To tell the story of my father, in the most accurate way, I feel that it is important to speak with all the surviving cast and crew members who had worked with him. I decided to set out on the road, to film the “Legends of the Golden Age of Porn”, and hear their stories, while they are still able to tell them. In order to prepare for this, I consulted with Larry Revene, to decide on which would be the best camera and lighting package to bring along. Larry had an impressive resume of shooting film and television, long before he became one of the he most highly acclaimed cinematographers from the “Golden Age”, He was responsible for such films as “Roommates”, “Wanda Whips Wall Street”, and “Raw Talent”. He definitely has stories to tell. So much so, in fact, that his memoir is in 2 volumes (“Wham Bam $$ Ba Da Boom!” and “Life in a Film Can” ), with a third one on the way.
I first met Larry back in 1984, on the set of “Throat: 12 Years After”. As a kid I had worked behind the scenes on many of my father’s films, painting sets, making props and doing pre-production work. For “12 Years After”, my father felt that I was finally old enough to join him on the set. I was hired as a Production Assistant (PA), the lowest position on any set. What my dad like to call a “Gopher”, as in “Go for coffee, Go for cigarettes”. On that day, my education in film production began in earnest. The Director on a film set is like the voice of God, when he speaks, everyone stops and listens. But the one person that the Director listens to, is the Director of Photography. I remember many times throughout the shoot, the two of them conferring on the best shot to convey the action in a scene, and specifically, where to place the camera. I have had a lot of respect for Larry ever since.
When I told Larry what I was trying to do, he was so enthusiastic, that I asked him on the spot, if he wanted to come along to shoot it. I explained that there was very little money involved, but that I would provide camera and sound, and cover all of the travel expenses. He would bring the necessary lighting and grip equipment. This would not be the first “no-budget” adventure Larry had ever been on, and he figured that at the very least, he might get to see some old friends along the way. He agreed, and the “Crew of Two” was formed.
To gear up for the trip, we headed to Woodstock, New York, where Larry stores all the equipment he has accumulated over the years. The Mole-Richardson lights, that we picked up, had actually come from the infamous Adventure Studios in Queens, and were the very same lights used on “Throat: 12 Years After” more than 30 years before. The tripod that we got, was used to shoot the documentary “Gerard Damiano’s Consenting Adults”. We packed everything into the 2006 Toyota Corolla, that my dad and I had bought together before he died, and set off on the American Road…
(to be continued)