Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fire in the Hole

We went into the mountains above Santa Barbara to shoot our fantasy sequence. Our entire hard-working crew drove up on Sunday to stay in a cabin on the edge of Los Padres National Forest.

The first disaster struck when Shiloh's van blew up.

Shiloh's treasured Volkswagen Vanagon - after years of dutiful service shuttling him to surf sessions, providing shelter, and inspiring hippie girls to flash him as they drive by - decided to catch on fire leaving LA.

The van was carrying half of our grip gear, our 1st Assistant Camera, Gunnar Mortensen and the actor playing our Orc, John Pfiefer.

No one was hurt, thankfully. But 90% of the rest of us were already up in the cabin getting ready to eat dinner and go to bed early. We had to be shooting by sunrise. Poor Gunnar and John - not to mention some essential gear - were stranded in Encino.

So: mourn the van, deal with the fire trucks, the tow company, try and find a rental truck (which turns out to be impossible on a Sunday night)...

Luckily, we found a friend to save our ass. Paul Jeter came through like superman in a truck. He went from just another Sunday night to loading gear and people, driving three hours into the woods, sleeping five hours and working all the next day as a grip.

Roll with the punches.


  1. It's sad to see such a savage beauty go like that. Make sure to salvage the hubcaps and Volkswagen symbol.

  2. You are truely an inspiration, Rider.
    My best friend of 18 years and I grew up watching you act. We're aspiring film makers so it is a blessing that you allow us to follow you direct as well. I liked the first post about brother film makers. That's how we work. We bounce ideas off each other and answer them honestly.