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Railway footage in feature films and television...


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6 hours ago, Pacific231G said:

I just watched London to Brighton again and the two things that struck me were that its absurd speed is now only a bit more than double the current rail speed record (though obviously the Brighton line would not be anyone's first choice for a rail speed record attempt) and the fact that when the train leaves Victoria it's the Brighton Belle but by the time it arrives in Brighton the enormous speed has somehow transformed it into a conventional slam door southern electric set.

 

It also reminded me of the American Supertrain series starring a nuclear powered train whose specially built broad gauge track enabled it to travel at the staggering service speed of wait for it .....

one hundred and ninety miles per hour. Since the series was made in 1979, more than six years after the gas turbine powered TGV001 had demonstrated that such speeds were at least feasible in service for a standard gauge train and twenty four years after electric test trains had reached over 200MPH it's perhaps not surprising that the series flopped. 

 

I doubt the Supertrain programme makers bothered to look at real railway technology and if they did, they wouldn’t have looked outside the US.

 

steve 

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On 31/08/2020 at 01:09, Pacific231G said:

I just watched London to Brighton again and the two things that struck me were that its absurd speed is now only a bit more than double the current rail speed record (though obviously the Brighton line would not be anyone's first choice for a rail speed record attempt) and the fact that when the train leaves Victoria it's the Brighton Belle but by the time it arrives in Brighton the enormous speed has somehow transformed it into a conventional slam door southern electric set.

 

The Brighton Line train transformation was repeated in the 1983 London - Brighton remake.  A CIG when it left Victoria and a VEP when it arrived at Brighton.

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On 30/08/2020 at 17:29, Johann Marsbar said:

 

Looks like a Triang Transcontinental coach features at 22:37 as well!

Not the last time Tri-ang models would be used in Gerry Anderson productions - a number of OO gauge models including the Caley Single appear in Thunderbird 6 and a variety of Big Big trains appear in the Secret Service episode Last Train to Bufflers Halt, alongside more stock footage.

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20 minutes ago, eldomtom2 said:

Not the last time Tri-ang models would be used in Gerry Anderson productions - a number of OO gauge models including the Caley Single appear in Thunderbird 6 and a variety of Big Big trains appear in the Secret Service episode Last Train to Bufflers Halt, alongside more stock footage.

 

Technically Hornby/Triang appears in Captain Scarlet- according to a book I read the monorail used 00 tracks and chassis, as the suspended (curtain rail) monorails in the earlier Thunderbirds proved too unreliable.

 

Theres a lovely scratchbuilt 440 Western loco in "Joe 90" too; in typical Gerry Anderson fashion it crashes and explodes...

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"The Avengers" episode "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Station", from Series 5 made in 1967, was re-run on ITV4 last week (sadly, the day before Diana Rigg died).

 

The plot is as mad as usual in the later series - a conspiracy to plant a bomb on a train carrying the Prime Minister, masterminded by an evil ticket collector, who is somehow able to set up a command centre, complete with control panels covered in flashing lights, a plotting table and a big red button to set the bomb off, in the brake van without anybody noticing. But hey, guys, it's The Avengers - you have to apply a major suspension of disbelief to enjoy it properly!

 

The episode opens with a lovely aerial panning shot of Wembley depot, complete with rail blue / grey and maroon stock, an AC electric loco and a passing Class 310 EMU on the main line, followed by a chase scene around the depot sidings. Later there are a couple of lineside passing shots of AC electrics hauling mixed Mk1 and Mk2 rakes, and a class 81, an 85 and a couple of 86s with similar coaching stock arriving at 'Norborough Junction" - actually Watford Junction, as seen on the platform lights at around 43 minutes.

 

Much of the action takes place aboard the criminal mastermind's train (he seems to work the same turn every day), which is clearly a stage set. The corridor first interior has a distinctly GWR appearance, with 2-tone wood panelling in the corridor, individual compartment doors and framed pictures above the seat backs. The "Dining Car" seems to be a cascaded Pullman, with marquetry wall panels, 1+1 seating and old-fashioned brass luggage racks. Not what you would expect to find on what was then BR's most modern main line, but with a solidity and attention to detail that sets it apart from most film set coaching stock.

 

One unnecessary error is that, despite all the exterior shots being filmed on the West Coast Main Line, the train apparently arrives and departs from Kings Cross rather than Euston, although the station exteriors and platforms are not seen. Still, it's all good fun and worth watching. Unfortunately, it's now gone from ITV Hub and isn't on You Tube, although there is a curious version on Daily Motion which for some reason is printed in reverse.

Edited by 602Squadron
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14 hours ago, 009 micro modeller said:

 

As in flipped left to right? I think some uploads to YouTube, Dailymotion etc. do this as it can’t be as easily (automatically?) picked up as copyrighted material.

 

Yeah, it's a mirror image - I suspected it might be something to do with copyright.

 

I don't subscribe to Britbox, but I imagine The Avengers will be available there.

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Has anyone mentioned the film "Riddle of the Sands"? Some nice shots of trains on the Hoorn-Medemblik museum line standing in for the line along the German Frisian coast. Though it's a shame they used the later Austrian four-wheelers on some shots and didn't just stick with the early 1900s varnished teak Dutch steam tramway carriages.

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18 hours ago, 602Squadron said:

"The Avengers" episode "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Station", from Series 5 made in 1967, was re-run on ITV4 last week (sadly, the day before Diana Rigg died).

 

The plot is as mad as usual in the later series - a conspiracy to plant a bomb on a train carrying the Prime Minister, masterminded by an evil ticket collector, who is somehow able to set up a command centre, complete with control panels covered in flashing lights, a plotting table and a big red button to set the bomb off, in the brake van without anybody noticing. But hey, guys, it's The Avengers - you have to apply a major suspension of disbelief to enjoy it properly!

 

The episode opens with a lovely aerial panning shot of Wembley depot, complete with rail blue / grey and maroon stock, an AC electric loco and a passing Class 310 EMU on the main line, followed by a chase scene around the depot sidings. Later there are a couple of lineside passing shots of AC electrics hauling mixed Mk1 and Mk2 rakes, and a class 81, an 85 and a couple of 86s with similar coaching stock arriving at 'Norborough Junction" - actually Watford Junction, as seen on the platform lights at around 43 minutes.

 

Much of the action takes place aboard the criminal mastermind's train (he seems to work the same turn every day), which is clearly a stage set. The corridor first interior has a distinctly GWR appearance, with 2-tone wood panelling in the corridor, individual compartment doors and framed pictures above the seat backs. The "Dining Car" seems to be a cascaded Pullman, with marquetry wall panels, 1+1 seating and old-fashioned brass luggage racks. Not what you would expect to find on what was then BR's most modern main line, but with a solidity and attention to detail that sets it apart from most film set coaching stock.

 

One unnecessary error is that, despite all the exterior shots being filmed on the West Coast Main Line, the train apparently arrives and departs from Kings Cross rather than Euston, although the station exteriors and platforms are not seen. Still, it's all good fun and worth watching. Unfortunately, it's now gone from ITV Hub and isn't on You Tube, although there is a curious version on Daily Motion which for some reason is printed in reverse.

 

One of my favourite The Avengers episodes, with a fine turn from John Laurie as the owner of a disused station just down the line from Norborough with identical buildings.

 

I wonder if the Kings Cross/Euston substitution was because American viewers were more likely to have heard of KX?

 

As you said, it's complete nonsense that doesn't really stand up to scrutiny but it's an enjoyable ride all the same.

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On 17/08/2020 at 07:29, DY444 said:

 

The railway scenes in that episode were filmed in and around Longsight depot.

 

Indeed they were.  One of my team, Leanne Johnson, was given the task of chaperoning the TV crew and actors whilst on site, with our West Coast Traincare Health and Safety hat on.  They were under strict instruction not to stray beyond the safety cordon, because Longsight was operating, business as usual away from the filming zone. 

 

As it turns out, one actor in particular didn't think the restrictions and safety briefing applied to him, and became so wayward that Leanne read him the riot act, to the extent that he would be escorted off site if he persisted with wandering off and being rude and demanding to staff.  I shan't be naming the diva concerned, you plonker, Rodney.

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On 16/09/2020 at 13:39, whart57 said:

Has anyone mentioned the film "Riddle of the Sands"? Some nice shots of trains on the Hoorn-Medemblik museum line standing in for the line along the German Frisian coast. Though it's a shame they used the later Austrian four-wheelers on some shots and didn't just stick with the early 1900s varnished teak Dutch steam tramway carriages.

Enjoyed that film billiantly authentic the raillway shots were great and very well filmed .

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've just watched Kate PlusTen (1938) on the BFI Player https://player.bfi.org.uk/free/film/watch-kate-plus-ten-1938-online

 

Like The Titfield Thunderbolt the railway scenes were shot on the Limpley Stoke- Camerton line, as well as at Freshford. They were all shot at night, which limits the interest a bit, but I think Monkton Combe (Titfield) is recognisable in this scene.

Kate-Plus-Ten.jpg.4cd686bb642e2b1b66dfb96d05c326dd.jpg

 

 

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I've just been watching the apparently little shown 1954 Film "Father Brown- Detective" with Alec Gunness that was on Moving Pictures at the start of this month. Towards the end of the film there is a wonderful five muinute sequence when Fr. Brown, with the police on his heels as he tries to reach a thief before they do, boards a local train at Cluny in Saône-et-Loire bound for Macon. The chef de gare manages to delay the police until the train departs. They then give chase by car but just fail to overtake the train before it reaches a level crossing while slowing down to stop at the small station of La Croix-Blanche Sologny where Fr.Brown alights and gets a lift to the wine growing village where he expects to find the thief. . 

 

The train is a very typical steam age Omnibus (all stations stopping train) wih three very ex PLM wooden-bodied slam door six-wheel coaches and a fourgon (baggage car) hauled by a large ex PLM 4-6-4T of class 5-232TB, a class of tank loco that had all been scrapped  by 1957. I did wonder about the newly painted 3s on every door but the trains on that line in the 1950s were indeed all third. Unlike Britain, which only had 1st and 3rd class by that  time, in 1954 France still had three classes before the abolition of third class in both countries and mant otherts in Europe two years later. The semi-open coaches still had wooden seats  but did have a toilet and side corridor though no corridor connections between coaches.

Cluny looked to be quite an important station with four platform faces but, though it had been an "etoile" or hub for several local branches and a metre gauge line, it was by then, for passengers, only served by the single track back line from Chalons-sur-Saone to Macon that closed to passengers in 1968 and to freight in 1994 and has since been dismantled. In reality, Fr. Brown would have changed trains at Macon not Cluny but let's not the facts spoil a good scene.

 

The short scene is full of wonderful period detail. The ornate PLM station canopy at Cluny has I'm sure been the subject of a commercial model in 1:87 scale. At the level crossing is a large cloche electrique a bell powered by a descending weight and controlled by a telegraph line, that sent a bell code to warn crossing keepers and the next station that a train was en-route to them , There was also the train itself and the small wayside garage adjoining the station at La Croix-Blanche.  It's well worth catching when it comes on again.

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The film “October Sky” has some shots of coal trains in West VIrginia (I think) and even features the photographer  WInston Link in a cameo role as the locomotive engineer.

The film’s about a boy’s dream to be a rocket engineer and work for NASA in the  fifties and sixties and is based on the book Rocket Boys. A great little film and worth a watch, with Jake Gyllenhal in one of his early roles.

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2 minutes ago, Rugd1022 said:

From 'Day Of The Jackal' in 1973, still a fantastic film....

 

 

JACKAL ut5.7043.jpg

 

The Jackal leaves Tulle on a diesel hauled train but on arrival in Paris it is electrically hauled. Did the SNCF in the 1960s swap from diesel to electric anywhere?

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5 hours ago, whart57 said:

 

The Jackal leaves Tulle on a diesel hauled train but on arrival in Paris it is electrically hauled. Did the SNCF in the 1960s swap from diesel to electric anywhere?

 

It's a long time ago now so my memory may be wrong but I did a number of school trips to Paris in the late 60s and early 70s via both Calais and Boulogne.  I'm sure I recall the trains being diesel hauled as far as Amiens with an electric working forward from there to Paris.

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5 hours ago, whart57 said:

 

The Jackal leaves Tulle on a diesel hauled train but on arrival in Paris it is electrically hauled. Did the SNCF in the 1960s swap from diesel to electric anywhere?

 

It's not actually Tulle but that does not invalidate your question.

 

Yes, before the current era, there would have been numerous trains that ran from unelectrified locations to Paris and would therefore require a change of traction en route,

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2 hours ago, Joseph_Pestell said:

 

It's not actually Tulle but that does not invalidate your question.

 

Yes, before the current era, there would have been numerous trains that ran from unelectrified locations to Paris and would therefore require a change of traction en route,

The "Tulle " sequence was actually shot at Veynes on the line to Briancon in Haute Alpes. The canopy over the island platform was very characteristically PLM though it's sadly now been replaced by a short concrete canopy   whereas Tulle is a reversing terminus with an overall canopy that, in the mid 1960s period when the the film was set Tulle would have still had a through line of the metre gauge PO-Correze between the statino building and the first standard gauge platform (It now just has an abnormally wide first platform)

I've no idea whether they chose Veynes becase it was closer to the locations used for the Jackal's drive from Genoa and Vengtimiglia on the Cote d'Azure  or simply because it worked better as a location. 

Changes of traction from diesel to electric traction was indeed common in France until fairly recently (and until the end of the 1960s from steam to electric)  Soem people have also commented that the train from Tulle had grown longer by the time it reached Paris but that was totally authentic.

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1 hour ago, Pacific231G said:

The "Tulle " sequence was actually shot at Veynes on the line to Briancon in Haute Alpes. The canopy over the island platform was very characteristically PLM though it's sadly now been replaced by a short concrete canopy   whereas Tulle is a reversing terminus with an overall canopy that, in the mid 1960s period when the the film was set Tulle would have still had a through line of the metre gauge PO-Correze between the statino building and the first standard gauge platform (It now just has an abnormally wide first platform)

I've no idea whether they chose Veynes becase it was closer to the locations used for the Jackal's drive from Genoa and Vengtimiglia on the Cote d'Azure  or simply because it worked better as a location. 

Changes of traction from diesel to electric traction was indeed common in France until fairly recently (and until the end of the 1960s from steam to electric)  Soem people have also commented that the train from Tulle had grown longer by the time it reached Paris but that was totally authentic.

 

At least it arrived at the right station in Paris.

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The other thing that seems typically French in the "Tulle" scene is the clanging of the wheeltapper doing his round. I'm no SNCF expert but was that typical, either in the 1963 of the film or the 1973 of when it was filmed.

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