The Walt Disney features, made beginning in 1954 for Disney's weekly TV series, could be considered the original Made-For-TV Movies, but the concept officially began in 1964 with NBC-TV and Universal's "Project 120" series. "The Killers", starring Ronald Reagan was slated to be the first, but it was released to theaters first after it was deemed too violent for television. After several years of TV Movies, the genre was made a weekly event in 1969 when ABC-TV debuted the successful 90 minute ABC Movie of the Week.
In 1972, ABC attempted to duplicate this success with a weekly Saturday morning animated series entitled The ABC Saturday Superstar Movies. The hour long series, with a budget reported to be around $300,000 per film, had wrap-around animation supplied by Hanna-Barbera Productions and consisted of animated movies, pilots and specials from various production companies geared towards a juvenile audience.
Watch the opening to the Saturday Superstar Movie that I posted on YouTube
Go To Saturday Superstar Movies 1: Filmation
Go To Saturday Superstar Movies 2: Hanna-Barbera
Go To Saturday Superstar Movies 3: Other Producers
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