Protest 'Dolls' Action

Suit Attacks Utah Laws On Obscenity in Films

Salt Lake Tribune, 1 August 1970, page 30
The film "Beyond The Valley of the Dolls" is not obscene under the test laid down by the U.S. Supreme Court and does not "go beyond contemporary community standards," a suit filed in U.S. District Court alleges.

Provo City Corporation, Olen J. Eilis, Provo city attorney; and Fourth District Judge E. Nelson are named as defendents in the action filed by Nolan Hartley, the manager of the Academy Theatre in Provo and National General Corp.

The suit asks that some of Utah's laws on obscenity in films be declared unconstitutional and that the legal action taken against the Academy Theatre and National General Corp. by the defendants be declared an abridgement of their rights under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

On July 22, 1970 Academy Theatre began showing "Beyond The Valley of the Dolls."  It was booked for a two-week showing under a contract with 20th Century-Fox Film Corp., the suit states.

The film is X-rated, which means no one under 18 may purchase a ticket, the action continues.

Mr. Ellis, on July 31, 1970, filed a complaint on behalf of Provo in Fourth District Court claiming the film "was obscene under the definition of obscenity found in Utah Code Annotated 76-39-11."

Judge Nelson issued a temporary restraining order barring the showing of the film in Provo and requiring the plaintiffs to produce the film.

In related court action, National General Corp., doing business as Uptown Theatre and Ted Kirkmeyer, theatre manager, filed a civil action in U.S. District Court Monday against Salt Lake City challenging the constitutionality of the city's motion picture ordinance.