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An Old Chinese Proverb: One Picture Is Worth Ten Thousand Words (1946)

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22 Minutes of Film is 31,680 Pictures
12 August 2015 | by See all my reviews

Jerry Fairbanks was an independent producer of short subjects for Paramount. He had three successful series: "Popular Science"; "Speaking of Animals; and "Unusual Occupations". When he got interested in producing for television in the late 1940s, Paramount told him that he could keep his Paramount contract or produce for television, but not both. He chose television and was instrumental in developing the three-camera system for the new medium.

Like other small studios, Fairbanks also produced industrial films -- films shown at business conventions and in school rooms. This film is a commercial for their industrial division, illustrating their competence, ability and commitment to their work -- they claim they have had a unit in Mexico shooting a sequence about cliff divers for two years. There are also short sequences of clips from Fairbanks' other productions; it was less expensive to reuse them than shoot new ones.

Although the constant hard-sell talk of the narrator is annoying, the studio shots that demonstrate the technical aspects of commercial film-making are worthwhile.


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