Posts Tagged ‘george barris

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!

17
Jul
11

STAR CAR NEWS FROM AROUND THE USA AND THE WORLD! GO TEAM SCC! (THAT’S STAR CAR CENTRAL!)

Starcar fans are all around the world, and starcarcentral.com is trying to keep up with all of our members and chapters so you can find the famous movie and TV car events near you!

One of the most active groups outside of Nate Truman’s  Hollywood division is run by Dee up in the upper left corner of the USA!  He has even started a “starcar Concourse”.  After searching for star cars all over the U.S. Dee and Nate found several owners and they all started hanging out together up north!  So heres the info on their upcoming event!

Its time for the big 5th Annual ‘Star Car Concourse Classic” show at the Americas Car Museum.

The show is always the last Saturday in August, this year the 27th, and is held at the LeMay Museum’s Marymount location in the Tacoma/Spanaway area. This will be a ‘sanctioned’ AMCA event, hosted by the International Movie & TV Vehicle Owners Association and madmaxcars.com. The larger event, the LeMay/Americas Car Museum’s “Openhouse” that we are featured at, is a VERY COOL annual event even if it were not for the moviecars contribution, so it is well worth the trip. You can find the basic details on our events page here: http://www.madmaxcars.com/events.shtml

Then out in the middle of the USA Michael Knight has a great group that is now doing Comic cons and features one of the two original Monkeemobiles!  Here’s a few shots of them sharing the star cars with fans of all shapes and sizes at a recent con!

"Robin, you seem.... Different?"

Original Ghostbuster Ernie Hudson showed up to see and sign the Ghostbuster tribute car (Hey, before you point out it’s not the right body style, not everyone can find a 1959 Mercury Meteor Ambulance, ok? )

Ghostbuster Ernie Hudson and SCC chapter leader Mike Knight!

Everyone had a great time chatting up Ernie about his time as a ghostbuster, and he even signed their car!

"To StarCarCentral.com, thanks for the cool car... what? I don't get to keep it?"

Like I mentioned before, They also have one of the two Monkeemobiles from the old TV series, and it showed up at a live Monkee show!

Well what did you expect them to be rolling in?

Meanwhile, over in Europe, France specifically, Claude has been hosting a great star car get together each year, and it keeps getting bigger each time!

And an article in the french mag “La Vie de l’Auto” The N°1 for the collectors in France! 🙂

Thanks to guys like Michael, Dee, and Claude – fan boys and girls around the US and the world have opportunities to see and get up close to their favorite movie and TV cars!

Where ever there are two or more starcars gathered in the SCC name, you are sure to have a party with some fun loving people!  So to all those who are lovers of cool creations for the screen,

thanks for being part of the star car movement in your neck of the woods!  TO THE BATMOBILE! Transformers, ROLL OUT!   If you see a star car, or better yet, a bunch of them together,

Make sure you say “HI” and tell them you saw them here first!

01
Mar
11

Banacek AMX 400 aka Phoenix ESV Experimental Safety Vehicle -George Peppard’s Custom Ride!

Banacek (one of the rotating NBC Mystery Movie series)was a short-lived, light-hearted detective TV series starring George Peppard (of A-Team fame) on NBC from 1972 to 1974. It alternated in its timeslot with several other shows but was the only one to last beyond its first season. It was later rebroadcast on A&E Network.

The show had a mixture of humor combined with rather intricate plots. The show was well received by critics and was picked up for a third season. However, before the third season could start production, Peppard quit the show in order to prevent his ex-wife Elizabeth Ashley from receiving a larger percentage of his earnings as part of their divorce settlement! I am sure Banachek would have an old polish proverb for that situation!

There’s an old Polish Proverb that says:

The regularly featured cars in the series were a 1941 Packard 180 with a Victoria body designed by Howard “Dutch” Darrin (license plate number 178344) and a 1973 Cadillac Fleetwood limousine.

But for the subject of star cars, there was a customized 1969 American Motors AMX that was built by George Barris. The car first became known  as the AMX-400 but on Banachek it was the “Phoenix – ESV!”

“The Phoenix, a crash-proof ESV (Experimental Safety Vehicle) worth $5million manufactured by RW company. Totally driver-proof safety vehicle. One of the sensational innovations found in this car is a compensator. It is mounted to a small on-board computer system and it automatically corrects skidding and fishtailing caused by oversteer.”  In ONE episode this special prototype car of the future is stolen off of a moving train, and Banacek is called in to solve the mystery!  Below is how the car appeared on the show, with large cardboard bumpers added and a new temporary paint job!

How the car looked when it was the ESV safety car!

Before it was the Phoenix, it had been around awhile.

Front view of the AMX-400

In the late 1960s, Barris teamed up with the American Motors Corporation to produce a bolt-on customizing kit for the AMX that was marketed through AMC dealers. Through this connection, George got his hands on a factory-fresh 1969 AMX and gave it the full Barris treatment.


WHERE IS IT NOW?

When Barris got the AMX 400 back from the show  the paint was removed, and it was restored to its former look. The car went on the road with the International Show Car Association (ISCA) and appeared at every major show around the country. That’s when it got its reputation as the most photographed AMX in the world.

After the car-show tour, the AMX disappeared for a while before turning up in a museum in Nags Head, North Carolina. It was then sold into Tom Monaghan’s Domino’s Pizza collection. When Monaghan only had a few stores, he had red, white, and blue AMC Javelins for delivery cars. When his pizza franchises took off, he built a 244-car collection. Eventually, he decided to sell everything.

Mike and Lin Geary acquired the car in 2003 in relatively sound condition, with a mere 3300 miles on the odometer, and set about refurbishing it. The car was repainted by Tabz Toys in Lan­caster, New York, and Ron Lasker re-created the original pinstriping.

The biggest modification was the chopped top, which came down 4-1/2 inches. In the process, the windshield posts were raked back two inches, and the rear window was inset between the ­”flying buttress” rear ­pillars.

The nose of the custom car was extended 15 inches and given a wild new look with a radical peaked louver grille. Rectangular headlights were hidden behind three bladelike grille bars, while the hood was revamped with twin scoops and a peaked tip that matched the grille bars’ shape.

All four wheel openings were radiused, and custom front bodyside flares were added to match the enhanced rear body character lines.

The rear of the custom car was extended eight inches and reconfigured with a row of 15 louvers that started at the top of the rear window and continued all the way down the trunklid and rear fascia.

A novel taillight system featured a full-width light that glowed green during acceleration, amber during deceleration, and red during braking.

Body details included a wild set of three-inch-diameter side pipes and a pair of competition-style fuel-filler caps. Both filler caps are just for looks; the actual fuel filler door is at the rear of the car.

A two-tone paint scheme in cream-toned Murano Pearl and Rustic Orange cleverly utilized the car’s body lines as color breaks.

The car was then reunited with its creator in Detroit at the ’05 Autorama.  Interest in the car spread quickly, and Geary received an offer to display the AMX 400 at the Walter P. Chrysler Museum’s Hot Rods and Cool Mods exhibit, where it stayed until late 2006.

Geary’s plans for the future include displaying the AMX 400, his ’69 midengine hybrid AMX, and his stock ’68 AMX in a restored car dealership. With that kind of exposure, I think it’s only a matter of time till we see the AMX 400 on TV again; it might be on Barrett-Jackson.

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14
Feb
11

STARCARCENTRAL.COM BACK AT MONSTER JAM FOR TWO WEEKENDS!

Thanks to Monster Jam Fan Charger Steve, it’s now been three years that Nate Truman’s  star car central gang and Steve’s San Diego star car owners  have appeared with the monster truck drivers at Monster Jam events!   Both in San Diego and Anaheim, and this year for the first time at Dodger Stadium!

Monster Jam 2011 Charger Steve leads the way around Anaheim Stadium with Nate Truman's StarCarCentral movie cars.

Charger Steve's Mystery Machine!

On Feb 12 10 famous movie and tv cars took a lap around Anaheim stadium and enjoyed the show, and this weekend on the 19th, EIGHTEEN star cars are in the line up to appear!  (Let’s hope for no rain!)

STEPHEN BOGGS  JURASSIC PARK MONSTER TRUCK!
ARI AND HIS JURASSIC PARK JEEP

NATE TRUMAN AND THE BATMOBILE
Paul  WITH THE BTTF DELOREAN
JASON BUCKARRO WITH TRANSFORMER RATCHET

JON WITH HIS TRANSFORMER CAMARO BUMBLEBEE

OSCAR   WITH THE MAGNUM P.I. FERRARI
LOU  WITH THE  STARSKY AND HUTCH TORINO
CLIFF AND   JUSTICE WITH THEIR  NASCAR HERBIE THE LOVE BUG
brian  WITH HIS JAMES BOND BMW WITH NEW ROCKETS
Sue KESSLER AND HER GET SMART MACHINE GUN WIELDING SUNBEAM
ALEX  AND SON  WITH KITT FROM KNIGHT RIDER

PAUL MILLER AND HIS MAD MAX INTERCEPTOR

PLUS FROM CHARGER STEVE’S SAN DIEGO CHAPTER JOINING IN THE FUN WILL BE THE BLUES BROTHERS 2000

MIKE TOWMATER TRIBUTE TOWTRUCK

STEVES GENERAL LEE FROM DUKES OF HAZZARD

TONY’S SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT TRANS AM

AND OBI SHAWN AND YODA WILL BE THERE IN HIS  STAR WARS CAR “H-WING”

Your ticket to Monster Jam includes entry into the drivers area where the star cars will be on display!

Come say you are a fan of the blog and meet the owners – and get a photo with your favorite movie or TV car!    Pray for no rain on Saturday and we will see you at DODGER STADIUM at 2:00 pm! Then stay for the show, we will take a lap inside the stadium as part of the pre-show around 5-6 pm! Cheer on your favorite car!  NITRO BURNING FLAME THROWING CRASHES!!!  And that’s just you trying to get into the parking lot!  Come say “HI” and we will see you there!

For fans of FACEBOOK, Starcarcentral.com International now has it’s own page to see all the photos from members at the event!

09
Feb
11

Can you design the next batmobile urban assault vehicle?

Here’s a challenge for all the builders that want a chance to design something along the lines of a functional batmobile, or futuristic version of today’s HUMMER.

If you ever wanted to design a super car loaded with as many weapons and tools as you could imagine (think your own personal Batmobile), now is finally your chance. Not only do you get an opportunity to design the craziest vehicle you can dream up and see it built in real life, but you can also win up to $7,500 in prize money from the Pentagon’s research branch, DARPA.

There are a few simple rules that you do have to keep in mind though:

  • The vehicle has to use “tubular steel chassis with existing GM LS3 V8 powertrain,” which is the steel frame pictured below.
  • Has to carry up to five passengers, including up to three people lying down.
  • It’s got to carry up to 1,200 lbs and tow up to 4,000 lbs

As long as you follow the three rules above, you can get as creative as you want with your design. Thinking of stealing some ideas from the Transformers movie? How about jet propulsion and speedboat ability? Go for it. DARPA is open to all suggestions. Submissions are to be in before March 3, 2011.

body 300x75 Ever Wanted to Design a Military Supercar?

To find out more information and submit your designs, click here.

I have a chassy ready to go, but I don’t think it will seat 5 people even if they are lying down!

02
Jul
08

Star cars we need to find….

The banshee, love it!

Well here you go, the last of my star car posts for a while, so after this, back to batmobiles.

KITT 2000, the original concept car is seriously cool inside!

below, a montage of the shots that got me interested in getting the group together.

Batmobiles, Movie Cars, and George Barris oh my!

Batgirl’s cycle I think it’s pretty cool, she can park with us!

the bat tank is always welcome

Judge Dredd?  really cool, it’s welcome as long as it doesn’t run over my car.

streethawk.  it’s in Australia, but any repros out there?

Well, we can park this on the end…..

Hey hey there’s a mold out there…..

Expensive, way too expensive…..

anyone want to screw up their Cord?  Doc Savage fans out there?

Wants 75 grand for it, any buyers?

any batmobile is welcome….

My brother’s black beauty at a car show a while ago, he has two

donor cars….

this is welcome too…..

If I could find this (barris said it was crushed) that would be SWEET!!!

Super Pursuit mode…..

we saw this all ready, but it looks so great!

This is out of Los Angeles, now in San Fran….

Oh yeah, this was CRAZY cool!  Nemomobile!!




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