For this episode, number 43 I spoke with documentary director Jon Spira.
I became aware of Jon’s work in 2015 with the release of Elstree 1976. A broad look at the men and women who were tucked away, far far away, in the back ground of some of the shots in Star Wars. They were often extras and masked characters that we didn’t even know were there. His film is a kind of microcosm of celebrity culture and how being on the periphery of a huge cultural event like Star Wars can impact on ones life.
I spoke to Jon in November 2021 for a couple of hours. We had briefly met once before at a BFI screening and we’d been intending to have a chat ever since.
Since making Elstree 1976, Jon has most recently made Hollywood Bulldogs Hollywood Bulldogs: The Rise and Falls of the Great British Stuntman which is currently on Britbox here in the UK. I really enjoyed listening to the stories of this unconventional group of men who worked on some of the biggest films in movie history.
Hollywood Bulldogs Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7COvrZs4Jns
Elstree 1976 Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6IhEuYdArz4