30 thoughts on “The Story Behind… The RKO Pictures logo

  1. Excellent article, Nostra!

    The RKO intro has always been a favorite of mine. Especially with Hawks’ ‘The Thing from Another World’.

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    • I didn’t know that it was, but I will make a couple of more of these. They still are some of the most read articles on my blog and recently even Time Entertainment linked to one of them.

    • Thanks Andy. I created the other quite a while ago, so it’s possible you weren’t around yet then. I saw that you checked them all out :) Thanks. Will have a new one the coming week.

  9. Fascinating. I just watched an RKO picture, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” (1939) starring Charles Laughton and Maureen O’Hara ! Great flick !!! Hard to believe (the always lovely) Maureen O’Hara is now 92 years old.

  10. ah, but who was the mastermind who put the deal together? None other than Joseph P. Kennedy. He bailed out and took over FBO in 1926. In 1927 he made a deal with “General” Sarnoff to use RCA/ GE Photophone to make talking pictures. Warner Brothers, Fox, Loews/ MGM, Paramount, 1st National and Universal all used Western Electric’s technology, so RCA was desperate to make a deal with any studio.
    Mid 1927 Kennedy bought KAO, a vaudeville circuit with 700 theatres (its flagship theater, the Keith Memorial, was in Kennedy’s hometown, Boston, and today is called the Boston Opera House) to ensure distribution of his pictures and build marketshare for Photophone. Next he bought Cecil B Demille’s company (PDC) and US operations of Pathé which included a studio, newsreel production and a roster contracted stars. In 1928 he tried to buy First National and make it a Photophone customer as well. When he failed RCA bought his FBO and KAO shares and formed RKO. Kennedy owned a piece of the company, but was not an officer. He kept ownership Pathé for another year or two until RKO bought him out. He made barrels of money in Hollywood, and had an affair with Gloria Swanson. His next move was into liquor distribution.

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