It is with a heavy heart that we pass on the news of Ray Merrin’s passing. A wonderful sound editor and supervising sound mixer of many features, including the Oscar winning film The Last Emperor. Ray was a sound editor on The Shining, and worked under the brilliant Bill Rowe at Elstree for many years, including being one of the first people to ever work with Dolby sound on the sound mix for A Clockwork Orange. Ray was a very warm, kind and generous man, who took the time on several occasions in his later years to share his memories with our project and with the film undergraduate students at the University of Hertfordshire. Our thanks go to Paul Welsh and Elstree Screen Heritage for facilitating these meetings and for introducing Ray to the project. We last saw Ray when we invited him to a special crew screening of Return to Oz, at Elstree Studios, in celebration of the...Read more
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Tomorrow we present the result of four years of filming interviews and one year of putting together our documentary. The first two public screenings of From Borehamwood to Hollywood: The Rise and Fall and Rise of Elstree are taking place at Borehamwood's Ark Theatre at 15:00 and 20:00. The screening has been sponsored by Elstree Studios, and so the tickets are free! We really hope our first audiences enjoy the film and that it encourages more people to find out about the history of Borehamwood and Elstree's film studios. After the first two screenings, we are screening the film at the University of Hertfordshire's Weston Auditorium, on November 13th. This screening will be followed by a Q&A with the crew and some contributors. We hope more venues will be interested in screening the film too, and so watch this space for screening updates!...Read more
The past month has been busy for our project! We have made the cover story of Hertfordshire Life magazine with a story about the centenary, and an interview with Howard Berry about our forthcoming documentary. Newsquest, publishers of the Elstree and Borehamwood Times, have produced a fantastic souvenir publication called Screen 100. The booklet contains the story of the studios and the town, and features a profile of The Elstree Project, with quotes from some of our interviewees. The October 1st edition of the Welwyn Hatfield Times features an article on page 38 devoted to the documentary. The BFI presented a special screening of Blackmail, for the centenary, and Elstree Studios donated a bust of Alfred Hitchcock to the BFI. This was followed by a presentation by Howard about the 100 years of the studios, and featured project interview clips. BBC Arts have posted a clip online from our documentary, with an article: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p027vf9p On Friday at 18:35, Howard will be interviewing Sir Roger...Read more
On Sunday 7th, Bob and I travelled into London to record our 55th interview as a project! We are so lucky to have had the opportunity to film with Louise Gold. We spent just over two hours with her, and asked her about her time working at ATV Studios in Borehamwood when she worked on The Muppet Show. Louise told us about Jim Henson and how he encouraged his whole crew to do well, and getting to sing with Jerry Nelson, as well as when she met Danny Kaye. After The Muppet Show ended, Louise continued with the production team across the road to EMI Elstree Studios, where they made The Great Muppet Caper and The Dark Crystal back-to-back. ...Read more
There are just four weeks until the world premiere of our documentary! From Borehamwood to Hollywood: The Rise and Fall and Rise of Elstree is in the last stages of editing, though we still have a couple more interviews to film - including a special interview tomorrow with British Muppeteer Louise Gold! The film tells the story of 100 years of film and television production in Elstree and Borehamwood. Covering the founding of Neptune Studios, talkies and Hitchcock at Elstree Studios, the backlot of MGM-British studios, Lew Grade and ATV, the loss of British and Dominion's studio, Roger Moore's exploits in The Saint, the LucasFilm era at Elstree, Danziger's studios, the demolition of MGM, the Gate and part of Elstree Studios and the current studios and their exciting future prospects. You can book tickets now from www.thearktheatre.co.uk - there are screenings at 15:00 and 20:00, and tickets are FREE! ...Read more
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