July 12 in Sci-Fi History: Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea

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Jul 12, 2017

We talk a lot about franchises nowadays. Star Wars is no longer a series of stories about the Skywalker family; it's a franchise spawning multiple universe copies of itself. It's how we make money off a thing that already made money. It's bigger than us all.

One of the very first examples of this kind of thing was Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, which premiered on this day in 1961.

A huge success, the film stayed in theaters from July through late fall. It starred big names like Joan Fontaine, Robert Sterling and Peter Lorre. It even had Frankie Avalon (Annette was busy?), who sang the theme song. And then, in 1964 …

Yep, it was turned into a television show on ABC.

This is something we take for granted now – success equals continued milking of the cow. But it was pretty rare back then. But legit, they pulled the film sets right out of storage and went to town.

Team, look:

Also premiering on this day in 2013, Pacific Rim. Which … fine. It's got water and Guillermo del Toro, but it's still no Voyage ...

Tomorrow: The Last Starfighter. Get pumped, OMG!