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Movie rifle anachronism

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indy1919a4
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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#16 Post by indy1919a4 » Wed Feb 20, 2019 5:36 pm

oddball6 wrote:
Wed Feb 20, 2019 5:13 pm
YEARS ago a local pawn shop had several Rolling block rifles 7mm on the floor rack They were stamped . BATJACK on the butts One had this god
awful looking . contraption on the right side . Yup, Movie conversion for John Waynes Alamo movie . Batjack was the name of his production company . Heard there was a huge fire that destroyed about every thing
So what was the contraption on the right side???.. Are you sure they were rolling blocks ???

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#17 Post by oddball6 » Thu Feb 21, 2019 8:19 pm

YES These guns had fallen off a lot of horses and thrown off stagecoaches The device was screwed onto the right side of the gun to simulate
a flintlock. My guess is the blank was loaded into the rifle,and as the trigger was pulled it would fire the blank . to simulate a flint lock
The guns were of the smaller bore 7 mm rifles . Not all were fitted with this adapter, or device or whatever term you could assign to it

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#18 Post by indy1919a4 » Thu Feb 21, 2019 8:31 pm

Thats neat.. I wonder for those were used by the Mexican army. Now IMFDB does show that trapdoors were used by several of the actors where were defending the Alamo

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#19 Post by 72 usmc » Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:52 pm

Remington No 5 Rolling Block Musket. Model 1897 Military Rifle. 2 band with bayonet mount and sling swivels. Top wood intact and butt stock marked with the Batjac stamp. John Wayne’s production company. 30” barrel, most likely 7mm or 8mm Lebel caliber. Condition is fair with pitting, no finish, all parts original. Block spring is broken. A fine movie prop gun with strong markings. -------



PHIL SPANGENBERGER (Noted Arms Specialist, Historian. Writer & Autry Museum Consultant):

According to what I was told by the late Michael Wayne (John Wayne's oldest son and producer of several of his films), the Remington Rolling Block rifle with the BATJAC brand is one of several thousand that were purchased at an extremely low price (possibly as low as a few dollars each) from a surplus house. They were first purchased by Batjac for use in John Wayne's film, The Alamo.

These were to be used by the many extras comprising the Mexican army in the siege and attack scenes of the movie. A number of the rifles that would be seen fairly close to the cameras were fitted with reproduction, moving but non- functional, cast metal flintlock hammers and frizzens to resemble period muskets. These arms would have holes drilled in the right side of the lock plate to accommodate the fake flintlocks. Those rifles used by troops further back from view were not altered at all.

Michael also told me that sometime after the film, there was a fire where they were stored that destroyed most of these Remingtons, thus only a small number of them have survived. I have one of these in my own collection, and when I purchased it from a friend, I asked Michael about is and the above is what he related to me. I have every reason to believe him and upon close inspection of the film The Alamo, some of thee rifles can be seen, along with a number of trapdoor 1873 Springfields that the various studio gun rental houses (Stembridge, Ellis Mercantile, etc.) had previously altered and were rented for the film as well.

(signed) Phil Spangenberger

John Wayne and producer Robert Fellows founded Batjac in 1952 as Wayne/Fellows Productions. When Fellows left the company several years later, Wayne re-named the corporation after a fictitious trading company mentioned in the 1948 film Wake of the Red Witch. The company name in Wake of the Red Witch was spelled Batjak, but Wayne's secretary misspelled it as Batjac on the corporation papers, and Wayne let it stand. Having his own company gave Wayne artistic control over the films he made. Among Batjac's productions: The Alamo, Hondo, Cahill U.S. Marshal, Big Jake, McLintock!, The Green Berets, Seven Men from Now, and Brannigan. The most famous of all Batjac's films is Wayne's 1960 version of The Alamo, a project he had planned for several years. It was an account of the battle of the Alamo during the Texas Revolution of 1836. A labor of love for Wayne, The Alamo cost Wayne much of his personal fortune. Because of a production/distribution deal with Warner Bros. and United Artists, Batjac was allowed to retain all rights to four Wayne films: the WB-distributed The High and the Mighty, Hondo, and Island in the Sky, and the UA-distributed McLintock!. It also held full copyright ownership in several non-John Wayne movies, Seven Men From Now, Man in the Vault, Ring of Fear, Plunder of the Sun, Track of the Cat, China Doll, Escort West and Gun the Man Down.

After Wayne's death, his son Michael assumed full ownership and managed the company for over 30 years. He meticulously managed the release pattern of his films and restored Hondo and McLintock! in the early 1990s for release on VHS and television. His passion was to restore the other two films, but water damage to the original elements made it impossible during his lifetime. Taking advantage of the new digital restoration processes, Michael's widow Gretchen restored these films in 2004 and released them through a distribution deal with Paramount Pictures in 2005.
BUYER'S PREMIUM
20%
295: Batjac Remington Rifle

Estimate $1,000 - $2,000
Jan 28, 2012
source
https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/10 ... gton-rifle
Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 9.48.38 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 9.48.56 PM.png

Guns used in the Alamo:
Rifles were another problem. The principal characters would have authentic firearms of the period, but finding a few thousand percussion-cap rifles for the Mexican Army was never going to be easy. Eventually, George Ross, Batjac's military arms advisor, was able to find enough trap-door Springfield rifles in various Hollywood prop-shops. By attaching bayonets and artificial locks to them, they would look reasonably correct, and would still be able to fire blanks. Fifteen gunsmiths were hired to keep the weapons functioning throughout filming. Wayne's rifle was an exact replica of Crockett's original, and at the time of filming, was over 100 years old.
see long info: http://widescreenmovies.org/WSM02/alamo.htm



The Making of John Wayne's "The Alamo"
By John Farkis
https://books.google.com/books?id=KftAC ... ds&f=false

QUOTE screen shot
Screen Shot 2019-02-21 at 10.01.35 PM.png
Last edited by 72 usmc on Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:05 pm, edited 5 times in total.
To old to fight and to old to run, a Jar head will just shoot and be done with you.

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#20 Post by Reverend Mauser » Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:56 pm

Not long ago, I saw a WWII documentary and the people portraying/reenacting Japanese and Russian troops were carrying Enfields.

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#21 Post by indy1919a4 » Fri Feb 22, 2019 12:50 am

Thanks 72USMC for putting all of this to bed. Many many thanks... and many thanks oddball for starting this.. I did not know of the Remington rolling back rifles in the ALAMO.. I do wonder what the Bores looked like, because Hollywood people loved using full size blanks back in the day and getting a big flash :)...

Just a lament, props like this are just gone in todays movies.. IE.. When they went to shoot the move "the War Lover" with Steve Mcqueen they had to go out the the Yucca flats and being back to life old b-17s used in atom bomb tests.. "Tora Tora Tora" they had to convert a bunch of T-6s to look like Japanese Zeros. Now with computer graphics. You can pay a few guys to make fleets of planes and never have to have one fly..

In the world of Hero prop guns so much can be done with CGI, you never need them to shoot blanks even..

And with all the concern for blank gun safety, many of the guns now just are flash paper guns using only flash paper..

Fun thing about shooting the TV Show combat, the reason you will see so many jams being cleared is that they would only shoot 1/4th blanks on the sets so save the Actors ears and the sound recording equipment. When you watch the movie "Hell is for Heroes" watch how many times Mcqueen has to clear a jam out of his Grease Gun.

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#22 Post by oddball6 » Sun Feb 24, 2019 4:10 pm

Was flipping around the boob toob last night and caught Audie Murphy in the Red Badge of Courage. Yep, Trapdoors all around

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#23 Post by nrobertb » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:09 pm

Interesting that Stephen Crane who wrote the classic Red Badge of Courage, was never in a battle.

He also wrote what is considered the finest American short story: The Open Boat.
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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#24 Post by M67 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 12:03 pm

If you want to see a lot of original weapons you should watch the movie Uomini contro. It is an Italian movie filmed in Yugoslavia in 1970. Carcanos, mannlichers, schwarzloses...etc. all original weapons and equipment. Great movie.
»You're a disgrace. I'd like to know how you got to be a Captain, anyway. »Yossarian: »You promoted me.« Colonel Cathcart: » That has got nothing to do with it.«

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Re: Movie rifle anachronism

#25 Post by indy1919a4 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:40 pm

That is a great Movie, lots of Original equipment. It was released over here under the name "Many Wars ago"

The Italians did a lot of joint production war movies during this time frame. And great attention was paid to the detail. Another great Italian/Russian movie made in the 1960s is "Attack & Retreat". This movie tells of the Italian actions during WW II on the Russian Front

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