Scopitone Archive

The Scopitone Archive is a fascinating site dedicated to 1960s video jukeboxes. Scopitones and Cineboxes were first introduced in Europe in 1959-1960 and came to the US a few years later. The coin-operated machines were quite popular but were swept into the dustbin of dead media by the 1970s. The Scopitone Archive is a near-complete catalog of the prototypical "music videos" made for Scopitones, Cineboxes, Coloramas, and other similar machines. From the Scopitone Archive:
 Images Cinebox Frankie Avalon Small Like Soundies (the films made for the Mills Panoram film jukebox in the 1940s), Cinebox films were printed so that the image is projected backwards when shown on a normal 16mm projector. The soundtrack is also printed in a non-standard manner, with the result that the sound lags behind the image by about half a second when projected on a normal 16mm projector. Perhaps because of these oddities, or because the Cinebox was never as popular in the United States as the Scopitone, Cinebox films are much harder to find than Scopitone films.

In the summer of 1965, there were reportedly 612 films available for the Cinebox.
Scopitone Archive


  1. CinePunk is a really interesting word. I hadn’t heard it before but lots of Google references, not really meaning what you intended Arkizzle. I dig it.

  2. I love reading about vintage media technologies; both Scopitones and Cineboxes are great examples. The history of analog and digital home formats is pretty interesting, too. Check out Capacitance Electronic Discs (CEDs) and the early days of DiscoVision/Laserdisc.

    Watching the industry adopt various combinations of analog/digital technologies in a single delivery format really helps us to appreciate the ingenuity of 50s, 60s and 70s media pioneers.

  3. Scopitones are endless hours of fun for the whole family! There was a guy here in Toronto at last years “Nuit Blanche” art festival beaming them onto a huge outdoor screen.

    My favourites are, respectively the King

    and Queens of the Scopitones

    the Nancy Sinatra Scopitone version of “These boots were made for walking is pretty good too but you have to get it directly from some Scopitone site as some copyright troll took it off of youTube.

    The technology of this Ur-MTV is pretty cool too. Check out the various Scopitone sites and eBay auctions for the details of these video jukeboxes filled with 16mm film canisters.

  4. seems to be selling dvds and now the podcast so that they make money off of stuff they have no right to be making money off of.

    dirty bastards.

    somebody correct me if Im wrong.

    at least the scopitone archive is a great resource with its heart in the right place.

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