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The Phantom of Crestwood

The Phantom of Crestwood(1932)

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According to RKO inter-office memoranda and Variety, RKO broadcast a radio version of this story called The Phantom, which was part of a promotional contest. The radio show, which was broadcast on NBC's "Hollywood-on-the-Air" program, began in August 1932 and concluded six weeks later on a "cliff-hanger" note. The contest consisted of listeners submitting their own endings to the story. The first winners of the contest were to be announced on the NBC program on November 24, 1932, according to inter-office memoranda. The Variety reviewer noted that the film included a "brief prolog in a broadcasting studio with Graham McNamee identifying the production with the air contest." Graham McNamee was a well-known radio personality. This "prolog" was not seen in the viewed print, however. Variety also commented on the film's use of flashbacks, which the reviewer described as the "heaviest use of this once standard device since the talking picture came to the fore." RKO borrowed Karen Morely from M-G-M for the production. Modern sources state that the film made RKO $100,000 at the box office, profits that suggest that the radio contest was a successful promotional gimmick.