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.
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• 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.
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• 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.
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Friday, November 5, 2010

The rarely seen backside of Crown Rock

Iverson expert Jerry England sent me a 5-second video clip recently from the 1941 movie "They Died With Their Boots On" that knocked my socks off (sticking with the footwear theme of the movie, and whether said footwear is on or off ... in case you might have missed it).

"They Died With Their Boots On" (Warner Bros., 1941)

The movie is several large notches up from the typical Iverson B-Western. It's a major feature from Warner Bros. starring Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland in a romanticized telling of the life story of Gen. George Armstrong Custer, of Little Big Horn infamy. The bulk of the movie is non-Iverson, but when the action shifts to Indian country near the end of the story, it becomes an Iverson spectacle.

The clip Jerry sent me — which you'll find below — is a short pan shot, It begins innocently enough with a shot of a rock I didn't initially recognize but which I knew from the subsequent pan had to be in the Upper Gorge section of the Lower Iverson. I suspected it might be Crown Rock, and a visit to the photo archives matched it up.

Here's Crown Rock in the movie:

And here it is in more recent times:

That "backside" (north side) of Crown Rock is rarely seen in the movies, which generally show the rock, along with the rest of The Wall that it was part of, from the east. The rest of The Wall was destroyed to build condos in the Upper Gorge, but for whatever reasons the builders decided to spare Crown Rock and leave it in place as decoration for the development. These days Crown Rock sits alone between a couple of those condos, looking a bit like an old warrior who would have tons of stories to tell, if only it could — stories of the hundreds of movies and TV shows filmed in that immediate area during the heyday.

Here's Jerry's 5-second video clip:

What's remarkable here, besides everything, is the view of Rock Island at the end, along with the rare view of the eastern wall of the North Cluster, above Garden of the Gods. This scene is shot from an angle that was almost never used.

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