The former RKO lot would be operated by Desilu until 1966, when Desilu was acquired by RKO Studios had ceased production after Howard Hughes sold it. After a period of financial difficulties, the company ceased production in 1958, and the studio lot was closed and the real estate sold to Desilu. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. The original company produced films from 1929, the year after its inception, through its dissolution in 1959. With Dana Andrews, Jane Powell, Don Dubbins, Arthur Shields. During the Golden Age of Hollywood, RKO produced an average of 40 films per year. Abstract: RKO Radio Pictures, Inc. was founded in 1928 and continued as a major motion picture studio for more than 27 years. After years of decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. The new owners announced a program of 11 films costing $22,500,000; The First Travelling Saleslady , Back from Eternity , Tension at Table Rock , Beyond a Reasonable Doubt , Stage Struck , Bundle of Joy , A Farewell to Arms , Cash McCall , Misty , The Syndicate and Is This Our Son? RKO (Radio-Keith-Orpheum) Pictures (also known as RKO Productions, Radio Pictures, RKO Radio Pictures, RKO Teleradio Pictures and, for a short time, RKO Pathé) is an American film production and distribution company. In 1959, the name changed again to RKO Genera, Inc. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived the studio as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. It was not famous for what they produced but what they released, a massive backlog of movies and shorts were all sent to television. Actors Katharine Hepburn and, later, Robert Mitchum had their first major successes at the studio. Among RKO’s other better-known films were Cimarron (1931), from the novel by Edna Ferber; King Kong (1933), one of the first monster films; John Ford’s The Informer (1935); and Orson Welles’s Citizen Kane (1941), now considered a masterpiece in cinema techniques. The five "major" Hollywood studios (MGM, Paramount, Fox, Warners, and RKO) went through a difficult period in the late 1950s (1955 to 1959). their carefully paced theatrical rereleases would yield profits for the indefi- nite future. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived the studio as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. In 1959, the name changed again to RKO Genera, Inc. In 1931 the company merged with Pathé, and in was renamed RKO Radio Pictures in 1932. In the past, it was one of the biggest and most powerful Hollywood studios. Expelled from Haaren High School in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen, Mitchum took to the road…. After a period of financial difficulties, the company ceased production in 1958, and the studio lot was closed and the real estate sold to Desilu. RKO made such classic films as Citizen Kane, King Kong and the Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers musicals. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General , the corporate heir, revived it as a production subsidiary, RKO … Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived it as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. During the Golden Age of Hollywood, RKO produced an average of 40 films per year. Webb also wrote music for television programs such as Wagon Train and Shirley Temple Story Book. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. Grants Committee. [RKO Radio Pictures was a motion picture production and distribution company. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, https://warnerbros.fandom.com/wiki/RKO_Pictures?oldid=130763. In 1948 the businessman and producer Howard Hughes bought RKO, but his inattention and growing reclusiveness doomed the company; it ceased production in 1953, and was sold to Desilu Productions in 1957. In 1948 Howard Hughes acquired a large share of RKO stock and gained control of the company. continued as a major motion picture studio for more than 27 years. His last major motion picture score was for the acclaimed 1955 Paddy Chayevsky screenplay Marty. After a period of financial difficulties, the company ceased production in 1958, and the studio lot was closed and the real estate sold to Desilu. During its 25 years in film production RKO produced many memorable films, including the Ginger Rogers-Fred Astaire musicals, the early pictures of Katharine Hepburn, and most famous of all, Orson Welles’s “Citizen Kane.” But the company always struggled financially. Cary Grant was a mainstay for years. Taken over in its later years by industrialist Howard Hughes, the studio ceased production in 1957. In 1989, this business, with its remaining assets, including the trademarks and remake rights to many classic RKO films, was sold to new owners, who now operate the small independent company RKO Pictures LLC. Directed by Byron Haskin. Here, the first claim pleaded in the complaint is for breach of a contract between King Bros. and RKO which provided for the production and distribution of the film "The Brave One". He then sold RKO Pictures to a subsidy of General Tire and Rubber. RKO is one of the oldest continuously operating movie studios, and occupies a unique place in the history of film making. Maverick industrialist Howard Hughes took over RKO in 1948. In 1948 the businessman and producer Howard Hughes bought RKO, but his inattention and growing reclusiveness doomed the company; it ceased production in 1953, and was sold to Desilu Productions in 1957. RKO then disbanded its distribution organization and ceased to engage in the business of distributing films. [RKO Radio Pictures was a motion picture production and distribution company. Taken over in its later years by industrialist Howard Hughes, the studio ceased production in 1957. Bought by businessman and producer Howard Hughes in 1948, RKO ceased production in 1953. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. Taken over in its later years by industrialist Howard Hughes, the studio ceased production in 1957. RKO Pictures was an American film production and distribution company. Barely Lethal. Grants Committee. Following RKO’s decline in the 1950s, its film library and related documentation — including matters pertaining to Welles — repeatedly changed hands. He then sold RKO Pictures to a subsidy of General Tire and Rubber. It was released through Warner Brothers. After years of disarray and decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. In its later years, RKO was taken over by maverick industrialist Howard Hughes and finally by the General Tire and Rubber Company. Shut out of the profitable sound-film conversion business driven by the success of Warner Bros.' October 1927 release The Jazz Singer, RCA bought its way into the motion picture industry to gain an outlet for the optical sound-on-film system, Photophone, recently developed by General Electric, RCA's parent company. continued as a major motion picture studio for more than 27 years. The work of producer Val Lewton's low-budget horror unit and RKO's many ventures into the field now known as film noir have been acclaimed, largely after the fact, by film critics and historians. After years of decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. Maverick industrialist Howard Hughes took over RKO in 1948. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. The company was originally established in 1929 as Radio Pictures during the founding of Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corporation. Despite no longer producing films, RKO continued to own the rights to King Kong, and in 1962 licensed the rights to Kong to Toho Company Ltd., who produced King Kong vs. Godzilla and later King Kong Escapes. RKO was also responsible for notable co-productions such as It's a Wonderful Life and Notorious, and it also distributed many celebrated films by animation producer Walt Disney (from 1937 to the mid-1950s) and leading independent producer Samuel Goldwyn. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. After years of disarray and decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. Some of the studios were sold; others changed management; a few went through proxy fights. In its original incarnation, as RKO Radio Pictures, Inc. (a subsidiary of Radio-Keith-Orpheum, aka: RKO) it was one of the Big Five studios of Hollywood's Golden Age. The collection consists of script files, production information files, music scores and arrangements, script synopses and reader's reports, story submission cards, payroll records, and books from what appears to be the story department library. The company made increasingly sophisticated visual effects By 1957 RKO was all but defunct as a production-distribution entity, and its actual demise came that year with the purchase of the studio lot by Desilu, the successful TV series producer owned by Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, who had once been under contract to RKO. Bought by businessman and producer Howard Hughes in 1948, RKO ceased production in 1953. Maverick industrialist Howard Hughes took over RKO in 1948. After numerous corporate reorganizations, the firm continued under the name RKO General, Inc., owning and operating radio and television stations, theatres, and related enterprises. The studio produced two of the most famous films in motion picture history: King Kong and Citizen Kane. In 1948 Howard Hughes acquired a large share of RKO stock and gained control of the company. Hoping to join in the anticipated b… Hailee Steinfeld, Hailee Steinfeld, Samuel Jackson and Sofia Turner. The new owners announced a program of 11 films costing $22,500,000; The First Travelling Saleslady , Back from Eternity , Tension at Table Rock , Beyond a Reasonable Doubt , Stage Struck , Bundle of Joy , A Farewell to Arms , Cash McCall , Misty , The Syndicate and Is This Our Son? Radio-Keith-Orpheum originated in 1928 from the merger of the Radio Corporation of America, the Keith-Albee-Orpheum theatre chain, and the American Pathé production firm. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived it as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. RKO has long been renowned for its cycle of musicals starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the mid-to-late 1930s. By the time it was completed, RKO had ceased production and distribution. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. After years of disarray and decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. In 1931 the company merged with Pathé, and in was renamed RKO Radio Pictures in 1932. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Aside from its own productions, RKO also released Goldwyn, Disney and Selznick films such as The Best Years of Our Lives, Becky Sharp, It's a Wonderful Life, and a variety of Disney feature animation films up until 1954. These were large, well-established organizations with traditions of success. By the spring of 1959, several unreleased RKO films were put out by other studios and distribution exchanges. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. Omissions? The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. Directed by Allan Dwan. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived … This was one of the last films produced for RKO. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later, though the studio retained the copyrights to all their films and assets. Despite no longer producing films, RKO continued to own the rights to King Kong, and in 1962 licensed the rights to Kong to Toho, who produced King Kong vs. Godzilla and later King Kong Escapes. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived it as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. Some of the studios were sold; others changed management; a few went through proxy fights. After years of disarray and decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... …of America (FBO) to form RKO Radio Pictures for the express purpose of producing sound films using the Photophone system (which ultimately became the industry standard).…, RKO Radio was the smallest of the major companies and never achieved complete financial stability during the studio era; it became prominent, however, as the producer of, Robert Mitchum, American film star whose roles as a cool, cynical loner combined with a notorious personal life and a sardonic, relaxed style to create a durable screen image as a fatalistic tough guy. At this point, RKO ceased film production entirely. After years of decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tie and Rubber Company in 1955. Now available DVD & BluRay. When RKO ceased production in 1957, Dunn leased the special effects facilities, merging the operation with Film Effects of Hollywood, a facility he had founded in 1946. It was also at that time that General Tire ceased both production & distribution by RKO, while also dropping "Pictures" from its subsidiary's name, shortening it to RKO Teleradio. Until 2009, post-RKO reissue prints used the usual "The End, A Walt Disney Production" notice. RKO studio when that firm ceased production in 1957) Disney adamantly refused to sell his cartoons to television, since. RKO ceased production in 1957 and closed its doors in 1959. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. The business was formed after the Keith-Albee-Orpheum (KAO) theater chain and Joseph P. Kennedy's Film Booking Offices of America (FBO) studio were brought together under the control of the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in October 1928. Corrections? The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. General Tire was not interested in operating the studio production lot, so it sold the physical assets of RKO to Desilu Productions in 1957 for $6 millio. That same year, RKO Teleradio became RKO General. At this point, RKO ceased film production entirely. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. By the spring of 1959, several unreleased RKO films were put out by other studios and distribution exchanges. The company continued as a major motion picture studio for more than 27 years. During the 1930s RKO produced the well-known Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers series of musicals and the early films of Katharine Hepburn, including Bringing Up Baby (1938). Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. In 1868, American inventor Victor Barbicane develops a powerful military explosive that he also uses as fuel for a moon-bound rocket manned by himself and a motley crew. It was taken over by Howard Hughes in 1948 and finally ceased production in 1957. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived the studio as a production subsidiary, RKO … Though it was one of the major studios in Hollywood, RKO spent much of its 25 years’ existence struggling for financial stability. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived it as a production subsidiary, RKO … In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived it as a production subsidiary, RKO … MGM went through four years of manageme… It was not famous for what they produced but what they released, a massive backlog of movies and shorts were all sent to television. RKO Studios had ceased production after Howard Hughes sold it. After years of decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived … By the time it was completed, RKO had ceased production and distribution. Later owner General Tire & Rubber Company sold the property in 1957 to Desilu Productions, the television production company owned by Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball. After numerous corporate reorganizations, the firm continued under the name RKO General, Inc., owning and operating radio and television stations, theatres, and related enterprises. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived … In 1989, this business—with its few remaining assets, the trademarks and remake rights to many classic RKO films— In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived it … RKO’s production strategy includes devoting resources to the repositioning of its famous classic library for current audiences as it develops other businesses and entertainment properties. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived the studio as a production subsidiary, RKO … The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. After a period of financial difficulties, the company ceased production in 1958, and the studio lot was closed and the real estate sold to Desilu. When RKO ceased film production in the 1950s, the business records were unceremoniously dumped into an empty Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Warner Bros. Entertainment Wiki is a FANDOM Movies Community. RCA chief David Sarnoff engineered the merger to create a market for the company's sound-on-film technology, RCA Photophone. . The film library was first acquired by C & C Television Corp. (later known as TransBeacon) in December 1955 — two years before RKO ceased production. RKO made such classic films as Citizen Kane, King Kong and the Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers musicals. It was released through Warner Brothers. RKO’s production strategy includes devoting resources to the repositioning of its famous classic library for current audiences as it develops other businesses and entertainment properties. It was taken over by Howard Hughes in 1948 and finally ceased production in 1957. All of the large studios survived, except for Howard Hughes's RKO. With Joseph Cotten, George Sanders, Debra Paget, Don Dubbins. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived the studio as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. https://www.britannica.com/topic/RKO-Radio-Pictures-Inc, Social Networks and Archival Context - RKO Radio Pictures, RKO Radio Pictures, Inc. - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.,, American motion-picture studio that made some notable films in the 1930s and ’40s. Two 19th-century sailors jump ship only to discover their tropical paradise is a cannibal stronghold. By the mid-1940s, the studio was under the control of investor Floyd Odlum. During the Golden Age of Hollywood, RKO produced an average of 40 films per year. In 1948 Howard Hughes acquired a large share of RKO stock and gained control of the company. The film library was first acquired by C & C Television Corp. (later known as TransBeacon) in December 1955 — two years before RKO ceased production. When RKO ceased production in 1957, Dunn leased the special effects facilities, merging the operation with Film Effects of Hollywood, a facility he had founded in 1946. That same year, RKO Teleradio became RKO General. In 1948 Howard Hughes acquired a large share of RKO stock and gained control of the company. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. Updates? Production was virtually shut down for six months as Hughes ordered investigations into the politics of all remaining studio employees causing a 90% decline in RKO revenue. It was bought by Howard Hughes in 1948 and ceased film production in 1953. After years of decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tie and Rubber Company in 1955. RKO ceased production in 1957 and closed its doors in 1959. RKO Pictures is an American film production and distribution company. 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