On February 18, 1954, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios premiered "The Long, Long Trailer", a feature film vehicle for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, stars of CBS TV's "I Love Lucy". The picture, based on the 1951 Clinton Twiss novel of the same name, was directed by Vincente Minnelli (Liza's dad) and featured Marjorie Main and Keenan Wynn.
A fictional Trailerite couple, Tacy and Nicky Collini, purchase a 36-foot New Moon "mobile apartment home" for a whopping $5,345.00 (a brand-new "Levittowner Number 1" tract house could have been had for $10,990 at the time).
The Collinis spend their honeymoon on the road and, as one might expect, several side-splitting scenes ensue.
"The Long, Long Trailer" ended up being MGM's top-grossing comedy film for several years and was a major shot in the arm for Michigan-based New Moon Homes. The success of the film contributed to a large increase in business for the manufacturer.
Original movie poster from MGM Studios
Above, we have a circa-1954 newspaper advertisement promoting the rig portrayed in "The Long, Long Trailer". New Moon Homes marketed it as their "I Love Lucy" model. Viewed today, "The Long, Long Trailer" is vastly entertaining. The movie is also an historic record of the Trailerite culture, a facet of mid-20th century Americana relegated, long ago, to misty, Technicolored memory.
Advert From The Beaver County Times (Beaver County, Pennsylvania)
Tacy and Nicky Collini's 8-wide New Moon rig extended 36 feet from stern-to-bow.