Saturday, December 1, 2012

Stand By Me

Wow!  The past few days have gone by super I'm going to try to catch up here.

When I last wrote I mentioned that I was going off to find some of the filming locations from the movie "Stand by Me."  This is one of my favorite movies that is based on a Stephen King story.  His story is called "The Body" and can be found in the collections "Different Seasons."

Before I show you what I found, here's a little side story.

In 1982 I went to work for a radio station in Bangor, Maine, where I did the news and later was a deejay.  The station was purchased by Stephen King while I worked there, and he came in often and was a very generous owner.  He was friends with my boss, and we were told that when he came in we should just treat him like a "normal person."  But I was a fan, and had been since I read Salem's Lot when I was in high school.  Anyway, I'd just finished ready the novella, "The Body," when a day or two later SK came over to the station.  Now, "The Body" is a work unlike any of his others.  It is not a horror story.  If you've seen "Stand by Me" then you know what it's about, but , as usual, the story is much more moving than the movie.(even though the movie is excellent and one of the best, if not THE best, adaptation of a King story)  It actually had me in tears and I was so astounded that such a beautiful piece of writing came from this guy who, up to that point, had only published scary stuff.  Coming from Maine, I just had to know if this story was based on a true incident.
So this one day that he was at the station I SO wanted to go up and talk to him about it, but I had to play it cool.  That lasted until he was about to leave.  He was actually on his way out the door when I pulled all my courage together and went up to him and admitted that I was a "constant reader" and that his story had really moved me.  He just stood there looking down at me (he's really tall) as I gushed on and when I asked him if it was autobiographical he looked at me and said, "I'll never tell," turned and walked out the door, leaving me standing there like an idiot and being the laughing stock of everyone else who worked there.
The upshot of this story is that some time later I came into work and my boss handed me the galley print of "Pet Semetary" and said, "Steve wants you to read this.  He wants to know if you like it."  HA!!  So that made me feel TONS better!!  And I am still a fan even though I left the station long ago.  As I said, he was a very generous owner who immediately gave us all raises and bought new equipment for the station, rented the theatre and watched his movies with us and invited us all to his home on New Year's Eve.  It's still a pretty cool thing, when I think about it.

Anyway, I really enjoyed my walking tour of "Castle Rock," which is actually Brownsville, OR.  Here's some of the stuff I found:

Here's a page from the script.  Lots of documentation from the movie is in a binder in the Brownsville Historical Society, so if you go you should start there.  They supply maps so you can take a walking tour of movie locations, like I did.

As "Vern," played by Jerry O'Connell, walks away at the end he finds and picks up a penny in the street.  Someone embedded this penny in the same place in downtown Brownsville.  Smart town, capitalizing on their claim to fame!

This is where the boys first run into the infamous "Ace," played by Kiefer Sutherland.  It looks a lot different now.

the bridge

movie scene

where the boys part

movie scene

back of the Blue Point Diner
movie scene where they look at the gun

tree house tree                                     

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