Monday, October 11, 2010

The Body Shop

Often times I wake up in the middle of the night and have trouble going back to sleep. Whenever that happens, I’ll turn on the radio beside my pillow. It never takes more than about 15 minutes of listening to lull me back to sleep.

This happened the other night and the show that my radio was tuned to was “Coast to Coast”…the show Art Bell created. They’re always talking about the super natural world such as UFO's, Big Foot, Shadow People, Out of Body experiences etc…..the kind of stuff that will put you to sleep in a New York minute.

Seems like they were talking about horror films and suddenly I hear a caller say something about a Charlotte North Carolina filmmaker named Harry Joyner!

Suddenly I was wide awake. The caller was saying Joyner never got the recognition that he deserved as an innovative movie maker, and sighted what he said was a 1973 ground breaking horror film titled “THE BODY SHOP.”

I remembered that Martin Hill had worked with Harry back in those days so I called Martin and he confirmed that Harry had indeed made a movie called “THE BODY SHOP” and in fact, Martin was the photographer for that movie. He even had character parts in several of Harry’s other films!

Searching the internet, I found this post:

Harry Joyner Under appreciated pioneer of film

"……You're very right about Harry. I too knew him and considered him a wonderful talent and a great man. He owned his own company and gave me my first job in my field. It was always an adventure there, one day you might come to work and find him bulding a model city out of cardboard boxes. The next day he might have been hosting a local filmmaker, and you'd find yourself watching the edits.

I lost touch with Harry, but saw him much later on the David Letterman show. He had made his own how-to movie about how to create special effects on your own home movies. Letterman showed portions of the video, didn't have Harry on his show directly. In Harry's inimitable style, perhaps a disdain for perfection, he sits behind his desk in his study, talking to the camera about whatever special effect he had demonstrated. While filming, the phone started to ring. Instead of stopping, answering the phone, or even unplugging it, Harry IGNORES it, just lets it ring. Letterman starts yelling at the tape, "Answer the phone! They're trying to order your video!" The audience howled with laughter! 

Wow, just realized it's been 10 years since the world lost Harry. What a poorer place the world is. Miss you, Harry!

I'm not sure who wrote this, but I agree that we miss Harry too!  Especially his sense of humor.
 A LOVE story?   -Ed


Cinematography by
W. Martin Hill

Film Editing by
Harry M. Joyner