Hollywood in Hawaii

From plastic palm trees to on-set pranks, from fake languages to obstinate water buffalo, intrepid humor writer Charles Memminger uncovered the funniest, strangest tales of Island moviemaking.


Published:

(page 4 of 4)

Sinatra Returns in Triumph

After having to beg for a part in From Here to Eternity, Sinatra made a heroic return to movie-making in Hawaii in 1961 in The Devil At 4 O’Clock. To create a French Polynesian port, the film used two plastic cannons (with plugged bowling balls as cannon balls), wind and lightning machines, 24 plastic palm trees, plastic outrigger canoes, 17,000 artificial flowers and a portable volcano. Why not shoot the movie at Newport Beach?

A Tall Order

While shooting Lord of the Flies on the Big Island in 1989, the director found a beautiful field of grass on the Hamakua Coast through which 10 or so boy actors would walk. But the grass was too tall and the boys too short. If the grass was cut, it would look weird, so the director sent out a call for body doubles between 6´4˝ and 6´7˝. Amazingly, within 48 hours they had found the tall “boys” they needed and shot the scene.

Anthony Quinn

He was in one of his first film roles, played Kimo in Waikiki Wedding, in 1937.
 

Nia Peeples

She was Kiani in North Shore, in 1987.
 

Joan Blackman

Played Elvis’s Hawaiian love interest in 1961’s Blue Hawaii.
 

George Chakiris

Portrayed Dr. Dean Kahana in 1963’s Diamond Head. In the same film, James Darren was cast as full-blooded Hawaiian Paul Kahana.
 

Susan Hart 

Was Lily Kilua in Ride the Wild Surf, in 1964.

Charles Memminger was a staff writer for Bawatch Hawaii. The show was canceled 15 weeks after he was hired. He thinks it was just a coincidence.

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Subscribe to Honolulu

Honolulu Magazine December 2018
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Trending

 

9 Greatest Honolulu Homes

Great Homes

Stunning, historic, extraordinary.

 

Can the Mainland Do Poke Right? Do We Want Them To?​

Poke

Martha Cheng, author of The Poke Cookbook and former line, talks about how a New York City publisher decided Hawai‘i’s favorite pūpū was for everybody.

 

50 Essential Hawai‘i Books You Should Read in Your Lifetime

Books

The most iconic, trenchant and irresistible island books, as voted by a panel of literary community luminaries.

 

Everything You Need to Know About Local Fruit in Hawai‘i

Fruit

Fruits are part of our history and culture, a way for us to feel connected to our community.

 

 

A Local’s Guide to Buying Reef-Safe Sunscreen

Sunscreen

Five Hawai‘i brands have created reef-safe sunscreens that are safe for your ʻohana and the ocean. 

Edit ModuleShow Tags