A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from January 22, 2015
“You can fool all the people all the time if the advertising is right and the budget is big enough”

“You cannot fool all of the people all of the time” is an old saying, frequently (and falsely) attributed to Abraham Lincoln. American film producer Joseph E. Levine (1905-1987) is credited with saying:

“You can fool all the people all the time if the advertising is right and the budget is big enough.”

It’s not known when Levine first said this. He was asked about the quotation in a 1977 newspaper interview:

Some time ago you are supposed to have said, “You can fool all of the people all of the time if the advertising budget is big enough.” Do you still think so?
“Things have changed. Twenty years ago you could sell sprocket holes in film, and I did.”



Wikipedia: Joseph E. Levine
Joseph Edward Levine (September 9, 1905 – July 31, 1987) was an American film producer. At the time of his death it was said he was involved in 497 movies as a producer, distributor or financier. These included The Lion in Winter, The Producers, The Graduate, and Carnal Knowledge; he was also responsible for the US releases of Godzilla and Hercules, which helped revolutionise film marketing.
(...)
Quotes
“You can fool all of the people if the advertising is right.”

27 May 1977, Independent, Press-Telegram (Long Beach, CA), “Hollywood Notes: Levine already has money back after $26 million for war epic” by Harry Tessel, Leisure sec., pg. 17, col. 1:
Fiery movie magnet Joseph E. Levine, who spent $26.7 million making a blockbuster, “A Bridge Too Far,” already has the money back, and the picture doesn’t open until mid-June.
(...) (Col. 3—ed.)
Some time ago you are supposed to have said, “You can fool all of the people all of the time if the advertising budget is big enough.” Do you still think so?

“Things have changed. Twenty years ago you could sell sprocket holes in film, and I did.”

Google Books
The Book of Hollywood Quotes
By Gary Herman
London: Omnibus P,
1979
Pg. 27:
You can fool all the people all the time if the advertising is right and the budget is big enough.
Joseph E. Levine.

Google Books
Halliwell’s Filmgoer’s Companion
By Leslie Halliwell
London: Grenada
1984
Pg. 97:
Joseph E. Levine: You can fool all the people all the time if the advertising is right and the budget is big enough.

New York (NY) Times
JOSEPH E.LEVINE, A TOWERING FIGURE IN MOVIE MAKING, IS DEAD
By NAN ROBERTSON
Published: August 1, 1987
Joseph E. Levine, one of the most successful and flamboyant producers and distributors in the history of the film industry, died yesterday at Greenwich (Conn.) Hospital after a short illness. He was 81 years old and lived in Greenwich.

The term movie mogul could have been invented for him. The man who said, ‘’You can fool all the people if the advertising is right,’’ who authorized a press release describing himself as ‘’a colossus towering above the lesser moguls of filmdom,’’ who brought the world ‘’Godzilla,’’ ‘’Attila’’ and ‘’Hercules,’’ as well as ‘’The Graduate,’’ ‘’Divorce - Italian Style,’’ Fellini’s ‘’8 1/2,’’ ‘’The Lion in Winter,’’ ‘’Two Women,’’ ‘’Darling,’’ ‘’The Producers’’ and ‘’A Bridge Too Far,’’ was truly larger than life.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Thursday, January 22, 2015 • Permalink