Going “Deep” With Linda Lovelace! “Deep Throat” And X-Rated Box Office! Seattle’s Original Newspaper Ads! Variety’s XXX-Rated Box Office Charts!

Deep_Throat_poster

“Deep Throat” Storms The Box Office Charts!

This is one of the most iconic movie tagline of all time – from one of cinema’s biggest hits ever!

It’s hard to imagine now, but there was a time when “XXX” films were routinely reviewed by mainstream newspapers, which also read their ads – and their box office gross was reported on the charts like any other movie!

Welcome to the halcyon days of the early 70’s, when “Deep Throat” ushered in a new explicitness in movie theaters all across the country – a seismic change in permissiveness in motion pictures.

x-rated movie theaters

LA’s iconic Pussycat Theaters proudly heralded “Deep Throat”, and theaters around the country followed suit, and Linda Lovelace became a pop culture phenomenon…

Lovelace ended up in a Playboy pictorial, and starred in the film’s sequel as well – before disappearing from the business and writing stories about the abuse she suffered in her life…

I was a movie junkie growing up. Each week, I would take a bus to the Seattle public library in order to read the showbiz bible called “Weekly Variety” – a newspaper that talked about movies, TV, theater, music – in short, everything I wanted to read about!

My Box-Office Obsession!

My favorite page in the newspaper was the weekly box office chart…in the mid-70’s, it listed how many theaters were showing a movie, what the “per screen” average was, the number of weeks out, and the total box office.

I started saving the charts so I could keep track of which films I saw…and I remember when a new explicitness showed up in the reporting – because Variety began to include the box office take on XXX-rated movies!

As you can see, it was reported on just like mainstream films as “Scarecrow”, “Trader Horn” and “Sisters!” The film was generating millions in box office grosses at the time…

When the bible of the entertainment industry began to report the box office grosses of XXX-rated films, it signaled a huge sea change in Hollywood!

Here is an ad I still have from The Garden Theater in downtown Seattle that proudly showed the film:

This is an original newspaper ad – and notice the theater was open from 10a until midnight – showing the film 7 times every day and a midnight screening on the weekend!

The Garden Theater was one of Seattle’s most notorious “grind house” theaters of the 70’s…showing X-rated movie at a time when it was still a dangerous thing to do!

Clearly it was a smart movie, as here is an ad 6 MONTHS into the film’s run in Seattle!

Can you imagine a film playing a single theater for SIX STRAIGHT MONTHS?

The film was a box office phenomenon, and ushered in a new era of “anything goes” in movie theaters…even though it was taken to court in various cities around the country, those obscenity trials ultimately resulted in little punishment, and the floodgates were open…

On the heels of “Deep Throat” came another controversial box office bonanza: “The Devil In Miss Jones” starred Georgina Spelvin, and told the XXX-rated story of a young woman who commits suicide – only to find herself in a hell where anything goes!

Devil Jones rubber

Of course, “The Devil In Miss Jones” starred Georgina Spelvin – and a snake, and the Actress became a legend in adult film…see more of her provocative story by clicking here:

https://jrsploitation.com/2020/11/02/this-witchcraft-is-xxx-rated-georgina-spelvins-censored-newspaper-ad-her-notorious-devil-in-miss-jones-snake-scene/

The story of Linda Lovelace became legend, and a film was made that told her tale – starring Amanda Seyfried, who put it all out there for the role…

Once courts tossed about obscenity charges against theaters showing these films, the onslaught was on! Adult films had gone mainstream – so much so that they remained on the Variety chart, culminating in the release of one of adult’s most notorious films ever:

Behind The Green Door Marilyn Chambers

The Ivory Snow Girl!

The popularity of the XXX-rated movie peaked with the release of “Behind The Green Door” starring Marilyn Chambers. This film was made notorious by the acting debut of Marilyn Chambers, who just a few years earlier had been featured on the Ivory Soap box!

Marilyn Chambers XXX Ivory Snow

Soon after, the popularity of X-rated movies waned, and Variety stopped reporting the box office of these movies,. Of course, within a few years VHS tapes would spark a resurgence in popularity of these movies…but at home of course!

Still, I am so happy to have saved these newspaper ads, because ALL of these Seattle theaters are long gone – and an era of “adult movies theaters” is long past us:

It was quite a time in movie history.

Some of the most legendary Adult Stars were doing incredible work at this time:

Marilyn Chambers went “Behind The Green Door” and made a fortune for the filmmakers…you can see more of her fascinating career by clicking on my story here:

https://jrsploitation.com/2020/09/04/the-ivory-snow-life-of-marilyn-chambers-my-2020-sex-kitten-countdown-goes-behind-the-green-door-with-the-insatiable-star/

It was the “golden age” of adult film, with Cult Movie Queens like Desiree Cousteau:

Click here to see more of her career:

https://jrsploitation.com/2020/07/11/cult-adult-actress-desiree-cousteau-my-2020-sex-kitten-countdown-has-pretty-peaches-and-goes-inside-desiree/

If you like these stories, and don’t want to miss any of my “2021 Sex Kitten Countdown”, then go to my website’s front page and sign on to follow me – there are NO ads at all, just lots of stories to come about the wild world of exploitation and cult films!

Click here and see the “follow” button on the upper right!

https://jrsploitation.com

I have many more newspaper ads from this era – and will be sharing soon – so you can, as this ad says, “see what all the fuss is about!”



Categories: 70's Films, Artsploitation, Books / Media, Cult Classics, Exploitation Films, Extreme Cinema, Grindhouse, JRsploitation, Nudity, sex kittens, Sexploitation Films, Talent / Celebrites

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9 replies

  1. I can remember all the fuss about this film at the time. It was cut in most cinemas in London, so I didn’t bother to watch it. I later borrowed a ‘fully uncut’ VHS tape from a friend, and I was SO disappointed. It was just silly! But you have to hand it to them for tremendous promotion of what was just a longer version of a blue film.
    It’s great that you still kept all those souvenirs, John. A legacy to hand down!
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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