Saturday, March 5, 2011

Happy New Year

I can't believe it's been this long since I've posted anything. It has been an interesting time, however.......

2010 turned out to be the most productive, lucrative, and ultimately frustrating year I've had. I did still manage to keep my 28 years of filing for unemployment record intact, but it was only a matter of a few weeks. The frustrating part came just before Thanksgiving when I was fired from "Hawaii 5-0." This isn't a very good forum to air dirty laundry and since in the real world most people are fired because they probably did something wrong, discussing it in detail here isn't a very good idea. For the record, however, I did an amazing job on a very difficult show that ultimately used my experience, crew, and contacts to set up the first 12 episodes. With no reason or excuse given (since there wasn't any), I was fired in a very unprofessional, undeserving sort of way in the parking lot. Soon, other departments lost their local heads and replacements from other C.S.I. shows or "24" replaced us since that had become the look and style of the show and from where all of the producers got their starts. One big happy family now reunited in Hawaii.

Like any sort of unplanned break-up, the best cure is a rebound! Less than a week later with barely enough time to get another fantastic Christmas tree up and 300' of fresh cedar garland hung with the Thanksgiving roasting pan still soaking in the sink, I started as the Assistant Art Director on "Alvin and the Chipmunks 3: Chipwrecked." Not having seen Alvin 1 or 2, I had no idea that they had made over a BILLION dollars at the box office and DVD sales worldwide! Who knew? The best part was being needed again, finding a fantastic crew, working for a SUPER boss, and basically running the local art department and setting up set dressing as most of the movie was being shot in Canada and on a cruise ship in Florida. The work was all on a beautiful secluded beach, jungle, or water fall and most of the construction went into an ocean going raft. Lots of technical problems like wet coconuts in cargo nets are REAL heavy and matching Hawaii jungle plants to the ones they were putting in their tropical jungle on a Vancouver sound stage were a welcome change. Very interesting to see how they film real sets with real people and no real chipmunks, too. Well, if I'm only as good as my last set, I am very happy it was "Alvin 3" and not the one with another number in it.

I'm back to working on my house and need to also start hacking on my encroaching jungle as well. My productive year for me did not bode well for the maintenance on my house. I've met with the Disney Imagineering people working on their fantastic billion dollar resort, "Aulani," being built out at Ko Olina (west side). Hoping to get something more regular there.

"Magnum" is now airing daily here on one of he stations, ironically just before the original "5-0" comes on. If I were to do a chart graphic based on the work load and enjoyment level of the work then vs. what has happened to the business today........why bother? Moving on!


Steveadl said...

Great to hear from you Rick! Sorry to hear they fired you, especially through no fault of your own.

Glad to hear you bounced back straight away this time. Keep the updates coming mate, love to read them!

Steveadl said...

PS been working my way through one of your other projects over the last couple months - Lost. Love your work there as well.

Magnum Decorator said...

Thanks! After all these months with no activity nice to know someone is out there!

Ordell said...

Nice to read something new from you, Rick. Hawaii 5-0 starts on sunday, march 13, 2011 on german television.
I never watched one of the Alvin movies also, but I knew they were very successful. Maybe I have to watch the 3rd one now. :)

Greetings from germany

p.s.:Firirng an employee in a parking lot is wimpy.:/

Marco said...


Great to hear some news - some really disappointing, some excellent (Alvin)!

Keep up the good work (and turn the jungle that was your backyard once back into it's old glory shape :-))


Anonymous said...

I'm glad to hear you are keeping your head up. What a hard business to be in! I'm in healthcare and I certainly am getting fed up with the idiosyncrocies of my field. Hang in there!

I found the main character of 5-O to be lacking. I liked Scott Caan well enough. I now have an even better excuse to not watch it.

My kids will enjoy the chipmunks!

Best wishes to you on your yard work and on your next gig.

Steven said...

Great to hear from you on here again! :) Was wondering if you'd ever turn up on here anymore!

Darla said...

I've read your blog from time to time and I'd just like to say that you did a fantastic job on Magnum. Sorry to hear that you were fired from Hawaii 5-0. Hope you keep busy. Have you heard anything about a magnum reunion. I'd settle for a tv movie, with you as set decorator.

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Anonymous said...

How unfortunate - I found the set decorating on the show extremely lacking after you left during the first season. Season 2 seemed better.

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