Today’s movie of the day is King Kong (1933), a fantasy horror monster film. The film was directed by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack. It was a box-office smash, earning around $5 million in international rentals during its first release and an estimated $90,000 on opening weekend.
A film team travels to a tropical island for an extraordinary location shot and encounters a huge ape who develops feelings for their blonde female lead. He is then apprehended and returned to New York City for public display.
- The movie was created by RKO and was initially scripted for the screen by Edgar Wallace, Ruth Rose, and James Ashmore Creelman, drawn from an idea by Merian C. Cooper.
- A novelization of the screenplay was published in 1932, adapted by Delos W. Lovelace, and includes descriptions of incidents not included in the film.
- The film starred Bruce Cabot and Robert Armstrong
- It is renowned for Willis O’Brien’s breakthrough stop-motion animation, Max Steiner’s orchestral score, and actress Fay Wray’s portrayal of the ape’s unlikely love interest. The premiere of King Kong took place in New York City on March 2, 1933.
- King Kong was the first major Hollywood movie to include a theme music soundtrack instead of background music, courtesy of Max Steiner, a talented young composer.
- Additionally, it was the first blockbuster film to have a lifelike animated primary character in any form.
- Most of what is done now with CGI animation has conceptual origins in Kong’s pioneering stop motion model animation.
- Willis O’Brien, billed in the movie as “Chief Technician,” has been hailed as an extraordinary original talent of pioneer rank by subsequent generations of cinema special effects artists.
- Prior to its formal release, the film’s original version was presumably presented to a sample audience in San Bernardino, California, in late January 1933.
- Between 1933 and 1952, King Kong was released four times. The film was censored in all of the releases.
- On its first release, the film earned largely good reviews but also some negative ones.
- The film has a 98 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, drawn from 64 reviews, with an average score of 9/10.