Saturday, September 27, 2008

Yeah, We All Goof Up, But . . .

…but it’s fun to see them on tv and in the movies. That’s why we watch the “outtakes” that sometimes run at the end of films, or (as I do on subsequent viewings of shows), check out camera crews in mirrors, windows or supposedly just out of view.

As I said, it’s fun. No malice involved and the first time through I pay attention to what I’m watching; it’s only later that I’ll keep an eye out for things that shouldn’t be there.

In “The Music Man,” for instance, it took me lots of viewings before I happened to notice that the train Professor Harold Hill gets off of then leaves the station in the same direction from which it arrived.

I was a projectionist for a bit and noticed the “The Missouri Breaks” had an awful lot of inside shots which showed the microphone boom over people’s heads – and distinctly in the mirrors. “THAT is sloppy,” I said at the time. Didn’t anybody catch the mics hanging in the mirrors? The cameraman? Whoever looks at the daily rushes?

When Liza Doolittle is trying to lose her accent in “My Fair Lady,” blowing out the candles when she says the “h” at the start of her words, the paper she uses (and you can see this easily) has Rex Harrison’s lines on it. Watch as the camera swings around.

The stuff you’d see in the old days of live tv was amazing; but films can be fixed, re-shot and made perfect. It’s a fun hobby.


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