)
2021 Don't Give Up the Ship
From Viacom International; under license from Hal B. Wallis
USA 1959 89 min TBD NR Matted 1.85 1 N/A Black and white 1978 1976 Viacom Enterprises "V of Doom" logo intact at the end.
4001 Bittersweet Love
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
USA 1976 92 min TBD PG TBD 1 N/A Color 1978 TBD
4002 C.C. & Company
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
USA 1970 94 min TBD R TBD 1 N/A Color 1978 TBD
4004 The Day of the Dolphin
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
USA 1973 104 min TBD PG Panavision 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 TBD
4008 The Loves and Times of Scaramouche
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
Italy/West Germany/Yugoslavia 1975 92 min English language theatrical version PG TBD 1 N/A Color 1978 TBD
4010 Permission to Kill
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
UK/Austria/USA 1975 96 min TBD PG Panavision 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 TBD
4011 Rider on the Rain
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
France/Italy 1970 119 min English language theatrical version GP Matted 1.85 1 N/A Color 1978 TBD
4012 Deadly Hero
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
USA 1975 104 min TBD R Matted 1.85 1 N/A Color 1978 TBD
4013 Shoot
From AVCO Embassy Pictures
USA/Canada 1977 94 min TBD R TBD 1 N/A Technicolor 1978 TBD

Winter 1979[edit]

Catalog number Title Country of origin Original year Length Version MPAA rating Film format Tape count Tape break placement (if applicable) Color Released Note(s)
1051 The Sound of Music USA 1965 174 min TBD G Todd AO 2 TBD Color February 1979 TBD

Summer 1979[edit]

Catalog number Title Country of origin Original year Length Version MPAA rating Film format Tape count Tape break placement (if applicable) Color Released Note(s)
1052 The Making of Star Wars USA 1977 49 min Original broadcast version NR TBD 1 N/A Color June 1979 TBD