Monday, January 25, 2016

The handy Beltipod, for 1930s amateur filmmakers

This advertisment for the Beltipod (which has nothing to do with an iPod) is featured in the October 1934 issue of Home Movie Magazine, a staplebound publication that was issued by Homovie Publishing Company of Hollywood, California.

The Beltipod was, literally, a steadying tripod that could be attached to a belt. According to a 1933 news item:
"For the movie maker who feels that a tripod is cumbersome for certain types of filming, William J. Grace, Kirby Building, Dallas, Texas, has announced a light weight device called the Beltipod. Consisting of a telescoping rod with a tripod head on one end and a hook to slip over the belt on the other, this device will prove a valuable aid to making steadier pictures. Weighing only ten ounces, it is light enough to carry on the belt or in the hand with no trouble. The length, closed, is sixteen inches and it may be extended to nearly twice that length for tall users. It will prove a boon to the travel filmer who feels that the conventional tripod is too large to carry about easily."
This accessory cost $7.50, which would be the equivalent of about $134 today. Trying to become the next James Whale or George Cukor during the Great Depression was not cheap!

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