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Friday 12 December 2014
Red Hot Chili Peppers confirm 'different' and 'unique' new album for 2015
Drummer Chad Smith also describes the LP as 'exciting' and 'challenging'
Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith has confirmed that his band will release a new album next year, labelling the LP as "different and unique".
The group released their last album 'I'm with You' in 2011, with the upcoming effort set to be their eleventh studio release to date.
Answering fan questions from Twitter via Rolling Stone, Smith revealed details about the new record.
"The new album is shaping up good," he said. "We've got lots of songs, and we're working with an unnamed producer who is really challenging us to find new ways to come up with new music. We've done the "guys get in the room and jam out songs, everybody playing together all at once" thing. And we wrote a bunch of songs that way. And we're now going to try another method that will be really challenging for us and will bring new, exciting results for the band. We've written and recorded in a way that we've never done before, so the record is going great. We all have high hopes that it's going to take off and we're going to do something very different and unique for the Red Hot Chili Peppers."
Smith continued: "As far as percussion goes, I foresee Mauro Refosco, the percussionist that we had record with us on the last record and tour with us, coming in and being a part of this record as well. I would think that he would add some nice, interesting percussive elements. But, as far as what I'm doing, I'm just playing my same old beat that I've been doing for 25 years, faster and slower."
"Anything we do is going to sound like Red Hot Chili Peppers. Certainly with Anthony [Kiedis] singing and the way that we play. We're just trying to break new ground and come up with something. All I can say is we're taking a different approach that is going to wield different results. We're going to probably write some more new songs this way, but we're also going to work on the ones that we have as well, which we've already done. We've already recorded some of the songs, just a few that we've been working on. But this is also going to be in addition to those. It's a new process. I don't know how long it's going to take. We'll have a record out next year."
As well as talking about the new album, Smith also approached the possibility of playing a whole album live in full and touring for the 25th anniversary of classic record 'Blood Sugar Sex Magik' in 2016.
"I wouldn't say "never" to anything," said of the idea. "But we're always moving forward and we don't look back too much. That seems to me that you're really going back. We have so much other material, and so much music that we want to play. But, again, I wouldn't say that we'd never do it, but it's not something that's ever really come up or discussed or talked about or anything. It's not going to happen anytime in the near future."
In October, the band's bass player Flea described the upcoming album as "super danceable". He told Rolling Stone: "It's cool. It's super danceable, funky shit and some real introspective, pretty stuff. It feels good, man, and it's fun to play it. I would hope that in a year from now, we have a record out and we're on a world tour."
The band's new album looks to be their first without long-time producer Rick Rubin since 'Mother's Milk', which was released in 1989.
Read more at http://www.nme.com/news/red-hot-chili-peppers/81710#VlHhxlYMorS8jVtt.99
on Saturday 08 November 2014
Nicki Minaj Pinkprint albums sold without 'Anaconda'
Nicki Minaj Pinkprint albums sold without 'Anaconda' after error
Copies of Nicki Minaj's The Pinkprint CD have been sold without the album's lead single 'Anaconda'.
Following what is assumed to be a production error, some fans have discovered that their deluxe edition copies of the LP contain an instrumental in place of the original track.
Nicki Minaj 'The Pinkprint' deluxe edition artwork
© Instagram / @nickiminaj
"WTF the deluxe cd of @NICKIMINAJ's #ThePrinkPrint I bought today has an instrumental where Anaconda should be @UniMusicIreland," tweeted Dublin-based Conor Behan.
"Returned my copy to Golden Discs, apparently all their stock of the deluxe ed is anaconda-less," he added.
It appears that the slip-up may be affecting orders throughout Europe, as fans in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands have also reported that their discs do not feature the song.
As the problem came to light, Target - which was exclusively issuing deluxe edition CDs in the US - canceled its pre-order shipments of the LP.
"Due to production issues, we are not currently accepting preorders on this album," reads a statement posted on its site.
"We hope to begin taking orders on the updated, correct version by 12/15/14. Please check back soon!"
Read more: http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a616333/nicki-minaj-pinkprint-albums-sold-without-anaconda-after-error.html#~oYi9fAwJFo9fHn#ixzz3Lk2zTCLD
Follow us: @digitalspy on Twitter | digitalspyuk on Facebook
on Saturday 08 November 2014
Tuesday 09 December 2014
Swedish Police Raid The Pirate Bay, Site Offline
Swedish Police Raid The Pirate Bay, Site Offline
Police in Sweden carried out a raid in Stockholm today, seizing servers, computers, and other equipment. At the same time The Pirate Bay and several other torrent-related sites disappeared offline. Although no official statement has been made, TF sources confirm action against TPB.
For many years The Pirate Bay has been sailing by the seat of its pants so any downtime is met with concern from its millions of users.
This morning, for the first time in months, The Pirate Bay disappeared offline. A number of concerned users emailed TF for information but at that point technical issues seemed the most likely culprit.
However, over in Sweden authorities have just confirmed that local police carried out a raid in Stockholm this morning as part of an operation to protect intellectual property.
“There has been a crackdown on a server room in Greater Stockholm. This is in connection with violations of copyright law,” read a statement from Paul Pintér, police national coordinator for IP enforcement.
Police are staying quiet on the exact location of the operation and the targets involved but the fact that the national police IP chief is involved at this early stage suggests something sizable.
In addition, expert file-sharing case prosecutor Fredrik Ingblad has commented on the raid, further adding weight to the incident.
“There were a number of police officers and digital forensics experts there. This took place during the morning and continued until this afternoon. Several servers and computers were seized, but I cannot say exactly how many,” Ingblad told SR.
Ingblad would not be drawn on any arrests during the operation but TorrentFreak has learned that police may have detained at least one man connected to the site.
While it seems certain that The Pirate Bay has been targeted today, it was not the only casualty. Several other torrent related sites including EZTV, Zoink, Torrage and the Istole tracker are also down.
Update: The Pirate Bay’s forum Suprbay.org is also offline. The same goes for Bayimg.com and Pastebay.net.
Breaking news story, more as we have it.
on Saturday 08 November 2014
Friday 05 December 2014
Danny Ferrington One of the Few Truly Original Luthiers
Master Guitar Maker
Fretboard Guitar Journal held and event on January 22 for guitar maker Danny Ferrington in Los Angeles.
Watch this impromptu performance of Warren Zevon’s “Carmelita,” performed by Jackson Browne, writer/musician
Adam Levy and Danny Ferrington himself.
“Musicians, not guitar makers, are who I've paid attention to. I've known how to make them for a long time but I continue to learn from musicians, that's what has guided me in my craft.
I have lived in Los Angeles since 1980. I've accomplished so much with this craft in my life. It will never get better than my dear friend George Harrison when we first met tell me he had played a guitar I had done for Jeff Lynne, he said, “I knew when I played that guitar that you did for Jeff, that you knew something.”
Follow Danny on
Here is a man that has crafted guitars, mandolins, violins and more for elite of the entertainment world and remains an incredibly humble individual.
Danny’s instruments are known for quality and unusual design and this book showcases his exceptional craftsmanship and amazing detail.
Danny Ferrington one of the few truly original luthiers out there.
on Saturday 08 November 2014
Thursday 04 December 2014
Sony Music Entertainment
AC/DC's new album "Rock Or Bust" is now available! You can get your copy here: iTunes: Amazon:
on Saturday 08 November 2014
U2 have announced details of a 2015 world tour,
Dubbed the 'iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE' tour, the tour will see Bono and his bandmates visit 19 cities and play 44 gigs as they promote new album 'Songs Of Innocence'. The tour sees U2 play indoor arenas for the first time in a decade.
U2 will headline four nights at London's O2 Arena in October during the tour and will then visit Glasgow for two gigs at the SSE Hydro. The world tour starts in Vancouver, Canada in May and will end with two Paris gigs in November, visiting America, Italy, Holland, Sweden, Germany, Spain and Belgium in between. Special shows in Dublin are also being planned but are yet to be announced. A rundown of U2's UK dates can be seen below.
The move marks a scaling-back for the band, whose last major tour was the U2 360° Tour of 2009 to 2011, which saw the band play 110 shows in outdoor arenas and stadia around the world in support of 2009's 'No Line On The Horizon'. They performed in the round from within a bespoke, four-legged structure nicknamed 'The Claw', which had a wraparound video screen and multi-directional sound system.
Earlier this week the rest of U2 performed in New York without their frontman as he recovers from a recent bike accident. Bruce Springsteen and Chris Martin of Coldplay stepped in for the injured Bono.
Earlier this year U2 and Apple 'gifted' 500 million iTunes users with their new album in September. Following complaints over the unconventional release, Apple released a tool to allow its customers to remove 'Songs Of Innocence' from their devices with just one click.
U2 “iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE” Tour 2015 UK Tour Dates:
London O2 Arena (October 25, 26, 29, 30)
Glasgow SSE Hydro (November 6, 7)
To check the availability of U2 tickets and get all the latest listings, head to NME.COM/tickets.
on Saturday 08 November 2014
MORE RIP OFF FOR ARTISTS !!!!!
Songs on iTunes are so cheap — 99p! (or 99 cents!) — that you probably don't spend much time wondering why the price of them rarely changes. Different songs' prices are all the same. Yet supply and demand for them changes all the time. Why don't song prices ever get cheaper or more expensive, like stocks?
In a court case that opened in California yesterday a group of lawyers and iTunes customers are arguing that Apple has essentially conducted a price-fixing operation within iTunes that has stymied competition in the music business that might have led to the price of songs dropping, or at least responding properly to supply and demand. Generally, iTunes prices are in three bands: 79p, 99p and £1.29, with equivalents in dollars.
The case asks a fanciful question: If iTunes is so great, why was it the case that, for years after the launch of the iPod, Apple's software prevented other companies from selling cheaper music for your iPod? Competing companies tried to sell Apple customers songs for 49 cents, the suit claims, but Apple kept the price high.
If their class action antitrust lawsuit succeeds it could lead to an award that refunds iTunes customers a portion of the money they spent over an eight-year period in the 2000s. We are, of course, a long way from that.
But as a legal argument, the case is fascinating. It's also worth bearing in mind that Apple has lost two antitrust cases recently: one about price fixing in the e-book market and one about the suppression of wages for tech workers. So it is not inconceivable that Apple may lose a third time.
Apple, naturally, regards the case as garbage. It has also successfully persuaded the court to seal from public view many of the documents and evidence in the case.
Eddy Cue wants 'FairPlay' kept secret
Eddy Cue, Apple's VP/internet services, is one of many execs who has filed declarations in the case. Cue argued — in a statement written in 2010 that was refiled in court on Nov 30 this year — that details of FairPlay, Apple's technology for restricting where MP3 music files are played, should not be discussed in open court.
Phil Schiller is also listed as a witness.
Other companies already offer music players and download services, so competition is not restricted. (We contacted Apple for comment and didn't hear back.) Apple does not have a monopoly over music, its lawyers have argued in a Northern California federal district court, and the suit should therefore be rejected by the court. The case is a class action on behalf of iPod and iTunes customers, who presumably want a cash payout for perceived overcharges that stemmed from Apple's alleged 99p song monopoly.
Steve Jobs' old emails
The case has so far made headlines because it has exposed yet more of Steve Jobs old emails — messages in which he was, as usual, highly disparaging of anyone who disagreed with him. He called Real Networks, a competing music service, "hackers" when they figured out how to sell songs for the iPod back in July 2004. "'We are stunned that Real is adopting the tactics and ethics of a hacker and breaking into the iPod,'" he suggested as a line for a press release attacking Real Networks.
That Jobs email is, arguably, key to the case. It demonstrates Jobs' intent. To understand that, you need to know the background: Apple had designed iTunes and the iPod so that songs within it contained a digital rights management scheme (DRM) that both protected artists' copyright, by preventing songs from being copied and pirated and prevented iTunes songs from being played on non-Apple devices. (Apple later abandoned DRM in 2009.)
The lawsuit argues that the DRM format prevented other companies like Real Networks from selling songs that could be imported onto the iPod. In fact, Real Networks actually developed a product that let users do exactly this, and it offered songs for 49 cents each — and Jobs stamped it out by banning Real's music from the iPod/iTunes system. He said in that email he regarded Real's attempt to offer Apple customers some choices beyond iTunes made them "hackers".
Here is how the lawsuit describes the effect of Apple's DRM system.
It wasn't so much about copyright as it was about making sure that only iPods could play the songs, the case alleges:
US Fed. Ct.
In 2004, Real Networks launched a product that let people buy cheap songs they could play on their iPods:
US Fed. Ct.
Apple immediately moved to make sure Real Network's software wouldn't work:
US Fed. Ct.
Apple's argument here is obvious: These are Apple devices and Apple software, why should the company let Real offer services on them? There are plenty of other companies that sell music players, and they offer price competition. (For instance, readers might want to check out Google Music Manager in the Play store — it offers a lot of music cheaper than iTunes does.)
That brings in the other interesting legal aspect of the case: Whether Apple unlawfully engaged in "tying" or "bundling" its products in a way that violates antitrust law. In general, companies are allowed to develop monopolies over markets if that dominance occurs simply because their products are superior. iPod became the dominant music player because of that. But companies are not allowed to use their dominance in one market to distort competition in another market.
The suit argues that Apple's strength in the music business through iTunes let it force customers to buy only one device to play that music on — the iPod. (The suit mostly covers the period from 2001 through 2009.) The music market and the device market ought to be separate, and leveraging your dominance in one to distort the other is a violation of antitrust law, the suit claims.
If the suit succeeds, Apple customers could be in for a huge refund. But don't hold your breath.
on Saturday 08 November 2014
LEARN TO CODE AND CHANGE THE WORLD !!!!!
Apple is participating in this year’s Hour of Code, the second annual worldwide event designed
to help spark interest in and provide access to coding education among youth and students. Apple’s participation will involve offering free one-hour workshops at its Apple Store retail locations, during which they’ll provide attendees with an introduction to basic computer science concepts.
Code.org is the non-profit behind the Hour of Code movement, and is working with a number of corporations to organize this year’s movement. The group has funding from Microsoft and others, and has a goal of reaching 100 million students through its program by year-end.
Apple’s workshops will run on December 11th, and will occur in international retail stores as well as domestic, whereas last year they were only available in U.S. locations. Apple is also going to be rolling out a full week’s worth of accompanying speakers and other events, to support Computer Science Education Week, and pointing would-be coders to resources on both the App Store and its developer portal via a new microsite created to mark the occasion
on Saturday 08 November 2014
Why Is Quincy Jones Worried About Music’s Future?
INTERVIEW: Why Is Quincy Jones Worried About Music’s Future And The Distortion Of Sound?
When you’re discussing Quincy Jones, there is no such thing as hyperbole. Just ask his 27 Grammys. The 81-year-old has played a vital role in the development of jazz, funk, and hip hop, holds more records than a jukebox, logged more firsts than Adam and Eve, and collaborated with everyone from Frank Sinatra to Grandmaster Melle Mel. It is no exaggeration to say he’s the chief architect of popular music in the 20th Century. But as we venture further into the new millennium, he’s getting pissed.
The cultural titan recently appeared in the The Distortion Of Sound, a documentary produced by cutting edge audio outfit Harman Kardon. The fascinating film explores the complex pros and cons of music in the digital age. Although companies like iTunes and Spotify have made music more accessible, portable, and cheaper than ever before, mp3s have become so compressed that the vast majority of the sound quality -sometimes up to 90 percent- is lost. With the omnipresence of iPods and ear buds, the documentary contends that a generation of music lovers are being raised on low-grade sonic sludge. As the final piece of his formidable legacy, Jones is working with Harman to ensure that his art, and the art of so many others, can be enjoyed the way it was meant to be heard.
Among his many musical milestones, Quincy Jones’ name will forever be linked with Thriller, the worldwide smash he produced with Michael Jackson in 1982. The work has been held up as a near-perfect piece of pop artistry, blending genres, boasting an unprecedented seven Top 10 hits, and earning sales records that remain unbroken to this day. So how does the man behind the biggest album of all time feel about today’s singles-oriented iTunes culture, where one can pick and choose tracks a la carte based on an incomplete sample? Does he feel that album making is a lost art?
The answer is a strongly worded yes. “It’s like they don’t think about albums anymore!” he laments. “Sequencing an album is one of the joys in being a producer because it’s like making a movie. That’s why I had ‘Human Nature’ right after ‘Billie Jean’ on Thriller. Because ‘Billie Jean’ was in three parts, like a mantra. The other one is like a kaleidoscopic harmonic collage, with all the harmonies running around the place. The ear loves that—it loves to feel that growth and change and movement.”
The abandonment of the album is an ironic bookend to a recording career spanning seven decades. He first entered the studio in 1956, another time when full length LPs were marginalized in favor of singles. The technological limitations were many, severely limiting his artistic canvas. “It couldn’t be over three minutes because [the disc] didn’t hold it,” he laughs now. And the turnaround time wasn’t exactly luxurious. “You had to do four 3-minute songs every four hours as an arranger or you didn’t work again!”
Obviously he’s come a long way since then, helping elevate the album to an art form along with the likes of The Beatles‘ producer George Martin, whom he considers a friend. While he admits that software has made it easier to realize creative ideas, he warns against using technology as a crutch. “If you don’t know anything about music and you use Pro-Tools, you will be working for the machine. But if you know music, the machine works for you. That’s what it’s designed for.”
If there’s anyone who knows music, it’s Jones. A child prodigy, he honed his skills at the age of 13 playing trumpet with jazz and swing bands around the Seattle area. Within a year he met a young pianist from Georgia named Ray Charles and the two formed a close bond. To this day he cites Charles as a major influence in his formative musical ambitions. After just a year at what is now Boston’s Berklee School Of Music, he was invited to tour with Lionel Hampton‘s band, and soon he was commissioned to arrange songs for heavy hitting stars like Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and Dinah Washington.
But show business is filled with hopefuls who have music pumping through their veins. Many fail, while a few succeed for a short time before inevitably falling out of fashion. It takes a special talent to remain relevant (let alone revolutionary) in an industry that is constantly evolving. How has Jones navigated the changing styles and technological upheavals that have made the recording studio unrecognizable from the world where he started?
In an age when repetitive hooks, cheap speakers, and splashy gossip headlines risk making music a disposable commodity, he follows a deceptively simple rule–put the song first. “Our entire industry is all about a song and a story… A song can make a terrible singer a star. If you’ve got a good singer, you’re in good shape. A bad song? The three best singers in the business cannot save it. And that’s a fact.” Even when literally working with the best singers in the business, he still labors tirelessly to make sure the tunes fit. “We went through 800 songs to get nine for Thriller,” he tells us -and the intense quality control doesn’t end there. “After you get nine of them on their feet- you’ve got vocal backgrounds and counter lines and all that- you look at the nine you have and very honestly say, ‘What are the four weakest songs in the company of these nine?’ And you take those out and try to make those your four strongest on the album.”
And that’s how you make the most successful record in history.
When most of us would walk away feeling nothing but supreme satisfaction, Jones consistently strives for more. The diligence shown on projects like Thriller has marked his career since the very start. At the age of 24, Jones put his lucrative career as a session arranger on hold and moved to Paris, where he studied music theory with the legendary composer Nadia Boulanger. “She said to me, ‘There are only 12 notes, until God gives us 13. And Quincy, I want you to know what everybody did with those twelve.’ Bach, Beethoven everybody- it’s the same 12 notes. Isn’t that amazing? All we have are twelve notes and you have to find your own sound through rhythm, harmony and melody. You have to find a way to make that your personal sound.”
Jones knows that music is a continuum, built on the shoulders of those who have come before. But after a lifetime of learning, he is now ready to do a little teaching himself. He’s currently working with engineers at Harman Kardon, helping to implement artist-driven solutions that combat the low quality recordings and inferior sound systems infecting the market. He is also mentoring an international youth orchestra that he calls The Global Gumbo All Stars. “It’s really about a case of passing it on. And it’s a pleasure, too.”
For Quincy Jones, working with young talented people is the only way to roll. They’re energetic, passionate, curious, fearless, unrelenting, and always testing limits-just like him. He mentions a recent conversation with Johnny Mandel, writer of standards like “The Shadow Of Your Smile” and “Emily,” among others. “We’ve been friends since we were in our teens, you know? He’s 88 now and I’m 81. He called me up and he said, ‘Q! We’re the only two guys who are going to go from infancy to Alzheimer’s and bypass growing up!’ We don’t want to get grown up. He’s a funny cat, man. He’s right, too—I don’t ever want to grow up.”
on Saturday 08 November 2014
Before writer-director Philip Kaufman brought Tom Wolfe's book The Right Stuff to the big screen in 1983, onscreen astronauts were little more than alien quarry or asteroid bait. In Kaufman's hands, however, spaceflight became a far more human pursuit—a story not of external threats but inner resolve. With its three-hour-plus run time and unconventional structure, the film—which tells the story of test pilots like Chuck Yeager and Gordon Cooper as they break the sound barrier and launch toward the exosphere—was almost as daring as its subject. (Kaufman calls it “the longest movie ever made without a plot.”) But it introduced an entire cinematic genre, what Quentin Tarantino has called the “hip epic,” inspiring everyone from Michael Bay to James Cameron, who hired its cinematographer for Titanic. Its dialog has become a go-to signifier of human accomplishment; director Rian Johnson celebrated landing his Star Wars gig by tweeting a clip from the movie. “Phil really pulled it off,” George Lucas says. None other than Christopher Nolan has called it “an almost perfect movie.”
Making it was an epic in itself. Its locations were hard-earned; its special-effects plan was largely reconceived during production; one man lost part of an ear on the set, another lost his life. But more than three decades later, The Right Stuff still resonates, a testament to the incredible feats of bravery, sacrifice, and intelligence of which humans are capable—and to the inherent absurdity of climbing into tin cans mounted on ballistic missiles and blasting into space.
“We Wanted to Make A Serious Film.”
Ed Harris looked so much like astronaut John Glenn that producer Robert Chartoff said, “Please, don’t let this guy get hit by a car … until after the picture is made.”
In 1979, Hollywood producers Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff (Rocky, Raging Bull) paid $350,000 to purchase the film rights to The Right Stuff, Tom Wolfe's runaway best seller about the space race.
CHUCK YEAGER (RETIRED GENERAL, U.S. AIR FORCE): Tom Wolfe started writing a book about the astronauts' early days. Through that, he discovered the Air Force test pilots who were doing the nitty-gritty work. We weren't getting free houses or notoriety. We were working our tails off for $250 a month. Many of us were dying in the process.
IRWIN WINKLER (PRODUCER): There was a competition with Universal to buy Tom Wolfe's book. They wanted it for John Belushi as a comedy.
ROBERT CHARTOFF (PRODUCER): Like the Airplane series.
WINKLER: We wanted to make a serious film.
CHARTOFF: We bought the book for $350,000, which was a lot at the time.
WINKLER: We hired Bill Goldman to write the screenplay.
CHARTOFF: Probably the hottest writer in Hollywood.
1 Yeager was the first pilot to break the sound barrier, on October 14, 1947.
WINKLER: But Bill's script didn't include the Chuck Yeager character, the epitome of “the right stuff.” 1 So we started looking for other writers.
GEORGE LUCAS: I was born and raised in the Bay Area, so when I got out of film school at USC I wanted to come back. Francis Coppola wanted to get out of Hollywood, so the two of us, we decided we'd move to San Francisco. There was a cadre of people here who were making movies, but more with a San Franciscan sensibility than a Hollywood sensibility. Phil Kaufman was living here. He worked on Raiders for about a week. [Laughs.] He came up with the idea for the ark.
PHILIP KAUFMAN (WRITER, DIRECTOR): When I read The Right Stuff I was just amazed. What I loved about it was not only getting to the truer stories but really beginning where he did, with a quality called “the right stuff” as personified by Chuck Yeager. I envisioned a movie that could be based around that central character or quality.
WINKLER: Originally we wanted Phil to direct and we couldn’t find another writer that we could agree on.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Tom Wolfe didn’t want to write the screenplay. He just didn’t feel that was his métier. I wound up outlining the script, and when Chartoff and Winkler asked me to write it, I turned around the first draft in about eight weeks. I really wanted to go back to Tom Wolfe’s attitude, atmosphere, and humor. I really wanted to find that Tom Wolfe quality, the craziness of the American circus—how the astronauts would be defined publicly by a Life magazine story while the truth was far more interesting, important, and heroic.
WINKLER: We gave Phil’s script to the Ladd Company, ensconced at Warner Bros.
PETER KAUFMAN (PRODUCTION ASSISTANT): Phil and Walter Murch made a great trailer to show Alan Ladd Jr. that making the movie was possible. This was back when Francis Coppola had American Zoetrope, and we rented some offices up off of Little Fox Theater. We had a little editing room. We’d find Walter asleep in there in the morning after working all night.
GARY GUTIERREZ (SUPERVISOR, SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS): Phil Kaufman was looking to storyboard the movie for a presentation to Ladd in LA. It was an enormous job; we created around 1,800 panels. Phil wanted to represent the whole movie. We laid out the storyboards on eight or 10 tables in a conference room and then Phil told the story, walking Ladd around the room. Whenever he’d finish a couple of tables, we’d lay out more. It took several trips around the room.
ALAN LADD JR. (PRESIDENT, THE LADD COMPANY): I said, OK, let's make the movie!
GUTIERREZ: Chuck Yeager became a technical consultant. He was very helpful.
YEAGER: Hollywood is in the business of make-believe. I didn't just walk out and fly the X-1 supersonic. It took unpowered flights and then nine powered flights.
GUTIERREZ: He would look at stuff and say, “Well, that's not exactly how it happened, but I know you fellas have to flower it up.”
“I Felt Like It Was Ridiculous to Play a Living Person.”
“Our characters had no written lines,” Harry Shearer says of the recruiters he and Jeff Goldblum played in the movie. “Phil said, ‘You and Jeff improvised. Hopefully it will be funny.”
Ladd gave Kaufman a modest budget to make the film, which meant it would have to be made without any bankable stars and with salary caps.
ED HARRIS (JOHN GLENN): I read for Phil Kaufman and wasn't very happy about how it went. Walking out, I hit the wall pretty hard. Phil saw me do that and said, “Oh, the guy's got spunk.”
CHARTOFF: Ed Harris walked into the office, and we looked at him and couldn’t believe that such a person existed. He was not only a wonderful actor but looked so much like John Glenn. And of course we looked at each other and said, “Oh my God, this is the guy we want.” I said to Phil, “Please, don’t let this guy get hit by a car. At least, not until after the picture is made.”
HARRY SHEARER (RECRUITER): I don’t believe there was an audition, because Jeff Goldblum’s and my characters had no lines written for them. Phil Kaufman conceived them, they were not representative of anybody that was in the book, but they were a plot device to move things forward. Phil basically just said, “You and Jeff improvise. Hopefully it’ll be a little funny.”
JEFF GOLDBLUM (RECRUITER): Mr. Philip Kaufman had me in Invasion of the Body Snatchers in 1978. I'd do anything with him.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: There were 134 speaking parts. Every day somebody new would show up on the set. I had my mission of what I wanted to do, but I also wanted to be entertained. I had Harry Shearer and Jeff Goldblum; life could not have been better.
CALEB DESCHANEL (CINEMATOGRAPHER): Phil and I had mutual friends in San Francisco. I’d gone to school with George Lucas. I knew Walter Murch. They were all part of the same small group of San Francisco filmmakers, with Francis Ford Coppola. Phil sent me the script. I loved it, it’s the kind of thing I grew up loving. My father was an engineer for Martin, who built Titan rockets. When I was a kid I’d build rockets. My dad helped me until I tried to build a liquid fuel rocket using nitric acid and alcohol. He was afraid I was going to blow myself up.
MARY JO DESCHANEL (ANNIE GLENN): Annie Glenn was already cast, and I just had an appointment to meet the casting director and read. I hadn’t been acting because I was having kids. I felt out of practice. Overnight, the actress who had the part asked for more money and fell out. So I didn’t know it when I went in, but they were looking for someone. The casting director said, “Do you know how to stutter?” And I said, “No, but I can try.”
“Mr. Philip Kaufman had me in Invasion of the Body Snatchers,” Jeff Goldblum says. “I’d do anything with him.”
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Dennis had done some movies, but his brother Randy was better known. I was alone when Dennis came in. I was doing the camera work as well as reading off camera, but I didn’t really know how the camera worked. Dennis said, “I know that camera. I’ve got exactly this kind of camera.” I pressed the button. “It’s red and flashing, does that mean it’s on?” He said, “Yeah, that’s it.” So then Dennis did a reading that was phenomenal. A couple hours later Chartoff and Winkler came in and I said, “Let’s check it out.” Of course Dennis was wrong. The camera was off, and lost to history was one of the greatest auditions I’d ever seen.
TOM WOLFE (AUTHOR): Having Dennis Quaid play Gordon Cooper was a good stroke. Cooper, as a pilot, didn’t have much of a background. He was an OK military pilot. They chose him because he was so cool. He fell asleep on the launchpad. These holds would go on for hours. He also fell asleep during a spaceflight. He was an absolutely cool human being.
FRED WARD (GUS GRISSOM): I was asked to play another astronaut at first. But then Phil asked me to read for Gus Grissom. That was exciting because I really liked the character. What he had to go through, his so-called blowing a hatch. I’d been in the Air Force when I was young, not as a pilot, but as an airborne radar technician in Goose Bay, Labrador, during the cold war. We were one of the first lines of defense. We’d work on the ground, meet with the aircraft, speak to the pilots, see what was going on with the equipment, pull it into the shop. Then we’d have these alerts; we’d have to go out at night and load missiles. These astronauts were big people at the time.
YEAGER: Some of my friends played extras, such as Korky Kevorkian, a pilot and fruit farmer from Reedley, California. I played a bartender.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: We started looking around for someone who could play Yeager. Then my wife, Rose, and I went to a poetry reading in San Francisco and Sam Shepard was reading. Rose poked me and said, “There's your guy.” I said, “For what?” She said, “Yeager.” Sam had a cowboy quality to him. He was Gary Cooper.
SAM SHEPARD (CHUCK YEAGER): Phil offered the part to me a few times, and I refused. I felt like it was ridiculous to play a living person. I knew Chuck and I didn't feel like I was him at all.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: I tracked Sam down at the Chateau Marmont in LA and slid the script under his door.
SHEPARD: He kept hounding me about it. And I did like Phil a lot, and I liked a lot of the actors I'd known through theater and stuff, like Ed Harris and Freddie Ward. So I thought, well, maybe it wouldn't hurt to do it.
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Dennis Quaid as Gordon Cooper Everett Collection
“Make It Like They Did in the Old Days.”
Kaufman wanted his audience to feel the adrenaline rush that early test pilots experienced as they chased the sound barrier, as well as the violence inherent in breaking free from, and reentering, Earth's atmosphere.
GEOFFREY KIRKLAND (PRODUCTION DESIGNER): Phil got this amazing collection of research from NASA and the Navy. He set up a library in his trailer.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Research went on in every area, all through the movie. When the actors showed up, each of them got a book that we had prepared with 30 to 40 pages on each character—every damn thing we could find.
PETER KAUFMAN: I'd go to the Soviet embassy in San Francisco with a copy of the book, and they would give me footage of Star City. They were really helpful, the Russians. And we got footage from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Air Force that hadn't been widely seen.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: We combined the great NASA footage with pieces that were built on the set. We were pioneering in that kind of insertion of actors into historical events. For example, we combined footage of the real Alan Shepard being loaded into the capsule with Scott Glenn doing it on the stage. We had Scott Glenn shaking hands with Kennedy; they did the same thing in Forrest Gump and made a big thing out of spending a million dollars to do it. We did that in one afternoon.
KIRKLAND: One day we went to the model shops to see the first shots of the supersonic jet. We had a production team out there, a whole unit unto themselves. They’d been working for six months, making these amazing models. Every little rivet had a little bit of grime. They’d built a shop, gotten a motion control camera.
GUTIERREZ: We called our motion control system the Cruciflex, because that’s sort of how we felt about it. It controlled camera movements with a computer so that a camera could precisely repeat movements. It featured a Fries Mitchell 35-mm camera mounted on a boom arm, placed at right angles to a vertical shaft. The mechanical system moved a camera along the x, y, and z axes. It allowed it to move in multiple directions. The cross-shaped configuration was in turn positioned on a moving turntable, which enabled the whole apparatus to swing around as it traveled down the track. The Cruciflex allowed the camera to pan 360 degrees, roll 360 degrees three times, and pitch approximately 200 degrees. You could shoot one element—say, the X-1—in front of a blue screen and the camera would travel toward the model, giving the impression that the X-1 was moving toward the camera.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: We discovered that the motion control effects George was doing on Star Wars didn't create the grittier effect we wanted.
CALEB DESCHANEL: Getting to outer space can be violent.
GUTIERREZ: “Make it like they did in the old days” became our marching orders. So I opened the window and had my director of photography go stand downstairs with his back to the wall and a handheld camera looking up toward the sky. On the street, crew people were holding a large parachute to catch the plane that I was going to throw out the window. Our model of the X-1 was 4 and a half feet long and cost $6,000. The model makers were holding their breath. The next day we showed Phil the footage and he loved it.
CALEB DESCHANEL: We used rear projection on the scenes where Yeager was trying to break the sound barrier. Phil used footage from an experimental filmmaker, Jordan Belson, who created images of moving lights that streak by you to give a representation of what it was like to get to that point just beyond something that anybody had ever done before.
PETER KAUFMAN: Belson worked in a little apartment in San Francisco. I don’t think anyone from the production went in. He did all of his effects in a little light box with smoke. He’d bring his footage in. We’d all be amazed.
GUTIERREZ: We did various kinds of shaky-cam movement to give it a sense of urgency. We attached a vibrator to the lens or a power drill to the camera mount to make it all move like crazy.
CALEB DESCHANEL: At one point I shook the camera so hard, I gave my operator a black eye.
RANDY THOM (SOUND RERECORDING MIXER): I went to Twentynine Palms Marine base to record the sound of a bomb detonating for the plane crashes. There was a test range where planes would drop bombs. Occasionally one of them wouldn’t explode. So there was this ordnance team that would defuse the bomb or explode it. I had to sign several reams of paper saying my family wouldn’t sue if I got hurt.
SHEPARD: We had a model of the X-1 in the hangar. We had these rigs that shook the hell out of us. It wasn't a simulator. It was much more primitive. It was like a milk shake apparatus.
CALEB DESCHANEL: When Yeager goes up to break the sound barrier, you look down and you see the desert beneath; we had giant sheets of butcher paper with desert scenes painted on them and somebody was pulling the paper very slowly underneath the model so it would feel like you were at 20,000 feet with the Earth moving below.
GUTIERREZ: There were some pyrotechnicians creating clouds on the ground. They had a PT boat camouflage fogger on the back of a truck. We used vaporized mineral oil to create 150-foot-high clouds on the ground. You could shut a freeway with those.
CHARTOFF: Today it would be CGI.
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CALEB DESCHANEL: There were these wonderful guys who built these models that were really beautifully detailed. These guys loved their planes. At one point when the guy was flying the X-1, he landed it too hard. It burst into pieces. He was a burly guy who had built this thing. He went over to it and picked it up. He was in tears.
KIRKLAND: The B-29 we had was the only one left in the country. It belonged to the Confederate Air Force.
THOM: I was driven out in the middle of a desert. The jeep stopped at a certain point and I stood there on a little knoll, and a hundred yards away this guy was working on something. I walked 50 yards closer, nervous. I didn’t want to surprise the guy—he was sitting on a bomb like Slim Pickens in Dr. Strangelove. He yelled to me, “Son, if I was you, I’d either come over here where I am, or I’d get another 100 yards away. Because this thing might go off. And if it does go off, it could kill ya. But if it doesn’t kill ya, you’d probably wish it had.” We marched about 100 yards away and got down behind a hill. He detonated and I recorded.
GUTIERREZ: Some of the reentry shots of the Mercury capsule, the close-ups, were shot on a stage with a 4-foot-tall model.
HARRIS: I knew that capsule inside and out. I knew what all the gauges were and everything. You’re just using your imagination. Like a kid, you know, climbing under a bunch of blankets pretending you’re going to the moon.
KIRKLAND: We shot the sequence where Gus Grissom bails from his capsule in Half Moon Bay, within sight of Mavericks.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: The question was, and is, did Grissom blow the hatch and screw the pooch, putting himself in danger, or did it go off like he claimed? I would like to believe it went off accidentally.
KIRKLAND: You think of the Pacific as being calm, but it can be ugly. We had barges anchored 15 times to Christmas, but they still moved. We needed to be able to submerge the capsule and bring it back up to do another shot. We couldn’t put it on a crane because you’d see the crane. We installed pipes underneath—you’d take the air out and it would sink, and then you’d put the air in and it would resurface.
WARD: I had a wet suit on under my flight suit, in pretty cold water. And then they picked me up, dangling by a rescue noose. It’s a tragic scene. You see Gus Grissom hanging there: almost totally defeated, like a dead fish on the end of a line, and then coming up toward the whirling helicopter blades, being pulled in.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: It was very dangerous. What a testament to Fred. Fred almost died in the water.
WARD: Grissom actually died in a prelaunch test. I heard the recording of the incident.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Gus was a fucking hero.
“We Really Had the Run of the Place.”
Fred Ward played Gus Grissom, who would later die in the launchpad fire of Apollo 1. “Gus was a fucking hero,” Kaufman says. Dan Winters
Kaufman and his crew resisted cutting-edge special effects, preferring to make the film as realistic as possible. But that quest for authenticity led to some setbacks.
WINKLER: We had trouble getting permission from the Pentagon and NASA to use their facilities. John Glenn was a senior senator and didn’t like the way he was depicted. They were talking about him running for president. He tried to stop the government from giving us cooperation. He went to the Pentagon and told them not to give us permission.
CHARTOFF: A month before we began, NASA withdrew their permission for us to shoot at their facilities. It was a disaster. I flew to Washington and met with the head of NASA. I called John Glenn’s office and arranged a meeting with them, as well. At NASA, I went in and argued that pulling our access wasn’t fair—we’re American citizens and should have the right to use the facility, and no one individual should be able to stop us. That was the only argument I could think of. The guy said, “Call me back tomorrow morning, 10 o’clock, I’ll give you an answer.” I had an appointment at noon the next day with John Glenn. The next morning I called NASA. They said, “We have no right to deprive you of use of our facilities, you’ve got them.” Then I called John Glenn’s office and canceled my appointment.
CALEB DESCHANEL: When we were at Edwards Air Force Base, we really had the run of the place. We'd be right along the runways. Some pilots would get ticked off because we were too close. But Yeager was with us a lot of the time. One pilot landed and was like, “Who the hell are you?! What's going on?! Who's in charge?!” Finally Chuck Yeager turns around, and the guy's face suddenly fell. He said, “Oh, General, I'm really sorry, I didn't realize that you were with these guys.” You could do anything you wanted at Edwards as long as Yeager was around.
SHEARER: Late in the process we were called up to the Bay Area for the shoot on the aircraft carrier.
2 The USS Coral Sea, a 45,000 ton aircraft carrier, was decommissioned in 1990.
WARD: The USS Coral Sea.2
CALEB DESCHANEL: They gave us two lectures. Both of them had to do with not getting killed. These huge cables catch the planes when they land. Every once in a while they go snap. If you're there when they snap, they just cut you in half.
GOLDBLUM: Of course, I feel at home at sea because I was a whaler before I became an actor. No, that's not true. I'd hardly been at sea. I'm not really seafaring.
SHEARER: We were going to be going out through the Golden Gate and spending the night. Jeff and I are taken down to where we're going to be bunking. It's cramped. There's water on the floor. We looked at each other and said, “Gee, I don't know about this.”
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Harry and Jeff were a little grumpy. So Peter and I took them back to my apartment. The Jeff Goldblum version of The Headless Horseman was on TV. Harry started doing riffs on Jeff. Then they were doing riffs on each other. In the early morning Harry was doing yoga in my living room. And then we got back to the set.
SHEARER: The script had me throwing up on the aircraft carrier. I had real qualms about it. I thought, man, it's going to look so fake. I didn't want to be busted with that: Yeah, the movie was great, but man, Shearer throwing up, ooh.
CALEB DESCHANEL: We sent Dennis Quaid up with a test pilot. He had a Nagra recorder in the cockpit. Phil leans over to the pilot and says, “Give him an exciting ride.” So they go up and come back down 20 minutes later, and Dennis is green. The sound guy goes in to get his Nagra, and Dennis had thrown up all over it. In the dailies, you see Dennis smiling, and then the pilot starts doing barrel rolls, and Dennis disappears from the frame. We asked Dennis about it and he said, “Oh, I had my script on the floor and I was just checking my lines.” It was total bullshit.
“We Didn’t Fly Those Planes, We Wore Them.”
Yeager's spirit of daredevilry infected the film and the cast. That, combined with shooting on active military bases, occasionally made for dangerous shooting conditions.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Chuck Yeager’s voice is the voice of “the right stuff.” Levon Helm had that voice that Tom Wolfe ascribed to Chuck Yeager, that sort of West Virginia drawl that Sam didn’t have. That’s why I had Levon as the narrator of the movie.
Space. Time. Dimension.
By Christopher Nolan
9 Easter Eggs From The Bookshelf in Interstellar
By Jon J. Eilenberg
Letter From The Editor: What it’s Like To Collaborate with Christopher Nolan
By Scott Dadich
SHEPARD: I’m not a Method actor. I just go for it. I could have cared less about the sound barrier. I was trying to capture something about the man. Something about his independence, something about his arrogance, something about his humility and his courage.
CALEB DESCHANEL: Sam Shepard doesn't fly; he drives everywhere he goes.
SHEPARD: I grew up in the country. A lot of country people don't like to fly, they don't like leaving the ground, but I went up with Yeager in a Piper Cub. I figured if I died while flying with the greatest pilot in the world, it would be OK.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Yeager was like the unseen father that Sam is always looking for in his plays.
SHEPARD: When I first met Chuck, he had an old Ford pickup. Out there by Edwards it's very flat, and all the streets are perpendicular to each other; he would get up to about 85 miles an hour with his cruise control, and he would hit these intersections without touching the brake. Every once in a while you'd see a car coming from a distance and it was heading right where you were heading, but Chuck would not put the brake on. He would just keep going.
BARBARA HERSHEY (GLENNIS YEAGER): Chuck was so warm and incredibly generous. He even started calling me Glennis, which really meant a lot to me. One of the terrible things about the poor wives of the test pilots was that, when they said good-bye to their husbands in the morning, they didn't know if they'd see them again that night. I would look at photos of these women and they all looked like they'd been snowed in for the winter.
YEAGER: Barbara Hershey was the spittin' image of Glennis.
HERSHEY: I asked Chuck, “Is Glennis going to come to shooting?” And he said, “Oh no, no, no, she is never going to come to Edwards again.” And I asked him, “Did it ever get to her, this terrible waiting?” And he said, “What do you mean?” I said, “Well, did she ever get emotional?” And he said, “Oh no, no, no, not emotional. She’d throw things, but she wouldn’t get emotional.”
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SHEPARD: I asked Chuck what it was like to be an ace pilot, and he said, “Well, by the time I was 12 years old, I'd already killed 26 black bears.” He had no fear.
HERSHEY: He said, “We didn't fly those planes, we wore them.”
WOLFE: Yeager is the same wherever you put him: at a card table, at the edge of space, or at a podium. He's just Chuck Yeager. He's a totally confident man.
CALEB DESCHANEL: I went up in an F-100, an old two-seater jet, with a test pilot for Lockheed. There were times we would pull out of a dive and I'd actually lose my vision. Everything became sort of a dark reddish brown and then I'd go blind.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: We were shooting at Van Nuys and somehow Caleb and I found ourselves sitting with Dennis in a little airplane. Suddenly we noticed Dennis was talking to the control tower and the plane was moving! We said, “What the [censored]'s going on here!?” Dennis had learned how to fly during the shoot, and suddenly he takes off. Caleb and I were terrified.
KIRKLAND: I think it's the single most dangerous filming environment I've ever been in.
CALEB DESCHANEL: We put a camera in a wingtip gas tank on an F-104 to get some shots. And then other shots we did with a guy named Art Scholl, a really wonderful pilot who could do incredible maneuvers. Unfortunately, he died doing footage on Top Gun.
SHEPARD: We didn't have many accidents. One guy unfortunately got killed doing the parachute drop. The chute just didn't open.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: We didn't use any of those shots. We were all stunned. It was so connected with the theme of the movie, how dangerous all of this stuff was.
“You Can’t Get That Many Great Guys Together and Not Have a Little Bit of Fun.”
As shooting rolled on, the actors inherited the astronauts' spirit of swaggering camaraderie.
HARRIS: Tosca Café, a bar in North Beach, was the main hangout. We made some history there.
MARY JO DESCHANEL: The owner, Jeanette, was a friend of Phil's. He wanted it to be kind of like Pancho's, the bar in the movie where the test pilots hang out.
SHEPARD: After shooting all day out in the desert, I'd play pool with Yeager at Tosca.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: Scott Glenn looked like Alan Shepard; he had that flinty, tough-as-nails, competitive attitude. All the actors carried that attitude with them off camera, all through the movie. They lived in character for a long time.
SHEPARD: Eddie and me were big buddies and we liked liquor a little bit more than we should have. And yeah, we got into some fights in that bar. There was somebody sitting between us who was bad-mouthing Jeanette. And we pushed him and pulled him off the stool. And eventually you know, I don’t know, we fought.
HARRIS: Lance Henriksen and I were at the Holiday Inn at Fisherman’s Wharf. I had a couple beers and I got on a luggage cart. I was skateboarding on it or scootering it out through the front doors. It went off a curb and I went flying, smacked my face on the ground. I had a major black eye—and had to do a scene where I was in my room at night. And so Caleb had to do a thing where the moon’s coming through a window lighting up one side of my face and the other side of my face is totally in the darkness, because I was really banged up.
CALEB DESCHANEL: Ed shows up, and I'm like, what am I going to do? The set was built, and I actually had to have them reverse it so I could have the light coming in from another side so you couldn't see his black eye.
HARRIS: Phil suggested maybe I was drinking too much. I think he was probably right.
SHEPARD: You can't get that many great guys together and not have a little bit of fun.
“Can a Movie Help Make a President?”
Director Philip Kaufman: “I really wanted the film to be sold as about ‘the right stuff’: men in leather jackets, the cowboy thing.” Dan Winters
The film's October 1983 release happened to coincide with the presidential candidacy of John Glenn, which presented both an opportunity and a challenge.
CHARTOFF: I was in New York and called Tom Wolfe and said I wanted to meet. And he said, “Come on over to the house for breakfast.” At 8:30 in the morning Tom was dressed in his whites. We were eating grapefruits. He managed to get the slices out without soiling himself. And I said, “Tom, we think we’re going to change the ending a little bit. Yours felt a little bit rushed.” I couldn’t have said that to any writer but I could to him, because we had this long relationship. He said, “Well, after working on the book for years, my wife said to me that if I didn’t finish the book in a month she was going to divorce me.”
WOLFE: The Right Stuff was going to be a book that went from the Mercury program in the early ’60s to the Apollo space mission in 1975. I had just finished the Mercury section and I was starting on Gemini, and my wife came in and said, “I’ve got great news for you.” I said, “What’s that?” She said, “You finished the book!” I had to write three books to finance this reporting stint.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: I was very fussy about nobody seeing the movie before it premiered at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. There were one or two prints of it. We were setting up for the screening and some friends went on a White House tour. As they were passing through, they saw some film cans with The Right Stuff stenciled on. Reagan had gotten a copy, secretly.
HARRIS: There was a big picture of me on the cover of Newsweek: “Can a Movie Help Make a President?” It gave a much different impression of what the movie was about.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: The movie suffered from that approach. I really wanted the film to be sold as about “the right stuff”: men in leather jackets, their connection to the cowboy thing. But somebody somewhere at the studio wanted to go back to that magazine-story approach. The movie should have been marketed as tougher and more mysterious than that magazine cover.
PETER KAUFMAN: With the help of Dolby technicians, we helped create new standards for the use of Dolby sound.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: When the rockets took off, the theater would rumble. I looked down the row at the premier and Kissinger was sitting there and I said, “I want to see those chins vibrating.” When the rockets launched, I went up in the projection room and I said, “Louder.” I went back down and the whole fucking theater was shaking. The chins were vibrating.
CALEB DESCHANEL: Phil wanted the movie to be really visceral. He always said that he wanted to pass out vomit bags at the screenings. He really wanted people to have the experience of what it was like in the X-1 cockpit or the Friendship capsule.
LADD: The film is a classic, but I think of it as a box office flop at the same time.
3 Best film editing, best sound, best sound effects editing, and best music (original score).
WINKLER: We won four Oscars.3 But we thought it would be a really, really big moneymaker. It wasn't.
LUCAS: The pivotal movie before The Right Stuff was 2001; that was like floating down a river. The Right Stuff had more of a documentary edge. It's seamless—the standard until Gravity.
SHEARER: It's a stunning piece of work.
MARK KELLY (ASTRONAUT): I read the book in eighth or ninth grade and saw the movie as a sophomore in college. I’ve seen it a dozen times. It got me excited about the space program. I ended up flying four times on the space shuttle over a period of 10 years. And I certainly remember the first time, at about Mach 15, as we rolled heads up I looked over my right shoulder, and that’s when I saw Earth as a whole planet for the first time. That’s a pretty amazing thing to see.
PHILIP KAUFMAN: The last line an actor says is Dennis Quaid's. He's going up after he's launched, total grace under pressure. “The sun is coming through the window now,” he says. “Oh Lord, what a heavenly light.”
on Saturday 08 November 2014
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