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 Post subject: Midway (1942) Question
PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2020 7:15 pm 
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Does anyone know where this footage (from the John Ford Midway (1942)) was taken?

I am most interested in what the biplane is in the foreground.

It was not taken at Midway as there were no B-18's there. Was this staged after Pearl for the film? Possibly in a scrapyard on the island?


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2020 10:36 pm 
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According to Wiki, it was filmed by Ford during the actual battle.
So if you see B-18s there, they were there.
Odd biplane though. Looks like a Fiat CR.42 to me. :D

According to the same source, Ford had a lot of footage of VT-8, and after their losses in the battle, had it edited into a short silent film (with silent film like titles) and transferred to 8mm home movie film and had a copy sent to each of the families.
Wow!

It would be great to see that footage, I wonder if any of the copies sent to families survive?

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:01 am 
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Could that be the remains of an SOC Seagull? Likely with the wheels installed instead of floats.
https://www.militaryfactory.com/aircraf ... rcraft.asp


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:50 am 
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While a Curtiss is certainly the most likely, the wing struts don't match.
The SOC has "N" units, the ones in the photo look like "II" units.

I can't imagine Ford would need to restage scenes back in Hollywood.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 6:05 am 
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I checked my Navy & Marine Overseas Loss List database & there were no biplanes losses for 4 Jun 42 at Midway in it. Is it possible that it was an AAF plane, or possibly that portion of the clip was from the Pearl Harbor attack?

Mac

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:02 pm 
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Jim MacDonald wrote:
I checked my Navy & Marine Overseas Loss List database & there were no biplanes losses for 4 Jun 42 at Midway in it. Is it possible that it was an AAF plane, or possibly that portion of the clip was from the Pearl Harbor attack?

Mac


It wasn't at Midway - so my guess, like yours was it was from Pearl...however it looks staged. I am wondering if those were one of the B-18's that were written off as it appears that the plane has been gutted.

I was wondering if it was just at a dump and that was just an old private biplane from the 20's/30's.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 1:33 pm 
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JohnB wrote:
According to Wiki, it was filmed by Ford during the actual battle.
So if you see B-18s there, they were there.
Odd biplane though. Looks like a Fiat CR.42 to me. :D

According to the same source, Ford had a lot of footage of VT-8, and after their losses in the battle, had it edited into a short silent film (with silent film like titles) and transferred to 8mm home movie film and had a copy sent to each of the families.
Wow!

It would be great to see that footage, I wonder if any of the copies sent to families survive?


Here is the footage:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pa6O5GjUonQ

Years ago, I obtained this footage on DVD from George Gay's grandson and he told me that this is what his grandfather obtained from either Ford and/or the U.S. Navy, as a tribute to VT-8.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 2:08 pm 
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hurricane_yank wrote:
Does anyone know where this footage (from the John Ford Midway (1942)) was taken?

I am most interested in what the biplane is in the foreground.

It was not taken at Midway as there were no B-18's there. Was this staged after Pearl for the film? Possibly in a scrapyard on the island?

This footage was taken at Hickam or Wheeler after the attack for newsreel and documentary use; there are longer copies around showing a soldier putting a torch to the biplane, which is a Douglas BT-2 trainer. There were a few of these oldies left in Hawaii at the time of the attack; one had been cracked up by George Welch the previous May.

Raw footage here, thanks to Mark Allen M for finding it:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNxniF4UB9M

Previous thread from 2016:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=63963&p=585592&hilit=douglas#p585592

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2020 2:26 pm 
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Chris Brame wrote:
hurricane_yank wrote:
Does anyone know where this footage (from the John Ford Midway (1942)) was taken?

I am most interested in what the biplane is in the foreground.

It was not taken at Midway as there were no B-18's there. Was this staged after Pearl for the film? Possibly in a scrapyard on the island?

This footage was taken at Hickam or Wheeler after the attack for newsreel and documentary use; there are longer copies around showing a soldier putting a torch to the biplane, which is a Douglas BT-2 trainer. There were a few of these oldies left in Hawaii at the time of the attack; one had been cracked up by George Welch the previous May.

Raw footage here, thanks to Mark Allen M for finding it:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNxniF4UB9M

Previous thread from 2016:
http://www.warbirdinformationexchange.o ... as#p585592


Thank you so much! I knew someone around here would know. There were not any B-18's at Wheeler so it must be Hickam unless this was days after the attack - so the next question is, since this was "staged," how many days after the attack was this footage taken.


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