By Gillian G. Gaar
Yellow Submarine returns to the big screen this month (check www.yellowsubmarine.com for showtimes). The reissue is being handled by Abramorama, and the company’s CEO, Richard Abramowitz, shared some of his own memories of the film, and his company’s involvement in other Beatle-related screenings:
GOLDMINE: What are your memories of first seeing Yellow Submarine?
I saw the movie in 1968 at the Central Plaza Cinema in Yonkers, New York. I remember it very well. It blew my 10-year old mind!!
Abramorama was previously involved in the theatrical screenings of 8 Days a Week. What are the challenges in getting people to see a film in a theater instead of simply waiting for the DVD release/streaming/ etc.?
There are so many options for entertainment that it’s always a challenge to get people to leave their homes but the big advantage here is — the Beatles! Their audience is, basically, everyone and seeing their work in a theater, with other people, is still a compelling motivation. Additionally, we were able to show the Concert at Shea in theaters along with Eight Days… and that was further motivation.
Is it correct that this release of Yellow Submarine uses the print restored for the 2012 reissue?
How do you choose the theaters where it will be screened?
We have a consistent group of theaters around the country that play our music films, theaters that have the best technical presentations, that have cultivated the right audience and know how to promote properly. Also, we make sure that we don’t over-saturate the market by booking theaters right on top of each other. The band’s legacy and their fans deserve the best experience possible and that’s the most essential aspect of our approach.
Do you know the last time Yellow Submarine had a big theatrical release like this? Why was it important to do one, since there isn’t a tie in release? (like a new DVD or CD).
It was re-released in 2012 [on DVD], but as far as I’m concerned the time is always right for a Beatles movie and since this is its 50th anniversary it makes sense.
Anything special about the theatrical screenings?
Ah, well, I think the opportunity to see this film on the big screen with big sound is all the encouragement people will need but I will say that it’s possible that there might be a few Blue Meanies dropping into screenings every now and then. Also… stickers!
Anything else you want to say?
There’s a new graphic novel and some cool action figures that will be available this summer.
Read the rest of the Yellow Submarine story in the August 2018 issue of Goldmine (shown below), available at select Barnes and Noble, Books A Million and indie record stores.