Classic Hollywood: Summer was a different movie season before 'Jaws'
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Stay out of the water( Universal Studios )
By Susan King, Los Angeles Times staff writer
Besides scaring swimmers everywhere, "Jaws" changed the summer movie landscape.
Before the release of the Steven Spielberg-directed thrill ride on more than 400 screens on June 20, 1975, about a great white shark on a feeding frenzy around fictional Amity Island (Martha's Vineyard), the summer blockbuster didn't really exist. The studios' major films, such as "Lawrence of Arabia" and "The Sound of Music," would play in a big city's movie palace sometimes for more than a year before heading to the neighborhood theaters.
The studios knew, though, that the box office was stronger during the summer and released several now-classic movies during those summer months, but they were of a much wider variety than the diet of comic-book, sequel, animated and teen fare we see now. Here's a sampling of some of the seminal movies that were introduced during the summer.