The Genesis Children (film)

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The Genesis Children (film)
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Year Released: 1972
MPAA Rating (USA): X
Director: Anthony Aikman
Starring: Vincent Child
Greg Hill
Peter Glawson

David Johnson
Jack Good
Butch Burr
Max Adams
Bubba Collins
Mike Good


The Genesis Children (1972), a film produced by Billy Byars, Jr., owner of Lyric International, features many of the young actors who appeared in Lyric's short naturist features and many magazines.

The movie premiered at the Encore movie theater in Los Angeles on 4 August 1972. The Los Angeles Times review by Kevin Thomas was titled "'The Genesis Children' a Gambol on the Beach" and summarized the movie in this manner:

There's enough earnestness to "The Genesis Children' (at the Encore) to allow for the possibility that its makers had something more in mind than an adolescent male nudie. [Los Angeles Times, 5 August 1972, p. B5]

The film received an X rating from the MPAA.

"The Genesis Children is really a very benign film. It was only the cumulative amount of nudity and the closeup shots of the pelvic area that brought about the X decision. Even the violence of the scene in which the boys attack the bus is well within the R category," said Dr. Aaron Stern, director of MPAA's code and rating administration. [Viola Hegyi Swisher, "Generating The Genesis Children", After Dark, September 1972, p. 18].

Display ads ran through 6 September that year, so presumably the film had at least that long a run.

Moved from Billy Byars, Jr.

The Genesis Children

Filmed in a beach below Salerno, Italy, the film was a failure with critics and the public.

"I discovered that one of the most valuable lessons any newcomer to film making can learn is this: the day of he yes-man is still with us. The people associated with the industry; the people working with producers, patting them on the back and saying, "What a work of art!" are not the same people who buy tickets, sit in the general audience; and make their own independent judgments.
"The making of a film becomes so personal, yet the mission of that film must be very public," he observed. "It's the man in the street who has final authority over whether this highly personal creation - my creation, in this instance - shall survive in the life-giving climate of public acceptance or die in the killing climate of public rejection."[Swisher, supra]

X rating and financial ruin

An online source says that the cost and box office failure of the film seriously damaged Byars's finances, even before the scandal.

"The Genesis Children is really a very benign film. It was only the cumulative amount of nudity and the closeup shots of the pelvic area that brought about the X decision. Even the violence of the scene in which the boys attack the bus is well within the R category," said Dr. Aaron Stern, director of-MPAA's code and rating administration. [Swisher, supra]
"You know, this is the most incredible thing," [Byars] brooded. "It's just unbelievable to me that the MPAA would comment to me that this film is dangerous, that it deserves an X. I think the MPAA has been the sole critic of my use of the young boys." [Swisher, supra]

External links