The Memos Part XI: ‘The Magnificent Ambersons’ opens in Los Angeles running only 88 minutes; Welles completes ‘It’s All True’ in BrazilMonday, July 23rd, 2012
By LAWRENCE FRENCH
'The Magnificent Ambersons' opens in Los Angeles - July 7, 1942
Even in it's truncated version, THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS received many excellent reviews and eventually was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Supporting Actress (Agnes Moorehead); Best Cinematography (Stanley Cortez); and Best Art Decoration. Certainly not an easy task for a film that was released in July of the awards year. And despite a widely perceived notion that the film was dumped without fanfare by RKO, this was not entirely the case. At least initially, RKO gave AMBERSONS an impressive campaign, with full page ads appearing in many national publications, such as LIFE and LOOK. In fact, according to Joseph McBride, AMBERSONS box-office returns for many major cities boded very well for the films prospects. "It was holding up beyond expectations in LA, doing sensationally in San Francisco, nice in New York and Baltimore, good in Denver and Omaha, and not bad in Boston and Philly." (as reported in 1942 by Variety).