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Fantastic Voyage (1966)
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2014 10:18 pm    Post subject: Fantastic Voyage (1966) Reply with quote




Undoubtedly one of the most intelligent science fiction films of the 1960s and 1970s. The concept is unusual and fascinating; a mini-submarine containing a team of doctors is reduced to microscopic size by a new experimental process and injected into the body of a famous scientist who was injured while defecting from behind the Iron Curtain.





Stephen Boyd plays the government agent who brings the scientist to American (and then gets injected into him). Arthur Kennedy and Donald Pleasence are famous surgeons, Raquel Welch is the shapely surgical assistant, and William Redfield is the minisub helmsman.





Because "Fantastic Voyage" was made in the 1960s, the film makers felt obliged to include an espionage-saboteur element in the plot. This part of the story isn't too well done, and absolutely nobody is surprised by whom the saboteur turns out to be.





Through no fault of the film makers, some of the Oscar-winning special effects appear seriously outdated by today's standards. Too many visible wires can be seen on the miniatures, and too many full-sized sets look like sets instead of the human tissue and organs they are supposed to be.







But the matt paintings and composite shots (such as the minisub's passage through the lymphatic system) look wonderful.

Even the less effective special effects scenes succeed in clearly illustrating the events that comprise this truly remarkable story. Directed by Richard Fleischer from a screenplay by Harry Kleiner.

The plot does have one blatant bit of illogic. It violates the plot's own stated premise concerning the need to remove every trace of the submarine and its occupants before they automatically expand to normal size and kill the patient. Isaac Asimov's 1966 novelization of the screenplay doesn't make this mistake.




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Pow
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2014 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some of the set pieces for the human organs were reused by Irwin Allen for his Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea TV show.

A Saturday morning TV cartoon series based upon the film was done around 1966 or '67.
The characters were all new as was the design for the Proteus vessel.

They also altered the official name for the CMDF. In the movie it stood for Combined Miniature Deterrent Force.
On the cartoon show they changed the D to be Defense.
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Eadie
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2014 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The brain set was also used in the first season of Lost In Space.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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I'd love to see some pictures from those LIS episodes, Eadie.
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Krel
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was in "The Derelict", the second episode of the first season. They used part ofthe brain set for the Alien ship interior. For the episode "Journey Through the Robot", the miniature blood vessel set was used as part of the Robot's interior. I think that was used in at least one other episode.

Fox also used some of the FV body sets for the VTTBOTS episode "Jonah and the Whale".

The Robinson's LASER drill was the snorkel from the Proteus. But who borrowed from whom here?

Next time you watch "Our Man Flint", look at the ZOWIE set, it is the CMDF set. OMF used practically every sf set piece on the Fox lot.

David.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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I love spotting props from other productions. I'll be on the look out for those the next time I'm watching Lost in Space.

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Pow
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sunday, September 10, 1965, "Jonah & the Whale" is the Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea episode which utilizes set pieces from the movie Fantastic Voyage as the interior of a giant whale.

Special FX maestro L.B.Abbott worked on both the Irwin Allen submarine TV series as well as the FV feature film.

The Proteus was re-rigged as a rescue craft for Allen's disaster movie The Poseidon Adventure. None of the footage of the Proteus made it into the movie.

According to reports, the Proteus was virtually destroyed during filming.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We all know that the people who order the building of marvelous props like the Proteus (and then later order them destroyed or roughly used and damaged) are not the folks who lovingly design and build these works of art.

They're the same dolts who cancel shows like Star Trek and Firefly and dozens of others without really having a clue as to what made them great.

Lillie Tomlin once told Johnny Carson that there was a good reason why it was called "show business" . . . and not "show art". Sad

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Krel
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pow wrote:
The Proteus was re-rigged as a rescue craft for Allen's disaster movie The Poseidon Adventure. None of the footage of the Proteus made it into the movie.

According to reports, the Proteus was virtually destroyed during filming.

I think it was on the defunct Model Builders Reference Vault that talked about the Pa Proteus. He said that the windows were covered, a hatch was built into the side of the sub and it was painted orange. But as far as he knew, no scenes were ever filmed. No one knows what happened to the Proteus after that, just that it was probably destroyed. It is kind of funny that the Proteus was never used in a VTTBOTS episode, perhaps because of all of the windows.

David.
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larryfoster
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As 'far out' as the concept of this movie is (shrinking people and a submarine to injectable size)... I can see how we are close to a parallel method of accomplishing the same objective - by skipping the 'shrinking' process, and using 'telepresence' technology.

Use the developing 'nanomanufacturing' technology to build the micro-sized submarine, and its humanoid android crew.

"Nanomanufacturing"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanomanufacturing

"Nanomanufacturing"
http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=13347

Then, use 'Telepresence' technique for (real full/life-sized) humans to connect and control the micro-sized androids aboard the injectable micro-submarine.

"Telerobotics"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telerobotics

As NASA has done with their Robonaut robot.
"Telepresence"
http://robonaut.jsc.nasa.gov/R1/sub/telepresence.asp

This plot could be included into any sci-fi adventutre that uses humans - which need medical care. After injection... there is no time limit - because the sub and crew will not expand to life size. They can wait dormant in the host's body, for the next needed use. Of course it is desirable that the micro-android crew should resemble the 'real-life' (medical-trained) tele-operators, for ease of audience association with them as being the real living humans.

I would inject every person aboard any starship with such micro-sized sub and android crew. It permits an occasional adventure breakaway, from the primary adventure of space exploration.
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Eadie
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Best picture (clearest) that Butch has.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice picture, Eadie! Thanks. Cool

Larryfoster - Another great concept for a science fiction story! I love both the logic of having such medical precautions built into every person, as well as the drama made possible by subplots and (as you said) the "occasional adventure breakaway".

Sweet idea, Larry. An EDCA well earned!

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scotpens
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pow wrote:
A Saturday morning TV cartoon series based upon the film was done around 1966 or '67.

The characters were all new as was the design for the Proteus vessel.

The ship in the animated series was called the Voyager.

Pow wrote:
They also altered the official name for the CMDF. In the movie it stood for Combined Miniature Deterrent Force.

On the cartoon show they changed the D to be Defense.

In the movie, it was Combined Miniature Deterrent Forces (plural), actually.

The scenes of the ramps and corridors of CMDF headquarters were filmed in the outer concourse of the Los Angeles Sports Arena. I half expected Stephen Boyd and Edmond O'Brien to go inside and catch a Lakers game.



I love how these fictional top-secret organizations always have their name and logo plastered all over the walls, the furniture, the equipment -- even the floors! Do the people employed by those agencies need to be constantly reminded of who they're working for?



Pow wrote:
The Proteus was re-rigged as a rescue craft for Allen's disaster movie The Poseidon Adventure. None of the footage of the Proteus made it into the movie.

According to reports, the Proteus was virtually destroyed during filming.

The story of the full-size Proteus being reworked as a rescue sub for either The Poseidon Adventure or its sequel, Beyond the Poseidon Adventure, is probably a myth. There's a studio photo of the Proteus mockup being dismantled after filming, and it hadn't had any alterations done to it. I wish I could find that picture. It used to be on Doug Drexler's old DrexFiles site, which unfortunately no longer exists.


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Krel
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

scotpens wrote:
The scenes of the ramps and corridors of CMDF headquarters were filmed in the outer concourse of the Los Angeles Sports Arena. I half expected Stephen Boyd and Edmond O'Brien to go inside and catch a Lakers game.

I was refering to the opereating room set being reused as the Z.O.W.I.E. set

scotpens wrote:
The story of the full-size Proteus being reworked as a rescue sub for either The Poseidon Adventure or its sequel, Beyond the Poseidon Adventure, is probably a myth. There's a studio photo of the Proteus mockup being dismantled after filming, and it hadn't had any alterations done to it. I wish I could find that picture. It used to be on Doug Drexler's old DrexFiles site, which unfortunately no longer exists.

As I wrote above, the person who ran the lost Model Builders Reference Vault (which had great photos of the FV sets) claims to have seen the altered Proteus, with the changes I wrote about. He said that no scenes of the altered Proteus were ever seen. It was sometime after the alterations that the Proteus was scrapped. It would seem that the Proteus would be kind of a large set/prop to keep around, but Fox kept the POTA rocket even longer.

Now to shoot myself in the foot. An argument for the Proteus having been scrapped after filming. It never got used in "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea", and Fox never let anything go to waste for their tv shows and movies. Another argument for the scrapping of the Proteus, is that it was designed to have sections removed for filming. The Proteus most likely would have been stored outside in the elements, and it is unlikely that it could have survived the exposure.

I too miss the DrexFiles. He said on the Steve Neil's Garage site last year, that he may do a new one someday.

David.
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scotpens
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Krel wrote:
scotpens wrote:
The scenes of the ramps and corridors of CMDF headquarters were filmed in the outer concourse of the Los Angeles Sports Arena. I half expected Stephen Boyd and Edmond O'Brien to go inside and catch a Lakers game.

I was referring to the operating room set being reused as the Z.O.W.I.E. set

Yes, I was just imparting some additional trivia that most of us geeks probably knew already anyway.

Krel wrote:
As I wrote above, the person who ran the lost Model Builders Reference Vault (which had great photos of the FV sets) claims to have seen the altered Proteus, with the changes I wrote about. He said that no scenes of the altered Proteus were ever seen. It was sometime after the alterations that the Proteus was scrapped. It would seem that the Proteus would be kind of a large set/prop to keep around, but Fox kept the POTA rocket even longer.

As I recall, Phil Broad (the gentleman you're referring to) never claimed to have personally seen the altered Proteus. He was just repeating information he'd heard second-hand.

However, he did see the Planet of the Apes ship sitting in a disused corner of the Fox lot, and was surprised at how sturdily built the thing was.
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