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Tag Archives: The godfather

A New York Minute (18) September 2014- Al Pacino!

17 Sep

September 17, 2014

Hello, and welcome to your New York Minute. This week’s episode is brought to you by Pharell’s big hat.

Al Pacino was born in Manhattan, but it took some Brooklyn law breaking for him to become one of Hollywood’s biggest stars.

I live in South Brooklyn, and in more than one New York Minute I talked about organized crime and the movies. There was Kid Twist and Coney Island, the Bowery Boys, even the mob shaking down the crew filming Saturday Night Fever. Al Pacino starred in some of the greatest organized crime films ever made, The Godfather and The Godfather Part Two. Many years later, he also starred in a Godfather parody called The Godfather Part Three.

Pretty much for as long as I can recall, I had been told that one of the houses in The Godfather was actually located right around here, so the other day, just for you, I set out to find “the Godfather house” and sure enough, it was right in my backyard.

As seen in the movie

As seen in the movie

Turns out it was the house that Clemenza lived in, and although I already had the address, I found out that the neighbors are pretty good about people, like me, who still come around looking for the house and taking pictures. I’d ask if you go, please be nice and respectful, as it is a quiet residential neighborhood. It’s a narrow street, so don’t try to double park, and also, please don’t knock on the door and ask if Martin Scorsese ever drops by from some capicola. Um, not that I did that.

The house today. I took the shot on the right.

The house today. I took the shot on the right.

The most interesting thing about the house isn’t the building itself, which is pretty nice, it’s the neighborhood. It is located just a few minutes away from the inspiration for another famous Al Pacino film. Just the next year, Al, (we’re on a first name basis, we’re good like that), was back in Brooklyn filming Dog Day Afternoon, and unlike The Godfather, this was based on an infamous bank robbery that happened wayback when I was a kid. And it turns out that I pass the robbery location almost every single day.

The scene of the crime: then and now

The scene of the crime: then and now

I’m not talking about where the film was shot, this is the actual robbery scene. Back in the 70’s this was a Chase bank, but today it is vacant. Want to rent it? The way this area is going, it’ll be sure to be a hipster juice pub thing any day now. Anyway, the building has gone through a few owners, it still has the cut corner that was a trademark of Chase banks of the era.

The movie was filmed in Windsor Terrace, still in Brooklyn but with Prospect Park as a backdrop. In a nutshell, the bank robbery went bad, hostages were taken, and it turned into a police standoff with the hundreds of onlookers rooting for the crooks. In the end, the cops seem to give in to their demands but Pacino’s character gets 20 years in prison. Spoiler warning! That was a spoiler.

dogdaymovie

Interestingly, both films also starred the amazing yet odd John Cazale, and if he were born in Brooklyn this would have been a neat and tidy way of wrapping things up but he had to spoil it be by being born in Massachusetts. No foresight there, thanks a lot.

Although I was too young to see any of the filming of these movies, in 1991 I did get to see the filming of Steven Segal’s Out for Justice, and believe me, that’s not a feather in anybody’s cap.

This has been your movie star, and Steven Segal, -filled New York Minute, and like Pacino said in The Godfather III- “just when I think I’m out, they pull me back in!”

What, you were expecting Scent of a Woman? “HOOOOOO-AH!” There you go.

An audio version of this story recently appeared in the amazing FlashPulp website. Check them out for awesomeness and goodies!

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Chiller Theatre 4/27/2014: Give David Faustino A Coffee

28 Apr

April 28, 2014

Today was the Chiller Theatre convention and let’s get the burning question answered: Was Greg “The Hammer” Valentine drunk? I can’t give you a definitive answer, but here’s how I answered that question last year:

And now, I present Greg “The Hammered” Valentine, April 2014!

Hulk Hogan Fan Appreciation Day at Toyota Park - July 10, 2009

As in years past, some of the more interesting things in the convention are the times when the celebs are let loose and on their own, like anything having to do with Todd Bridges last year. This year’s person of interest was Bud Bundy, (not) better known as David Faustino. I have nothing against him, other than the fact that calling him a celebrity offends me. Ronald McDonald is more of a celebrity. Want proof? Which one hasn’t worked in 25 years (at least in nothing not in the bargain bin at your local gas station) and which one has been steadily employed and loved by millions of (overweight) kids? I rest my case. But other than that he seems like an OK guy. He was signing at the convention and didn’t seem too busy most of the time. But he had am amazing tan, and considering that this is April in the Northeast, that’s saying something.

At one point I was hanging around the snack counter. I had fifteen minutes to kill before my appointment to have a professional photo taken with Walter “Chekov from the Star Trek” Koenig, who was a last minute replacement for Abe Vigoda. (Abe had not died, only cancelled. I think his colonoscopy results came back today.) While I was there, David Faustino came out and went to the counter for coffee. He asked how much it was, the young semi-English speaking woman behind the counter told him $2, he paid, and got his coffee. After he walked off, the young woman started smiling and giggling, and went over to another semi-English speaking woman and said (in semi-English, which I will clean up) “do you know who that was?” the other woman said no, and the giggly one said “he’s on the TV late at night! When he was a kid! I can’t remember his name!”

Ah, fame.

But I was a little put out. As I said, he seems like a nice guy, but David Faustino was an advertised guest at the show. They couldn’t give him a free coffee? Cloris Leachman was there. I bet she got comped. I’d be surprised if Dominic Chianese got charged. But David Faustino? $2 for a cup of coffee which, by the way, he had to pour himself.

In other convention news, I met and took pictures with WWE Superstars The Godfather and Demolition, Jackie “The Jokeman” Martling, and Walter Koenig. Demolition were a pair of great guys, For some reason, we wanted to talk about their tag team championships while they wanted to talk about how crowded the place was yesterday. Go figure. And Jackie Martling was so gracious I almost felt bad saying “F Jackie” to him. (If you know Martling, you know that’s actually a compliment.

There was also a great display of famous monster props. Check them out below.

 Planet of the Apes

Creature from the Black Lagoon

Creature from the Black Lagoon

Monster Trio Monsters1

Phantom of the Opera

Phantom of the Opera

 

Werewolf of London- Henry Hull

Werewolf of London- Henry Hull

 

 

 

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