Bedknobs and Broomsticks

Bedknobs and Broomsticks Premieres in London

With a bedknob, a broomstick, and the magic words “Treguna, Mekoides, and Tracorum Satis Dee,” moviegoers were first bewitched by Bedknobs and Broomsticks on this day in 1971 at the world premiere in London, England. The film was shown at the famed Odeon Theater in Leicester Square. The Odeon first opened its doors in 1937 and was home to many a movie premiere—its iconic 120-foot-tall tower soaring above Leicester Square. Just three years earlier, the non-Disney film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang premiered at the Odeon, which, like Bedknobs and Broomsticks, featured songs by Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman. Although still under contract with Disney while working on Chitty, Walt personally granted the Sherman Brothers permission to work on the film because he believed it would be a great opportunity for them. The Odeon was also home to the premiere of The Slipper and the Rose in 1976, for which the Shermans not only wrote the songs, but the screenplay as well. Perhaps the Odeon was a lucky charm for the boys. Every film of theirs that premiered at that theater was nominated for at least one Academy Award®, and you better believe that includes Bedknobs and Broomsticks for the song “The Age of Not Believing.” With the storyline taking place throughout London, D23’s Scott Wolf recalls a conversation he had with songwriter Robert B. Sherman. “They will shamelessly rip you off if you let them (as is implied in the song). Recently someone tried to sell me a broken picture frame, worth maybe five dollars, for £150 (which would be about $200).  The salesman insisted the frame was an antique. It wasn’t.”