The Movie, The Rookie

By Chuck and Francie Stull

These are a couple of photos that we snapped at the making of part of the new movie, The Rookie, staring Dennis Quade. This part was filmed at our neighbor's red brick house on the corner as you turn onto Grelle Lane. One morning on my way to work, I noticed a couple of trucks lined up along the side of the road. Within an hour, they had built a small city in the field across the street. Hundreds of people, massive trucks, more equipment than should be legal. I'm sure glad it didn't rain!

This is the stand that the director uses to see the action as it is being filmed. This was set up outside in the back yard, while the acting was going on inside the house. The director and his minions crouch around the video screens to try to see what is happening, with ear phones on. He did use a megaphone to yell "QUIET" and "CUT". He was as dramatic as the actors, me thinks.

Behind, you can see the U-Haul trailer and old station wagon that Dennis Quade used to take off for the training camp in Florida. It is parked in front of the house, waiting for the actors to show up to film the scenes.

This is a close-up of the classic car brought in for the movie. Note that the car port has probably been there ever since the time when the story takes place. We like to think of it as a classic too. The cactus, however is not a classic. It is not even a real cactus.

Since the story was supposed to take place in West Texas (we sometimes call it Classic Texas, since it is mostly the dry desert that you see in all of the old Westerns on TV,) they had to make some adjustments to the Austin spring time, for this scene. Truck loads of sand was brought in to cover the lovely lawn. Notice the difference between the West Texas yard and the gorgeous hay field across the street.

They actually brought in a crew to de-leaf the mamosa trees. To the left is the early flowering of the trees. Below is many dollars of labor later.

You can see the nose of our brown truck sticking out by the fire hydrant that was soon hidden with a judiciously placed authentic West Texas cactus. Others, like the one below, were wired to the fence posts.

They could not have the noise of air conditioners running while filming, so they imported this enormous air conditioner. The tubes were fed into all of the back windows of the house and it was turned on to cool the whole place any time there was a break in the action.

Since we were blocked for a couple of days from coming into or leaving our house, we took full advantage of the film crew's generosity and ate at the mess tent every chance we got. The lunches were served under this tent, but the meals were fixed to your specifications. Everything was gormet. From the salads to the choice of deserts, the food was excellent. They can come back and block my street with a lunch tent any time they like.