Tag Archives: classic movie

Detour–Inside Story on Making of a Movie

In a slight detour from Spain week, I want to share this article I wrote after attending a screening of the Sam Peckinpah/Steve McQueen movie Junior Bonner.

Steve McQueen and Robert Preston in Junior Bonner
Steve McQueen and Robert Preston in Junior Bonner

When director Sam Peckinpah and his assistants headed out west to scout out sites for a new movie in 1972, one of their stops was in a mountain town a couple hours drive north of Phoenix that once was the state’s capitol. Since they were looking for a western setting for a movie written by an Arizona screenwriter, Jeb Rosebrook, Prescott seemed a likely choice. After all, the rodeo plays an important part in Junior Bonner and Prescott, Arizona’s yearly rodeo bills itself The World’s Oldest Rodeo, having been in continuous operation since 1888.

However, it almost didn’t happen. William Pierce, chairman of the rodeo committee was summoned to meet Peckinpah and give him a tour of possible locations in Prescott. He showed up in the morning at Peckinpah’s Prescott hotel room, where the director was lounging on the bed sipping a whiskey.

(Read the rest of the inside story of the filming of Junior Bonner at Reel Life With Jane in my Classic Movies column.)

The Leopard

Sicily - Palermo
The Governor’s Palace, Palermo, Sicily

Movie: The Leopard (1963), Starring Bert Lancaster, Claudia Cardinale and Alain Delon

John Keahey,the author of Seeking Sicily, calls the book, The Leopard: A Novel, (not to be confused with Jo Nesbo’s latest mystery by the same name) a blockbuster and essential reading to understand Sicily. Although I’d like to read the book (1956) some day, I cheated and watched the movie, made in 1963. Continue reading The Leopard