Sunday, June 08, 2014
Movie Ad of the Week: YOUNG GANGS FROM WILDWOOD HIGH (1983)
Hoping to catch some of the runoff from FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH, which was still playing second-run theaters and drive-ins in other parts of the country but wouldn't reach pay-TV for another six months, Aquarius Releasing opened the Sam Sherman/Independent-International production TEAM-MATES (1978) under the title YOUNG GANGS FROM WILDWOOD HIGH on 23 screens in the New York-New Jersey area on February 18, 1983.
This wasn't the only face lift the movie underwent. Sherman had first come up with the title YOUNG GANGS in 1980...
...but was too late to rumble with THE WARRIORS, THE WANDERERS, BOULEVARD NIGHTS, WALK PROUD, SUNNYSIDE and other gang pics of the late '70s.
This was after the film had come out as TEAM-MATES, with two different ad campaigns, and died.
"It played the USA Network, surprise surprise, but I could never license it to home video," Sherman told us in 2009. "The basic idea was that it was about the first girl to play on a high school football team. It didn’t work. It really wasn’t good, and yet it had some fine qualities about it. But it was really mishandled, and I didn’t spend much time on it. I guess I blame myself for not being a good producer on it. I kind of let the young people working on that picture kind of run it and they just ran off with it. I had to stop it, rewrite it, and then go ahead and reshoot it, months of editing to make any sense out of it. The big deal of the picture was the discovery of James Spader and Estelle Getty, the first picture they ever made."