old school

Roar.

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yea, Bill Nelson set me up with an interview to do sound on "Roar".After walking across the compound inside full of mama lions and their babies to get over to Tippi and Noel and having one of the mamas put her front paws up on my shoulders [lovingly] ,I figured they were a little nuts and not safe.Luckly,kitty cats have always liked me. I left there never to return. The walking across the compound was some kind of test, but dangerous with cubs.

 

                                                                                            J.D.

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Well I guess I was on the movie the longest. I came on after Crew left and they had hired Laurence Abrams.

There was an accident on the lake with a camera barge and the producers Nagra went for brief dip in the lake.

So they needed someone with their own equipment and in a hurry since they didn't have any backups.   I had previously interviewed for the job but the money they were offering was so low I turned it down.  When they called in a panic I agreed to come on and help them out and mix for a few weeks with my own gear but at my price which they previously turned down.   Well  that made me the second highest paid crew member after Jan DeBont.

 

Well the few weeks turned into a series of months and I finally finished the film 2 and half years later.  They continued to pay me my original rate even when the main set was wiped out by a flood and later by a wildfire. I was never injured on the set or bitten or scratched by any of the Jungle cats although there was plenty of opportunity for such encounters.  I was trapped on an island in the middle of the night during the flood and had to be pulled out using a makeshift boson's chair (harness) on a cable over a rushing flood of water while they tried to round up hundreds of loose Lions and Tigers that escaped when their compound was ravaged by floodwaters.  It was quite a harrowing experience and I enjoyed the month we spent in Africa shooting some of the amazing establishing shots.  Laurence stayed on as my boom operator later to leave and be replaced by the films Elephant Trainer,  Tim Cooney.  I will never forget those years in the company of madmen. They certainly were a great training ground for improvisation and how to get the sound when most would think it was impossible.

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I like hearing these stories from back in ya'lls day. 

 

Although, I did think this thread was going to be about hot Katy Perry pics. =)

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It was complete and utter madness.  I doubt there's a single person on that crew who would go back there today.  Frankly, I don't know why we stayed.  It was total insanity.  No trained animals.  No medic.  No back-up plan.  And frequently nothing to separate crew from numerous full-grown lions.  In fact, sometimes they'd use us, instead of a fence, standing in two long rows of stupid people about 15 feet apart, to herd a pack of 10 or 15 lions from one place to another.  For protection, each of us would grab a wooden cane.  Yes, a wooden cane.  Did I mention crazy?

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I will never forget those years in the company of madmen. They certainly were a great training ground for improvisation and how to get the sound when most would think it was impossible.

 

Courtney, you gotta write a book someday.

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Courtney, you gotta write a book someday.

 

Well, we can't quite give you a book but the 695 Quarterly did run a fairly extensive profile of Courtney. It spans two issues:

 

Summer 2011: http://695.com/Quarterly/previous-issues/#.VSvQZWY1gu0

(just the Courtney Goodin profile, Part 1) http://695.com/Quarterly/3-3/3-3-courtney-goodin/#.VSvWt2Y1gu0

and

Winter 2012: http://695.com/Quarterly/4-1/#.VSvWU2Y1gu0

(just the Courtney Gooding profile, part 2): http://695.com/Quarterly/4-1/4-1-courtney-goodin-part-2/#.VSvXPGY1gu0

 

His experience working on Roar is in Part 1. The second part is largely concerned with the development of the teleprompter system and Broadcast Wave Widget software.

 

While there is a photo of Courtney working on Roar taken by Laurence Abrams, no shots of lions, I'm afraid. I don't know why Laurence didn't take more photos.

 

David

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Cameras were strictly forbidden.  But snuck in on occasion.  I got a bunch of pics plus lots of clippings.  And a super-secret 5-minute audio out-take reel.

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Cameras were strictly forbidden.  But snuck in on occasion.

 

Oh, I just assumed that one of the cast members ate your camera.

 

David

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Ok, you made me do it.  Here are some of the forbidden pictures... with apologies to those who were there and may experience flashbacks.

 

 

Two guys on the crew versus two lions.  To improve the odds, the guys have sticks.  (Wooden canes, actually.)

 

post-735-0-89975400-1428973507_thumb.jpg

 

One of the lions argues with crew member so the Director attempts to create a diversion with fresh meat.  I mean, in the bucket.

 

post-735-0-14271800-1428973516_thumb.jpg

 

The Director, with his arm in a sling from a previous tangle with lions, inspects his caged crew.

 

post-735-0-90129000-1428973523_thumb.jpg

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I saw recently where Tippi Hedren gave an interview and said she now believes it's a very, very bad idea to try to have lions and tigers as pets. 

 

"We were stupid beyond belief to have that lion in our house."

 

Sure, now she says that...

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2797870/tippi-hedren-reveals-regrets-letting-beast-share-family-home-letting-sleep-daughter-melanie-griffiths-bed.html

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Tim Cooney also wrote of his experiences on Roar in an old issue of "The Coffey Files"  When Coffey Sound was publishing a sound oriented mag.

 

http://good4sound.com/downloads/The_Coffey_Files_-_Issue_03_-_2009.pdf

 

Tim's article is on page 41.

 

He later fleshed that article out into a book but I don't know where it is available.  I had a copy but loaned it out and it never came back.   (Waelder was that you?)

 

Tim is retired from Show Biz and now lives in the Philippines.

 

I used to have a picture somebody took of me in the small 15" boat with 2, 650 lb Bengal Tigers while trying to hand hold an Senn. 815 to get the dialogue from the 2 actors on the boat with me while mixing on the Nagra and trying not to get eaten by the very nervous Tigers.  I can't find it though...  Those were the days before digital cameras and Cloud backups.

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It was complete and utter madness.  I doubt there's a single person on that crew who would go back there today.  Frankly, I don't know why we stayed.  It was total insanity.  No trained animals.  No medic.  No back-up plan.  And frequently nothing to separate crew from numerous full-grown lions.  In fact, sometimes they'd use us, instead of a fence, standing in two long rows of stupid people about 15 feet apart, to herd a pack of 10 or 15 lions from one place to another.  For protection, each of us would grab a wooden cane.  Yes, a wooden cane.  Did I mention crazy?

Absolutely extraordinary, you must have been made of sterner stuff in those days.

I'd love to see a present day risk assessment on a call sheet for that.....

Very big predators with very sharp teeth, inclined to be moody.

All cast and crew to carry acetaminophen, disinfectant, and wipes. :)

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Crew and Laurence,

If you want a blast from the past and want to relive your nightmares Roar is playing Thursday Night at 7 pm at the Arclight Sherman Oaks.

It may be sold out though.  I know they moved it twice to a bigger theatre because it kept selling out advance sales.

 

https://www.arclightcinemas.com/movie/arclight-presentsroar?lid=1002

 

I saw it at a screening at the CineFamily Theatre tonight.  The sound was screwed up though some lines were lost.

I think the theatre had the 5.1 track mixed down to Stereo speakers and the phase errors caused a lot of funny problems with lines being lost.  Hopefully the Arclight will have the sound configured correctly. The show I went to was sold out standing room only.  I guess it has a bit of a cult following now.

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I'm working or I'd try and make it. Did you & Laurence get a credit? If it's too be a cult classic a credit would be cool.

CrewC

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Courtney... some lines were lost?  Like it mattered?  Crew... yes, to the credits... but cult classic?  Don't think so.  It's more fun for people to talk about the making of it than to actually watch it.

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I wanted to go to the CineFamily screening (with the some members of the original crew as special guests) last night, but the tickets were sold out. I'll go next week... from what I understand, the film is a pretty tedious "hi-jinks" total misfire, but it'll be fun to see what kind of production challenges they must have faced.

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Courtney... some lines were lost?  Like it mattered?  Crew... yes, to the credits... but cult classic?  Don't think so.  It's more fun for people to talk about the making of it than to actually watch it.

It only matters to those that remember the lines.  And those people can be counted on one hand.  The plot is totally incomprehensible and Mativo needs to be subtitled.  It did look a lot better than the DVD.  It was a DCI file pulled from a German Re-Scan for BluRay.  I had a chance to talk with some of the "fans" after the screening and ask them if they got what the basic story was.  None of them really could tell me what was going on plot wise.   It is totally being promoted by Drafthouse Films as "The Most Dangerous Movie Ever Made".  And has tag lines like "No animals were harmed in the making of this movie,  However 70 cast and crew members were injured or maimed".    I think the number is a bit high though.  It probably includes people who stepped on some sharp 9 wire or pinched their fingers in the fencing.

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The reporter's background info looks to be heavily influenced by P.R. hype from Drafthouse but John's interview is spot on.  He gave a remarkably candid interview.  The whole thing in the bathroom happened exactly as he said and the parts I can't actually vouch for sound right, too.  It really was that crazy, that dangerous and, in a dangerously irresponsible sort of way, that exciting.

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Once again a fanrastic thread on this project! Love it. I am currently doing a show called Zoo and we've got lions, lion cubs, brown bears, a wolfpack, house cats, an otter, and rats (so far). It's so darn tedious shooting with those big wild animals. The trainers use yellow rope to make the "animal highway" from their cages to set. That's it, just thin ropes between us and the wild animals. According to CBS working with bears calls for hazard pay so our producer banned everyone from the set. Cameras were on remote heads, all dialog was body mics or plants. At one point one of the bears knocked over a refrigerator and got scared, leaped up on a stove and ran off set to his cage! 650 pounds moving as fast and agile as a housecat in the lower garden district in New Orleans.

Nothing as insane as these Roar stories! They don't make em like they used to.

Please keep these amazing stories coming! Whatta legacy...

Dan Izen

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It's picking up press momentum.   I saw a piece on CBS Morning show with Charlie Rose today with an interview with John Marshal and along with clips from the film and some current clips or stills and quotes from Tippy and Melanie  saying that they didn't want to comment on the films re-release because it kind of goes against everything they stand for now.

 

Here is a link to the CBS piece

http://www.cbs.com/shows/cbs_this_morning/video/bxwv6rj4GsmMHUNqjcZK4_YVeqOqhxgW/-roar-actors-battle-animals-in-newly-released-1981-film/

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Tippy seems to have done a 180 on her enthusiasm for the film---back in the 70's ,she was fanatical about the making of the film.

 

                                                                                                      J.D.

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Tippy seems to have done a 180 on her enthusiasm for the film---back in the 70's ,she was fanatical about the making of the film.

J.D.

I would say that had something to do with the amount of personal investment they had in the film. To the point of bankruptcy.

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Tippy seems to have done a 180 on her enthusiasm for the film---back in the 70's ,she was fanatical about the making of the film.

 

                                                                                                      J.D.

Well, she was married to Noel Marshall so I think that was the biggest factor.

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