JETHRO BODINE’S BEVERLY HILLBILLIES MANSION & CASINO
Born the son of Max Baer, Sr., one time world heavyweight boxing champion in 1934-1935, Max Baer, Jr. graduated from the University of Santa Clara with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Commerce. Shortly thereafter, he was signed by Warner Brothers as a Contract Actor.
From 1962 until 1971 he starred in the hit television series, The Beverly Hillbillies - the most watched television series of all time. The Beverly Hillbillies first aired on September 26, 1962. In just four weeks it was the Number One show in the country, marking the fastest rise ever to the number one rating. Since its debut, the series has been syndicated in 61 countries. Australia and the United Kingdom have been syndicating it for 28 straight years. Presently, it’s showing in five countries plus the United States. In many countries the series runs for a few years, then returns two or three years later and runs again. The series popularity is verified by the A.C. Neilson rating system, which reveals that eight of the show’s episodes were in the top twenty shows of all time. One particular episode, which aired on CBS on January 8, 1964, is the highest rated one-half hour television show from 1960 to present. At the time The Beverly Hillbillies was number one, their share of audience was 50 million per show. When it left prime time, more than 25 million were still watching every week. As further confirmation of the show’s recognizability and popularity, the special one-hour retrospective titled The Legend Of The Beverly Hillbillies, which aired on May 24, 1993, was the fourth highest rated prime-time show in the weekly Neilson ratings. In addition, 20th Century Fox produced a $40-million feature film, The Beverly Hillbillies, which was released in 1993.
Following his role as Jethro Bodine in The Beverly Hillbillies, Baer wrote and produced the motion picture Macon County Line, (1974) which held the record for the largest grossing movie per dollar invested of all time (at that time) until the Blair Witch Project (1999). Macon was made for $110,000 cash & it grossed almost $25 million at the box office.
Ever innovative, Baer created a new way to produce motion pictures. With little money he knew he could not compete in a big budget, star oriented industry. Baer initiated the idea of using a popular song title as a way to produce a low-cost, high-profit motion picture entitled, Ode To Billy Joe (1976) was produced at a cost of $1.1 million. Box office earnings were $27 million, plus earnings in excess of $2.65 million (foreign), $4.75 million (television) and $2.5 million (video cassette). Since Ode To Billy Joe, the motion picture industry has capitalized on the trend, with more than 100 song title movies. Max Baer originated the idea of using a hit song as the star attraction for his films. The song title became the recognizable star of the film. It became a brand! Ode To Billy Joe represented the first of it’s kind when the title to an old hit song was used as the star of a movie - - - making movie history.
Now Max Baer plans to revolutionize the casino industry through his unique appreciation of brand appeal.
Baer retired to his home at Lake Tahoe, Nevada in 1980. Since 1985 he has been studying the gaming business from a new marketing approach (i.e., how to deliver people into the hotel/casino and keep them for longer periods of time with the lowest cost in advertising and marketing). At Lake Tahoe, Baer witnessed tourists paying $5 to $6 to enter the "Ponderosa Ranch", a location used for just a couple of episodes of the TV series Bonanza. Once inside the grounds, there was not much to see, but the tourists nevertheless enjoyed it. Baer had the beginnings of an idea. If people would pay to see next to nothing merely because of a well-known television series, then surely those same tourists would be happy to pay "nothing" to see something. Namely The Beverly Hillbillies, whose TV audience was much larger.
For the last four decades, Max Baer has been known to the world as "Jethro Bodine" from The Beverly Hillbillies. It is an unshakable identity, regardless of his other successes and projects. Through the years, Baer has become objective about his identity, and has seen in it a marvelous marketing opportunity with clear application to the resort and gaming industry. With this in mind he started and after two years acquired all the contracts necessary in obtaining the rights for marketing Jethro Bodine’s Beverly Hillbillies Mansion & Casino.
"That’s simple", says Baer. "Take the worldwide recognition of The Beverly Hillbillies and combine a shopping, gaming and entertainment complex with a great location and you can’t lose." According to Baer, "Americans love brands. They feel comfortable with well-known products and identify with them on a very personal level" Baer is banking on the ability of his team to translate the "get lucky, get rich" message of the series into exciting entertainment opportunities that will draw locals and a large share of the five million plus visitors to the Reno market.
Baer has the rights from CBS to use The Beverly Hillbillies theme for casinos, hotels, theme parks, restaurants, cosmetics and consumables. There is no doubt that the name of the show is recognizable worldwide. Demographically, those people who grew up watching the show are the adults of today, and are very familiar with the warmth, humor, and good old-fashioned American fun the series provided them. The name recognition is the method that Jethro Bodine’s Beverly Hillbillies Mansion & Casino intends to use to attract large numbers of visitors.
The Beverly Hillbillies provides more than just a highly recognizable brand name. Max Baer has translated the characters recognition into entertainment experiences and total project theme opportunities that are unique. The realization of Max’s ideas is a consumer draw even without the gaming experience. A few of Max’s ideas, for the casino, hotel, and retail entertainment complex are outlined on the following pages.
The "Oil Derrick" will become the landmark for Carson Valley, Nevada. The Oil Derrick will draw the attention of all passers by and will be visible from miles around.
The exterior of the property will be designed and landscaped as Jethro's version of the beautifully elegant Beverly Hillbillies Mansion, but five times larger (with additions by architect Jethro Bodine). "Beverly Hills that is. . . swimming pools, movie stars!"
Once inside the casino, the decor will make the guests feel at home with the elegance of a Beverly Hills Mansion complete with chandeliers, elegant staircases, palm trees and combined with the home spun charm of The Beverly Hillbillies.
The hotel rooms will be upscale with jacuzzi tubs appropriate for a Beverly Hills mansion and will have a touch of "hillbilly" flavor with rooms dedicated to the colors and tastes of Jed's room, Granny's room, Elly May's room, Jethro's room and the Drysdale's suites.
The bathrooms will have elegant bleached-wood outhouse doors with brass beer bottle door handles. However, the interior will be "ultra" Beverly Hills! "Don’t worry . . . your bottom won’t get splinters!!!"
The slot machines will no longer have the images of lemons, cherries, and oranges. Instead the unique images will be The Beverly Hillbillies characters including Jed (Clampett's Cash ™), Jethro (Bubblin’ Crude™), Elly May, Granny (Moonshine Money™) and Duke the Dog. $ Ching $ Ching $
A large arcade will be designed at the children’s center, utilizing the characters from the series. The adults can gamble & enjoy themselves worry free while knowing their children are in the safety and security of a guarded environment filled with hours of fun for the youngins!
The old cabin from back in the hills will become Granny’s Shotgun Weddin’ Chapel and will be placed in an area where the players and other people can watch and enjoy real weddings take place. The weddings will be presided over by "granny" who will be a real Justice of the Peace and will perform weddings for people that want to get married, people that are already married and people who want to get hitched just for the fun of it in a mock "shotgun weddin’". The event will be taped from eight video cameras from which a wedding movie will be edited together. Take the video back home to your friends and family for a "one-of-a-kind" experience giving them incomparable laughter & entertainment. As an extra (on occasion) we will have guest celebrity "Granny's" who may be men dressed as Granny to make an even more fun-filled experience!
similar to the one shown in the TV series will be built, catering to
the hotel guest. "Keep your eyes open for the flamingos and Elly
The Beverly Hillbillies Limousine comes complete with its own "still", backfires, snorts & whistles. The limousine is available to take you and your guests to and from the airport as well as other casino or sites of interest in the area. "Hot Dawg! You never can tell, that might be Jethro drivin’ that limo!!!"
Uncle Jed’s Country Store gift shop will have specialty items including: Granny’s Cookbook, Granny Glasses, Elly May Bras, Beverly Hillbillies mugs and cups, Beverly Hillbillies rope belts, T-Shirts, hats, music boxes, "purrfume", various cosmetics and a large variety of collectables. There will also be consumables such as Jethro’s Beverly Hillbillies Pork Sausage, Elly’s Critters Dog & Cat Food and Jethro’s Jerky, just to name a few! Elly May’s Critters will offer a variety of cute & cuddly stuffed toy animals that will be roaming the country store waiting for a good family to take them home!
Highly themed restaurants with country-style specialties include from having your own privately enclosed booth at Jethros All You Can Et Buffet to gourmet meals at Drysdale’s Fancy Eatin’s for the Richuns (complete with "billiard" tables & pot passers!) and Granny’s Vittles & Hog Jowls Coffee Shop.
Elly May’s Buns Bakery where the buns and biscuits are to die for (and some people have!)
Have a swig from Granny’s special "XXX" jug at Granny’s White Lightnin’ Bar. "Watch out for the falling rain & lightning!"
The waitresses will be dressed like Elly May (padded like Dolly Parton). The dealers like Jethro (because he’s so dumb that anyone can beat him!), and the pit bosses like Uncle Jed (the man of honesty & integrity!). "Hey, is that the real Jethro I see over there dealing those cards?!?!?"
Casino chips will have pictures of the characters from the series, so customers can collect all of them. "What a great keepsake!"
The casino will
feature 4'x6' pictures from the series, similar to the original MGM
Grand in Las Vegas, which featured large blowups of MGM’s major
stars, like Gable, Tracy, Hepburn, Garland, etc.
The Commerce Bank of Beverly Hills will be the cashier cage. "You don’t have to worry about keeping your eyes on Mr. Drysdale’s sticky fingers!!!!"
With these theme related touches, and many more, The Beverly Hillbillies experience can become a marketing coup that will be irresistible to millions of guests.
"Y’all come back now, ya hear!"