A group of us, friends all, planned and plotted the production of a major motion picture. We were high school juniors and we had high hopes for lives of destined greatness.
The plan - we would travel to the big city, Chicago, some seventy-five miles to the east. Once there we would inhale the magic of that toddlin’ town and film a series of stunning scenes that would flow from our collective imaginations like fine Champaign poured slowly over a naked woman.
And everything captured for posterity on Super 8 MM. It would rival a magical mystery without the Fabs and a zillion dollar budget.
In pre-production I took charge of film procurement. With the assurances from the other three that my expenses would certainly be reimbursed on a later date, I headed to the local convenience store for film.
As it happened, on an appropriate Saturday afternoon, the other three loaded up a VW Beetle (circa 1969 version) and trekked to Chi-Town, movie camera and film onboard. A wondrous time was had by all…except me. My boss refused to let me have Saturday off. Apparently oblivious to the future brilliance of our art he demanded that I remain behind watering plants in the
greenhouse where I worked.
The genius raw footage, unedited, was displayed for the masses (the entire class body) in the school library under the tutelage of (I think) an English teacher.
Price of admission – one thin dime.
Considering that we film makers had neither an accounting department, nor a desire to run a business, ticket sale figures remain murky even to this day. Suffice to say that the afore promised restitution for the film purchase never materialized.
They stiffed me on the cost of the Super 8. And the price of those twin film reels I bought, with my own meager funds, so long
And $10.08 begat the PJ 1008 Film Company. Somewhere down the line the reasoning behind the PJ part was lost, words took precedence over film, and everything morphed into 1008 Productions.
That’s my story. My very first major motion picture and I wasn’t even there.