Thursday, March 9, 2017

Toonfomercial: Pinocchio shills for AMC (1955)

Before it was absorbed by Chrysler some 20-odd years ago, American Motors Corporation (AMC) made a bid to make the Big 3 automakers (Ford, Chrysler, General Motors) into a Big 4. The best way to do that, you see, was to engage in some inventive advertising. That is to say, they made licensing deals with Disney to use some of their characters in commercials, and this included characters that Disney held licenses on themselves, such as the characters from "Song of the South" and, in this next ad, Pinocchio.

Because more than a decade had passed since the initial release of "Pinocchio" in theatres, Dickie Jones, who had voiced the title character, wasn't available. Actor-singer Cliff Edwards not only reprised as Jiminy Cricket, but voiced Geppetto as well. Pinocchio's voice in this case is by the reigning grand dame of voice actors, June Foray.

Down the line, we'll see ads with Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse, plus "Song of the South".

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