CANNON MONTH 2: 2076 Olympiad (1977)

How rare is this Cannon movie? Not only can I not find a place to watch it, I can’t even find poster art for it.

Here’s what I do know, thanks to director James R. Martin, who posted this on IMDB in 2008:

2076 Olympiad is an unrated film, reviewed in Chicago by Variety. By today’s standards, it would probably be an “R.” There was a year-long fight with the MPAA about a rating that is a story by itself. It was my first attempt at making a fictional feature-length film.

2076 Olympiad was picked up by Cannon Pictures originally and previewed in a number of locations, but did not do well up against a similar comedy Groove Tube that came out at the same time. There seemed to be room for only one. We got the film back from Cannon and tried another distributor, Cambridge Films, and they previewed it in a couple venues including George Town in DC. Ultimately we got the film back from Cambridge as well.

The film is essentially a mockumentary and satire of television coverage of sports and the Olympics in the year 2076 when even sex has become a sport. It is presented as 90 minutes of TV coverage complete with commercials, promos, news, and PSA’s. The main hosts for the events include Sandy Martin (no relation) and another commentator who sounds like Howard Cosell. Other actors in the film have gone on in the industry.

In 2076, no one actually has sex anymore, they transmit their emotions electronically to machines that create simulated non-explicit images of the encounters for replay.

2076 Olympiad had its moments but it was episodic and needed a unifying character or plot to tie it all together. The humor is bawdy, and there is some nudity but no explicit sex. Probably if there had been the film would have been more successful. As it is the film’s humor is mostly slapstick and sophomoric but entertaining at times. Looking back it could have been edited a lot tighter.

It was shot in 35mm, in Philadelphia in two weeks. The budget was small bthe ut production value was very good and the film looks like it had much higher budget.

I transfered the 35mm film to video in the early 90’s but the video master and 2 VHS copies have been lost. I have 2 35mm release prints and am thinking about doing another transfer to a digital format for DVD if there’s enough interest to warrant the cost.”

James seems to be still alive and if he is — get in touch with me. I need to know more.

Another poster remarked that Martin taught at Columbia College. I have no idea as this is his only movie.

In the year 2076 — well, obviously right? — the Olympic Games are sponsored by companies and the broadcast rights have been sold to a sex channel, which that the top sports are all sexual. So yes, there’s the idea. Why wasn’t it called 2069 Olympiad? Well, I do know the Olympics are every four years and this was made in 1976, but let’s sell this movie.

Sandy Martin, who plays Shiela, has had quite the career with her most famous role being Grandma in Napoleon Dynamite. John LaMotta, Boris in this movie, was the lead in One More Chance, which was Sam Firstenberg’s first movie. He’s also in Firstenberg’s Revenge of the NinjaNinja III: The DominationBreakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo and American Warrior, as well as playing Trevor Ochmonek on the TV show ALF.

There you go. 2076 Olympiad. The ball is in your court, Mr. Martin.

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