50th Anniversary of the Making of Grand Prix Oct 4 – 5th

Directed by John Frankenheimer

Forest & Ocean Gallery will be hosting the 50th anniversary of the making of this historic film, October 4th and 5th, 2014.

Reception from 5-9 PM on Saturday the 4th.


Nine races. One champion. James Garner, Yves Montand, Brian Bedford and Antonio Sabato portray Formula I drivers competing to be the best in this slam-you-into-the-driver’s seat tale of speed, spectacle and intertwined personal lives. Eva Marie Saint and Toshiro Mifune also star. John Frankenheimer (who 32 years later would again stomp the pedal to the metal for the car chases of Ronin) directs this winner of 3 Academy Awards – crafting split-screen images to capture the overlapping drama and orchestrating you-are-there POV camerawork to intensify the hard-driving thrills. Nearly 30 top drivers take part in the excitement, so buckle up, movie fans. Race with the best to the head of the pack.Probably the best of the formula motor racing films. Frankenheimer was a keen fan of the sport, and took great pains to convey the experience cinematically. There are no CG-process shots; a 70mm camera was fixed to the cars, and the suspension jacked up on the other side to balance them. Drivers wore cameras on their helmets. “Chase cars” were fitted with remote-controlled cameras. Long lenses were used for a slow-motion effect, helicopter cameras shot the aerial footage.. Cutting-edge technology was used to control the cameras remotely.The racing scenes were real; actual races, actual drivers…as good as it gets.

John Stephens, who directed the Action Unit in the film will be the featured guest. Also in attendance will be John Frankenheimer’s wife, also the cast of the film; Eva Marie Saint, Antonio Sabato and the President of Panavision, whose 70mm Panaflex cameras captured all this historic footage. Also in attendance will be Bob Bondurant, the world-famous race driver whose School of High Performance Driving trains new racers as well as law-enforcement officers. Bob trained the actors to drive their race cars and also drove in the film. We expect to have other famous drivers in attendance as well; list of names to follow.

John Stephens’ fabulous still photographs of the film, including action shots and the making of the film will be available for viewing and for sale in limited editions.

There will be a screening of the film, as well as a short film on the Making of Grand Prix, to be held at the Lumberyard Restaurant at 9AM on Sunday, the 5th.

In addition, there will be a 1960’s Formula 1 racing car on display, along with the Panaflex camera rig used in the film. For the enthusiast, a 1916 Ford Speedster race car will be offering rides in its open-cockpit. Enough thrills for everyone attending.

This will be a historic moment for Laguna Beach and for all automobile enthusiasts.



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