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WGN Channel 9 - Family Classics With Frazier Thomas - "The War Of The Worlds" (Opening, 1978)

Here is the opening to the Family Classics With Frazier Thomas presentation of "The War of the Worlds" on WGN Channel 9.

The Family Classics theme song was called "Moviescope" and was a piece of library music composed by Dennis Berry. It was originally released on the Berry/Conroy label.

This aired on local Chicago TV on Sunday, November 19th 1978 at 3:30pm!

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This clip aired on Sunday, November 19th 1978, and is included in the following categories:

Viewer Comments

I have the RCA SelectaVision CED of this film.
Comment posted by Betamax75 on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 9:06am.

Another great find, Fuzzy!
Comment posted by ChitownTVFan on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 9:35am.

Which Chicago station had "The War of the Worlds" prior to WGN? I know that in NYC, the first station to lease it, starting in 1969, was WCBS Channel 2 (as part of Paramount Pictures' "Portfolio II" package); in fact, this film was the first to be aired on WCBS's very short-lived attempt at a horror showcase, "Saturday Shocker," in fall 1972 (apparently as meant to compete with WNEW Channel 5's "Creature Features" which aired at various times of the day on weekends, including Saturday and Sunday afternoons).

I seem to recall around the late 1980's or early '90's, WGN's sister station WPIX Channel 11 ran this flick.

Comment posted by W.B. on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 1:39pm.

W.B., WBBM Channel 2 had Paramount "Portfolio II" before WGN got the rights to those movie titles.
Comment posted by Phantom on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 3:57pm.

Thought so . . . I seemed to read ads from the 1969-70 period that indicated that CBS O&O's acquired "Portfolio II."
Comment posted by W.B. on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 6:52pm.

The opening description Fraizer Thomas talked about doesn't mention the 1938 War of the Worlds radio broadcast created by Orson Welles!
Comment posted by Dth1971 on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 8:56pm.

Gosh, Anything with Frazier Thomas or Framily Classics is such a rare treat. Thank you for posting..simply awesome! I can almost picture myself sitting on the floor in front of our new 25" RCA ColorTrack Console TV watching this show....one of my favorites to this day. Who didn't want to see the inside of one of those cool space ships.
Comment posted by Siciliano66 on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 11:29pm.

Dan - I think this was one of the more scary films that he showed on Family Classics. I wonder if he even considered this one almost crossing the line? People getting vaporized by alien rays definitely freaked me out!

Notice, in a rare variation, he doesn't say, "And now, if you're quite ready..." :-)

Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Tuesday, October 26th 2010 at 11:51pm.

You never cease to amaze me with your video finds, Fuzzy.


Comment posted by GHilbrich on Thursday, October 28th 2010 at 7:11pm.

Love hearing the amazing Paul Frees in the opening narration...and of course, WGN clips = superawesome!
Comment posted by DoctorJPW on Friday, October 29th 2010 at 9:00pm.

I grew up with that theme song! Anyone know who composed it and which orchestra played it?
Comment posted by ScarlettOHara on Sunday, October 16th 2011 at 4:31am.

This is interesting, because I have an audio recording of Frazier's introduction of this movie in early 1980, and he recited the same speech almost verbatim--including "And now--if I have prepared you for what you're about to see..." I guess even someone as talented as Frazier Thomas needs to use scripts sometimes!
Comment posted by RLaPorte on Sunday, January 29th 2012 at 2:58pm.

RLaPorte - Is it possible it is in fact the exact same intro? Maybe they videotaped some and reused them for popular movies?
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Sunday, January 29th 2012 at 3:01pm.

I just listened to the 1980 recording, and, happily, it was definitely a different "performance," with slight changes. Instead of referring to "very expensive trick photography" as Frazier did here, he called it "very clever trick photography" in 1980. Also, here he stated that the film was "released to the movie theaters of the world," but in '80 the phrase "of the world" was omitted. Finally, here he included the phrase "when they attack" toward the end of the speech, but removed it in the '80 performance. Different vocal inflection is used each time as well. In 1980 he was a bit more dramatic, and chuckled a little during the "...if I have prepared you..." line.
Comment posted by RLaPorte on Sunday, January 29th 2012 at 4:10pm.

The Family Classics opening theme was awesome, and very soothing.
Comment posted by ColVonDouche on Thursday, May 31st 2012 at 7:23pm.

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This clip has been viewed 8132 times.
This clip debuted on FuzzyMemories.TV on Monday, October 25th 2010.
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Comment posted in WFLD Channel 32 - The Addams Family - #3 (Break #1, 1971) by Stephen Z. on Saturday, November 28th, 2015 at 1:38am CT

I think the voice of the pirate in the Kraft Fudgies commercial is Joe Silver.

Comment posted in WLS Channel 7 - "Anthem, Sign-On, Reflections & Editorial" (1984) by W.B. on Thursday, November 26th, 2015 at 5:36am CT

The company that offered (for sale, of course) this color test pattern (and laid out the type including the "Broadcasting From Sears Tower" and "Circular Polarization" notices) was a Clifton, NJ firm called Tele-Measurements, Inc., which is still around. In 1977 adverts the company put out in magazines such as Broadcast Engineering and BM/E (Broadcast Management/Engineering), their designation for this type pattern was TM-501, as part of their "Tele-Pat" line. A much earlier version of this pattern was used in Chicago by WFLD Channel 32 in its early years on the air (from its 1966 debut into the early '70's, apparently giving way to electronic color bars around the onset of Kaiser's 1973-77 sojourn).

Comment posted in WBBM Channel 2 - Station Sign-On, SSB & Meditation (1979) by W.B. on Thursday, November 26th, 2015 at 5:27am CT

No doubt when the tape of Fr. Hitpas' sermonette got around to airing on NYC sister station WCBS Channel 2's "Give Us This Day" at sign-on or sign-off, the voiceover (either Pat Connell or Norm Stevens or Roger Forster or whomever) would have announced at the end that it "was presented in cooperation with the Communications Office of the Archdiocese of New York." And if at sign-on, would have been followed by first the station ID, then a 20-or-so-minute slides-only newscast read by the said announcer.

Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - "Boz Knows" (Promo, 1991) by Brian1978 on Tuesday, November 24th, 2015 at 8:49pm CT

Isn't there a longer, minute version of this commercial? If I remember, they also had a segment where Larry from Perfect Strangers, "Boz Knows Comedy?" and you see Cooky trying to hit Bozo with a pie and as usual, it backfires. I swear I saw it on here. I checked YouTube and there's no such commercial on there.

Comment posted in WFLD Channel 32 - The Addams Family - #1 (Break #2 & Ending, 1971) by W.B. on Tuesday, November 24th, 2015 at 1:35pm CT

That "auto-iris" that we see throughout this showing of the picture, was an unfortunate attribute of RCA TK-27 chains, which WFLD had in those days.

Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - Garfield Goose And Friends (Ending & Break, 1975) by HomerDoh60 on Tuesday, November 24th, 2015 at 9:32am CT

Thanks for finding this, Fuzzy. It brought me right back to childhood and simpler days!

Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - NewsNine (Ending, 1979) by W.B. on Sunday, November 22nd, 2015 at 10:41am CT

I think that connotation of "Mechanically Reproduced" as 'Fuzzy' mentioned, may explain why on NYC stations the term generally used was "pre-recorded" (or, by the later '70's, just "recorded").

Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - "Energy Conservation" (Editorial, 1980) by W.B. on Sunday, November 22nd, 2015 at 10:18am CT

Around Why-Tee (the phonetic spelling for the initials of YouTube), you have quite a few editorials (and even some editorial feedbacks) from sister station WPIX Channel 11 in New York City, as delivered by Richard N. Hughes who was perhaps the most famous of the editorialists in NYC. Pray tell, who amongst the Chicago TV stations' editorialists would have been better known "at the time"? I'm banking on WMAQ's Dillon Smith . . .

Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - Len Johnson and the News (Part 2, 1965) by W.B. on Sunday, November 22nd, 2015 at 10:11am CT

NYC sister station WPIX Channel 11's "Portions..." wording was "Portions Of The Preceding Program Were Pre-Recorded." The "pre-recorded" terminology was used by NYC stations almost uniformly, as if they believed New Yorkers wouldn't understand what "mechanically reproduced" meant.

Comment posted in WGN Channel 9 - Garfield Goose And Friends (Ending & Break, 1975) by W.B. on Saturday, November 21st, 2015 at 10:38am CT

Especially in cartoons produced by Hanna-Barbera.

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