Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Sebastian Cabot in Miracle on 34th Street 1973

Since the 1947 original premiered, Miracle on 34th Street has been a holiday classic. It's was remade twice for television in the 50's and 60's, as a Broadway play in 1963 called Here's Love starring Janis Paige and featuring a lovely score, and was remade again in the 1990's. Sebastian Cabot stars as Kris Kringle in this 1973 television film remake. It's a fairly faithful retelling of the story, updated to the mod 70's. Cabot is charming as Santa Claus. It also features Roddy McDowell as the officious Dr. Sawyer, Jane Alexander as Susan's mother, David Hartman as the love interest, Jim Backus as the VP in charge of sales at Macy's, David Doyle as Mr. Macy and Tom Bosley as the Judge. I'm especially fond of the footage of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade from the period, and the opening sequence features some wonderful shots of New York City in the early 70's.

Here's a the opening sequence and a few moments of the film, uploaded to YouTube by baythebike. It hasn't been released on DVD in its own right, but I first saw it in the DVD extras of another film (I'm one of those annoying people who watch all the DVD extras of every DVD I rent), and I've been racking my brain to remember which one it is. It's not the obvious 1947 version of the film and I've gone back through my Netflix queue and none of them look likely. If any of you know the answer to this conundrum, please let me know with a comment. There are lots of people out there who will thank you!

Obscurity factor: 7 (Not available on DVD, rarely shown on television, full film available on YouTube)

10 comments:

  1. Did you ever find out which DVD had this film as an extra? I've Googled for an hour, out of curiosity, and can find no evidence that it has ever been presented that way. It has been released in a pirated, crappy version...and apparently, a few cable channels have broadcast it in the past few years...

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  2. I never did, but I know it was on something because I watched it one afternoon a while back.

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  3. A 2006 special edition release of the original, contained a copy of the 1955 "The 20th Century Fox Hour of Stars" TV remake, with Thomas Mitchell, but I give up!! Let us know if you find it...it is available from a few other sources, as a stand-alone DVD, but nothing "official."

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  4. Will do... It's bothering me too.

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  5. Where is the full film on youTube? I think I saw it last year but I can't find it anymore.

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  6. The uploader deleted their account, so the film is gone, I'm afraid.

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  7. I just found this 1973 version on Netflix. They will only be streaming it until October 14, 2012. It says it is available for online streaming only.

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  8. Nice! Thanks for the heads up on that. Odd they won't be streaming it during the holidays though.

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  9. Has anyone got or know where I can get a copy of the Ed Wynn version of 'Miracle on 34th Street' ?

    Many thanks for any help!

    Laurence A Frankel
    (London, England)

    More info here:

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0307164/

    http://forums.tcm.com/thread.jspa;jsessionid=89DB68B251D472624B23B3EC822E5CCA?messageID=8494616

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  10. I actually managed to download the 1973 version. Quality is OK but not great. The sound at the beginning of the recording is a bit faint. It's actually my 2nd favourite version after the original 1947 film. Looks like someone taped it from some FOX tv station and converted it to digital. I also have the original youtube flv files, there was 10 parts.

    Hopefully someday it will be re-mastered.

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