Author Topic: Director trademarks  (Read 1814 times)

AlkyBastard

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Director trademarks
« on: September 03, 2011, 05:21:53 PM »
In the Odd Movie Dialogue thread, Operty1 mentions John Landis' penchant for inserting the phrase "See You Next Wednesday" in the background of his films. That got me thinking about other little bits and bobs that keep popping up in the work of certain directors.

For example, George Lucas has a persistent interest in the number 1138. Obviously it shows up in THX 1138, but also his other films.

Quote from: Wikipedia
- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace: 1138 can be seen on the back the droid Jar-Jar hits over the head after they are deactivated on Naboo because of the destruction of the droid control ship.
- Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones: When Mace Windu orders a clone pilot to land in an assembly area, 1138 can be seen on the back of the pilot's helmet in LED lights.
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith: CC-1138 is the numerical designation for Commander Bacara, commander of the Galactic Marines under General Ki-Adi-Mundi. An easter egg involving the number and a clip of Yoda breakdancing is also present on the DVD version.
- Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope: 1138 is the number of the cell block on the Death Star that Luke Skywalker claims to be transferring Chewbacca from. Additionally, the Imperial Stormtrooper suit Luke Skywalker stole in the Death Star belongs to a Stormtrooper with the registration TK-421, but this was scripted and appears in the novelization as THX 1138.
- Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back: In an approximation of the 1138 meme, General Rieekan issues the following order: "Send Rogues 10 and 11 to Station 3-8".
- Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi: The number 1138 is inscribed on the side of Boushh's helmet.
- Raiders of the Lost Ark: The number is heard spoken through an intercom in German, "Eins-eins-drei-acht". The wing number on a plane also reads THX-1138.
- Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: 1138 is in roman numerals MCXXXVIII in Dr. Jones' notebook in the library scene.

Along similar lines, Stanley Kubrick used the number CRM-114 in Dr. Strangelove, and Serum 114 in A Clockwork Orange. I don't think it shows up in any of his other films though.

And of course Tarantino and feet.

What others?

Serge

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2011, 08:15:01 PM »
Are we allowed to mention the disposition of some directors for certain actors in minor roles? Charles Napier - who some of you may already be familiar with - seems to turn up in most of Jonathan Demme's films, as do Tracey Walter, Paul Lazar and until his death, Kenneth Utt. And although he must have worked with other directors, Jon Polito exists entirely within the universe of the Coen Brothers for me.

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2011, 09:15:38 PM »
Like Russ Meyer always having tits in his films?

NoSleep

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2011, 09:16:15 PM »
Sam Raimi's old car (as originally seen in Evil Dead I, II & III) is apparently in all his movies, although I was wondering about how it gets a look-in in The Quick And The Dead.

The Wiki says:

Quote
Raimi has included a 1973 yellow Oldsmobile Delta 88 automobile (nicknamed "The Classic") in every film including The Quick and the Dead ("Somewhere...somewhere hidden. Only I know. I'll never tell"). Bruce Campbell, at Comic-con 2005, revealed that a special covered wagon frame had covered the vehicle to maintain the motif of the film. The yellow Oldsmobile also appeared in Drag Me to Hell, driven by the elderly gypsy woman. A bottle of Maker's Mark also appears regularly in his movies.

AsparagusTrevor

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2011, 09:18:09 PM »
Raimi often manages to squeeze Bruce Campbell in his films too, one of my favourites is his Darkman cameo.

Sal Vicuso

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2011, 09:20:03 PM »
Hitchcock's cameos plus his penchant for treating blonde actresses badly
Spielberg's work often concerns father figures or lack of them

NoSleep

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2011, 09:22:41 PM »
Sam Raimi, in emulation of Hitchcock, also likes to cameo in his own films. Trademark is his middle name.

Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2011, 02:25:16 PM »
Spielberg's work often concerns father figures or lack of them

So does Burton's, often to the detriment of the film IMO.

Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2011, 03:09:20 PM »
So does Burton's, often to the detriment of the film IMO.

Burton also got opening titles where the camera zooms over & through something. & Danny Elfman & Johnny Depp.

Marty McFly

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2011, 03:46:44 PM »
Are we allowed to mention the disposition of some directors for certain actors in minor roles?

Dick Miller in most of Roger Corman's and subsequently Joe Dante's films..

Famous Mortimer

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2011, 04:38:13 PM »
MST3K favourite Coleman Francis had skydiving in all his films, the same mountain, and copious amounts of coffee.

There's the Pixar thing where the number of the room the main people met in college makes an appearance in all their films, too.

CaledonianGonzo

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2011, 05:00:16 PM »
There's the Pixar thing where the number of the room the main people met in college makes an appearance in all their films, too.

And also:

http://pixar.wikia.com/Pizza_Planet_truck
http://pixar.wikia.com/Ball

And:


Johnny Townmouse

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2011, 05:15:38 PM »
Kubrick repeated many shots, but I suppose his most famous trademark was symmetry of shots - creating mathematically perfect camera-lines. This was about perfection and his OCD I imagine.

Apart from that I have always enjoyed these two shots:




MissInformed

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2011, 08:02:49 PM »
Stan Lee is another one fond of the cameo appearances.

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2011, 08:48:09 PM »
Terence Malick and long lingering shots of wheat fields.

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #15 on: September 04, 2011, 09:08:59 PM »
big kahuna burgers.

Famous Mortimer

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2011, 08:41:19 AM »
I know it's not directorial as much as star-atorial, but Steve Carell puts references to "Mystery Science Theater 3000" in most of his films.

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2011, 11:45:40 AM »
Dick Miller in most of Roger Corman's and subsequently Joe Dante's films..


Uusually playing the same character, 'Walter Paisley'

Famous Mortimer

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2011, 01:09:21 PM »

Uusually playing the same character, 'Walter Paisley'

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Miller#Walter_Paisley

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shiftwork2

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Re: Director trademarks
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2011, 02:01:55 PM »
Sooner or later the lead sellotapes himself to a lamp-post in all Nicolas Roeg films.

Kubrick repeated many shots, but I suppose his most famous trademark was symmetry of shots - creating mathematically perfect camera-lines.

Nice example, I hadn't noticed the similarity between those two shots.  There's also Kubrick's use of the fast long zoom.  Off the top of my head there's the first sniper shot of Private Cowboy in Full Metal Jacket, the three letter attack code appearing in the B-52 cockpit in Dr Strangelove, Redmond Barry spotted strolling along the riverbank with his bit on the side in Barry Lyndon, and plenty of examples in The Shining once the hotel has come alive.