The New Robin Hood is Richard Todd

Evening News April 5th 1952

I have discovered this small article in The Evening News, dated Saturday April 5th 1952:
“ Walt Disney’s new version of the Sherwood Forest legend makes ‘Robin Hood’ ideal family entertainment - colourful, gay and packed full of action.
As the honest lad who turns outlaw when his father is murdered by the Sheriff’s men, Richard Todd pulls a powerful longbow and turns in a different performance from all his previous ones.
Joan Rice, ex-waitress turned top-line star, is a pretty Maid Marion and earns the approval of the gallant Robin.
The supporting cast is exceptionally strong and includes James Robertson Justice as an enormous Little John, James Hayter as the plump Friar Tuck and Hubert Gregg as Prince John. And there is a pleasing portrayal of a strolling “news vendor” by Elton Hayes. This ranks as the best of the Merrie Men stories”. 

This was just one example of the huge publicity machine behind the promotion of Walt Disney’s live-action movie The Story of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men (1952). Disney was a master at promoting his films.

Shop window displays promoting Robin Hood

Neil discovered an article in ‘Picture Post’ dated 27th March 1952 that showed some of the incredible window displays in London’s West End, promoting Robin Hood.

Some of the stores shown in the picture included:

1. The ‘Robin Hood’ display put on by the Houndstitch Warehouse Company in their women’s outdoor wear window.

2. The elaborate sports window tie-in at Selfridge’s Oxford Street.

3. Vatric, Regent Street, purveyors of vacuum cleaners, use this modernistic ‘Robin Hood’ motif.

4. Famed toy store, Hamley’s of Regent Street, brighten their windows ‘Robin Hood’ cut-outs, bows and arrows.

5. Cramer’s music store, of Kensington High Street, favours the eye-catching ‘Robin Hood’ music display.

6. This ingenious ‘Robin Hood tie-in’ is on show at Anglo-French Shoes, of Victoria Street.'

Queues to see ‘Robin Hood’.

The ‘Picture Post’ article also showed the huge crowds outside the cinemas. The film was of course a huge success!


Clement Glen said...

"The New Robin Hood is Richard Todd"

Neil said...

Yes Walt Disney pulled out all the stops when it came to promoting this film - there was great publicity and one of the clever things he did was the release of the short 'Riddle of Robin Hood' film which was released to the only TV channel that there was - the BBC and because they had limited transmissions and a lot of test material in the daytime, this short film was shown over and over again - and I do remember that and watching it so many times as a small boy. Also I notice from the Poster in your article that James Hayter and Joan Rice appeared along with the film at certain cinemas. Well done to Walt Disney who really looked after this film and it was the most successful one he did in England out of the four that were made in the early fifties.