Around the World in 80 Days Do It Yourself Anniversary Party Kit

Mike Todd, Elizabeth Taylor

Hollywood: N.p., Circa 1957. Vintage party kit produced by Elizabeth Taylor and Mike Todd in celebration of the first anniversary of the Los Angeles premiere of their 1957 film "Around the World in 80 Days." Kit includes an illustrated two-color bifold folder, which houses an introductory letter from "Liz and Mike," a two page instruction manual, and a bifold "Around the World Menu."

Taylor and Todd were married on February 2, 1957, four months after the New York premiere of Todd's epic production "Around the World in 80 Days," which would go on to win five Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The couple spent much of their first year together celebrating and promoting the film. On the first anniversary of the film's release, Todd threw a party at Madison Square Garden, attended by 18,000 people, and featured on a 90-minute CBS telecast. The broadcast was a "spectacular flop," according to Life magazine, and in response Taylor and Todd took this decidedly different (and flippant) approach to the anniversary of the Los Angeles premiere.

The introductory letter announces the year anniversary of the film's premiere at the Carthay Circle Theatre as "a good occasion for a real gala party," then goes on, facetiously, "but when ... we celebrated by having a little party at Madison Square Garden ... We have learned ... that these numbers are too great for us to handle comfortably. Therefore ... here's a DO IT YOURSELF ANNIVERSARY PARTY KIT."

The instructions include a playful breakdown of party categories: dress, decor, music, popcorn, service, and gifts, with a comic elaboration of each category, ending with the valediction: "Have fun. Liz and Mike." The menu includes a list of suggested foods from seven countries: England, France, Spain, India, China, Japan, and America.

Illustrated bifold folder on card stock: 9 x 11.5 inches. Light toning at the spine, else Near Fine.

Introductory Letter: 7.25 x 10.5 inches. Near Fine.

Instructions: 8.5 x 11 inches. Two leaves, stapled at the top left corner. Near Fine, with toning on the top right edge of the first page.

Menu: 7.5 x 5.5 inches. Bifold on card stock. Near Fine.

[Book #157076]