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The Bootleg Files: King of the Pins

BOOTLEG FILES 813: “King of the Pins” (1950 short film).

LAST SEEN:
On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A true obscurity.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE:
Not likely.

When people are asked to identify short films made by Columbia Pictures during Hollywood’s Golden Era, it is safe to assume that the majority of responses will be rooted in comedy – The Three Stooges, Andy Clyde, Buster Keaton, Charley Chase and Vera Vague will probably be cited most often.
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Short Films for You! France Edition 

Today is Jour de la Bastille, which means, we should celebrate France. So, for this week’s crop of Short Films for You! we have 6 shorts that are either French or take place in France. These are all subtitled in English or shot in English. Without further ado, les voilà: 

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The Bootleg Files: Hatter

BOOTLEG FILES 807: “Hatter” (2022 fan film short inspired by the Batman franchise).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: Not yet.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A fan film that borrows copyright protected characters.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Who knows

Fan films are a hit or miss affair – they’re mostly miss, IMHO – but sometimes the genre produces a genuine surprise. In this case, there is a very happy surprise coming from a pair of creative artists who’ve turned up before in The Bootleg Files series.
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Kosmonavt (2021)

A sexy young Russian lady who doesn’t speak English sets herself up at a chess table in New York City’s Central Park and tries to invite passersby to engage her in a game. A sad faced shlub who was stood up by his date ambles by and agrees to play. After losing badly, the lady encourages him to try again. They continue playing through the course of the day – but where can this relationship go?
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The Bootleg Files: Chagall

BOOTLEG FILES 805: “Chagall” (1963 Oscar-winning documentary short narrated by Vincent Price).

LAST SEEN:
On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS:
It fell through the cracks.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE:
Probably not.

If you’re the type of a movie fan who feels the need to see every film that won an Academy Award, you probably experienced a frustrated pursuit of “Chagall,” which won the 1963 Best Documentary Short Subject. For many years, the film was very difficult to locate – there has never been a home entertainment release and it was absent from YouTube until last August when an unauthorized posting based on a McGraw-Hill Films educational market video popped up.
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The Bootleg Files: Wacky Wigwams

BOOTLEG FILES 804: “Wacky Wigwams” (1942 animated short).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: It fell through the cracks.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE:
Probably not.

Unless you are a die-hard animation aficionado, there’s an excellent chance that you are unfamiliar with the output of Columbia Pictures’ Screen Gems animation studio in the 1930s and 1940s. Truth be told, their films were never as invigorating or innovative as those from the major Hollywood animation studios of the time, and their obscurity was compounded by not being part of the television rerun culture that ensured cult status for the Warner Bros. and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer animation.
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The Jackpot Hit (2022)

A pair of would-be gangsters trying to break into the Mafia receive an assignment to disrupt a poker game gathering of mobsters and steal the considerable money at stake amid the card shuffling. One of the hoods (Joey Ambrosini) is too eager to succeed while his comrade (Keont’e Collins) is going into the assignment with too much apprehension.
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