Martin Scorsese and I share a few things in common.
He’s Italian; I’m Italian.
He’s a genius; I’m Italian.
He likes real curbs; I like my curbs to be fake.
Street curbs, that is.
Big fake over-sized street curbs.
Like in the classic feature film, Singing in the Rain.
But those are the kinds of curbs that Scorsese didn’t like to see in the movies.
Because they aren’t realistic.
So, he always wanted to make sure that the street curbs he photographs and presents in his movies are realistic; and not over-sized or fake-looking.
But to me, that’s what movies and TV are all about: being fake.
Television shows and motion pictures are not reality, or else they would be reality.
They can reflect reality; they can even be realistic. But they are not reality.
That’s why I like my street curbs to be fake on screen.
It’s also why I want things like Christmas TV specials to have fake snow.
No on-location Christmas specials for me…like the kind John Denver used to do…or that one-time Perry Coma special.
Those kinds of TV shows are too real for me.
Give me a TV show or movie that was filmed on a back-lot over an “on-location” TV show or movie any day.
I’ll always choose the back-lot days. I like my movies and TV shows to look like movies and TV shows.
If I want reality I can go step outside and spend time in reality.
When I want to escape reality I turn on the TV or go to the movies.
And when I watch TV today, it’s usually when I slip in one of my classic TV DVDs, or I switch on ME-TV, Antenna-TV, COZI-TV, or the Hallmark Channel, all of which frequently air beloved classic shows from the past.
With each of these options I see fake sets, fake streets, and fake Scorsese-hating curbs.
There’s only maybe to or three studio back-lots left in Hollywood.
The old Universal back-lot, which now doubles as a ride for Universal Studios Tour, and the old Columbia street of homes where they filmed shows like Father Knows Best, Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, Gidget and The Partridge Family…and the “fountain” opening and some exteriors for Friends, among countless other shows and movies. Warner Bros. owns that lot now, and thankfully, it’s still around, and not bulldozed away like the MGM lot.
I guess pieces of the Paramount lot are still around. But that’s all mostly gone, too…right along with the way they used to make TV shows and movies.
I guess you could say that the fake way they used to make TV shows and movies have been kicked to the curb.
I hope Martin Scorsese is happy.