Author Archive for Nate Truman

11
Mar
14

TWO SHOWS THIS WEEKED! SAN DIEGO SCC CARS ON DISPLAY!

Just a quick update, a few of our LA cars will be WAY down south for two shows this weekend. If you live in the Temecula, San Diego, Oceanside areas and wanted to meet some of the Star Car Central gang, here’s your chance!  (Otherwise there is always Charger Steve’s Wild Ride’s and classic Car showdown in August!)

 

FIRST SHOW: Friday, March 14th/15th (Friday & Saturday) – “El Centro Air Show”

EL CENTRO, CA STAR CARS!!!
Event Title: El Centro Airshow  and Food Fest
Date: March 14 (Food Fest-evening Event) AND March 15 (All day Airshow )
Call time: 3pm for Food Fest, 7 am for Airshow  (to get us in the gates before the public lines up!)
Duration of event: Food fest is 4-5 hours. The Airshow  opens on Saturday at 9 am. We conclude about 3:30pm-4:30pm
Address: El Centro Naval Aviation FieldNaval Air Facility El Centro, El Centro, CA 92243

NOTE: REQUIREMENTS FOR GETTING ON BASE:

Must be a US citizen OR have a passport
Must have a valid picture ID

  • JERRY – HERBIE THE LOVE BUG
  • OBI SHAWN – STAR WARS H WING

SECOND SHOW: OCEANSIDE, CA!

March 15th (Saturday) – “South O Elementary Bike and Car Show”

9am – 3pm
1806 S. Horne St.
Oceanside, CA 92054

This is a Hot Rod, Rat Rod, Custom Car and Bike Show.

Last year, they had over 200 participants & just about 6000 people through the door. This year they are anticipating 300 cars & about 60 to 80 bikes.  They also have 3 Top Fuel Dragsters from the Cackle Car Association coming.

Click here for show flyer.

  • ARI – JURASSIC PARK
  • TYLER – BANDIT
  •  JUSTIN – PEE WEE HERMAN BIKE
04
Feb
14

New Bluesmobile joins Nate Truman’s StarCarCentral.com movie and TV lineup!

Too many StarCar happenings to keep up, but here’s a new member for 2014!
John G. shot me over a few shots of his “Bluesmobile”. We are always looking for new accurate movie and TV star cars to join in the fun! For those who need to brush up on the “Bluesmobile” here’s some info!

Wiki states -
The Bluesmobile is a 1974 Dodge Monaco sedan that was prominently featured in the 1980 film, The Blues Brothers. In the film, it is described as a used Mount Prospect police car that replaced a Cadillac, which Elwood Blues traded for a microphone. The Bluesmobile was equipped with the “440 Magnum” squad car package that was offered by Dodge for the Monaco. Its license plate was an Illinois plate reading, “BDR 529″, a tribute to the Black Diamond Riders motorcycle club of Toronto, Canada at 529 Jarvis Street.[1] Dan Aykroyd, co-writer of the film, stated that he chose the 440 Dodge Monaco because he considered it to be the hottest car used by police during the 1970s.[2]

In describing the car to his brother, Jake, Elwood said, “It’s got a cop motor, a 440-cubic-inch plant. It’s got cop tires, cop suspension, cop shocks. It’s a model made before catalytic converters so it’ll run good on regular gas.” The Bluesmobile has the ability to perform seemingly impossible stunts, such as jumping over an open drawbridge, flipping backwards in midair and even “flying” for very brief periods of time.
Jake and Elwood with the Bluesmobile

It's not a Bluesmobile, without the giant speaker!

It’s not a Bluesmobile, without the giant speaker!


"On a mission from God"

“On a mission from God”


The film used 13 different cars to depict the Bluesmobile, all of which were former police cars purchased from the California Highway Patrol, and were mocked up to look like ex-Mount Prospect, Illinois patrol cars. Some were formatted for speed, and others in jumps or high-performance maneuvers, depending on the scene. One was designed simply to fall apart upon its arrival at the Daley Center. A mechanic took several months to rig the car for that scene. The production kept a 24-hour body shop open for repairing the multiple cars used in the film.[3]

At the time of the film’s release, it held the world record for the most cars destroyed in one film until it was surpassed by its own sequel.[3]

08
Jan
14

Knight Rider’s KITT meets Dawn, Star cars at their best!


Here’s a link to my star car pal Jim, who write a short blog about KITT who has a special day with a fan.
Enjoy!

http://jimsuva.typepad.com/blog/2013/11/kitt-and-dawn.html

18
Nov
13

Nate Truman’s StarCarCentral.com gang at the Long Beach Comic Con Nov. 23 2013!

November 23 (Saturday) - “Long Beach Comic/Horror Con”

Just a quick post to let all the star car fans know that we will have a big group on display this Saturday in Long Beach!

Come on down and get your photos with the star cars, meet the SCC team members and enjoy a great comic-con!

Lots of great places to eat near by, and cool comic fans and creators everywhere you turn! 

 Show starts at 10 am, 
http://www.longbeachcc.com/

What’s the show about? Go to this link
http://www.longbeachcomiccon.com/

 
We will be out in front of the main entrance to the Long Beach Convention Center.  

  • NATE – JURASSIC PARK EXPLORER!
  • EVAN – MACH 5
  • OSCAR-  MAGNUM PI FERRARI
  • JASON – TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLE VAN
  • MARTIN – CHRISTINE
  • ARI – JURASSIC PARK JEEP
  • GARY G – HIGHWAY PATROL
  • PAUL – BACK TO THE FUTURE DELOREAN
  • BRYAN – ECTO-1! YEAH BABY!
  • ALEX – KITT FROM KNIGHT RIDER
  • OBISHAWN – STAR WARS
  • FLOR – POLICE ISETTA
06
Oct
13

Yasushi Shiroi’s Japanese Star Car from “Ultra Seven”

Sometimes it takes a new friend to remind you of an old one! A star car pal is traveling to Japan, and his new hobby is making short videos about movie and TV star cars and their owners.

As I have been in the “star car” game since the 70′s he figured if there was a movie or TV car in Japan, I would know about it. Only one car came to mind, and that was Yasushi Shiroi’s Ultra Seven build. I found his car by trolling for Batmobiles and the Green Hornet’s Black Beauty info and his car was built on a Chrysler Imperial. He also said his car was as famous as the Batmobile!
As far as I can tell there is only one page on the internet about his car,and one fan posted a few photos in the passing decade since we first shared our affection for TV star cars. Searching deeper I found one video of him driving his car, and a few photos from Japanese car shows. That’s not enough!

So I want to feature our “star car pal” in Japan in a blog! If you have contact info, or know Yasushi Shiroi, please send me the info, or send him this blog!

GO TO ABOUT 5:30 TO SEE THE CAR, BUT THIS SHOW IS AWESOME FUN!

Here are his words, describing his Ultra Seven car:finished side
This is the story of the most famous Imperial in Japan and the efforts of Yasushi Shiroi to recreate an exact replica of the original, which was destroyed.

In 1967, a very popular television series named “Ultra-Seven” debuted on Japanese TV. Ultra-Seven is the story of a spaceman (Ultra-Seven) who fights evil aggressors as a member of the Earth Defense Force. The car that the EDF used for battle and VIP transport was named “POINTER”. This car is as famous in Japan as the Batmobile is in America.

Most people never knew that POINTER was based on a heavily modified 1957 Imperial. This was due to the small TV screens of the time and the extensive modifications to the original, not to mention that 57 Imperials were very rare in Japan.

The original POINTER was not in great shape during the series and, in fact, did not run. During filming it was pushed around by the TV crew. The TV series only ran 1 year and after the series was cancelled, POINTER was given to a kindergarten. After that, no one knows what became of her. It is presumed she was scrapped and crushed.
In Japan, a car over 10 years old must pass a very extensive, and expensive, safety inspection. Because of this, most cars are removed from service before they are 10 years old.

The original builder who worked in a repair shop in Yokohama. The builder told him that he built the car from a design of Toru Narita, a famous Japanese artist. The design concept was the car which could be used in both of the sky and the land. To create the illusion of flight, both rear fenders were extensively modified into a big horizontal wings and a vertical fin. The front of the car was also heavily modified. Below the fenders are small holes which were laser cannons.
readyforpaint

building
Yasushi Shiroi dreamed of recreating Pointer. He had watched Ultra-Seven as a child and never forgotten the magnificent machine. By 1985 he had a job and was still single. This was fortunate because this was a very expensive process. He wanted it done right but could not find a 1957 Imperial so he began with a Japanese car which had a similar side profile.

In Japan, remodeling a car involves very strict laws and it is very difficult to alter the basis structure of the car. Even so, modifying the Japanese car was very time consuming and expensive and Yasushi often “lived only on drinking water for a week before payday.” As work progressed, his version of POINTER was smaller than the original. The car came out very well and Yasushi was satisfied at first, but as time passed he wanted to make a “real” POINTER based on an Imperial.

In 1991, a classic car show was held in Tokyo and Yasushi went to look for a 57 or 58 Imperial. While many Imperials of this vintage survive in America, no one thought that any would have survived 40 years in Japan. After a 3 month search a 58 Imperial was located and obtained. Yasushi became the leader of a group who wanted to recreate the original. As leader, the burden of work fell to him and, again, he drank a lot of water to survive as the project took on a life of its own.

A year later it was finished. The original car was followed faithfully based on the TV series. Many new parts were fabricated and, of course, Japanese law had to be followed. Fortunately the original

The original craftsman remembered the original car had single headlights instead of duals but the main structure of the 58 appeared to be the same as the original 57.

During the project, many surprising things were discovered such as how similar the 40 year old transmission is to modern transmissions, a testament to the quality of the original Imperial. When the transmission failed, they were able to able to get it repaired.
in costume
In 1992 the car was first shown at the classic car show in Yokahama and was in many Japanese car magazines and the subject of much attention. People became aware that POINTER was based on an Imperial. At least one person became angry because of the changes to a “Classic”. For that reason, Yasushi became concerned about showing people photographs of the “Imperial”.

In 1995, the car was exhibited at a show in Tokyo and Yasushi met a young woman who worked for the exhibition. They are now married. Her photo is in the following photograph along with Yasushi. Both are in authentic costume of the Ultra-Seven series.”

OK back to me, Nate Truman talking!
We emailed back and forth, translating our emails, and a lot got lost in translation. I found I couldn’t use “colloquialisms” as those tended to be translated into gibberish. (Like “Coke adds life” translated into “Coke brings your ancestors back from the dead!”)
So hopefully I can reconnect with Yasushi somehow, and we can make a video of him and his famous TV car, and make the distance between our two worlds get a little smaller in the process. Great job Yasushi!

UPDATE! HE STILL HAD THE SAME EMAIL AS 13 OR SO YEARS AGO, AND WE ARE MOVING FORWARD WITH GETTING HIS STORY ON VIDEO! LOVE THE INTERNET!

PFuji

Pside

rear

58imp-4

hotwheel

pomodel

front

metal-po

metal-po2

po-toy

02
Oct
13

NATE TRUMAN’S STARCAR CENTRAL JOINS THE 10-4 PARADE DOWN HOLLYWOOD BLVD. THIS FRIDAY!

Hollywood show salutes law enforcement

with 10-4 Day

dramas have long been a staple of Hollywood, produced for big screens and small

screens alike. Many who have pursued a career in law enforcement attribute their interest to the

early influence of television shows like Highway Patrol, Adam-12, Starsky & Hutch, Chips andcountless others where the good guys always get the bad guys. Each October 4 (10-4, radio

code for “affirmative”), Los Angeles Councilman Tom LaBonge’s office hosts an event called

“10-4 Day,” which unites stars of past police dramas with iconic police cars, all to promote a

message of public safety and pay tribute to local law enforcement.

The event stars cars like a 1955 Buick Century, sprayed in a livery identical to the cruiser driven

by Broderick Crawford in the series Highway Patrol; Kawasaki KZ-1000P motorcycles as ridden

by the stars of CHiPs; a replica of the Ford Torino (known as the “Striped Tomato”) from Starsky

& Hutch; and even a replica of KITT, the sentient 1982 Pontiac Trans Am driven by David Hasselhoff in the series Knight Rider. Celebrities expected at this year’s event include Paul Michael Glaser (Detective David Starsky, from Starsky & Hutch), Erik Estrada (Officer Frank “Ponch” Poncharello, from CHiPs) and Martin Milner (Officer Pete Malloy, from Adam-12).
The cars depart from Los Angeles Fire Department Station 27, located at 1327 North Cole Avenue in Hollywood, then head down Hollywood Boulevard “Code 3′′ (with lights and sirens)

before parking in front of Broderick Crawford’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (across from the El Capitan Theater). Speeches are given, and the cars are parked for roughly half an hour, allowing ample time for photo opportunities.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the event, which has grown in both size and scope since its origination. Those owning vintage police cars are encouraged to participate, and those who grew up watching police shows won’t want to miss the chance to see their favorite actors in the flesh. The event is free to the public
October 4 (Friday) – “The Tenth Annual 10-4 Day Parade”

Friday, October 4, 2013
12:00 p.m.Classic Police Car Line-up
1:05 p.m. Parade
1:15 p.m. Ceremony
1:30 p.m. participants’ barbecue – LAFD Fire Museum

Parade begins at LAFD Fire Museum, 1327 N. Cole Avenue Ceremony at Broderick Crawford’s Star, 6901 Hollywood Boulevard

Member’s of Nate Truman’s StarCarCentral.com will be on hand and will include the following cars:

GARY GOLTZ – HIGHWAY PATROL
NATE – TV style BATMOBILE
MARK G – ADAM 12 cruiser
FLOWER – ISETTA POLICE CAR
OSCAR – MAGNUM P.I. Ferrari
LOU – STARSKY GRAN TORINO
MARK SAN DIEGO – GREEN HORNET
JASON – TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLE VAN
MARK – FIRETRUCK
DIANE – ROSCO POLICE CAR

COME ON DOWN, WE’LL SEE YOU ON HOLLYWOOD BLVD!

29
Aug
13

ROCKFORD FILES cast and crew party 2013

Rockford Files Cast And Crew Party 2013

Rockford Files Cast And Crew Party 2013

Written by Jim Suva

Pictures by Joe Gunderson, AJ Palmgren, Rob Kleinle

Rockford_filesfest2013_rough

Logo By Darin James Bristow

This years Rockford Files Cast and Crew Party 2013 was held at Galpin Ford in North Hills, California on Saturday June 22nd.  We gathered in Community Room,on the second floor. The Party started at 8:30 am with a meet and greet.  Coffee and danish were available for those attending.  Sheri Aldrich was kind enough to man our registration table and greet everyone as they came in.  Special namestags with our logo on them, were given to each our guests and speakers.

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Some of those who attended this years party included our first real life Private Investigator, Chris Farmer from Arizona.  Chris became a PI because of The Rockford  Files.  Others came from New Jersey, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, Minnesota, Alabama, Illinois, California and from Germany.   In fact, Patrick Schnurr and his father Albert from Germany, won the farthest distant traveledprize.  The prize was the 1/64th scale Rockford Files Hotbird, from Hot Wheels and two Rockford caps.

This year we did something different. We had guest speakers to talk about their experience working on The Rockford Files and with James Garner.  By the feedback I have received, it was a big success.  Everyone attending got to hear all the stories,  so that no one missed any.

Roydon Clark – Stuntman.  Roy is James Garner’s stunt double, since “Maverick” in the 1950′s through a number of TV shows and movies. On Rockford, Roy was the second unit director and stunt coordinator.  Roy told some great stories about working with Jim over the years.

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Robert Zilliox – Set Decorator 1975 through the Rockford Movies.  Bob told stories about how he started in the business and was promoted on The Rockford Files to Set Decorator.  He said Jim told him that he did not want anything used more than once on Rockford.

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Milt Kogan – Actor and a real medical Doctor.  Milt has appeared in numerous TV and movies, plus 3 different Rockford’s  “No Cut Contract”, “The Empty Frame” as Aaron Keel, Angel’s brother-in-law.

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Steve Reich and Steve Hofmann from Film Vehicle Services – Steve R. and his
partner Steve H. were in charge of finding and working on the Firebirds for the
Rockford Movies of the 1990′s.  They talked about the finding of the Firebirds and the help GM gave them in locating parts for their transformation into Rockford Firebirds.

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Dennis Burkley – Actor.  Dennis has been in many TV shows over the years.  He
mainly played Bikers, tuff guys and was also in Murphy’s Romance.  Dennis is
one of nicest guys you ever want to meet.  He also talked about working with Jim.

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Chester Grimes – Personnel friend of James Garner and Actor.  Chester worked on a couple of episodes of Rockford and appeared in a couple of the Rockford movies.  Chester was also Jim’s driver for a few years.  He brought his own unquie stories
to the party.

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Diane Adler- Film Editor.  Diane came and was suppose to answer questions.  Unfortunately, we ran out of time.  But Diane did take pictures and sign autographs for the fans.

Pat McKinney brought some of his Rockford Files Collection, along with his
Screen used 1978 Firebird Formula 400. Of course the Firebird (the star that it is) arrived a little late, but came in on a flat bed truck.  Pat did not want anything to happen to it on the way to and from Galpin Ford.

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Glenn Gamer and Michael Mundy brought their Firebirds to the party too.  Below are a few pictures of their cars.  Glenn’s Firebird is from Neveda and is a 1978.  Michael’s is the red 1979  Firebird.

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We took breaks between speakers, so that fans could meet, talk, get pictures and autographs.

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Of course, it was time for the Guess Speakers to catch up with their Rockford Family from the show.

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Before we left Galpin Ford,  everyone signed a banner for Pat McKinney.  Pat
had the banner made with his on money and will be proudly displayed in his
garage.

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Part of the party of course was held in the parking lot, because of one special Firebird.  Pat enjoys talking about his Firebirds with his fellow fans.

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Here are some of my favorite pictures of most of the guests by Pat’s Firebird.

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We broke for lunch around 1 pm.   Those interested in going to see Pat’s 76 andhis 77 Firebird sound car, were welcome to come back to Pat’s house at 3 pm.  In fact a number of people showed up.  Including a stunt man that Sue Kessler knew, Bob Herron.  Bob worked on Rockford in a few episodes.  He also work as a stunt double for Ross Martin on The Wild Wild West.  He was also the first stunt man to drive the original 1966 Batmobile on Batman.  He has some wonderful stories totell about working on the different movies and TV shows.

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A few people went down to Paradise Cove on Sunday morning, to see whereRockford lived.  This was organized by Sheri Aldrich and included Richard Piet, Tim Koch, Glenn and  Kathy Gamer.

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We would like to thank our speakers for giving up their time, to share their stories with the fans of a great TV show and it’s star James Garner.  None of these peoplewere paid to participate.  All funds raised were used toward the cost of this event. We do not make any money, in fact we usually do not even cover the cost.

Plans are all ready in the works for next years 40th Anniversary of The Rockford Files.

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This article is dedicated to Dennis Burkley.  Even though Dennis was not feeling well the day of our Rockford Files Party,  he still attended, spoke, took pictures with and autographed items for the fans.  He was truly a wonderful guy!  We will miss you very much Dennis!!!

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27
Aug
13

007 Lotus Esprit ‘Submarine Car’ To be auctioned on Monday, September 9, 2013 Without Reserve

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Used in the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me

The one and only fully functional Submarine Car
One of the most famous movie cars of all time
Amazing story of lost and found
Never before offered for sale

The 007 Lotus Esprit Submarine Car from The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) commonly tops the polls when multiple generations of movie fans are asked to pick their favourite film cars of all time. Like all the best Bond cars, the Lotus was a veritable war chest of weaponry and gadgetry that was designed to fox and foil the enemy whilst also helping Bond to another hard-won victory for Queen and country.

DOSSIER

Giorgetto Giugiaro’s Italdesign unveiled a concept car at the Turin Motor Show in 1972 that was based upon a stretched Lotus Europa chassis. It was amongst the first of designer Giugiaro’s polygonal “folded paper”, or wedge-shaped, conceptions, and it caused a sensation in the automotive press. Lotus ultimately developed its Lotus Esprit using this design, and remarkably, little changed from the show car. The Esprit was launched in October 1975 at the Paris Auto Show, and it went into production in June 1976, replacing the Europa in the Lotus model line-up. With its lightweight chassis, mid-engine configuration, and fibreglass body shell, it furthered the reputation for class-beating handling long enjoyed by Lotus. At the time of its introduction, it was indisputably Britain’s most advanced sports car.

The Lotus not only impressed the automotive world, but it also impressed film producer Albert R. “Cubby” Broccoli, who one day found a pre-production model parked directly in front of his office at Pinewood Studios outside London. The car had been conspicuously positioned there, without identifying badges, by Lotus PR Manager Don McLauchlan. McLauchlan had learned that preparations had begun for a fresh 007 adventure, and he wanted to make their extraordinary new car available for the picture. Experience with the vehicles from other films, particularly Aston Martins in prior Bond movies, had proven that the publicity and sales impact could be enormous. So a deal was struck, and Lotus delivered two production vehicles; each of these were equipped with an additional piece of sheet metal beneath the radiator to protect the cars from the rough streets of the Costa Smeralda, in Sardinia, where the surface sequences of the famous chase was to be filmed. Additionally, seven more body shells were supplied, with one of which being sealed all around for underwater scenes and converted into a submarine.

“PAY ATTENTION, 007!”

No Bond car has ever done anything as outrageous on screen as transform itself into a submarine; none except for this Lotus in the epic The Spy Who Loved Me. Breaking with tradition, Q is never given the opportunity to explain the car’s features to 007. So, when the Lotus is fired (literally! – see sidebar) off a jetty into the sea, the audience was stunned, and captivated.

The specially prepared body shell was shipped to Perry Oceanographics, a marine engineering and construction firm based in Riviera Beach, Florida. Perry was known for their ingenuity in building all manner of submersible vehicles (including the Reef Ranger, also seen in the underwater battle), and they are world-renowned for their unique capabilities.

With guidance from Special Visual Effects Supervisor Derek Meddings, Perry re-envisioned the Lotus as a “wet” submarine (connoting that it is full of water as it travels beneath the surface). It moves forward via a bank of four propellers, with their electric motors being driven by batteries housed in a water-tight compartment. The articulated fins are adjusted with mechanical levers that are operated by its driver. Underwater, the Lotus has a turning circle of around 20 feet. Its dive and climb performance is regulated by ballast tanks, and it has been described as “crisply argonautic”. Contrary to what movie magic suggests, there is no semblance of a road car interior in this Lotus; instead, inside one will find its underwater motors, batteries, levers, and other control apparatus, with only a platform seat for its driver. It was said to have cost over $100,000 to construct (nearly half a million dollars today).

Its driver was Don Griffin, a retired U.S. Navy SEAL who was employed as a technician and test pilot for Perry. As such, he was the obvious candidate to operate the Lotus on location, with the underwater sequences being filmed nearby in the Bahamas.

And Don Griffin was indeed the driver (in full scuba gear with auxiliary oxygen), and in so doing, he assumed one of the greatest anonymous roles in movie history. As the one and only fully functioning Submarine Car especially designed and built for the spectacular underwater sequences, the Lotus appears in the film for the lion’s share of the screen time beneath the surface.

Dubbed “Wet Nellie” on the set, the Lotus was used to incredible effect in the film. It was fitted with mechanically operated enclosures that reveal the missile launchers in the front, a smoke screen exhaust in the rear, and a mine hatch on the bottom. When Griffin voiced the need for rearward vision, a prismatic mirror was mounted on the roof, which was sourced from Army surplus and came off of a tank. The stream of air bubbles following the vehicle was actually generated by utilising a giant cache of Alka-Seltzer tablets!

ENDURING ICON

The Spy Who Loved Me was the 10th film in the Bond franchise, and the third to star Roger Moore. At a pivotal moment in the celebrated progression of 007 films, Eon Productions needed a hit after the disappointing box office performance of The Man With The Golden Gun (1974). So, this time they pulled out all the stops by doubling the budget, bringing back Lewis Gilbert (You Only Live Twice) to direct, and giving Production Designer Ken (later Sir Ken) Adam appropriate latitude to create the phantasmagorical and futuristic sets for which he was famous. And then there was the Submarine Car, which was conceived by Adam, a Lotus owner and an admirer of the Esprit’s streamlined shape. So, the fuse was lit and the fires of 14-year-old imaginations around the world were re-ignited: the secret agent as super hero (with a little technological assistance)! As a result of this renewed commitment, The Spy Who Loved Me became the highest-grossing Bond film to date, firmly re-establishing the 007 character as a contemporary action hero.

Along with supervision on location by Meddings, underwater cameraman Lamar Boren, himself a veteran of the underwater crew from Thunderball and You Only Live Twice, was also re-enlisted for the filming of Wet Nellie in the Bahamas. So, yet again in a James Bond film, the car was the star, and moviegoers couldn’t stop talking about the Lotus.

WET NELLIE SURFACES

In conjunction with the 1977 release of The Spy Who Loved Me, U.S. Lotus (Lotus East) executive distributor Fred Stevenson procured Wet Nellie for display at auto shows, according to correspondence between Stevenson and the location manager for Eon in the Bahamas. Stevenson remembers the Lotus was full of sand and seaweed upon delivery in New York and there was no time to clean it prior to its first public debut at the New York Auto Show! This was followed by appearances at shows in Cleveland, Chicago, Denver, and Los Angeles, by which time its custodianship was taken over by Lotus West. Stevenson relates having great fun with the Lotus, discussing its unique features with dignitaries and celebrities who enjoyed having their photographs taken with Wet Nellie.

Eventually, Wet Nellie was shipped to Long Island, New York, where it was kept in an unassuming storage unit in Holbrook, New York. The lease was reportedly for a 10-year rental, paid in advance. Fate later intervened when, in 1989, the rent delinquent unit was put up “blind” at public auction. A modest winning bid from an area couple brought surprise and wonder when the blankets were removed to reveal the iconic 007 Submarine Car. The roof had been damaged, but it was otherwise wholly intact. It’s new (and current) owners recount that, whilst towing it home, the CB radios of highway truckers were all abuzz about the sighting of the famed Lotus. After positive authentication, Wet Nellie was cosmetically restored and fitted to a custom-designed display trailer and exhibited occasionally, including a stint at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, but it was mostly kept closely under wraps…until now.

NOBODY DOES IT BETTER

“Of all the Bonds I made”, remembers Roger Moore, “The Spy Who Loved Me is the one I like best. The locations were right; the costumes were right; everything on that movie went together”.

Sadly, Ian Fleming, the creator of the James Bond character and originator of the first 007 gadget car on paper, is no longer with us. However, Raymond Benson, author of seven “official” posthumous Bond books, had this to say: “I never used an underwater car in any of my Bond novels, but the Lotus in the film is one of my favourite vehicles in the 007 universe!”

Today, Wet Nellie is presented with its restored, museum display quality exterior, whilst inside, the full operational equipment appears to be complete and original. This first-time-ever public offering of the Lotus is accompanied by copies of numerous period photos, rare movie stills, correspondence between Lotus East and the film production team, auto show memorabilia, and authentication documents.

The 007 Lotus Esprit Submarine Car is one of the most inspired creations in the history of filmmaking. As such, we wouldn’t want it to fall into enemy hands, so we invite those who can enthusiastically appreciate its technology, ingenious deployment, and legendary screen appearance to attentively consider this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to acquire Wet Nellie, one of the most fascinating and entertaining movie vehicles of all time.

BEHIND THE SCENES: EVOLUTION OF A GREAT SPY CAR

It is believed that Lotus provided two production “road cars”, plus seven Esprit fibreglass body shells, to the filmmakers. One of those shells was reported to have been split in half to film Roger Moore and Barbara Bach in their separate seats. The remaining six body shells, delivered bare, were used to initiate and consummate filming the underwater scenes. Each of these shells was modified to perform specific functions in the movie. Here is the evolution of Wet Nellie on the screen:

1. Used for the tyre retraction sequence.
2. Used to portray the side fins protruding from the wheel arches whilst the periscope extends.
3. Featured in the below-surface-to-air missile sequence from the rear hatch.
4. Tethered to a powerful air cannon and jettisoned off the pier and into the water below.
5. The spare unit for the above.
6. The one and only fully enclosed shell used to film the functional Submarine Car.

Once filming was complete, the tyre shell (1) and the missile shell (3) were left behind in the Bahamas and given as souvenirs to Roberts Scrap Metal Company, who assisted with the heavy equipment for the shoot. The tyre shell exists today in poor condition in a Florida museum. The fin shell (2) has seemingly disappeared (with its whereabouts unknown), whilst the missile shell (3) is owned by the Ian Fleming Foundation and is proudly on display as part of the on-going 50th Anniversary of James Bond Exhibit at the Beaulieu National Motor Museum. The first of the pier shells (4) was damaged by the air cannon during filming in Sardinia, and it is presumed to have been discarded. The other pier shell (5) may have been unused or used more lightly; in any event, it was later unofficially retrofitted with mock up gadgets and sold in the late 1980s.

Which leaves the one and only functional Submarine Car (6), which is being offered to the public for the first time ever.

-Doug Redenius
Co-Founder, The Ian Fleming Foundationbond submarine lotus

28
Jun
13

4th of July parade featuring the Star Car Central crew!

next appearance of STAR CAR CENTRAL!

JULY 4TH HACIENDA HEIGHTS PARADE
MAGNUM P.I. FERRARI
KNIGHT RIDER SUPER PURSUIT MODE KITT
BACK TO THE FUTURE DELOREAN TIME MACHINE
THE A-TEAM VAN
JURASSIC PARK EXPLORER
KNIGHT RIDER KITT
PEE WEE HERMAN BIKE
TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLE VAN
JAMES BOND DB5
BMW JAMES BOND CAR
HERBIE THE LOVE BUG
TRANSFORMER’S BUMBLEBEE

The Hacienda Heights 4th of July Parade takes place on July 4th at 9:00 am in Hacienda Heights, CA on Stimson Avenue starting at Colima Road and ends at Steinmetz Park. The Parade consists of bands, floats, equestrian, drill teams, VIPs, local school and church groups AND FAMOUS MOVIE CARS!!!!.

Come out and show your Hacienda Heights support on July 4th at 9:00am.

23
Mar
13

A look back at the Hollywood Christmas Parade, soon a bigger line up in Burbank April 6th!

Ok, This is from a blog I found about the 2012 Hollywood Christmas parade, but he got our whole line up and had nice things to say about all of the members who came and participated!   On April 6th we will have more than this epic line up, with a few new members and surprises as well! Come out to the Burbank parade and meet the Star Car Central team!


Wait, what!? The 1960s Batmobile from the Adam West “Batman” show and the 1989 Batmobile riding together??
Awesome. The 1989 one even unleashed a bunch of firecrackers underneath it. Where does he get those wonderful toys?


Another shot of the two Batmobiles.


I’ll take one of each.


Yeah, baby.


Remember when cars looked cool?


Okay, apparently the Christmas parade just turned into a pop culture cars parade, and I couldn’t be happier about it.
Here’s the DeLorean DMC-12 from “Back to the Future”.


Another shot of the DeLorean.


Not one, but two Herbie Volkswagen Bugs drove by.


Herbie fully loaded, with stickers and new rims!


The Pontiac Trans-Am from “Smokey and the Bandit”.


Look out, it’s them Duke boys speeding by in the General Lee!


I wonder if Boss Hog will ever catch ‘em.


Apparently this was Bumblebee from the Transformers movie.
I wouldn’t know, because I tried blocking that bastardization of a beloved childhood memory from my mind long ago.


Starsky & Hutch. Word.


Scooby Doo riding on by in The Mystery Machine van!


Well whaddaya know! It’s the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Van along with April O’Neil walking beside it!


And yes, that’s the same van from the TMNT video I appeared in earlier this year.


Probably the most intimidating van in history – the classic van from The A-Team.


It’s KITT from Knight Rider.
(fun fact: KITT stands for “Knight Industries Two Thousand)


There was a second Knight Rider car that drove by and the motion lights on the front were gold instead of red.
Must’ve been KITT’s brother, KATT. (HAR!)


Time to go off-roading with Jurassic Park.


Smile while you can kid… you’ll be devoured by a Velociraptor soon enough. Merry Christmas!


Now this one was a real treat for me… I’m a HUGE fan of John Carpenter’s “Christine”, so getting to see the Plymouth Fury
from the film was nothing short of awesome. I do wish they had it playing 1950s rock & roll when it drove by though.


I’ve seen it plenty of times over the years, but the Ecto-1 from Ghostbusters is always a welcome sight.


Are you kidding me!? Alright, they definitely saved the best for last. An X-34 Landspeeder occupied by
two Jawas with perfect glowing yellow eyes, a Tusken Raider, and Leia in the Boushh disguise. Amazing.


Nothing says “Christmas” like an X-34 Landspeeder chasing after the Ecto-1 chasing after Christine.




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