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Sample Chapter

FIFTEEN

THEY'RE GONNA PUT ME IN THE MOVIES

THEY ONLY WANTED MY BUS

    It was while working with Pete Brenenstuhl that Pete got a call for his Scenicruiser. A film company doing a shoot in northern Maryland needed an early 60's Greyhound bus for a scene in the movie"THAT NIGHT"starring Juliette Lewis. The location chosen was supposed to be that of a small,roadside Greyhound agency in a rural part of the country. It was to be a nighttime goodby scene where a young girl is placed on a bus and viewers see the agency disappearing into the night through the back window of the bus as the coach pulls away.

  Pete's scenic was painted in authentic Greyhound colors and had the proper lettering and numbers. The running dog symbol was on both sides of the coach. For all intents and purposes, it was a Greyhound Bus. Seats were removed from the rear of the bus so a camera and its crew could be stationed inside. In fact, Pete had to remove the tinted rear window and have a clear window made and installed in its place, so the camera could shoot through the rear of the bus from the inside to the outside.

Scenes were recorded from outside and from inside the coach. It took hours to get the action right as the bus pulled away from the country store agency. The bus transmission, of course, wasn't automatic, and we needed to shift up to third gear as smoothly as possible. The other driver and I would get a few hundred feet down this dark road, then stop, and have to back up without benefit of street lights or backup lights. The work took two nights.

Oh, I almost forgot. The director waited and waited for an official OK from Greyhound, so they could use their logo on the side of the bus.  He didn't get it.  Working quickly in fading light, crew members took the dogs off the sides of the bus, covered the other markings and numbers which might refer to the Greyhound Corporation, and, matching the blue already on the coach, printed out: TRAILWAYS BUS LINES on both sides of the scenic. Now, to a real bus man, or an old Greyhound driver, that name on the side of a scenicruiser must have seemed sacrilegious to say the least.  Pete just happened to have an old, orange Trailways Bus Depot sign with him, as well as a Greyhound sign, just the touch that was needed to complete the scene.

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