“Whether you are in a cave… or behind a million mountains, SANTA CLAUS sees you with his MASTER EYE!”
It sounds like something straight out of your worst childhood nightmares. But in November of 1959, this bizarre holiday film premiered to select theaters across the United States and Mexico. The world, and more importantly, Santa Claus, has never been the same… thanks largely to the promotional genius of a small-time distributor operating out of Coral Gables, Florida. K. Gordon Murray’s successful ad campaign spawned a new film sub-genre, the CHILDREN’S MATINEE. From 1960…until the birth of VHS, independent distributors flooded the market with a cavalcade of curiosity pieces. Subjects ranging from live-action interpretations of Grimm’s fairy tales…to holiday films containing Martians and Easter Bunnies. Even the major Hollywood studios wanted their piece of the action.
When K. Gordon Murray previewed “SANTA CLAUS” in Mexico City in the late summer of 1959, he knew almost instantly how to market it in the United States. It was after all, a foreign film, and imported films were not successful at that time. And this was a foreign CHILDREN’S film. But Murray had a plan! Using the tactics he, and the exploiters before him, employed to distribute ‘ADULTS ONLY’ films, K. Gordon Murray Productions launched an impressive ad campaign focused directly on kids. Not adults, not parents, just the children. They were the core audience Murray wanted to attend the film.
Below is the narration for the first theatrical trailer to hit the screens (debuting October, 1960). The first trailer was narrated by K. Gordon Murray himself.
“Whether you’re in a cave, or behind a million mountains, Santa Claus sees you through his Master Eye, and invites you to his Magic Wonderland! See Santa Claus in his magic motion picture! Come past the doors of his towering castle, into a fantastic crystal laboratory, filled with weird and wonderful secrets; into his heavenly workshop, the most marvelous toy factory of all! Watch his battle with the mischievous demon who wants to get children into trouble! You’d better watch out! You’re gonna shout about the picture that won the Golden Gate Family Film award! Everyone, everywhere, is waiting for the K. Gordon Murray presentation, SANTA CLAUS!”
RESTORATION OF SANTA CLAUS
VCI has produced a new high definition master from the original negative and has given it the digital restoration that it deserves. The film will also be seen in its original widescreen glory and enhanced 5.1 sound for the first time on any video format.
With bonus features produced by K. Gordon Murray historian, Daniel Griffith, this special Edition will have broad appeal to Collector’s, and is sure to delight a whole new generation of fans of fantasy!
SO WHAT IS THE MOVIE ABOUT?
The producers packed every magical, wacky, and just plain weird, holiday oddity known to man in to this wild-n-wonderful, and strangely charming, children’s classic! It’s not enough that Santa must deal with the usual suspects – the good little boys and girls, and the not so good little boys and girls – but this season Lucifer himself is out to ruin Christmas and has sent his chief minion, Pitch, on a mission to Earth to turn all the children of the world against Santa. But wait, there’s more! Santa’s workshop is located high above the North Pole in a Toyland castle in outer space, where he plays the organ and keeps watch over the children on earth through specialized equipment, while readying his mechanical reindeer for Christmas Eve action. Santa also enlists the aid of Merlin the Wizard, who provides him with magic sleeping powder and a flower that makes one disappear. But wait, there’s even more! Santa also receives a magic key that will unlock any door on Earth from Vulcan himself!
This delightful Christmas concoction, with all the weird and wonderful characters of make-believe, was originally produced in Mexico, but re-edited and reissued for American audiences by the ‘King of the Kidde Matinee’ – K. Gordon Murray. And though Murray’s version of the film was a big theatrical box-office success, and also became a holiday tradition on many U.S. TV stations, it has never enjoyed a proper home video release — until now.
Where Can You Buy This Long Lost Treasure?
What a great question! SANTA CLAUS is available in 3 versions which you can find at Amazon.com and other online video retailers, or at VCI Entertainment’s website.
Click on the links below to buy your copy from VCI Entertainment today!
- SANTA CLAUS: Collector’s Edition DVD
- SANTA CLAUS: Collector’s Edition (Blu-ray)
- SANTA CLAUS: RESTORED ORIGINAL SPANISH VERSION DVD
BONUS FEATURES FOR THE BLU-RAY & ENGLISH VERSION DVDS:
• Contains both the American K. Gordon Murray and Original Spanish Versions on one disc
• Commentary by Daniel Griffith (K. Gordon Murray Historian)
• Making of Featurette
• Animated Stills Gallery
• Original Santa Claus Theatrical Trailer, TV Spots and Radio Spots
• Bonus Santa Claus Novelty Short Subjects
• Bonus K. Gordon Murray Trailers
• “A Howdy Doody Christmas” – classic Castle Films Short Subject