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 Please help!

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Doobster
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PostSubject: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:01 pm

Hi guys.

The biggest Classic American Car magazine in Europe has just taken a bunch of photos of my Christine for a feature to be published soon.

I initiated this about 4 years ago, not only to increase the prestige of my car (I can boast her as a feature car in Class' Am' Magazine) but also to get some publicity for the ICC.

But times have changed.

I've recently had a 2 hour phone conversation with a freelance journalist that's writing the feature.

I made sure I mentioned the Christine Car Club as well as the ICC, I'll be upset if one of them (or both) isn't mentioned in the article.





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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:07 pm

Congrat's on the Magazine Lee!!!! That is the way to do it. Regardless if they mention 1 or both Club's the important thing is your Christine will be getting placed in the magazine. Any help I can give you please just let me know.



Joe C NY
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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:12 pm

Thanks Joe.

I need help from club members.

The journalist wrote a feature for another magazine a few years ago.

He was worried he might have gotten some facts wrong so emailed me some of what was written.



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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:17 pm

I'll write what the journalist emailed me in a following post.

He (and all of us) don't want to risk any libel claims or to offend or upset anyone, so I'd appreciate any comments anyone can give, this feature is being rushed through presumably for the 30th Anniversary, so is being written this week.

Please PM me if you'd rather not have comments seen publicly.


Thanks guys.


Lee.





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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:23 pm

I know the answers and general consensus about much of what is written below but I'd appreciate any input you can give.


What Mike (the journalist) sent me:







CARS THE STAR – CHRISTINE

Ask any American car fan what’s wrong with the movie /Christine/ (1983) and at some point you’ll hear; “The 1958 Plymouth Fury was never available in red.”

Quite right, when Stephen King wrote the book /Christine/ that was turned into a screenplay he wrote the lead star Plymouth as a four door Fury - also not available in 1958 - that was custom painted by her first owner.

But, and this may surprise you, nowhere in the film is Christine actually referred to as a Fury.

When the movie begins we see Christine on a 1957 Detroit assembly line surrounded by other 1958 Plymouths that appear to all be painted Buckskin Beige - the only colour you could officially buy a Fury in at the time.
But although she has the Fury 150mph speedometer, Christine lacks Fury badging and the gold anodised trim.

Under the bonnet there’s a 350ci Golden Commando dual carb engine as often fitted to the Fury, but that was also an option on Belvederes, and you /could/ buy a Belvedere in red and white.

The story’s straightforward; Arnie a bullied teenager, falls in love with the wreck of a 1958 Plymouth and begins restoring the car. When the bullies wreck the car Christine regenerates back into mint condition and goes on a murderous rampage reeking revenge on anyone coming between her and Arnie.

When the production began Universal didn’t scour America for rare and valuable Furies to destroy, in fact it’s thought only one or two genuine Furies were used for the film - one of those a 1957 model.

The majority of the 1957 and 1958 Plymouths used were Belvedere or Savoy Sport Coupes - bodily almost identical except for trim.

Opinions vary greatly on how many cars were used, many sources suggest 12 or 17, Transportation and ‘Christine’ Coordinator Eddie Lee Voelker, and Special Effects Supervisor Roy Arbogast say 23 cars, producer Richard Kobritz says 24.

A further source suggests 16 cars were used for filming and a further seven purely for parts - we’ll probably never know for sure. It took the production crew over two years to track down cars through newspaper adverts, junkyard searches and the California Dept. of Motor Vehicles.

Car fans are forever complaining about the amount of cars that were wrecked during filming but the crew generally bought only the roughest examples, there are instances of them refusing a Plymouth because it was too good to destroy.

Plymouths of the era had poor corrosion protection so the typically rusty panels and rotted out floors were replaced, dents repaired and rubber moulds made of the Sportone side trim, badges and hubcaps to allow the cars used to be turned into Christines.

The Plymouths were all painted 1980/81 Chevrolet Camaro Red with a white roof.

Textured aluminium was used for side trim pieces, grilles were sprayed silver and 1/4 inch chrome tape made everything shine. Restoration on the cheap! Although the Plymouths got quite a beating in the film a lot of parts were reused, if you see Christine hit on her driver’s side chances are later that same car also took a hit on the passenger side too, the cars were also cut’n’shut to put a good front or rear onto a damaged car.

At night Christine’s glass becomes darkened, in many cases this was made from dark or opaque perspex, some cars simply had their glass painted gloss black on the inside. A narrow slit was left in the screen and covered with light black tinted film so the stuntman had a vague idea where they were headed even though there was no side or rear vision.

The car used in the ‘show me’ scenes where Christine regenerates was a bare 1958 shell with all external panels and trim entirely made from moulded rubber. A large air pump was sealed in the empty interior and the air slowly sucked out. When the film was played backwards Christine’s crushed bodywork straightened out and became dent free.

Chrysler full size cars had very effective torsion bar suspension but anyone who’s driven one may wonder just how the various Christines managed to corner and slide so well during the chase scenes, the answer being that the rear axles were chained down to the frame to minimise bodyroll.

The Christine that destroys high school bully Buddy Repperton’s Camaro just prior to the gas station explosion had large blocks of wood and an X member installed in the engine bay to prevent the whole front end from crumpling, and her radiator mounted in the boot to avoid damage.

The most dramatic scenes are when Christine, engulfed in flames, chases Buddy into the night. Stunt Coordinator Terry Leonard was wrapped in a thermal suit used for fighting aircraft fires and strapped into a stripped out Plymouth covered in rubber glue which was then set alight. As soon as he backed out the car stalled.

On take two Leonard managed to pilot the car across the gas station forecourt largely unable to see where he was going due to the darkened glass - and a bonnet covered in flames.

One thing quickly became apparent - fire rapidly burns up oxygen.
It was hard to keep the engine running and difficult to breath even with a mask and suit. The stunt wasn’t repeated...

Although Christine is the undoubted star Arnie’s friend Dennis drives a nice blue 1968 Dodge Charger base model 440.

Supposedly two Chargers were used; a four speed manual and a three speed auto (on the auto the rearview mirror is always mounted upside down). It’s rumoured one still exists and the other was destroyed in a garage fire.

Legend has it they were sourced from /The Dukes of Hazzard/ because they had plenty to hire out...

Buddy has a 1967 Chevrolet Camaro Super Sport with Z28 stripes and Western Cyclone Turbine wheels, two were used, one cut in half lengthways to achieve a camera shot, the other destroyed in the gas station fire - although it’s obvious the engine was removed first.

After filming was complete every remaining piece of incomplete Christine Plymouth was sold to Bill and Ed's Auto Wrecking in Fontana, California and several Plymouth owners bought large numbers of parts from the yard including rubber moulds for trim and hubcaps.

Visitors to the site counted ten Christines in wrecked condition.

It is known that two cars used for close up work - known on set as ‘Pristine Christines’ - did survive and were extremely well cared for.

One was given away in a competition, the other was supposedly kept by director John Carpenter.

The stunt car used in the Moochie chase scene also survives, it was the only manual gearbox car used and had a powerful race engine installed. A fourth was retained on a backlot for use in the film /Cat’s Eye/ (1984) but later sold when a different ‘58 Plymouth was found.

It has since been restored to on-screen condition. Other promotional cars were created including one for the UK to advertise the RCA/Columbia video release of Christine in 1987.

It’s probably safe to say that at least four ‘58 Plymouths can lay claim to being survivors from the film.

The movie had its faults but whilst cars were destroyed, the popularity of /Christine/ means a great deal of 1957 and 1958 Plymouths have been saved and restored - probably 99 per cent of them repainted in red, with a white roof!


//ends//
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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:25 pm

More from Mike:






Did you know?

The license plate of Christine reads begins with ‘CQB’, supposedly an acronym for "Close Quarters Battle".

The small wheels that are visible under the MkII Cortina that Christine crashes into during the showdown at Darnell's is not necessary a mistake as the Cortina was intended to represent a vehicle that won't run placed on a dolly to allow it to be moved around with ease.


The Twilight Zone, season 5 episode 14, titled /You Drive/ may be where Stephen King got the inspiration to write /Christine/. A 1956 Ford begins driving itself to convince its owner to admit to a hit and run accident. The possible origin of the killer car's name could possibly be from another film entitled /Christine/ made in 1958.


Because the film didn't have enough violence to justify an R rating and there was fear that no one would watch a PG rated horror, a lot of swearing was added to the script. At the time only /Scarface/ (1983) contained more obscenities than /Christine/.


Christine, or her likeness, has appeared in several other films and shows including /Futurama/ and she makes an appearance in Stephen King’s 1986 book ‘It’.


The building used for Darnell’s garage was a 1/4 mile long disused wire production warehouse in Sun Valley, Los Angeles. Later half of it became the garage and the other half a repair and rebuild area for the part wrecked Christines.

An old furniture warehouse was initially used for the Detroit production line in the opening scenes.


Rudolph Junkins, the decective investigating the murders Christine has done, drives a blue 1977 Plymouth Fury.


The red and white 1958 Plymouth Belvedere used in /Cat’s Eye/ (1984) has a small bumper sticker reading ‘I Am Christine’.


The scenes where Christine is destroyed by the bullies used a quite decent car, it proved harder to destroy than expected and all the actors involved got minor injuries from sharp metal and flying glass.



John Stockwell, who played Dennis, enjoyed being taught how to drive the bulldozer and became quite proficient at it by the end.


Visitors to the film set were amused that Christine was always referred to on set by name or as ‘she’ or ‘her’, never ‘it’ or ‘the Plymouth’, because there was a genuine desire to make the car seem alive and real.


The film was based on the 700 page story manuscript because King’s book hadn’t then been released. The film was massively boosted when, before filming was completed, the book became the number one bestseller.


Scott Baio and Brooke Shields were put forward by the studio as lead actors, Kevin Bacon accepted but had to later turn it down. Producer Richard Kobritz was convinced he should use young unknown actors because “always the car was the star”.


As well as liking the name ‘Fury’ Stephen King choose the 1958 Plymouth because it was ‘never oversold. It was the only car no one ever wrote about, it had no cult following, it was
this kitsch, chromed ugly thing that no one cared about’.

It’s rumoured one of King’s first cars was a ‘59 Plymouth.

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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:34 pm

Thanks guys.



PS, I'm currently typing this in Florence, South Carolina if anyone's local and fancies a Samuel Adams or three.

Only here for a few days on a training course ( maintain MRI scanners).






I spent today paying my respects at a military cemetery and visited Union Soldier Civil War graves (2300 of them buried there).

I then took a lone walk around the site of the Stockade where many of them met their fate.

The hairs were standing up on the back of my neck and on my arms.





Tomorrow I'm heading up to Charleston to visit Fort Sumter, I've been interested in the American Civil War since I was about 7 years old when my uncle (whom has a massive interest in it) introduced me to it.

i first visited the States in 1980 when I was ten.

It was life changing for me (I was probably the only kid in my school of 2000 or so pupils that had ever been to Disney World at that time).

I've been back 15 times since and spent at the very least a day in 10 different States.

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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:41 pm

Whoops....


Here's the Magazine:


[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]



You probably won't be aware of it in the US but it's the only Magazine that US Car owners in Europe would want to buy.

Other magazines about American and Classic American cars exist, but this is the biggest.



Exposure in this magazine is quite big for the Christine community as a whole.


Cheers!



Lee

...... I'm off out to get a Burger and some of that good old Southern Hospitality now......



Yeeha!
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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sat May 18, 2013 7:52 pm

Lee Mike is correct on his research regarding the movie, cars a bit different. I also have several emails I have never shared from the producer: Mr Korbitz and he has explained this exact story. The cars are a somewhat different story that I will discuss with you in private from documentation the producer had sent to another Member here in 2010 when all of the movie info was needed and wanted by several fan's and myself.

He is on the money with 99% of the story he has sent to you.

When you have a chance feel free to call me Mate.

Joe C
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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sun May 19, 2013 8:27 am

Thanks for all the great information on Christine Lee. Will we be able to order this magazine when it comes out? I want one!!!

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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Sun May 19, 2013 8:29 pm

i actually have a fact to add Lee but it will take a little bit of research because i do not know the actual episode number but there is a twilight Zone episode where all of a wealthy mans electronics become alive and attempt to kill him and in the end he is chased down by his car very similar to how Moochie was, jumping a fence and everything and finally he falls into a pool and drowns. I would like to see the episode he described though

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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Mon May 20, 2013 9:58 pm

Thanks guys.

Joe, I'm in South Carolina, what's your phone number mate, I don't have it with me.


I don't want to know anything the author can't print.

Thanks mate.

Lee.



Chrissy, I know how you can subscribe to the magazine but not sure how an individual copy might be obtained (I subscribe so am not sure which stores sell it).
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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Mon May 20, 2013 10:00 pm

914 557-7575

Thanks Mate
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PostSubject: Re: Please help!   Mon May 20, 2013 10:27 pm

I'm over here learning about Super-conductive M.R.I. magnets Joe.

I'll try and "give you a Bell" during a lunchbreak.


Would be good to talk to you again!


Cheers!


Lee.





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