Toomorrow (film)

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Toomorrow
"Toomorrow" (1970).jpg
Original UK quad poster
Directed by Val Guest
Produced by Don Kirshner
Harry Saltzman
Written by Val Guest
Starring Olivia Newton-John
Benny Thomas
Vic Cooper
Karl Chambers
Roy Dotrice
Music by Ritchie Adams
Mark Barkan
Hugo Montenegro
Cinematography Dick Bush
Edited by Julien Caunter
Alan Osbiston
Production
company
Lowndes Productions Limited
Distributed by Rank Organization
Release dates
27 August 1970
Running time
95 min.
Country United Kingdom
Language English

Toomorrow is a 1970 British musical film starring Olivia Newton-John, and directed by Val Guest.[1]

Synopsis[edit]

A group of students pay their way through school by forming a pop band called Toomorrow; sonic vibrations from a special instrument called a "tonaliser" cause an extraterrestrial to abduct the group, and have them entertain the Alphoid population. According to the Internet Movie Database (IMDB.com) this movie is based on the 1967 film The Gang.

Production[edit]

James Bond film producer Harry Saltzman entered into a three-picture deal with Don Kirshner.[2] Kirshner had helped create The Monkees. However, according to director Val Guest, Kirshner and Saltzman grew to loathe each other during the increasingly troubled production.[3]

Saltzman hired novelist David Benedictus to write the script, but after 30 pages neither Saltzman nor director Val Guest felt it was working. Guest concedes that it was "very well written, but a little bit too 'high-faluting'." Saltzman advised Guest to write a new script. However, unbeknownst to Guest, Saltzman never informed Benedictus. Only during production did Benedictus learn that a new script had been commissioned.[4]

Guest had been working on the film for six months beyond the time specified for in his contract and still hadn't been paid, nor had anyone else who worked on the film. Saltzman didn't have the money nor did his company "Sweet Music" which was in Switzerland. Guest waited until after the film's premiere at the London Pavilion to obtain an injunction. The film could not be shown until Guest and the other people who worked on the film were paid. According to Guest in 1994, he still had not been paid and the injunction was still in effect.[5]

As a result, the film, which took about two years to make, was shown (in the London Pavilion, then a cinema) for only one week, then was shelved. Aside from isolated showings in the British forces cinemas during 1971 and early 1972 on British military bases, and one showing in Los Angeles in 2000 (see below), "Toomorrow" was not seen in public for over four decades.

Response[edit]

In a March 1971 edition of the British music magazine, NME, Newton-John commented "Our film died a death and it was all a bit of a shambles. But it was a good experience".[6]

According to onlyolivia.com:

Nowadays Don Kirshner, distances himself from the project, claiming on Headliners and Legends (2000) that he left the project before it was finished as he could see it was going in the wrong direction. Rumor has it that he won't allow the movie to be shown again during his lifetime. However, it was shown in 2000 at a special LA Film Festival and the one remaining movie copy is in private hands.

—Only Olivia[7]

Don Kirshner died in January 2011, and in March 2012 the movie was released on DVD in the UK by Pickwick having licensed the film from the estate of writer and director Val Guest. Unfortunately, the DVD release was of low quality: It was sourced from an inferior video element and the audio is of marginal quality, and they failed to make it dual-mono: The sound only comes out of one stereo speaker. It is hoped that eventually a Film Transfer will be done from the copy housed in the British Movie Archives, but for now the Pickwick version will have to suffice.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Toomorrow". BFI. 
  2. ^ Dietz, Lawrence (23 September 1968). "The Monkees' Man Invades the Kiddie Ghetto". New York 1 (25): 46–47. 
  3. ^ Dixon, Wheeler Winston (2007). Film Talk: Directors at Work. Rutgers University Press. pp. 36–37. ISBN 9780813541471. 
  4. ^ Brosnan, John (1978). Future Tense: The Cinema of Science Fiction. Macdonald and Jane's. p. 192. ISBN 9780354042222. 
  5. ^ Weaver, Tom (2003). Double Feature Creature Attack: A Monster Merger of Two More Volumes of Classic Interviews (reprint ed.). McFarland & Company. p. 123. ISBN 9780786413669. 
  6. ^ Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1st ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 224. CN 5585. 
  7. ^ "About Toomorrow". Only Olivia. Retrieved 2012-03-22. 

External links[edit]