From the 1959 M-G-M Press Book

Lincoln Futura, Fabulous Car of Future, Makes Debut in MGM Film

One of the most talked-about stars of the new movie season has a shape like no other--and a reputation for being fast that won't be equaled for years to come.

A sure traffic-stopper (near riots already have taken place during her rare appearances in public), she makes her screen debut with Glenn Ford and Debbie Reynolds in the rip-roaring Metro-Golden-Mayer comedy release, "It Started With a Kiss."

And what she does to an eager sergeant and his showgirl bride in a little Spanish town shouldn't happen to a General--Motors, that is.

The sleekest of model, there's nothing standard about her equipment and she's way ahead of her time  With dimensions that pale those of run-of-the-mill glamour girls, she measures 19-7-52.8 (length-width-height) and tips the scales near the two-ton mark.

The new star is an automobile, called the Lincoln Futura.  A car of tomorrow, developed at a cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars by the Ford Motor Company, it was loaned to play a major part in the new movie, describing the hilarious misadventures of a couple in Spain after winning the most fantastic automobile ever designed.

Movie stardom, however, wasn't foreseeably in the Futura's future when she first saw the light of day on a drawing board in Detroit.  She was initially destined to be an experimental vehicle, conceived to test public reaction to her rocket-age styling and to furnish important engineering data compiled through her advanced mechanical design.

When Hollywood producer, Aaron Rosenberg, set about casting "It Started With A Kiss," however, her drive to film fame began.  Rosenberg needed the most luxurious car in existence.  Rumors about the Futura reached him.  Fifteen color photographs and ten cross-country telephone calls later, negotiations took place, agreements were reached, contracts were signed--and a star was born.

Like many newcomers to the film capital, Futura was given a screen test.  Only one flaw, cinematically speaking, was found in her smooth performance.  It seems, to be more CinemaScopically appealing, she needed a dye job.

Originally a pearlescent, frost-blue white, painted with lacquer made from the distillation of fish scales, she became more photogenic when painted red.  Thus it was as lustrous, low-silhouetted, double-bubble top vision in vermillion that she arrived in Spain for location sequences filmed in Madrid, Granada, Seville, Barcelona and Segovia.

The plot of "It Started With a Kiss" called for the Futura to cause such commotion in Spain that international complications were exploded.  It was also to provide the cause of the romantic fire-works set off when Sergeant Glenn Ford, with an expensive raffle-won car and a base pay of $340, honeymoons with showgirl Debbie Reynolds, who still hasn't forgiven herself for not marrying a millionaire.

Futura filled the bill as called for by the script.  In fact, the car caused such excitement while scenes were being filmed in Madrid streets that special government policeman had to be assigned to break up crowds which assembled against regulations.

Back