BOOTLEG FILES 749: “The Divine Mr. J” (1971 religious satire starring Bette Midler as the Virgin Mary).
LAST SEEN: On YouTube.
AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: On a VHS label in 1984.
REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Legal threats by Bette Midler have kept this out of circulation.
CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely.
In May 1974, newspapers in New York City began to carry advertisements for a film opening at the Festival Theater called “The Divine Mr. J.” The advertisements alerted moviegoers this was the film debut of Bette Midler, who achieved her career breakthrough two years earlier with the album “The Divine Miss M,” and the caricature of Midler used on her eponymous second album was the featured image of the film’s promotion.