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‘Amos ‘n’ Andy’ videos pulled after CBS challenge

August 19, 1997

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ The video renaissance of ``The Amos ‘n’ Andy Show″ has ended after a legal threat by CBS, the owner of the TV comedy that was pulled out of syndication in 1966 because of protests over its racial stereotypes.

Bridgestone Multimedia, the Chandler, Ariz.-based distributor that had marketed videos of the early 1950s show, said it sold about 50,000 two-volume sets containing 10 episodes each before pulling it off store shelves.

The company is complying with the network’s cease-and-desist order even though it believes the shows are in the public domain, Shelly Barrios-LeVeille, Bridgestone’s vice president for sales and marketing, said Monday.

Ms. Barrios-LeVeille said Bridgestone offered to share its revenue from the show with CBS, but the network refused. A CBS spokeswoman declined to say whether the company plans to market the show itself.

The two-volume sets became Bridgestone’s top-seller since going on sale seven months ago. Bridgestone said the videos, sold through stores, mail order and TV, appealed to a cross section of buyers: white, black, young and old.

The show was a hit on radio with white actors playing black roles before it found popularity on TV with an all-black cast.

``Amos ‘n’ Andy″ originally ran on CBS from 1951 to 1953 but was pulled out of syndication in 1966 after protests by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The NAACP claimed the show portrayed blacks in a negative light.

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