Posts Tagged ‘1914 Stutz Bear Cat

25
May
15

“Bearcats” car built by George Barris is in the hands of a superfan!

If there’s one star car-lover who knows determination, it’s my star car pal, John Boyle. He is a 59 year-old, retired Air Force officer from Colbert, Washington and he had a dream car. It was the George Barris-built car, the Stutz Bearcat, from the short lived TV series “Bearcats” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bearcats!


It was in 1971, when John Boyle was a teenager that he saw a TV series called “Bearcats!” It was the story of two soldiers of fortune ala “Butch and Sundance” who drove a 1914 Stutz Bearcat. Boyle says he loved the car and wanted one. He’d read in TV Guide that George Barris had built two Bearcat replicas for filming. bearcats
The antique Bearcats were extremely expensive, so when the show was cancelled Boyle told himself he’d keep his eyes open for one of the Barris replicas. After searching for over 25 years, in 1999, he found one, whose owner agreed to sell it at a price he could afford. “I couldn’t believe it,” said Boyle. “I was now driving the exact car I saw on TV when I was a kid, made by George Barris.” He later met with Mr. Barris in his L.A. office, and the car was authenticated. Boyle admits that the car is now his “weekend toy” and he feels very lucky to have it.

Bearcats!, despite a large promotional campaign prior to its premiere and having a loyal fan base, lost in the Nielsen ratings to both The Flip Wilson Show on NBC and a more traditional Western, Alias Smith and Jones, on ABC, and was cancelled midseason after only 13 episodes.

Both series were trying to cash in on the popularity of westerns.  “Bearcats” were two soldiers of Fortune, hero’s for hire, like “The A-Team” and “Smith an jones was patterned after the big movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid”.  Smith and Jones coyly pointed out in their title that Butch and Sundance was what they were aping.  In the movie staring Robert Redford and Paul Newman, when they rob a bank there is a line where they are deciding their “aliases”.  Sundance says to Butch, “Now remember, I’m Smith, and you’re Jones”.

Bearcats! is an American Western television series broadcast on the CBS television network during the Fall 1971 television season. It starred Rod Taylor and Dennis Cole as troubleshooters in the period before America entered World War I.

Bearcats! was produced by Filmways Inc. (which previously produced many series including The Addams Family, Mister Ed, The Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, and Petticoat Junction). It was co-produced by Rodlor, Rod Taylor’s production firm. (Rod Taylor did many films, such as “The Time Machine” Hitchcock’s “The Birds”)   I “found” John on the internet years ago in a “chat room” (remember those?)

It was great to find out that the car was in good hands and won’t be changing hands any time soon!  Machine guns on the fenders and tearing through the old west? What’s not to like!

04
Mar
12

Before star cars, there were the cars of the stars!

Before star cars, there were the cars of the stars!
by Nate Truman
Often times at auto events I am approached with owners of a different type of “CarStar”, cars that were
once owned by a famous person.  As cars and stars have long been connected even before the “golden age” of movie and TV
customs (60’s through the 80’s) still the link between a memorable face from the films and a unique or special car started long before that.
Below is just a sample of press photos taken of the famous stars from the start of the film industry up to the 1940’s.
No commentary needed, if you don’t know who they are you can Google them!  So here’s a walk through the start of the Stars and their cars,
that later Hollywood and TV land finally figured out was a winning combination and took it a step further, and made the cars “Stars” in their own right!  Enjoy!
Paulette Goddard, getting into her husband’s (Charlie Chaplin) Rolls-Royce Phantom II
Some 20s glamour:
Fatty Arbuckle and his 1919 Pierce Arrow
Erich Von Stroheim and his Cadillac
Harold Lloyd and wife Mildred Davis with their Buick
Lincoln Theodore Monroe Andrew Perry aka Stepin Fetchit with his Cadillac Phaeton
Joan Crawfordwith her 1929 Ford Town Car
Babe Ruth receiving a 1926 Auburn Roadster as a gift
And now – to 30s and 40s!
Lilian Harvey and her Mercedes
Johnny Weissmuller with his 1932 Chevrolet
Clark Gable with his 1932 Packard
Laurel and Hardy in their Buick 1930 Series 30 Model 30-45 phaeton
Joan Crawford (again) and her 1930 (or 1931) Cadillac Fleetwood
Carl Brisson behind the wheel of his 1934 Isotta Fraschini
Al Jolson with his Mercedes
Jean Harlow with her Cadillac
William Powell admires Gary Cooper’s Duesy
Buck Jones with his 1933 Packard Special
 
Errol Flynn driving his Packard…
… and Auburn Roadster
Tyrone Power with his Duesenberg…
… and post-war Jaguar
Robert Montgomery with his Cadillac Sport Phaeton
Joan Crawford (yes, again!) driving her 1933 Ford roadster
James Stewart with his Plymouth
Ginger Rogers and her 1937 Dodge
Norwegian Olympic figure-skating champion, and Hollywood star Sonja Henie, posing with her Cord 810
Cecil B deMille with his 1937 Cord
Rita Hayworth with her 1941 Lincoln Continental
Bing Crosby giving rides around the studio lot in his 1939 Olds coupe convertible
Cary Grant parked on the fender of his 1941 Buick Century
And finally, some double-retro:
John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara in a 1914 Stutz Bear Cat. Which later got it’s own series “The Bearcats”!



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