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RKO Radio Pictures

RKO Pictures was an American film production and distribution company. In its original incarnation, as RKO Radio Pictures, Inc. (a subsidiary of Radio-Keith-Orpheum, aka: RKO) it was one of the Big Five studios of Hollywood's Golden Age. The business was formed after the Keith-Albee-Orpheum (KAO) theater chain and Joseph P. Kennedy's Film Booking Offices of America (FBO) studio were brought together under the control of the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in October 1928. RCA chief David Sarnoff engineered the merger to create a market for the company's sound-on-film technology, RCA Photophone. By the mid-1940s, the studio was under the control of investor Floyd Odlum.

RKO has long been renowned for its cycle of musicals starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the mid-to-late 1930s. Actors Katharine Hepburn and, later, Robert Mitchum had their first major successes at the studio. Cary Grant was a mainstay for years. The work of producer Val Lewton's low-budget horror unit and RKO's many ventures into the field now known as film noir have been acclaimed, largely after the fact, by film critics and historians. The studio produced two of the most famous films in motion picture history: King Kong and Citizen Kane. RKO was also responsible for notable co-productions such as It's a Wonderful Life and Notorious, and it also distributed many celebrated films by animation producer Walt Disney (from 1937 to the mid-1950s) and leading independent producer Samuel Goldwyn.

Maverick industrialist Howard Hughes took over RKO in 1948. After years of disarray and decline under his control, the studio was acquired by the General Tire and Rubber Company in 1955. The original RKO Pictures ceased production in 1957 and was effectively dissolved two years later. In 1981, broadcaster RKO General, the corporate heir, revived the studio as a production subsidiary, RKO Pictures Inc. In 1989, this business, with its remaining assets, including the trademarks and remake rights to many classic RKO films, was sold to new owners, who now operate the small independent company RKO Pictures LLC.

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1929 - 1932

Roles Represented in DAHR: Motion picture production company

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 1288 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor MVE-49598 16-in. 4/8/1929 Sure-shot Dick RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-49599 16-in. 4/8/1929 Sure-shot dick RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50602 16-in. 4/8/1929 Sure-shot Dick RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50642 16-in. Mar. 1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50643 16-in. 3/25/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50644 16-in. 3/25/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50645 16-in. 3/25/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50646 16-in. 3/25/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50647 16-in. 3/26/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50648 16-in. 3/26/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50649 16-in. 3/26/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50650 16-in. 3/26/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-50651 16-in. 3/26/1929 Syncopation RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor FRC-64292 35mm film 10/3/1930 Lawful larceny RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Disc to film transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor FRC-64293 35mm film 10/3/1930 Lawful larceny RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Disc to film transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor FRC-64294 35mm film 10/3/1930 Lawful larceny RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Disc to film transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor FRC-64295 35mm film 10/3/1930 Lawful larceny RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Disc to film transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor FRC-64296 35mm film 10/3/1930 Lawful larceny RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Disc to film transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor FRC-64297 35mm film 10/3/1930 Lawful larceny RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Disc to film transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-70770 16-in. 9/23/1931 Skyline RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MVE-70771 16-in. 9/23/1931 Skyline RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor BRC-72340 10-in. 4/21/1932 Dot and dash, trademark RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to 78 rpm wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor BRC-72902 10-in. 9/7/1932 RKO sound effect record Victor Records staff (unnamed) Sound effects : Dubbed recording and re-recording from film Motion picture production company  
Victor MRC-DN-3 16-in. 12/29/1930 Pathé sound news. 1931 series, no. 3 RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
Victor MRC-DN-25 16-in. 3/17/1930 Pathé sound news. 1930 series, no. 25 RKO Radio Pictures Motion picture soundtrack : Film to wax transfer Motion picture production company  
(Results 1-25 of 1288 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "RKO Radio Pictures," accessed October 25, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102172.

RKO Radio Pictures. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved October 25, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102172.

"RKO Radio Pictures." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 25 October 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102172

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