Back in late July 1986 the Brightlingsea One Design fleet suddenly found itself staring in a major Hollywood movie as this fascinating extract from the log of Tom Sargent of C6 Jumbo Too relates:
Thursday 31st July and Friday 1st August 1986 – High water 21.00 and 21.30 hours. Thursday overcast and cool, moderate to fresh. Friday bright and sunny, light to moderate south east.
Ten BODs – C6, C17, C21, C23, C24, C25, C29, C42 and C75 were hired with crews by a film company at eighty pounds a day to make a sequence in a film about Teddy Kennedy Junior. The Club Jetty and the River Colne are supposed to be the Hieannis Port, Cape Cod and the Kennedy’s summer home, with the BODs playing the role of the local craft used by the Kennedys and their friends.
The first morning was taken up with filming scenes on the jetty, but there seemed to much wind in the afternoon to do anything useful afloat. The food laid on was an eye opened to us all!
On Friday conditions for filming were near perfect. We all set off early. As I was technical advisor at double pay I was on Bill Merdon’s motor cruiser which was acting as camera boat. The whole process I found quite intriguing.
Tony Leech was put in charge of C21, Geoff Payne’s boat, as he was doubling for both Kennedy and a character called Tully and C21 was supposed to be Kennedy’s boat. This involved him in several quick changes and a lot of quite dangerous swapping of boats, all of which rather impressed the director! He had not got the first idea about sailing or boats and neither had his film crew. Therefore my job should have been critical, but as it turned out I had little to do as everything seemed to fall into place naturally and they should have got a lot of good material.
Jenness was in charge of Jumbo II with Geoff and June and the only actor who could sail. He seemed to really enjoy himself. The fleet in general excelled themselves, going through mass spinnaker scenes with dangerous looking gybes and much rolling and swerving about. Things went so well it was all sorted out in the morning, which please the Director and camera crew no end.
Once ashore and in the Club we were all promptly paid in cash. All the owners had agreed beforehand to put their money together to provide a fund for the Owner’s Association to buy up derelict boats which should be a very good thing for the class.
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