Monday, February 11, 2008

An afternoon with Roy Scheider

The man pointing is Roy Scheider, who died over the weekend, and the kid in back with the cowboy hat is Burt Kearns, the author of Tabloid Baby, during the filming of Jaws, on Martha's Vineyard in June 1974.

"We'd just graduated from high school and a bunch of us took a van up to Cape Cod, " Burt recalls. " My pal John Garofano and I took the ferry to the Vineyard and saw they were making a movie on the beach. We worked as extras on a few scenes with Richard Dreyfuss and Peter Benchley. We thought Dreyfuss looked familiar but we couldn't figure out who he was until we saw the poster outside the moviehouse in Vineyard Haven, where American Graffiti was playing. One afternoon, we hitchhiked out to Edgartown and wound up on the docks where Scheider and Dreyfuss were filming more scenes. It started to rain pretty hard, and John and I somehow wound up spending a lot of the afternoon hanging out in the dock house with Dreyfuss, Scheider and Spielberg. They were all pretty friendly. I don't know what happened to John, but it took me another 16 years to get to Hollywood and 15 more to write and produce my first major motion picture. Now I see Spielberg at the supermarket."

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