So I've introduced myself over in the New Member thread and I'd like to share one of my favorite memories of growing up with a tie to Tinseltown. As you all know the Movie "The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming". Well I have personal association with this Movie and would like to tell the story, but a little background will be required.
My Father was an Attorney in private practice in Ft. Bragg, Ca. (Where I was born in the Hospital in Ft. Bragg, it is now a B & B called the Gray Whale Inn), and Gilroy, and Morgan Hill in northern California from the mid 50's to the late 70's. I don't know how his affiliation with some Hollywood productions was initiated or what his exact relationship with each different Movie was, because he was killed when I was 17 by a drunk driver. I do know that sometime in the late 50's he started to be the Attorney for Personnel contracts on several Movie productions up to about 1969/70 when he became Senior Counsel for the Ca. Division of Real Estate where he was until killed in 1973. And I didn't care enough to ask any questions of my Mother until 30 years later, some of her memories were muddied by then.
As to what I do remember, was that the one spring/summer/fall when my whole world was turned upside down by a bunch of people from out of town. I was born in 1956, and in 1965 there were a lot of changes that summer & fall in the Duty household. I was 8-9 years old. The first was when my Father told us we were going to have to move out of the House on the bluff overlooking the Ocean we were renting, just for a couple of months. We moved to the House next door for what seemed like forever (But was probably 3-4 months?). Now as a neighborhood kid with free reign on our bikes, I and my best friend haunted the set almost daily and all day as well sometimes.
My Father was on Set almost every day as well (Don't know if he was needed, but maybe he just wanted to be there). When the Movie began shooting all of the principal actors would walk over to our house and and drink coffee around the Kitchen Table, while my Mother would make breakfast for a lot of them (She told me she was paid). I would then have an hour or so of intermittent horseplay with Alan Arkin, Brian Keith, John Law, the Russian Heartthrob, Jonathan Winters, Carl Reiner, Theodor Bickel, Paul Ford and a few of the other Actors (When they weren't rehearsing their scenes and accents). The kid in the Movie I didn't hang with much, I remember him being a Dick and a whiny voice! Usually not all of them each day, but some every day. I remember that my Mom had a schedule taped to the fridge that showed who would be there each day so she knew what to prepare for breakfast. The other two meals that ate on set (Which I did to, for a free lunch, A Lot lot) In a typical day we would ride over to the old house a couple hundred yards away and watch for a couple hours until we became bored.
When they filmed the Town scenes in Noyo Harbor (Doubling for Mass) I was in the crowd for a couple of weeks, so because of this I got paid for 10-12 days of be an Extra! Big deal for a 9 year old!
My personal connection were many many ways during this filming.
1. The Dog in the Movie was our Family dog, Muffett
2. Our house was used
3. Our kitchen was used as multiple locations in buildings for several scenes
4. The Volkswagen used was my Mom's car
5. I was a paid Extra and if you pause the DVD I can be seen at most, barely, at least 3 different times
6. Noyo Harbor was my stomping grounds, and most of the Houses pictured I was very familiar with, being my friends houses for exterior shots, etc.
7. The filming dominated the town during this period, that's all we talked about and in the Local Kid hierarchy I was the Kings Nuts, cause I was the closest to it and could come and go on the set at any time.
8. I'm sure now looking back, My Father made money off every connection to our Family!
In 1968 or so we moved to Alhambra Heights near LA, (No longer a City). During the next couple of years My Father would have BBQ's on Sat and Sundays and we would have over to our house numerous TV and Movie Cowboy/Western B grade stars. Strother Martin, Ben Davis, Michael J. Pollard, Ty Hardin, Chris jones, Stoney Burke, Dub Taylor, and many many more, but those are other stories!
It was just a Fun Fun time and something I'll always treasure!
And that's My Story!
Have a Great Day