Fifty years ago tonight, on August 6, 1972, at the O’Farrell Theatre on the corner of Polk and O’Farrell, a now mythical film was first introduced to the public: BEHIND THE GREEN DOOR. Actually the first screening was earlier that week on August 1, but August 6 was the day this amazing artwork was unleashed onto the general public.
And if you don’t think BTGD is a work of art you haven’t seen The Ejaculation Scene.
Yes DEEP THROAT is getting all the hype this year, but I’ve always thought BTGD was the better and more intriguing of the two films. Plus there’s no annoying-as-hell Harry Reams anywhere in sight! In fact in my book the only thing DT has over BTGD, aside from timing, might be its soundtrack (both versions of it), but yet and still BTGD does have at least one nice little tune (Marylin Driving), and there are definitely some haunting moments musically (again, see The Ejaculation Scene!).
Anyway, this isn’t an in-depth post on any aspect of BTGD, just an acknowledgment that a major anniversary of a very early example of what adult cinema could have been and sometimes was/is. And to mark that we’ve pulled the ads for it’s release.
First we have a “Starts Soon” ad from July 3, 1972, over a MONTH before the film would ultimately be released. Also of note, the phrase “Behind the Green Door” was actually used a LOT before the film came out and changed the nature of that term forever. Perhaps we’ll do a quick post later in the year on the various uses of it…
And this is the ad which ran on Sunday August 6, 1972, fifty years ago today.
But elsewhere in that same edition of the San Francisco Examiner we find a bit of a screw up! No, there wasn’t a competing Behind the GLASS Door film!
And finally, zooming forward 17 full weeks, BTGD was still playing exclusively at the O’Farrell, but the next week all that would change, and it would begin opening on unsuspecting punters across the country!
In addition to being a groundbreaking film on the big screens, the Mitchell Brothers were also very early adopters of home video, and we have in the Capri Show World Archives one of their early versions of BTGD on VHS, and it came with the following ad-slick as well.
Also, over on the Capri Show World YouTube channel we have TWO Marylin Chambers clips. The first is from 2000 where she talks about how she got involved with the Mitchell Brothers and BTGD, the second is when she was performing in NYC and did an evening on the Efrom Allen Public Access TV show, and be forewarned, it gets a little!