Blood Circus (partially found Santo Gold film; 1985)

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Handbill for the film.

Status: Partially Found

Santo Gold's Blood Circus, produced in 1985 by Santo Victor Rigatuso (aka Robert "Bob" Harris), is a sci-fi movie about man-eating aliens from "Zoran" invading Earth and their clash with professional US and USSR wrestlers. Rigatuso, playing the character of Santo Gold in a scene recorded at the Baltimore Civic Center, performs a song before the film's climactic brawl. The lyrics, however, have nothing to do with the film and are about Rigatuso's Santo Gold business.

The film starred a few professional wrestlers from WWF (now WWE) and was made on a budget of 2 million dollars. It was promoted through infomercials for Rigatuso's Santo Gold mail-order jewelry business.

In 1987, after 2 years of editing the film, Rigatuso was having trouble finding a distributor for it and decided to rent a few local cinemas and screen it himself over the course of one week (although he only held a few showings, and the film didn't gross anywhere near its 2 million dollar budget). "Scream Bags" were also given out at the screenings as a promotional tie-in, each side of the bag sporting a long poem about Blood Circus, with one of the sides containing a coupon for a free diamond ring from Santo Gold.

After 1987, Blood Circus wasn't shown publicly and thought to be lost for years until a secret screening at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz in 2014. In 2008, the Santo Gold company announced on their website [1] that they had re-discovered a 35mm copy of the film, and were looking for producers for an official release. No producers signed on, and the original 35mm film reels were eventually offered up on eBay in 2011,[2] with a starting price of 21 million dollars and a buy-it-now price of 750 million (including insurance), or an option to buy a partnership in the film. No bids or partnerships were made, and the reels didn't sell.

Two and a half years later, in late December of 2013, the reels for the film were offered up on eBay by a different seller. The highest bid fell below the reserve price, so the reels were unsold.[3]

In April of 2014, the film would finally be screened again at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz in Austin, TX, as apart of a secret screening.[4] A year later, around May 27th, 2015, an LPP 35mm print of the film (presumed to be the same print from the 2013 listing and the 2014 Drafthouse Ritz Screening) was put up for sale on eBay.[5] However, unlike the previous listing, this print only has a buy option. The print was available for $3,500 in June 2015.

Future plans for releasing the film remain unknown. The only footage of Blood Circus that has surfaced online are brief snippets as seen in an old Santo Gold infomercial.


Santo Gold jewellery infomercial featuring clips of Blood Circus; part 1 of 2.

Santo Gold jewellery infomercial featuring clips of Blood Circus; part 2 of 2.

Justin Whang's video on the subject.

See Also