Reel Corner - January 2015

The Top 10 Picks for Movie Releases this Month


The New Year brings the beginning of awards season. As we wait in anticipation, I thought you may enjoy a few fun film facts. There are so many details that go into producing films, for back-story buffs it’s always fascinating to uncover a few surprises.

THE HANGOVER: No effects or prostheses were used to create Stu’s missing tooth. Actor Ed Helms never had an adult incisor grow and took out his fake incisor for filming. ANCHORMAN: The restaurant where Veronica visits with girlfriends from the station was called “Escupimos en su Alimento,” which in Spanish means : “We spit in your food.”

THE 40-YEAR-OLD VIRGIN: The scene where actor Steve Carell has his chest hair waxed off was real. Five cameras and one shot to film the scene. Ouch!

AVATAR: In 1999, special effects required by Director James Cameron were so costly he tabled the project for eight years until computer-generated imagery effects were more reasonable.

CAPTAIN AMERICA: No thin body double was used when Chris Evans was meek and muscleless. Instead, filmmakers used a digital shrink technology technic.

IRON MAN: A prosthetic chest was placed over the real chest of Robert Downey, Jr. and a light positioned behind it to illuminate the arc reactor in the center of his chest.

CASABLANCA: The final scene was filmed on a sound stage. The plane was a cardboard cutout and the ground crew were little people.

BEVERLY HILLS COP: At the time the film was made, technicians made up a technology called “Satellite Tracking System,” which later became a reality technology we call Global Positioning System (GPS) today.

APOLLO 13: In real life, Tom Hanks is 1-inch too tall to be an astronaut. Maximum height is 6-feet.

APOCALYPSE NOW: Laurence Fishburne lied about his age to get the part of gunner mate. He was only 14 years old, not 18, which he had on his paperwork.

AIRPLANE!: The movie title was changed in different countries: Argentina: Where is the Pilot? Brazil: Tighten your Seatbelt, the Pilot is Gone; Norway: Help, We’re Flying; France: Is there a Pilot on the Plane? Germany: The Incredible Trip on a Crazy Airplane.

MASH, PATTON AND THE SOUND OF MUSIC: These were the first U.S. films to be released on VHS at a price of $50-$90 each. The History of Violence was the last U.S. film released on VHS. IT’S A

WONDERFUL LIFE: In 1947, an FBI analyst investigating communism infiltration into the film industry submitted a memo that It’s a Wonderful Life promoted communism by discrediting bankers. THE

GODFATHER: Actor John Marley’s screams were real in the bed scene with the horse head. The actor anticipated a prosthetic horse head, but it was replaced by a real horse head from a dog food factory.

THE WIZARD OF OZ: The munchkins were paid $50 a week for a six-day work week. Toto was paid $125 a week.

TWILIGHT: In an initial aborted script, Edward was a vampire “hunter,” not a vampire.

THE TERMINATOR: OJ Simpson was sought to play the lead role but the director at the time didn’t think the public would buy him as a remorseless killer. SUPERMAN: Marlon Brando refused to memorize his lines. During the scene where he is talking to baby Superman, his lines were written on the baby’s diaper.

STAND BY ME: The cigarettes used by the young teens were made of cabbage leaves.

JAMES BOND: Sean Connery wore hairpieces in every Bond movie

THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST: James Caviezel was struck by lightning while on the cross. No physical injuries were reported. Sources:;;

Donne Paine, film enthusiast, once lived around the corner from the Orson Wells Theater in Cambridge, Mass., where her strong interest in films, especially independent ones, began. She was a 12-year member of the Hilton Head Second Sunday Film Society, and frequent visitor to the Sundance Film Festival. To support her habit of frequent movie going, Donne is an executive recruiter and staff development consultant. Are you interested in joining a film club? Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



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