GTO 3987 on Mulholland

GTO 3987 on Mulholland

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Mission: Impossible

Back in the day when I already knew I wanted to direct film but was still too young to do anything about it, I took advantage of an invitation from a friend of the family to visit any set where he was shooting. His name was Paul Stanley and he directed a lot of television--most notably, the TV series Mission: Impossible. He also drove a fuel injected '59 Corvette, which I enjoyed driving from time to time. I practically lived on the set of that show located on the Paramount lot next to the soundstage where they shot Star Trek. Peter Graves, Martin Landau, Barbara Bain, Greg Morris and Peter Lupus all contributed to my formation as a filmmaker though they they probably had no idea at the time.

There was a car connection on the Mission: Impossible set in addition to Paul in the form of cinematographer Michel Hugo, a Frenchman and aficionado of the Citroën DS. Knowing that I was a car guy--I was driving a Ferrari Berlinetta Lusso in my teens--Michel took every opportunity to extoll its virtues. At social gatherings, his wife would take up the argument that I should buy a Citroën Pallas and discover the joys of unparalleled technical innovation. It seems they both drove and enjoyed their Citroëns.

Although I acquired a taste for the DS, I never did own one. However, I think it's interesting that the first project I worked on after moving to Paris was a publicity film that a friend of mine was making for---Citroën. I spent several terrific days at the Citroën test track in the middle of a forest doing stunts and maneuvers with the new line of Citroën CXs.

Michel would have been proud!

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