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The Bootleg Files: Hello London

BOOTLEG FILES 610: “Hello London” (1958 British feature starring Sonja Henie).

LAST SEEN: A copy can be found on YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO:
None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS:
Never released in the United States.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely.

During the late 1930 and early 1940s, the Norwegian ice skating champion Sonja Henie became an unlikely star in Hollywood movies. While she was no rival to Bette Davis or Barbara Stanwyck in terms of acting ability, she had a pert and bouncy personality that appealed to audiences, and her elaborate ice skating numbers helped to inspire the sport’s popularity among Americans. Her films, most notably “Second Fiddle” (1939) and “Sun Valley Serenade” (1941), were usually packed with musical and comedy co-stars that helped distract the audience from the stretches when Henie was not on the ice.

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The Bootleg Files: Murder in the Cathedral

BOOTLEG FILES 590: “Murder in the Cathedral” (1951 British feature based on the T.S. Eliot drama).

LAST SEEN: We cannot confirm the last public exhibition of this film.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Out of circulation in the U.S. since its original theatrical release.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: It is possible.

The 12th century political battle between England’s King Henry II and Archbishop Thomas Becket was the subject of two magnificent dramas: T.S. Eliot’s “Murder in the Cathedral” and Jean Anouilh’s “Becket.” Today, most Americans are familiar with the Academy Award-winning 1964 film version of “Becket,” starring Richard Burton and Peter O’Toole. Sadly, there is much less familiarity on this side of the Atlantic with the 1951 film adaptation of “Murder in the Cathedral.”

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