/ In Which Film?

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wercat on 01 Aug 2017

would you like to have had a part as an extra?

Withnail and I? Caligula? Monty Python and the Holy Grail? Or whatever?


perhaps Whisky Galore wouldn't be a bad choice?
Post edited at 09:56
james.slater - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

The Lord of the Rings, any one of the three. Mainly just for the trip to New Zealand!
Tom V - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Zulu. I like the scenery.
Tony the Blade on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Gladiator

But can I choose the role? If so I don't want to be a (CGI) face in the crowd at the Colosseum, I want to be either the leader of the barbarian horde of Germanic tribesmen facing the might of the Roman army, or one of the many slaves that get to fight alongside Maximus (But not the one that pisses himself).
Mike Highbury - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to james.slater and the rest of you:
> The Lord of the Rings, any one of the three.

Jeanne Moreau died yesterday and these are the films that come to mind?
Post edited at 10:36
deepsoup - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:
> Jeanne Moreau died yesterday and these are the films that come to mind?

I'm not very familiar with her work or French cinema more generally - were her films particularly noted for crowd scenes in which the extras were clearly enjoying themselves?
tony on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

What a very odd reply.

Anyway, I'd have liked to have been in a Bill Forsyth movie, preferably Local Hero or Gregory's Girl. I reckon being one of the costumed penguins in Gregory's Girl must be one of the coolest extras.
wercat on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to tony:

I thought of Local Hero too. The people in the house I lived in in Applecross in the 80s had been extras in Ill Fares the Land, about St Kilda.
Mike Highbury - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to deepsoup:
> I'm not very familiar with her work or French cinema more generally - were her films particularly noted for crowd scenes in which the extras were clearly enjoying themselves?

I would have been.
Blue Straggler - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Rocky Morton and Annabel Jankel's ill-fated film of Super Mario Brothers, so you could go out on the lash with Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo every night and have a laugh slagging off the film you were making and not worry about turning up on time because nothing seemed to matter on that production. Also, might get to hang out with Samantha Mathis.


Similarly, Zardoz. Just to see what drugs they were all on

Being an extra on any big production would be a nightmare though. Gotta be on hand 19 hours a day in full costume and you might not even be called upon, on a particular day.


I recommend Marco Perella's book "Adventures of a No Name Actor" for an amusing insight to all of this.
Hat Dude on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to deepsoup:

> I'm not very familiar with her work or French cinema more generally - were her films particularly noted for crowd scenes in which the extras were clearly enjoying themselves?

Viva Maria

http://c8.alamy.com/comp/BP9NHH/jeanne-moreau-brigitte-bardot-viva-maria!-1965-BP9NHH.jpg

Hat Dude on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Definitely not Fitzcarraldo
james.slater - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:
Umm yes they did, the scenery, costume, set design and scale of many of the scenes came to mind as something that would have been amazing to be involved in.
deepsoup - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to Hat Dude:

Oh, that *does* look good.

Still, in answer to the OP, I think it's The Wicker Man for me. (The original, obvs.)
Dell on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

I am Spartacus!
Blue Straggler - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to deepsoup:

> Oh, that *does* look good.
I used stills exclusively from Viva Maria, to mark the passing of Moreau yesterday.

Sadly, it is a terrible film - but possibly would have been fun on set.
Babika - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Pulp Fiction.

Anything would do, but sitting in the background of one of the diner scenes would be my favourite.
Stichtplate on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Apocalypse Now. The scene where the boat finally pulls up at Kurtz's camp. Playing one of the weaponised hippies.
Never been to the Philippines, the set looked bonkers and by all accounts, the whole production was pretty bonkers.
Jon Stewart - on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

> would you like to have had a part as an extra?

> Withnail and I?

Yes. Everything that happens in my life can be referenced to either Withnail and I or The Big Lebowski. In Withnail, I could have been a nobody druggy hanging around at the flat (without the charisma of Presumin' Ed), in the Big Lebowski, maybe one of Maudie's assistants in creating her "strongly vaginal" art.
wercat on 01 Aug 2017
In reply to Jon Stewart:

and perhaps testing the Camberwell Carrot ....

I had a thought that being in one of the original St Trinians must have been fun, in fact one of my distant relatives was a shunting consultant on the Great St Trinian's Train Robbery.

Tom V - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Jon Stewart:
You aren't into bowling, then?
Or mauve?
Or both?

Not appropriate really because he's hardly an extra.
Post edited at 00:04
ripper - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Hat Dude:

> Definitely not Fitzcarraldo

Sprung to mind for me too - along with Aguirre the Wrath of God!

For fun reasons mine would probably be the Blues Brothers - or for cinematic reasons maybe one of the farm workers in Days of Heaven
Blue Straggler - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to ripper:

Being on the set of The Blues Brothers would have been extremely tedious. It was a grossly overblown production, spectacularly inefficient and way over budget. The extras would have had a really hard time of it.

Days of Heaven might be a good call given that you'd only have to be ready to work for about 2 hours each day though
bouldery bits - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:
Saving Private Ryan might have been fun to be an extra in.

Or Vertical Limit!
Post edited at 01:06
Blue Straggler - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to bouldery bits:

> Saving Private Ryan might have been fun to be an extra in.

> Or Vertical Limit!

Wow you people aren't getting the message that the bigger the film, the more rubbish is the experience for the extras. So I'll stop
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Big Ger - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

I was an extra in "Revolution", it wasn't much fun and I never got to go on the lash with Al Pacino, Donald Sutherland, or (preferably) Nastassja Kinski.
Stichtplate on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:

> You aren't into bowling, then?

> Or mauve?

> Or both?

> Not appropriate really because he's hardly an extra.

I'd certainly be up for lurking in the background, polishing Jesus's balls.
pasbury on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Mamma Mia! It looked like a lot of fun, plus several weeks on a Greek Island. And I'm an out and proud Abba fanatic.
pasbury on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Big Ger:

Nice one; any tales to tell?
MonkeyPuzzle - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

I'd settle for something like Attack of the Killer Tomatoes or one the Troma films like Toxic Avenger or Tromeo and Juliet. I'd like to die on screen, horribly.
BnB - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

> Apocalypse Now. The scene where the boat finally pulls up at Kurtz's camp. Playing one of the weaponised hippies.

> Never been to the Philippines, the set looked bonkers and by all accounts, the whole production was pretty bonkers.

I was going to mention the same film (my all-time favourite) but to point out that 300 of the extras, in the the same scene no less, were dead!!
Stichtplate on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to BnB:

> I was going to mention the same film (my all-time favourite) but to point out that 300 of the extras, in the the same scene no less, were dead!!

It's in my top 3 films (along with Big Lebowski and The Assassination of Jesse James by the...). I especially remember the piles of heads. Have you seen the redux version?
BnB - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

I saw Redux on release but critical faculties, and thus memory, were impaired by, well, you can guess.

I have both versions on DVD but my son, daughter, who wrote her AS level Film Studies dissertation on the meeting between Kurtz and Willard, and I tend to stick to the original.

For their generation, the wonder of the film is the absence of CGI. "You mean they really hired the Philipine army and blew up the jungle?" As for the use of 300 real corpses. Bonkers.
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to BnB:

I was thinking it would have been really cool to have been a Storm Trooper in the original Star Wars movie. Then the shallower part of my soul thought that an extra in the In Betweeners movie would have been great, especially the boat party .
Jim C - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:

> Zulu. I like the scenery.

And the native inhabitants are so friendly and welcoming.
bouldery bits - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:

> So I'll stop

Good.
Tom V - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:

And get all that hot ash in your eyes on the train ride.
Tom V - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Jim C:

The Ripen at Noon regiment looked OK to me.
The New NickB - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

The french crowd scenes in Escape to Victory, a truly terrible, wonderful film. I suspect I would have got bored waiting for Sly to eventually save that penalty on the 28th attempt.
Blue Straggler - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to The New NickB:

Oh man, Escape To Victory.

I reckon that whole film was the result of a drunken bet between movie studio executives.
ripper - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Would be quite cool to be able to say you'd appeared in the wedding scenes of either (or preferably both of) Godfather or Deer Hunter. Or maybe the famously studio-bankrupting Heaven's Gate - perhaps the cockfight 'scene', about which John Hurt told a tale along the lines of arriving on set at a point where the script had a single line, saying a character (Kristofferson's,l I think), walked past a cockfight - and the crew were in the third week of filming the cockfight.
Some detail in that probably wrong - if so I'm sure BS will clarify....
Blue Straggler - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to ripper:

>

> if so I'm sure BS will clarify....

Sadly, I promised to stop! You'll have to read Stephen Bach's book :-D

nufkin - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to BnB:

> 300 of the extras, in the the same scene no less, were dead!!

At first scroll-past I thought you were referring to the film '300', and thought that might have been a cushy extra job, what with being in a nice cozy sound studio and all. But probably lots of them were just CGI, and it looked like they'd have demanded a level of buffness I couldn't hope to meet
Castleman - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to ripper:

> Would be quite cool to be able to say you'd appeared in the wedding scenes of Four weddings and a funeral.

Corrected that for you.

ripper - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to nufkin:

> At first scroll-past I thought you were referring to the film '300', and thought that might have been a cushy extra job, what with being in a nice cozy sound studio and all. But probably lots of them were just CGI, and it looked like they'd have demanded a level of buffness I couldn't hope to meet

I thought of this too - in my head I'd look rather dashing wearing just helmet, cloak and speedos. In reality, sadly, less so
BusyLizzie on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

I would like to be one of the musicians in Monty P and the Holy Grail, or an orc in Lord of The Rings . A colleague saw it early on when screened in NZ and claims that the cinema was full of people whispering to their companions "I'm the third orc from the left" or similar.
dabble on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

24 hour party people, at the house party after the club, looks like good fun.
krikoman - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Debbie does Dallas
graeme jackson - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

jaws. just come back from Martha's Vineyard and wish I could have spent more time there.
Stichtplate on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to krikoman:
> Debbie does Dallas

Hmm... possibly, is that your 'happy ending' face in your profile?
Post edited at 16:22
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Tom V - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to ripper:
No way.
How would you choose that over the fiddle dancing roller skating scene?

David Mansfield, fiddle and skates and musical score, is actually the true star of Heaven's Gate (after Isabelle, of course)
Post edited at 19:01
plyometrics - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:
Charlie and the chocolate factory. (The original version).

Or

Talladega Nights, the filming for which, I suspect, will have been hilarious to be involved in.
Post edited at 20:11
Stuart en Écosse - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to Mike Highbury:

Jeanne Moreau died? How did I miss that?

In answer to the OP, the 2cv driving archaeologist in Les Amants.
Stuart en Écosse - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

> Monty Python and the Holy Grail?

The stunt double who plays King Arthur crossing The Bridge of Death (in Glencoe, after answering the three questions) is none other than former Kinghouse proprietor and all round legend Ian Nicholson.
Big Ger - on 02 Aug 2017
In reply to pasbury:

> Nice one; any tales to tell?

Not really mate, I'm afraid.

We rolled up to Dartmoor, I was chosen as I had very long hair. We got dressed in period costume, bit of make up, then marched and charged about on the moors, with flash bangs going off left right and centre (it must have cost a fortune to clear up,) with some bugger, possibly the director, yelling at us. Did this for four days, earned half a years beer money, and went away.

Never even got a sniff of Natasha.

I can be seen, albeit very briefly, in this scene;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKHYuLUCGLY
Hugh J - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Dell:
I'm Brian and so's my wife!

(Obviously ;) )
Post edited at 07:12
Trangia on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:

> Zulu. I like the scenery.

Ever considered a trip to RSA?

I've been to the Royal Natal National Park, where Zulu was filmed, several times. Loads of fantastic waking in stunning scenery, including one up the Tugela River past the film site and up the Tugela Gorge almost to the foot of the Tugela Falls. There is also a mountain walk along the top of the escarpment which includes a via ferrata type step up chain ladders to the very top of the Tugela Falls. The Drakensberg rise to a height of nearly 11,000 ft here with mind blowing cliffs.

Incidentally Zulu was not filmed anywhere near the realRorkes Drift which is about 100K away in KwaZulu Natal. The scenery here is totally different although very beautiful and impressive around Isandlwana and Fugitive's drift.

Changing the subject, when my mate did his National Service in the Army, he and hundreds of his mates were extras in the 1958 film Dunkirk which was filmed at Camber sands.

I would have liked to have been an extra as one of the pilots in the firm Battle of Britain if they had let me fly a Spitfire or a Hurricane.
SNC on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:

Absolutely. An under-rated film, in my humble opinion. Oh, Isabelle ........
wercat on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Trangia:

In the 80s I lodged with an old Scotsman in a maisonette in Ham as I worked at BAe Kingston upon Thames. He'd had a stroke but we used to have long conversations about his life experiences where the problem was that he frequently could not remember a particular noun, place or person and inserted the word "line" as a place holder. It turned out that line meant an entry in a vocabulary notebook full of words he'd written so he could point out what he was referring to.

Once I got used to this I discovered he'd been in the RAF in the 30s and stationed in Scotland, lots of tales of hair raising accidents as they converted from biplanes to Hurricanes.

Later he told me he'd spent a good part of his life working in the health service in South Africa and pointed to a metal plate in a cabinet that turned out to be from the site of the former mission station at Rorke's Drift, from a building that had been destroyed by fire while he was out there and from which he'd retrieved the brass plate.

He went on to tell me that he'd seen the filming of Zulu and that the man who played the Zulu Chief was a personal friend of his.

One of my memories is coming in in the evening and finding this old chap playing chess against a Sinclair Spectrum and beating it, making faces at the silly mistakes it made!
Blue Straggler - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to SNC:

> Absolutely. An under-rated film, in my humble opinion.

How recently did you last see it?
Spartacus on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Dell:

> I am Spartacus!

No I am!
Gordon Stainforth - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I remember being v impressed by Zulu when it first came out in the 60s (I was about 15). I saw it again about five years ago and couldn't believe how dated it seemed, and second-rate compared with how I remembered it. And the story not very palatable.
Blue Straggler - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

I've only seen it once, also when I was about 15 (not in the 60s but still a long time ago). Only saw it on television, probably at my grandmother's house on an idle Saturday evening.

I keep coming close to watching it again but I always hold back because of fear of exactly what you outline above.
To be honest my interest in the film is based not so much on its "classic" status but on the fact that Cy Endfield directed it. Cy, as you probably know, made some interesting films often with Stanley Baker (my second point of interest, given that he was pretty much the biggest British movie star between around 1957 and 1964).

Hell Drivers is a fascinating portrait of the post-war working class itinerant bachelor, including one of the most terrifying performances I've ever seen (Patrick McGoohan - he's up there with Ben Kingsley in Sexy Beast and Robert Duvall in The Apostle)
Mysterious Island (no Stanley Baker) is a delirious meeting of Jules Verne and Ray Harryhausen
Sands of the Kalahari is a massively underrated "stranded in a remote location" drama with some fascinating characterisations and an unforgettable finale. Budget constraints meant that the cinematography was a bit of a let-down.

I fear that Zulu might pale in comparison to all three.
Stichtplate on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Come on, where's the love for Zulu?
Certainly dated, definitely not pc. But a great little B movie all the same. Worth the watch just for the competitive singing.
Blue Straggler - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

I only said that I've seen it only once. For the record, that was about 27 years ago!
I'll try to watch it again soon ok.
wercat on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:
I think older films are often demoted as we see them only on the small screen unless going to special showings. A lot of modern films are unmemorable on small screens too. Dr No was a film I saw in the cinema quite young and it made quite a big impression on me which has reduced and reduced over the years. However, I was able to go to a large-screening at the Rheged centre a couple of years ago and it blew me away. The original cinematography had far more impact and the quality of the photography and composition were far more evident. I'd love to see more of the older films shewn this way, in particular OHMSS and perhaps 2001 which I never saw in the cinema - had to enjoy the book only at the time it came out.
Post edited at 12:11
Trangia on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

Have you seen Zulu Dawn with Peter O'Toole playing Lord Chelmsford. It's about the Battle of Isandlwana which immediately preceded Rorkes Drift. I think it's a much better film than Zulu, but needs to be seen first so as to get the sequence of events in the right order. The Zulu dancing in Zulu is superb, including the pre battle psyche up, as is the "train" sound of the spears beating on shields. Spine chilling and in reality must have been terrifying to the outnumbered waiting British soldiers.
Tom V - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:
Actually I thought SNC was referring to Heaven's Gate, unless Mlle Huppert blacked up as one of those Ripen At Noon chicks.
Gordon's comment about the Zulu story being "unpalatable" puzzled me, as did yours about it suffering in comparison to its Cy Enfield co productions. And Stichtplate, for calling it a "great little B movie", goes down in my little black book as being even a bigger troll than Ayrshire Runner.
The only film of its era , scale and genre it could possibly pale against is "The Man Who Would Be King", I reckon.
Now there's a film.
Post edited at 19:15
Stichtplate on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:
>And Stichtplate, for calling it a "great little B movie", goes down in my little black book as being even a bigger troll than Ayrshire Runner


You are quite right and I am suitably chastised. B movie is the wrong term and I'm not sure what the right term is.
An enjoyable, lightweight film , best enjoyed post Sunday roast on a rainy afternoon, while going through the papers.
The Man Who Would Be King Is another splendid example of this genre.
Post edited at 19:37
colinakmc - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to pasbury:

+1 for that one, except that I cannae dance.

Not really eligible (cos it started out as a to series) would be Taggart. "Muster Taggurt, therrres been a murrdurrr"
HakanT on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Spartacus:

I am Spartacus, and so's my wife!

Completely off topic, but the first paragraph has the best Life Of Brian reference I've seen in a while: https://www.ft.com/content/bebfc556-720a-11e7-93ff-99f383b09ff9

I can't think of a film that has a lot of climber extras, so how about Point Break or Blue Crush?
Gordon Stainforth - on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to Trangia:

> Have you seen Zulu Dawn with Peter O'Toole playing Lord Chelmsford. It's about the Battle of Isandlwana which immediately preceded Rorkes Drift. I think it's a much better film than Zulu, but needs to be seen first so as to get the sequence of events in the right order.

No, I haven't. Good tip. Thanks.

abseil on 03 Aug 2017
In reply to wercat:

Life of Brian

OR

Airplane
Tom V - on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

Gratifying to know how other film commentators take their films. My wife is cut from the same cloth.
And even Blue Straggler dismissed the Tom Huddleston Hank Williams biopic as being not worthy of comment after seeing ten minutes of it on a flight somewhere.
Stichtplate on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:
Don't get me wrong, if it's a first viewing of a worthy film, it will have my full attention. Third or fourth viewing of a Sunday afternoon classic, not so much.
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Blue Straggler - on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:
> dismissed the Tom Huddleston Hank Williams biopic as being not worthy of comment after seeing ten minutes of it on a flight somewhere.

That doesn't sound like me. Maybe I said "I shouldn't comment, because I didn't get past the first 15 minutes". I never say anything is "not worthy of comment".

Go ahead and dig something up to prove me wrong in this case

Blue Straggler - on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Tom V:

> Actually I thought SNC was referring to Heaven's Gate, unless Mlle Huppert blacked up as one of those Ripen At Noon chicks.


I know he was referring to Heaven's Gate. My question about when he last saw it, was w.r.t. Heaven's Gate.

> as did yours about it suffering in comparison to its Cy Enfield co productions.

I put plenty of qualifiers in. Such as the one where I mention that I haven't seen Zulu in the last 27 years (admittedly in another post)

The Man Who Would Be King is an example of a "near-perfect" film, not in terms of being "one of the greatest films ever", but in terms of being one where I can't see any need to change any detail. And this is coming from someone who generally can't stand Connery.
Blue Straggler - on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to HakanT:


> I can't think of a film that has a lot of climber extras, so how about Point Break...

Point Break remake has an epic climbing scene although they didn't need a lot of extras for it.

The Mission (muddled 1980s thing about Jesuit missionaries) would have had a fair few climbing extras.

Fire, Ice and Dynamite (daft stunt showcase film with an "eclectic" cast featuring Roger Moore, Buzz Aldrin, Tatiana Patitz, Stefan Glowacz etc.) would have had a lot of climbing extras for the dam climbing race sequence.
SNC on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Yes, I was referring to Heaven's Gate. I saw it when it first came out, in student days [heck, that was a long time ago!]. I didn't see it again for many years, but I did imbibe the 'overblown failed epic' narrative. Then I saw it a few years back on late night TV, and thought it had merit. There was IIRC a cinematic re-release a couple of years ago, which I missed, but I have seen it - that re-release - since on DVD. When time permits I'd like to see it again, properly. It's certainly not perfect, but it is majestic in many ways.
wercat on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

I can remember the impact of seeing "A Man for all Seasons" in a special school viewing.


Back on the extras front I think being one of the citizens of the Grand Duchy of Fenwick would have been nice.
wercat on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to colinakmc:

or a boddy in Midsomer?
krikoman - on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to Stichtplate:

> Hmm... possibly, is that your 'happy ending' face in your profile?

>

If only, that's my normal, going out face
Blue Straggler - on 04 Aug 2017
In reply to SNC:

I'd agree with your assessment. As would most sane people

I did see the big-screen re-release around 18 months ago.

The funny thing is that it never originally got a chance to BE "underrated" as it was withdrawn from release immediately after its premiere! Well we could argue that those attending the premiere may have underrated it, I guess.
Tom V - on 05 Aug 2017
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Just seen that Sam Shepard has died. Very sad to hear it.

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