Brutus Johnson, owner of the Porter Pullman Shoe Polish Company, sponsors the Porter Pullman Shoe Polish Variety Program on the Black Network Broadcasting Co. Mezzanine Johnson, Brutus' ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Nina Mae McKinney
The Nicholas Brothers ...
The Nicholas Brothers
The Washboard Serenaders ...
The Washboard Serenaders
Emmett 'Babe' Wallace ...
Babe Wallace (as Babe Wallace)
Amanda Randolph ...
Mezzanine Johnson
Bill 'Basement' Brown ...
Brutus Johnson
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Storyline

Brutus Johnson, owner of the Porter Pullman Shoe Polish Company, sponsors the Porter Pullman Shoe Polish Variety Program on the Black Network Broadcasting Co. Mezzanine Johnson, Brutus' controlling wife, has her own views of what she would like to happen on the show, she who believes has the right since it is her father who put up the money for the business. Mezzanine wants to take over the lead female singer spot from Nina Mae McKinney. This news does not sit well with Brutus, who still cannot control what his wife does. It also does not sit well with either Nina or Emmett 'Babe' Wallace, her male counterpart, the two who see themselves as a team and who learn the news through the grapevine. As the show continues and Mezzanine plots her take-over, Nina Mae and Babe have to figure out what to do to save their spots and to save the show. Nina Mae and Babe may get some unwitting help from The Nicholas Brothers, who plan to audition for the amateur segment of the show but who sell lucky ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Musical | Short

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Details

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Release Date:

4 April 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Broadway Brevities (1935-1936 season) #20: The Black Network  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's title is a satirical reference to radio's National Broadcasting Company (NBC), which divided its programming between two networks, "The Red Network" and "The Blue Network." See more »

Connections

References Broadway Gondolier (1935) See more »

Soundtracks

St. Louis Blues
(uncredited)
Written by W.C. Handy
Performed by The Washboard Serenaders
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User Reviews

 
Simply Fantastic
19 May 2006 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

Glamorous Harlem fashions coincide with great music and that particular Jazz Age buzz that you don't find anywhere else in this short about a 1930s radio station!

Nina Mae McKinney shines with a great vocal and acting performance, and The Nicolas Brothers astound with their amazing and precocious dancing. In fact, all the performers in this short are extremely talented, and are very under-acknowledged.

If you are want to see this short, buy the DVD of King Vidor's 'Hallelujah' (available from Amazon). 'The Black Network' is included as an extra on the 'Hallelujah' DVD, along with another short that Nina Mae McKinney appeared in, 'Pie Pie Blackbird', which is not quite as good as this one.


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