The Filmgroup

The Filmgroup was a production and distribution company founded by filmmakers Roger Corman and Gene Corman in 1959. Corman used it to make and distribute his own movies, as opposed to ones he was making for American International Pictures. (The reason is that AIP required films to be shot using union crews; working on his own, Corman could save money by going non-union.) The company ultimately folded, however, lessons from running the company helped Corman make a success later of New World Pictures. Filmgroup also produced early feature work of Francis Ford Coppola, Peter Bogdanovich, Charles B. Griffith, Curtis Harrington, Jack Hill, Monte Hellman, Robert Towne and Jack Nicholson.

The Filmgroup
TypeLimited company
Founded1959; 62 years ago (1959)
Defunct1968; 53 years ago (1968)
SuccessorNew World Pictures
United States
Key people
Roger Corman (co-founder)
Gene Corman (co-founder)
ProductsMotion pictures


Corman established his own company, Palo Alto Productions, in 1954, which was responsible for his first two movies. Filmgroup came out of a desire for Corman to move into distribution.

In February 1959 Filmgroup announced they would release ten films. Their first movies were High School Big Shot (1959) and T-Bird Gang (1959) produced by Stanley Bickman.[1]

Corman would also buy films made by independent distributors, in addition to several films from the Soviet Union, which he would re-dub and have additional scenes shot and added to.[2]

Gene Corman left the company in 1963 to join 20th Century-Fox and Corman handed over distribution of his films to American International Pictures.[3] The company soon wound up.

Corman never bothered to copyright the movies so most of them are in the public domain.[4]


Unmade FilmsEdit

The following films were among those which Corman announced would be produced by Filmgroup but which were never made:

  • Cop Killer and Sob Sisters Don't Cry – based on original scripts by Malden Harms[5]
  • Wedding Night – from script by Robert Roark[6]
  • I Flew a Spy Plane Over Russia – based on a script by Robert Towne[7]
  • Murder at the Convention – a political mystery satire from a script by Arthur Sandys starring Dick Miller and Jonathan Haze[8]
  • Pan and the Satyrs[9]
  • The Man Who Sold the Earth (1962)[10]
  • Women in War (1962)[11]
  • Haunted Dream (1962)[12]
  • Juliet (1962)[13]
  • The Story of Robert E. Lee by Robert Adams
  • Fun and Profit by Joel Rapp and Sam Locke
  • The Wild Surfers by John Lamb[14]


  1. ^ "Roger Corman Sets 10 to Nourish Filmgroup". Variety. 18 February 1959. p. 3.
  2. ^ Fred Olen Ray, The New Poverty Row: Independent Filmmakers as Distributors, McFarland & Company, 1991, p 23-62
  3. ^ Mark McGee, Faster and Furiouser: The Revised and Fattened Fable of American International Pictures, McFarland, 1996 p209
  4. ^ Christopher T Koetting, Mind Warp!: The Fantastic True Story of Roger Corman's New World Pictures, Hemlock Books. 2009 p 13-14
  5. ^ "FILMLAND EVENTS: ROCKY MARCIANO TO MAKE FILM DEBUT". Los Angeles Times. Feb 13, 1960. p. A7.
  6. ^ Philip Scheuer (Apr 22, 1960). "Compassion Ideal to Guide Stevens: Producer Tells Preparations on 'Greatest Story Ever Told'". Los Angeles Times. p. A9.
  7. ^ "FILMLAND EVENTS: RAYMOND BURR CAST IN 'DESIRE IN DUST'". Los Angeles Times. June 2, 1960. p. A13.
  8. ^ Philip Scheuer (July 13, 1960). "Hollywood Steals Political Thunder: Davis Jr.'s Solo Show Due; 'Raisin's' Chicago Authentic". Los Angeles Times. p. A9.
  9. ^ "FILMLAND EVENTS: GENEVIEVE PAGE SET FOR ROLE IN 'EL CID'". Los Angeles Times. Dec 16, 1960. p. A12.
  10. ^ "Smith p 194".
  11. ^ "Smith p 194".
  12. ^ "Smith p 194".
  13. ^ Smith p 194
  14. ^ Philip Scheuer (Aug 30, 1963). "MGM to Assemble Comic 'Big Parade': Levine's 'Say It Isn't So'; Cinerama Claims Patent". Los Angeles Times. p. D13.

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