Kit West - SFX Cameraman for 'Bowie Films'


'The Adventures of Gerard' - A big budget adventure filmed in Italy and based on the novel by Arthur Conan Doyle.
The million dollar budget was generously spent on wonderful costumes, great scenes and it was
possible to hire 'Bowie Films Ltd' to shoot an elaborate miniature castle scene.
Les Bowie, Kit West (cinematographer), Brian Johnson and Neil Swan flew to Malta for this job.
Kit West: "We actually built the miniature castle at the Malta Film Facilities 
(today 'MFS' - Mediterranean Film Studios), above the studio water tank, overlooking the sea."
'Adventures of Gerard' is sometimes cruel and absurd, but always funny and full of black humor.
An excellent little avant-garde 'Monty Python' style 'epic', exquisitely photographed.
I truly want to see a quality release of this splendid movie, in the correct aspect ratio, 
to enjoy the great visual impact.

Director Jerzy Skolimowski (right) on set with Peter McEnery and Claudia Cardinale.

Claudia Cardinale (Countess of Morales).
Countess of Morales - An unusual, wonderful role for Claudia Cardinale.
Wow, what a model miniature built by the Les Bowie 'gang' - The Castle of Morales.
The word miniature is somewhat misleading since the castle set is of enormous scale.
SFX legend Brian Johnson is plastering the outside walls of the castle, 1968.
Maltese Crew - Who are these people?
What a greatness! What a tremendous model miniature!
A miracle of a time with great experts and outstanding hand-made effects!
Brian Johnson 'planted' a few trees and shrubs.
Brian Johnson with a handful of dried moss. This was used for the false trees and foliage.
Kit West - The whole crew is sticking moos around the castle.
Kit West in the middle of the maltese 'forest workers'.
Brian Johnson (foreground) and Kit West with the maltese helpers.
Brian Johnson inside the castle miniature - Reminds me of "The three Worlds of Gulliver".
Castle of Morales - Some final color corrections made by Brian Johnson, 1968.
What a tremendous effort...
h
Maltese crew.
Kit was filming the miniature castle scenes.
Kit West: "Les Bowie and myself were responsible for the model castle sequence. 
At the end of the movie, the castle is bombarded by cannon fire."
Kit: "Special effects man Neil Swan is putting finishing touches to the walls."
Neil Swan (SFX) - What a great shot clearly showing the great scale of the miniature!
Les Bowies Special Effects Cameraman Kit West is setting up the camera position, 
to shoot the castle miniature scenes.
Castle of Morales - model miniature - 'The Adventures of Gerard'.
That would be something for my garden...
The castle miniature in the movie. A composite shot of the miniature set and a live action scene!
The end of the splendid model miniature, a violent explosion.
Filmed by Kit West.
Kit: "I really miss working with the camera...."

The live action scenes in and around the castle in 'Adventures of Gerard' were filmed in 
the 'Castello Orsini-Odescalchi. The great Castle in Bracciano (Rom) was the location for 
different Peplums and other feature films.
Comparison photo.
Kit: "Although Les Bowie and myself attended the live action shooting, which is combined with 
the miniature castle blowing up, we were not involved in the live action effects. 
These were done by the Italian special effects crew."
Peter McEnery and Claudia Cardinale arrive at the party in honour of the cast of 
'The Adventures of Gerard', Rome, November 18th., 1968.

Between all my 'Gerard' negatives and paper photos are a few 'enigmatic' images.
This photo is showing Special Effects Supervisor Pat Moore on set in Malta.
What is he doing there...?
Obviously he is supervising a maltese crew. For his own production under the Bowie banner? 
One of the Peter Collinson movies?
Or is Pat helping the other Bowie guys on location for 'Adventures of Gerard'?
Kit: "In those days, we all helped out each other, helping in all departments..." 
Obviously this set was built very close to the old water tank of 'Mediterranean Film Studios'.
I wonder about the cut-out in the wood! Left and right sides are not equal.
In 'Adventures of Gerard' ...there is a scene in which you see the castle in the distance through a canyon.
Are they building a miniature canyon here?
A cheerful Pat Moore.
Let me know if you have any idea!
www.moon-city-garbage.agency

www.kit-west-spfx.com