Last month, for the first time in over 5 years, I was officially back in the movie business, if only for few days. My friend Joeprops was in Atlanta, having taken over as propmaster of The Vampire Diaries. After completing a few small graphics jobs Joe pitched me on cool new project: illustrating a prop journal that one of the characters was slated to find in an upcoming episode (now known as “The Turning Point“, which aired on November 19, 2009). After thinking about the job for a day I agreed to have a whack at the drawings and spent the following weekend studying old Continue reading On Being a Vampire Diarist
(Please Tweet this if you get a chance) Last night I went to see the new hit comedy horror film “Zombieland” with a bunch of my friends who were on the crew and I must confess right up front that I’m extremely jealous that I didn’t work on this show; what it lacks in plot it makes up for with style, and it’s certainly going to look great on their resumes. I am, however, disappointed about one thing this film left out:
Katrina Rice didn’t get a screen credit.
Now, those of you outside the film industry need to realize that this is something Continue reading Zombieland Ate Katrina Rice
While Tim Burton’s film Batman may have been my first exposure to a big budget feature, Robocop 3 was the very first film I was paid to work on as a crewmember. Mind you, that pay came late in the day, as I’d been working for free as an intern before that. Being a intern to Props in the late 1980s entailed a lot of: Continue reading Robocop 3 : Boom, Baby, Boom!!
This afternoon I began porting old video from a cache of VHS-C tapes sequestered deep in the bowels of the Drewcave. One of the first tapes I wanted to “take digital” was footage we captured from the 1991 production of the movie “Robocop 3”, a lackluster sequel to the original blockbuster. This footage is from actor Robert Burke being sealed into the Continue reading Robocop the Cosmonaut
The year was 1998.
The place was a bend in the Yellow River, just south of Porterdale, about 40 miles east of Atlanta.
The movie was False River, a film best viewed while intoxicated, being savaged by weasels or in the throes of a malarial fever dream.
We had just returned to work after a weekend of torrential rain and the river was high. Really, really high.
Dark shapes keep appearing along the top of the churning, rock-strewn rapids then slipping below again.
Those were turtle heads.
Snapping Turtle heads to be precise…. and they were everywhere.
Dozens of them covered the width of the Continue reading Give Me the Barrel
Fox is about to release a remake of the Hollywood classic “The Day the Earth Stood Still” in a week or so and I realized that this is as good a time as any to tell you the story of my connection to the original 1951 version of that film. Be warned: it is a long and rambling story, filled with teenage nudity, a strip club, a Waffle Continue reading The Day That Drew Stood Still
This year I made it my goal to share all of my on-set photos with all of you via my Flickr account. The most recent batch of photos I’ve uploaded are from an ABC made-for-TV movie originally titled “Saratoga Summer” (released as “A Horse for Danny“). Shot in Lexington, Kentucky and Evansville, Indiana, the movie tells the heartwarming tale of a spunky girl named Danny (a spunky young Leelee Sobieski) and her horse-training Uncle Eddie (Robert Urich) as they struggle to make their mark in the hurly-burly world of horse racing. Young Leelee was Continue reading Saratoga Summer
Due to the untimely demise of actor Heath Ledger and the recent one-car accident by beloved entertainer Morgan Freeman, the American mass media has gleefully started pushing the idea that the latest Batman film “The Dark Knight” is cursed. And, while I do have my own infinitesimally tiny connection to Tim Burton’s original Batman picture, I know nothing about this latest Batman show and its potential damnations. I do, on the other hand, have the scoop (including photos!) on a Patrick Swayze film that was absolutely, positively cursed†; from an aneurysm at the beginning to an accidental explos Continue reading The Curse of the Black Dog
This is a photo of actor Jeff Garlin holding a box of doughnuts, standing next to Leo Murphy, the Propmaster from Robocop 3 (shot here in Atlanta back in 1991). Now, I know that it’s Jeff Garlin, because I remember taking the photo. But… there’s no way that you can tell that it’s Jeff because the film was “skunked”, obliterating part of the image, which was often the case of Polaroid film on set..
Yes, the title of this post sounds exciting and dirty, but it is in fact a very accurate description of some special effect chairs that were built over at Scenario Custom Scenery a few years ago for a set of commercials for Badcock Furniture. I personally worked on the first chair shown in this video…. check it out and I’ll explain a bit more afterward:
Okay, in the first part of that video you saw a chair’s upholstery being sucked up into a vacuum cleaner, right? Well here’s how it worked…. Continue reading Spinning, Flopping, Bucking & Sucking