April 8, 1953: first big Hollywood 3D film

On this day's date in 1953, the first 3D movie made by a major Hollywood studio hit screens. I was surprised to learn that it wasn't Jaws 3D House of Wax, but rather Man In The Dark. From Wired:
Man in the Dark was a noir film starring Edmond O'Brien, a remake of the 1936 Ralph Bellamy movie, The Man Who Lived Twice. As 3-D it was underwhelming -- the climactic roller-coaster scene was described as flat -- and it apparently wasn't much of a flick, either, at least not to a New York Times critic who called it "a conspicuously low-grade melodrama."


  1. But six months later, Kiss Me Kate was released in 3-D. Eye-blindingly colorful and 3-Delicious. Bob Fosse dances in it and Ann Miller sings a song with the refrain “dick, dick, dick, a dick, dick, a dick, dick.” Best viewed at the Castro Theater on acid with a bottle of poppers handy.

  2. Interestingly, 3D photos have been around since the 1800s. I was surprised to learn that there are 3D photographs of the Lincoln conspirators being hung.

  3. Back then, many in the movie industry thought that all movies would soon be in 3D. Seriously!

  4. And note the polarized glasses! None of the big Hollywood releases used anaglyph.

  5. I always thought (I dunno where I heard it), that Creature from the Black Lagoon was the first Hollywood 3-D movie. I saw it once in a theater, with the glasses, it was cheesy but fun.

  6. IMDB lists the USA premiere date as April 9, 1953:


    Hot on the heels of this release was one of my all-time favorites, ‘It Came From Outer Space’, which was based on a Ray Bradbury short story entitled, ‘The Meteor’. It featured Richard Carlson of ‘The Day The Earth Stood Still’ fame and the always beautiful, Barbara Rush. This film featured excellent 3-D effects which have to be experienced from a good print of the film to be appreciated.

  7. ‘I am a girl who will marry (who will marry very quick)
    ‘Any Tom, Dick or Harry, any Tom, Harry or Dick.
    ‘I want a Dick Dick Dick, I want a Dick Dick Dick,
    ‘I want a Dick…’

    Cole Porter being sexually subversive in 1948.

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