June 10, 2006

VISIT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS

Earlier this evening I was watching The Last Starfighter on DVD when I discovered something that I found to be pretty neat. After all the credits rolled a very lo-fi ad for Universal Studios, Hollywood appeared. First came a panel that featured a simple logo, followed by an artists rendering of the studio tour tram and the instructions "When in Hollywood Visit Universal Studios." I took some screenshots...


I got a great feeling from these no-frills graphics. The film they follow was out in 1984, but the images in the ad wouldn't look out of place in the 1960s. They remind me of something out of a Drive-In intermission reel. Given my tastes, this kind of thing is more enticing to me than a 30 minute infomercial. Hmmm.. Universal Studios, now that sounds like fun!

7 comments:

Travis said...

That same "When in Hollywood" graphic was at the end of the original Blues Brothers movie. My worn-out VHS tape has it, but it also says, "ask for Babs" on the bottom.

I'd love to ride that tram in the picture.

Kirk D. said...

Hey, that's great info!

I looked up the "Ask for Babs" and found this on IMDB...

In this film, after the Universal Studios logo is shown at the end, and the ad for Universal Studios in Hollywood is out, under "When in Hollywood, visit Universal Studios", appears the words "Ask For Babs". The same appeared in National Lampoon's Animal House (1978) (Babs is the Animal House character Babs Jensen), and it reappeared in Blues Brothers 2000 (1998) underneath a new Universal Studios Hollywood logo at the end of that movie."

So now we know who Babs is, and that the design predates 1978. Come to think of it, now I want to go to Universal Studios in the year 1978.

Kirk D. said...

And from Wikipedia..

After the closing credits, a card appears advertising the Universal Studios tour. To correlate with the film, it reads, "When in Hollywood, visit Universal Studios. (Ask for Babs.)"

Some later Landis films, such as The Blues Brothers, "An American Werewolf in London" also carried this tagline in their theatrical releases, partially as an inside joke and reportedly as a tongue-in-cheek promotion for Universal's studio tour of the theme park in Los Angeles.

As of 1989, Universal Studios no longer honors the "Ask for Babs" promotion, which was either a discount or a free entry.

Travis said...

If I ever get there, I'm still asking for Babs. Chance are slim, though.

Ward Jenkins said...

I remember seeing these "When in Hollywood Visit Universal Studios" ads at the end of the credits on some Universal movies in the 70's. Always thought it was quite quaint, that the studio would be so optimistic that any moviegoer left in the theater would be so enthralled by the just-seen film and go immediately west to engage in film-induced entertainment!

J Fish said...

I grew up in Southern California in the 1970's. School trips to Universal Studios were a one or two time a year event. I would have been there in '78. It was pretty cheesy by today's standards but back then it was the coolest thing to a ten year old.

jeffm12012 said...

I remember the original version from the 60's, on Don Knotts movies and such; the graphics were gaudier, and the text read "WHEN IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, VISIT UNIVERSAL CITY STUDIOS."
Universal had offered tours way back in the silent days; that ended when sound began, but in the 60's they started offering the tours again.