RKO (Radio-Keith-Orpheum) Pictures is an American film production and distribution company. As Radio Pictures Inc. and then RKO Radio Pictures Inc., it was one of the Big Five studios of Hollywood's Golden Age. The business was formed after the Keith-Albee-Orpheum (KAO) theater chains and Joseph P. Kennedy's Film Booking Offices of America (FBO) studio were brought together under the control of the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in October 1928. RCA chief David Sarnoff engineered the merger to create a market for the company's sound-on-film technology, RCA Photophone. By the mid-1940s, the studio was under the control of investor Floyd Odlum.RKO has long been celebrated for its cycle of musicals starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the mid- to late 1930s.
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The U. K. arm of Rupert Murdoch's media empire may be in trouble due to the ongoing phone hacking scandal there, but the licenses that News Corp. holds for the 27 TV stations it owns in the U. S. are probably safe, at least for the immediate future.
Film News: Veteran exec was in charge of film services, library -- Milford "Mel" Rydell, who worked in film services at MGM, died Nov. 17 in Torrance, Calif. , of congestive heart failure. He was 86.
Film News: Thesp was featured in action films like 'The Enforcer' -- Thesp John Crawford, who appeared in more than 200 titles in his over 40-year career, died of a stroke on Sept. 21 in Newbury Park, Calif. He was 90.