SLEEPING BEAUTY is a Disney animated feature, released January 29, 1959. It opened at the Paramount Friday, June 19, 1959, playing through Tuesday, June 30. The movie was the first animated film photographed in Super Technirama 70 Widescreen and stereophonic sound for first run showings. The Paramount had had Cinemascope wide screen equipment since 1953.
The promotion of the movie included a cooperative advertising campaign with the Kress Department Store at 14th & Broadway. The huge four-story store in downtown Oakland had opened August 2, 1926, part of a large National chain (1896-1981). The building has since been demolished.
For several years, Paramount management were doing various kinds of cooperative advertising with local businesses, from radio spots to retail stores, anyplace advantageous to both businesses. Two photos show a beautiful display in the Kress window which includes toys, puppets, puzzles and games related to SLEEPING BEAUTY and featuring the movie poster as the Paramount Theatre movie promotion. There was probably a similar display in the toy department inside, but no photos survive.
The advertising campaign in the Tribune was nicely done, local reviews were very positive, so it was probably well attended. Unfortunately we don't have photos of the happy Saturday matinee audience, however we do have cashier Ellen Carlson's 1997 memory of another similar Saturday matinee crowd, in part:
"The cashiers wore red satin smocks trimmed in a cream color."
"Prices for seating was Loges, 65 cents, General 65 cents and children under twelve, I believe 25 cents."
"...I had the noon to five shift and of course enjoyed selling tickets to such a happy (matinee) crowd, the line stretched around the left side of the theatre, a long long block, of mothers and kids. We opened early to accomodate all the people ...kids as far as the eye could see, a truly happy crowd."
Paramount Theatre Curator