I enjoyed Hope very much and am pleased to be a part of the production. Coming in on short notice is not difficult; more often than not, you find you are starting a project with very, very little preparation prior to the film; particularly in TV, where most begin production within days of the final casting.
Crenna came back with tremendous fondness for his experiences here. I love Canadian people. Crews are very hospitable and very helpful. I enjoyed working here tremendously. In his career, Crenna has done so many varied things that his versatility at times has been a deterrent in terms of people identifying him and knowing who RIchard Crenna is.
Most of the time you talk about RIchard Crenna, you have to explain the picture or the project that you're familiar with and then people say, Oh Yes, he was the fellow who was in ...
In his career , he has tried to do things that are interesting and stretching, that make him work as an actor. He will try roles that are different and offer a challenge. Crenna dismissed the idea of vertical ascent a long time ago. He feels badly for superstars who are fortunate in terms of finanial gain, but don't see much work. For instance Dustin Hoffman has not been in a picture for three years; Robert Redford waits two years between pictures.
I think to be an actor, the joy of acting is to be active, at least for me and so it pleases me that I can work as much as I do. As for the new year, it is difficult to tell now. Projects jump on you from out of the woods and I never pack my bags until the telephone rings.
When Stallone first came into town, he was seen in a number of stores. After one visit, a store owner was asked if she had got Stallone's autograph? "NO" she replied quickly, but I got his money!"
During some of the dangerous stunt shooting, Stallone managed to crack a couple of ribs. The local doctor attending the injured Hollywood star noticed that during Stallone's fall, he had managed to badly scrape his left arm. Suggesting that a tetanus shot would be in order, Stallone agreed to the treatment until the doctor returned with a syringe in hand. Then with a grin, he informed the good doctor that the injury was in fact only Hollywood makeup.
Words than fists settled one fun confrontaion during the party First Blood hosted for the town just prior to shooting. Stallone was in the receive line, shaking hands with the locals when one burly fellow walked up, put his arm around Sly and said, "Why you're just a little... Without batting an eye, Sly stared up and replied, yeah, but am I mean!
Unfortunately, those extras who spent many a bitter cold day or night on the set hoping to be captured forever on celluloid were sadly disappointed to find their moments cut or shortened in the editing.
The fast paced movie left nothing extraneous, not even a romantic interlude of any sort, to slow things down.
As a result, extras in the street scenes are merely a blur, and those in the spectacular gas station explosion bowed to a stalking climax.
Of greater disappointment though, was a lack of any thanks to the town of Hope itself. While the movie crew and cast continually praised the town and its residents for their co-operation, no mention is made in the list of credits.
Whiie such mention may have damaged the credibility of the setting, supposedly northwest Washington state, it would have certainly been appreciated in terms of ongoing tourist interest in the movies actual location.
Nevertheless, First Blood, which was filmed last November and December in Hope and surrounding mountains, as well as Golden Ears Park in Maple Ridge, produced a much needed financial boost to the local economy just as the recession starting setting in.
The film company built a sheriff's office which has now been nearly converted into a senior citizen's recreation centre, and poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into town during their three months here.
People who doggedly watched the hours and hours spent getting one scene, were amazed at the brevity of the shots once on the screen. For instance, the fire engine, which the film company had offered to paint red, used extensively to fight the gas station blaze, never shows up once. Nor do the extras employed on the scene.
The 25 second scene in which Stallone blows out two electrical transformers took at least 14 takes in pouring cold rain as technicians worked on getting the M-60 to fire continuously without jamming. The gunshop, built and then decorated intricately with trophies and antique guns, has about a minute's life on the screen before it too gets blown up real good.
Also of interest was the way Hope was portrayed, using different scenes to create an illusion about the size and access to the town. If nothign else, First Blood is a first hand look at behind the scenes of a Hollywood movie and an education into the creation of illusion.
While that may detract local viewers concentration from the plot of the movie, it helps one appreciate the amount of effort that goes into the multi-million dollar special effects creations now produced by Hollywood.
Local downtown merchant promotions helped generate premiere night excitement for the movie. A special midnight show sponsored by The Hope Standard saw Rich Graham win $50 from the Hope Chamber of Commerce for the best Rambo costume. First Blood is playing at the Hope Theatre until November 3rd. It's worth seeing.
Scott Hardy's First Blood Filming Locations
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