Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Fotonovel Roundup

Here's a few more great Fotonovels, some kindly forwarded by Bronze Blog Buddy Graham, and some from my own scouring around the net. This one of Ralph Bakshi's legendarily aborted version of Lord Of The Rings is actually in my collection, and I'll do a piece about this one soon. Meantime, here's some of the other classic movies & TV shows you could've taken home in the era before home video. Y'know what's missing? Trancers. There really should've been a Trancers Fotonovel.

Yep, there was even one of Grease! Presumably with song lyrics and everything. Now, regarding the Star Trek ones, as I said I do have the 2nd one ( Where No Man Has Gone Before ) and will be posting a few pages from that at some point too. But, for those of you even now scouring ebay, here's what you need for the set. You're welcome.

There were also Fotonovels of the first two Trek movies, but apparently they come with a 'buyer beware' as they're actually in Black & White. Something I remember from the dying days of the Fotonovel boom, and something that obviously helped to kill them off.


  1. wow. I'd completely forgotten about most of these. I definately had the Lord of the Rings, Galactica, and Close Encounters ones. I'm pretty sure I had Amok Time, too. buggered if I know where they are now, though. I'll have to have a dig around. they ought to bring these things back. how cool would a Dark Knight or Irom Man Fotonovel be? way cool, sez I.

  2. I have all the Trek books. Years ago I did a "purge" of Trek books and while even the Blish adaptations went to Goodwill, I couldn't bring myself to let go of the Fotonovels that had been such a bright spot in my youth.

    And a small correction: Star Trek: The Motion Picture got a color Fotonovel, while "Wrath of Khan" was stuck with black and white. Which is ironic, as the second movie was much more colorful.

    I also have a "trade-size" Fotonovel (though Warner Books had a different name for it) based on the Sean Connery SF flic, "Outland." I liked it better than the movie!

    I dimly remember a Fotonovel adapting the very first Frankenstein movie, as well.

  3. Wow, I bet the Outland one rocks. And thanks for that correction by the way.

  4. Bluray... DVDs... who needs 'em give me a photo novel any day of the week... kids today, don't know they're born... (Slipping into a Monty Python sketch)

    Grease ...? !!! I hope I don't see this on E-bay then I won't have to buy it (And justify it, I get enough stick for Battle-star)

  5. david, the Frankenstein book you're thinking of was one of a set produced by Picador/Darien House back in the early 'seventies, under the collective title of "The Film Classics Library." they were edited by Richard J. Anobile, and they were fantastic books. unlike the fotonovels pete's going on about here, these books featured every scene and every word of dialogue from the films, accompanied by between 1,500-2,000 frame blow-ups. they were beautiful. I still have my copies of The Maltese Falcon and Casablanca, and I believe the other two that were published were Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho and, as you rightly recall, the James Whale Frankenstein.

    I have a very vague recollection of the Outland one, too, though I don't remember having ever owned, or even read, it.

  6. Yes. The Films Classics Library also had NINTOCHKA and DR. JECKYL AND MR. HIDE I believe and STAGECOACH. Richard J. Anobile also edited that OUTLAND book refered to above-they were called Movie Novels. Besides OUTLAND, he also edited ALIEN, THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, POPEYE and a few collections of The Marx Brothers, W.C. Fields and a few others I believe. He also did a novel sized Video Novel on the pilot for MORK AND MINDY. Another Video Novel was also produced for the pilot for THE INCREDIBLE HULK tv series, though not edited by Anobile.
    Besides Fotonovels, Movie Novels and Video Novels, there was also PHOTOSTORY books. The films BATTLESTAR GALLACTICA (shown above) and THE BASTARD were released as Photostories and were the size of regular novels.
    There are many other Fotonovel publications as well: THE BEST OF ROCKY AND THE COMPLETE ROCKY II, REVENGE OF THE PINK PANTHER, AMERICATHON, NIGHTWING, THE CHAMP, HAIR, the PG version of SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER, ICE CASTLES, LOVE AT FIRST BITE, HEAVEN CAN WAIT. In the late 90's they tried to resurrect them and released THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, DINOSAUR and CHARLIE'S ANGELS. They planned on releasing BATTLEFIELD EARTH and SHRECK but I don't believe they were ever released.
    My favorite that I have is a mid-sized version of CLOCKWORK ORANGE, which was similar to the Anobile movie novels but completely in black and white. Found it on ebay by accident one day.

  7. Believe it or not, I have the original Foto-Novel of CAN'T STOP THE MUSIC - starring The Village People, Valerie Perrine, Steve Guttenberg and Brice Jenner.

    Let me know if you want me to scan/send it to you-!?!


  8. I had the Incredible Hulk amongst others I still have The Lord of The Rings one as it is one of my fav books of all time

  9. I had almost all the ones mentioned above. Love Fotonovels, The Movie Novels series, etc. Richard J. Anobile was a god. Anyone know what happened to him? Hard to find contact information for him these days.