‘Engine’ b’cast to fuel video sales

MCA/Universal Home Video is buying chunks of television time to not only showcase — but show –“The Little Engine That Could” to viewers in hopes of ensuring that the small-screen adaptation of the classic kiddie book will be a success as it chugs its way down the homevid tracks.

The distrib is purchasing half-hour blocks in early fringe in the top 56 markets to show a 24-minute version of the 30-minute vid from March 25 through April 10.

The video hits the streets March 31.

Andrew Kairey, the company’s senior VP, marketing and sales, said the studio has been “much more efficient” in use of its advertising budget and reach by purchasing the 30-minute blocks than by simply buying a bunch of 30-second spots. Further, other MCA/Universal homevid titles, including “Beethoven,””Fried Green Tomatoes” and “Shelley Duvall’s Bedtime Stories” will be cross-promoted throughout the program.

Clearances for the broadcast airing of “The Little Engine That Could” include WWOR, New York; KCAL, Los Angeles; and WFLD, Chicago.

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