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Cool Item Of the Week: Gulliver's Travels pressbook

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Added: 05/19/2014

As many of you know, I, Bruce Hershenson, owner of, have collected pressbooks (and related movie paper like studio yearbooks) for over 30 years, and I have the world's foremost collection of such material. I thought I would share one item with you each week, the type of items you almost surely have never seen before, and which might not come up for sale for DECADES!

So below is the pressbook from Gulliver's Travels, the 1939 Dave Fleischer full-length feature family fantasy adventure animation cartoon ("Based on Jonathan Swift's Immortal Tale"; produced by Max Fleischer) featuring the voices of Jessica Dragonete, Lanny Ross, Pinto Colvig, Jack Mercer, and Sam Parker. Note that this movie by the Fleischer brothers (who had had multiple reel cartoons prior to Walt Disney's first feature, "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs") was intended to be the beginning of a long series of Fleischer features, but this did not have the success of Disney's films, so that did not happen! Note that Max Fleischer (along with his brother Dave) were legends and pioneers in animated films. They made the very first sound cartoon in 1924, beating Walt Disney by several years. They had great success with their Out of the Inkwell cartoons, Popeye, Betty Boop, and much more, including the Superman cartoons, widely regarded as the finest cartoons ever made! But after Walt Disney made Snow White, the Fleischers made Gulliver's Travels, which did not do well at the box office, and their next major project, Mr. Bug Goes To Town, had the bad fortune to be released two days before the attack on Pearl Harbor, and it also did poorly. At this same time, the Fleischer brothers had a major falling out, and in 1942, they split completely. After they made the last of their Superman cartoons in 1942, Paramount ceased control of their studio. Each of the brothers made a few more cartoons, but their careers were essentially over.

Here is an image of the pressbook's covers and an interior spread:


Each week I will showcase a different pressbook (or related item) from my collection (so in just 20,000 weeks or so, I will have shared the entire collection with you!). And remember to check out our previous Cool Items of the Week in our Cool Item of the Week archive (which is fully searchable!).

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