Voodoo Heartbeats and Naked Evil with The Gorilla Gang in Greenville, SC – This Day in 1972

10-8-72, Greenville and Greer, SC – Back in the day when Indie companies charged through areas to get as many screens as possible, Robert Saxton had a double screen win like the booking of Voodoo Heartbeat at the Cedar Lane Drive In and the double bill of The Gorilla Gang and Naked Evil at the Greer Drive In, with Greenville just a little SW of Greer enough to be considered the same area. Although some may remember the Roy Molina Voodoo Heartbeat as The Sex Serum of Dr. Blake released independently of Saxton, the 1968-made Ape Suit Krimi Gorilla Gang and the 1966 Voodoo-themed flick Naked Evil were enjoyable picked up screen fillers that played many times in the ozoner business that were later handed over to Sam Sherman’s Independent-International by around 1974 – the very reason why some may recall the later as Exorcism at Midnight on TV with a “new” scenes thrown in. It was all a part of the industry that tried to sell any old movie it could, and did!


7-6-73, Chicago – Voodoo Heartbeat was thrown into the Drive In showings of How Did a Nice Girl like You… starring Barbi Benton and Three Golden Serpents known here as Island of Lost Girls. I think that How Did… was almost originally known as The Cheerleaders before a better known film too that title as it was aka The Naughty Cheerleader when picked up by Sam Sherman’s Independent International. Island… was one of the Kommissar X films that played under several different titles through The States especially on Late Night TV and released by Hampton International – the last chapter of Saxton’s Distribution history from what I know.


5-10-74, Detroit – The Motor City showing of Voodoo Heartbeat was late in the game at the Adams with The Devil’s Wedding Night.


10-26-73, Detroit – The Naked Evil/Gorilla Gang show hit the Grand Circus in Detroit with the emphasis on Naked Evil aimed for the urban markets (note the “Soul Brothers of Death” line in the trailer). Although the films were not bad, at least in a Late Show kind of way, it’s understandable if the audience was not too into them at the time.


3-15-74, Pittsburgh area – in a desperate attempt to promote what was at the time a very outdated  B&W production, the ads had to evoke the word “Exorcism”, which was a very common ploy in the Mid 70’s.

~ by screen13 on October 9, 2019.

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