Friday, November 27, 2009

Colonel Fielding, Colonel Fielding

When you have a father who saves the world from Martian Invaders, you should feel pretty safe at night. Right?

Yeah, that's him on the phone. My dad, the Colonel.

I know it was just a movie. And it was a long time ago that we rode our bikes down to the local matinee and shelled out our fifty cents for the Saturday double feature. But to this day, every time I see sand, I can't help but think of "Invaders From Mars."

Occasionally, I catch myself searching the backs of stranger's necks to see if that little Martian device is protruding out. Crazy, I know.

But, seriously, have you ever been to Walmart?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

My First Post

In 1977, I walked into a post production facility in Hollywood and was greeted by George Lucas. He was putting the finishing touches on his latest film. He led me into a sound booth. From there I could see a small movie screen on the wall. He explained to me that I was going to be voicing a character in his film. He gave the go ahead and the movie screen came to life.
There, in front of me, I saw my first X-Wing zooming through space. At the controls was WEDGE ANTILLES..also known as RED 2.
Wedge was being played by the terrific Scottish actor, Dennis Lawson. The first words out of his mouth..."Look at the size of that thing!" He spoke in a thick Scottish brogue. George gave me a few directions. I put the head set on and stepped up to the microphone.
"Look at the size of that thing" I said, seeing the Death Star for the first time. George gave me the thumbs up. And I continued on. "I'm on him Luke,"... "Right with you boss."... "What about that tower?" ..."Fighters coming in point three!" ... "I'm hit!"
In between takes, Mark Hamill entered the sound stage and plopped down on the sofa. Blue jeans and bare feet. He was full of life and great energy and it was a pleasure to meet him. A couple hours later I finished the job. George shook my hand. I was now the voice of Wedge Antilles in Star Wars.

An additional bit of Star Wars trivia...George also had me voice another sequence in the film. A briefing room scene with Luke Skywalker and Wedge Antilles. In this scene a different actor was hired to play Wedge. Dennis Lawson was unavailable so Colin Higgins took his place. The line I voiced in this scene:

"That's impossible, even for a computer."

Luke responds, "It's not impossible, I used to bulls-eye womp rats in my T-16 back home. They're not much bigger than two meters."

...when I walked out of the sound studio and stepped onto the Hollywood sidewalk, I had no idea what I had just become a part of.

More to come...

"Red 2, standing by"....