Saturday, January 30, 2010

Old Tucson Studios

Fri - Jan. 29th
We spent the whole day at Old Tucson Studios, Arizona's Hollywood in the Desert, where over 600 feature films have been made, more than any other city except NY or LA. These girls are doing a can-can performance at the saloon.

Here is a shoot out in front of the hotel between Billy the Kid and a couple other gang members. The first movie ever filmed here was "Arizona" in 1939 with the Tucson Mountains in the background. The set was built of adobe bricks by the local Tohono Indians.

After the movie it was leased to the local Jaycees. They opened it on weekends for tours by donation. The sets were rented for $60 a day for movies. In 1960 it was revamped and opened to the public as a theme park. 15,000 people showed up the first day.

Liz Taylor did the movie "Poker Alice" to promote it. This is the fake river built for the movie "Rio Lobo" with John Wayne. 5,000 gallons of water were stored in a water tank. When someone yelled action, the plug was pulled and they had a raging river. Otherwise it was dry. Now they recirculate the water, so it is always full. John Wayne did three
other movies here, "McClintock", "Rio Bravo", and "El Dorado".

Here is the local bath house for cowboys in off the trail. Depending on the needs of any particular movie, the look of the whole town was changed. For "The Three Amigos" all the buildings were stuccoed over to create a Mexican village.

This is the set for the TV series "High Chaparral" 1966-1971. Note the sign Rattlesnake Mine and the smaller one that says rattlesakes have right of way on the trail.

This was the mission where they did a show to demonstrate how stunts are done. Note the escaped convict falling off the tower, having just been shot by the sheriff.

This is Golden Gate Mountain seen in over 500 productions such as "The Lost City of Gold", a Lone Ranger episode, and Little House on the Prairie and Father Murphy in Mankato, Mn.

Here is a peddler of an elixir that cures everything.
He had to hurry off when word came that the folks from the last village he visited, were coming to give him a rope party.

I think John is thinking ahead about what to do with me when I kick the bucket.

Hmmm. Maybe this is a second option, so he can keep me with him. I'm sure he would enjoy the peace and quiet, no nagging.

Here are two joshua trees at the back side of the jail. They have train rides, stage coach rides and trail rides here, too.

Pat Garrett's deputy is testing out the gallows for the upcoming hanging of Billy the Kid.

But once again, the Kid makes a last minute escape, his last one.

These studioes have been used entirely or partially in 202 movies, 148 TV shows, music videos, 50+ commercials. It is a favorite of the BBC.

A posted list of rules for old west towns. Following is a list of some of the films that have been done here, some just in part. Bonanza, Yuma, Joe Kidd, Hombre, Death Wish, The Hanged Man, The Gun and the Pulpit, A Knife for the Ladies, Petrocelli, Hawmps, An American Terrorist, Young Pioneers, Pray for the Wildcats, Posse, Outlaw Jose Wales, The Quest, Wanted, The Sundance Woman, How the West was Won, Incredible Rocky Mountain Race, Go West Young Girl, Buffalo Soldiers, Dooley Brothers, Frisco Kid, The Gambler, Hart to Hart, Calamity Jane, Canon Ball Run 2, Flashpoint, Judge Roy Bean, Desperado, Once Upon a Texas Train, Red River, Stones for Ibarra, Young Riders, Grizzly Adams, Young Guns II, Four Eyes and Six Guns, Gunsmoke III, Geronimo, Tombstone, Legends, Lightning Jack, The Quick and the Dead, Cutoff, Ghost Town, Miracle at Sage Creek, Al's Beef, Burr, Four Guys, Ten Wanted Men, The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing, Monte Walsh, The Bells of St. Mary, The Alamo, The Last Hard Man and last, but not least, The Sacketts.
Lots of them I have never heard of or can't remember, but I'm sure lots of them bring back good memories for lots of you.
See you at the movies.

1 comment:

  1. Keep telling that history:

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    How do you keep a people down? ‘Never' let them 'know' their history.

    The 7th Cavalry got their butts in a sling again after the Little Big Horn Massacre, fourteen years later, the day after the Wounded Knee Massacre. If it wasn't for the 9th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers, there would of been a second massacre of the 7th Cavalry.

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    I hope you’ll enjoy the novel. I wrote it from my mini-series movie of the same title, “RaPR” to keep my story alive. Hollywood has had a lot of strikes and doesn't like telling our stories...its been “his-story” of history all along…until now. The movie so far has attached, Bill Duke directing, Hill Harper, Glynn Turman and a host of other major actors in which we are in talks with…see at;

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