Here's what the Iverson Movie Ranch obsession is all about ...

For an introduction to this blog and to the obsession a growing number of vintage film and TV fans have with the Iverson Movie Ranch — the most widely filmed outdoor location in movie and TV history — please read the site's introductory post, found here.
• Your feedback is appreciated — please leave comments on any of the posts.
• To find specific rock features or look up movie titles, TV shows, actors and production people, see the "LABELS" section — the long alphabetical listing on the right side of the page, below.
• To join the MAILING LIST, send me an email at iversonmovieranch@gmail.com and let me know you'd like to sign up.
• I've also begun a YouTube channel for Iverson Movie Ranch clips and other movie location videos, which you can get to by clicking here.
• Here's a link to Garden of the Gods, the best-known section of the Iverson Movie Ranch (featured in the movie "Stagecoach," the "Lone Ranger" TV show and hundreds of other productions).
• To go right to the great Iverson cinematographers, click here.
• Readers can email the webmaster at iversonmovieranch@gmail.com.

Monday, August 24, 2009

The obligatory "then and now" shot of two Garden of the Gods fixtures, as seen in "Stagecoach" ... and some confusion about rock names

"Stagecoach" (1939) — the iconic scene with background provided by the Garden of the Gods,
on the Iverson Movie Ranch in Chatsworth, Calif.

Same rocks as they appear today

Sphinx, on the right, also known as Eagle Beak, and Tower Rock, on the left, also known as Indian Head and sometimes as the Pinnacle, are among the most famous and most widely filmed rocks on the Iverson Movie Ranch. They're located in the Garden of the Gods on the former Lower Iverson, an area that has been preserved as a park.  

The sequence in which they appear in John Ford's landmark 1939 Western "Stagecoach" (top photo) is one of the most high-profile appearance of Iverson rocks on film, rivaled only by Iverson's other extremely high-profile feature, Lone Ranger Rock, and its appearance in the opening sequence of the "Lone Ranger" TV show. 

Sphinx, Tower Rock and Lone Ranger Rock tend to be the entry points for Iverson research, and they clearly have their appeal and their glamour. But in my own Iverson research, once I got past the initial excitement of seeing these familiar monuments in real life, I went on to discover hundreds of other rocks at the movie ranch that I found at least equally interesting. 

One bit of trivia about these two giants concerns their names: Indian Head is a name that has been applied to at least four different rocks at Iverson, including both of these. (Click here for a post that runs through all of Iverson's so-called "Indian Heads.") Sphinx (or Eagle Beak) has itself been referred to as Indian Head at least once in a movie. Additionally, before Lone Ranger Rock became identified with the Lone Ranger, it was known as Indian Head. And there's another Indian Head on the Upper Iverson, also known as Wrench Rock


"Batman and Robin" (Columbia serial, 1949) — Batman Rock at top right
 
The name "Indian Head" could easily have also been given to another Iverson rock, known as Batman Rock. Meanwhile, the name "Eagle Beak," which is now in wide use (probably more common, for example, than Sphinx, which is more correct), apparently came about as a result of an error, as it was reportedly confused with a different rock, Eagle Beak Rock, located on the Upper Iverson.
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