Thursday, March 22, 2007

El Cid = El-Son

Way back in '61, the movie "El Cid" opened at the Capri Theatre at 42nd and University in a 70mm Todd AO presentation. To stir up interest, owner Bob Fridley--ever the showman--hired "well-known insurance man" Chet Elson to ride through town on horseback, wearing a real suit of armor borrowed from the Salisbury House. His mission: to invite then-governor Norman Erbe, as well as the mayor and the rest of the local government, to the premiere showing.

"Des Moines' favorite policeman" Tony Mihailovich delivered a mock violation ticket to Elson for allegedly parking his horse illegally. The Tribune and all the local news stations covered Elson's ride to glory.

Once again, this blog entry comes courtesy of the BoxOffice Magazine collection of John McElwee, used with his kind permission. Be sure to visit his beautiful website at Greenbriar Movie Theatre.

No comments: