Thought-lost films continue to turn up, right?
But how about a visual record (as in over 150 images) from behind-scenes of a
John Ford wartime classic ... news to me on par with reels hauled up
from hiding ... a between-covers coup achieved by author Lou Sabini and
serviceman-photographer Nicholas Scutti. Latter was assigned to the Florida location of They
Were Expendable, part of U.S. Navy cooperation with Ford/crew, Scutti making his own
photo diary during a month spent with Expendable's company. Scutti got to
know director Ford and all of performing principals, coming
away with much insight into each and all. His captures were not for studio use
or publicity ... thus nothing posed ... and everyone on relax or candid setting. We
really get sense of a crew at work, play, eating, arguing (Bob Montgomery did not hit it off with Ward Bond), etc. Most welcome of visitors was military personnel passing through, or there to
greet Naval colleague Ford, one of these a spit-and-polish Richard Barthelmess,
former silent era star andnow a lieutenant commander. Behind The Scenes Of
They Were Expendable: A Pictorial History is one-of-a-kind, and once-in-a-lifetime,
explore of Classic Era filmmaking like we dream of, but nearly never get. Just
pretend someone gave you a camera and a ticket back to Florida in 1945 --- that's the kind of kick you'll get from exploring this marvelous book. Amazon has it HERE.