Sunday, April 19, 2020

Sanford and Son (1972-1977)

Cantankerous junk dealer Fred Sanford spends his days trying to get rich quick, sparring with his sister-in-law/archenemy Esther Anderson and looking out for his son and business partner, Lamont.  Sanford and Son was produced by television pioneer Norman Lear, hot off his debut of All In The Family (1971-1979)Both shows were known their racial humor and catchphrases.  Sanford and Son's success eventually became a ratings ballbuster for my beloved Brady Bunch (1969-1974) but paved the way for future African American sitcoms such as Good Times, The Jeffersons (1975-1985) and What's Happening.  The show was before my time but I caught several episodes when it aired in syndication in the early 80s.  Ratings started to decline by 1977, when ABC offered Redd Foxx his own comedy hour. 

Location: Sanford & Son Salvage
Address: 10659 W Magnolia Boulevard, North Hollywood, CA

The original building was torn down in the late 80s...

Location Visited: October 2018

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

The Beach Boys - Kokomo (1988)

The 1980s resurrected many artist careers of yesteryear - Aretha Franklin, Patti LaBelle, Smokey Robinson.  The Beach Boys caught a second wave and found themselves sitting on top of the world ;-) and the Billboard Hot 100 with their song Kokomo.  Written for the Tom Cruise cinematic masterpiece Cocktail (1988), Kokomo is a tropical ditty and an advertisement for the fictional island, which is somewhere off the Florida Keys.  The song reached #1 on November 5, 1988, knocking Phil Collins' A Groovy Kind of Love out of the top spot.  Unfortunately not even Rhonda could help them ;-) during award season.  Carly Simon's Let The River Run from Working Girl (1988) won The Globe Globe for Best Original Song and Collins got his revenge at the Grammy Awards when Two Hearts won Best Song Written for a Movie.  And don't even get me started on the The Academy Award nomination snub.  This would not be the last time The Beach Boys contributed their harmonious vocals to film.  Two years later, they recorded the title track for the John Ritter film Problem Child (1990).  While the song is quite catchy, it got lost in The Bermuda Triangle ;-)  

The video for Kokomo was filmed at the newly built Grand Floridian Resort at Walt Disney World.  The Beach Boys were the very first guests and also served as guinea pigs for their soon-to-opened restaurants.  The boys perform for a bunch of vacationers on the beach, some more scantily clad than others.  John Stamos, Full House (1987-1995) star and occasional percussionist for the band, makes an appearance, mugging for the camera every chance he gets.  The video was shot in just two takes due to impending weather.  

Location: The Beach
Address: 4401 Floridian Way, Lake Buena Vista, FL  Disney's Grand Floridan Resort

The Grand Floridian is modeled after the Hotel del Coronado, which is located in San Diego.  The Victorian resort is eloquently decorated and has over 850 rooms.  My family and I stayed here in 1994, though at the time I was way more interested in Splash and Space Mountain.  The Grand Floridian is one of three resorts to be on Disney's monorail line... 

Location Visited: March 2020

Related Location:

Cocktail (1988)

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

When Avon rep Peg Boggs calls at the gothic mansion overlooking her colorful town, she encounters Edward Scissorhands, a soft spoken young man with... wait for it... scissors for hands.  Peg invites him to live with her family and her busybody neighbors waste no time getting the 411 on Edward, who must endure the horror that is ambrosia salad.  He soon becomes the talk of the town, honing his topiary and dog grooming skills while catching the eye of Peg's daughter Kim.  After a series of misunderstandings, Edward finds himself shunned by the town.  He flees back to the mansion, believed to be dead after a fight with Kim's boyfriend.  But a now ninety-five year old Kim believes he's still alive as the town occasionally sees snow when Edward carves ice sculptures.

Admittedly, I was dragged to see this movie.  I wanted to see Kindergarten Cop for the third time but my cousins were visiting for Christmas and wanted to see Edward Scissorhands.  The TV ads didn't make the film look like something up my alley.  But little did I know gothic mastermind Tim Burton had another masterpiece on his hands.  Edward Scissorhands is a heartwarming modern day fairytale.  Johnny Depp delivers an amazing performance, mostly with his eyes.  Burton initially looked at his hometown of Burbank, California to film but eventually settled on the town of Lutz, Florida.  The production took over the newly built Carpenter's Run subdivision, painting houses in pastels with many residents cast as extras.

Edward Scissorhands was filmed in Lutz and Lakeland, FL

Location: Neighborhood Establishing Shot
Address: 1820 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: Helen's House
Address: 1823 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: Joyce's House
Address: 1769 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: Teenage Girl's House
Address: 1820 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: Esmerelda's House
Address: 1816 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: Gothic Mansion Entrance 
Address: Looking east on Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Spoiler Alert!  The gothic mansion does not actually exist.  The facade was built outside Dade County with interiors filmed at 20th Century Fox...

Location: Marge's House
Address: 1827 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: Tinka's House
Address: 1773 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

Location: The Boggs' House
Address: 1774 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

The house was up for sale recently.  Here are few real estate shots of the interior...

Location: Southgate Shopping Center
Address: 2515 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland, FL

The spot where the beauty salon was located no longer has windows...

Location: The Diner
Address: Roughly 2420 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland, FL

Sadly, the diner is no longer around but it would've been located where Lopez & Humphries law offices currently are...

Location: Jim's House
Address: 1844 Tinsmith Circle, Lutz, FL

While I was walking around Tinsmith Circle, I bumped into a friendly neighbor who lived there at the time of filming and showed me several photos he took during production...

Locations Visited: March 2020

Still Need To Locate: 

The School
The Bank