Early prediction from 1934 on GOOFY MOVIES and the future of riffing

As some of you know, Pete Smith did a series of short films between 1934-1935 that took old silent movies and re-edited them into new movies that used his comedic narratives, called GOOFY MOVIES (TCM recently ran all ten films and many are available on YouTube).

An article from the fall of 1934 had the following comment to make about the series mocking older films, which I thought was of interest.

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You can still get duds in cowboy clotheries.

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Oh man this is prophetic!

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That blurb is saying “make bad movies, fellas, they’ll pay off eventually”.

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You laugh, but this is precisely how we got An Extremely Goofy Movie.

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That was Roger Corman’s entire ethos. And it worked too.

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There was a short film called “Boo!” on my old Frankenstein DVDs which edited scenes from Frankenstein, Nosferatu, and The Cat Creeps (that movie’s only surviving footage) and edited it together comedically. I never really figured out where it came from, but now I’m wondering if it were one of these shorts.

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It’s funny, but I was just looking at “Boo!” on YouTube and one of the comments was calling it a “poor man’s Pete Smith Specialty.” It’s from 1932, so a couple of years before the GOOFY MOVIES series, but definitely has a similar feel to it.

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