Fireside 2.1 (https://fireside.fm) Sequel Rights Blog https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles Fri, 27 Apr 2018 11:00:00 -0700 Sequel Rights Blog en-us Sequel Soundtrack Rights https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/sequel-soundtrack-rights Fri, 27 Apr 2018 11:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com 4f1ede5d-7544-42d7-94fd-40e78e3c456d For a truly eclectic listening experience, check out the Sequel Soundtrack Rights Spotify playlist. Sequel Rights recently bursted onto the Spotify podcasts section, and to celebrate, we put together a playlist of all your favorite tunes from your favorite sequels!



Sadly, some of our favorites were missing from Spotify! You'll have to look elsewhere for Ron Bloom's patriotic tunes from Missing in Action 3, "Dark as Love" from Species IV, or any of Benji's Euel Box jams. But there's some really good stuff on here, including James Horner's entire score for An American Tail, Hans Zimmer's Darkman score, "Oh Man" from Step Up: Highwater, and Justin's favorite "Santa's Got a Hot Rod" from the Santa Clause 3.

Right now the playlist includes everything we could find through The Naked Gun series. We'll keep updating as we cover more films, so follow the playlist and check back often! And of course, follow us on Spotify to get all the new podcast episodes too!

--eliz



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RIP Barbara Bush & Other Fact-Checks from Naked Gun 2 1/2 https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/rip-barbara-bush-other-fact-checks-from-naked-gun-2-1-2 Wed, 25 Apr 2018 08:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com fa86803c-cecd-44f3-b19a-ba996b8894f0 A tribute to First Lady Barbara Bush and other follow-ups from our episode on Naked Gun 2 1/2: The Smell of Fear When you're recording live, sometimes things just pop into your head, and you don't want to disrupt the flow of the show by looking it up online. Or we say weird stuff that never gets explained. So in the interest of truth, justice, and the American Way, we're going to do these blog posts and fact-check ourselves.




So you might have noticed that we strangely did not mention the passing of former First Lady Barbara Bush in our latest episode on Naked Gun 2 1/2. Well that's because we actually record these episodes one week in advance. So actually as soon as we got home from recording, Justin pinged us because the news had JUST broken that Mrs. Bush was in critical condition, and of course the next day we found out she had passed. So of course we all send our deepest condolences to the Bush family (because I'm sure they care what we think) and we salute Barbara Bush for her wonderful life of service and her "starring role" in Naked Gun 2 1/2.

And actually while looking up more about her in relation to Naked Gun, I found this cute news piece on the Pres. & Mrs. Bush getting a little revenge on Leslie Nielsen for parodying them in the film. It's actually really cute to know that they were good sports about it and able to razz Nielsen a bit in an adorable old person kind of way. I can't even imagine a world where Trump would throw up some bunny ears on Alec Baldwin and call it even.




And because we were tiny children in the late 80s and early 90s there were a few jokes in this film that went right over our heads or that we misinterpreted. Here's some of our usual fact-checks.


What was the art dealer joke all about?
Robert Goulet introduces their Meinheimer look-alike Earl Hacker, the "former arts consultant to Jesse Helms." You might have heard of Jesse Helms before, a five-term Republican North Carolina senator most famous for being a total racist. But around 1989 he made headlines with his introduction of an amendment that would have cut funding to the National Endowment for the Arts because they had provided funding for two exhibits which he deemed obscene. Here's a link to a biography/obit of his, but I think that you can learn a lot about him just by reading this one paragraph from Wikipedia:

"Helms had a negative view of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people and LGBT rights in the United States. Helms called homosexuals "weak, morally sick wretches" and tried to cut funding for the National Endowment for the Arts for supporting the "gay-oriented artwork of photographer Robert Mapplethorpe". In 1993, when then-president Bill Clinton wanted to appoint 'out' lesbian Roberta Achtenberg to assistant secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Helms held up the confirmation "because she's a damn lesbian", adding "she's not your garden-variety lesbian. She's a militant-activist-mean lesbian". Helms also stated "I'm not going to put a lesbian in a position like that. If you want to call me a bigot, fine." When Clinton urged that gays be allowed to serve openly in the armed forces, Helms said the president "better have a bodyguard" if he visited North Carolina."

By the way, comedic actor Ed Helms, who was at one-time rumored to be up for a Naked Gun reboot, is the fifth cousin once removed of the now-deceased Senator, according to famouskin.com.


What is the meaning of "General Schwarzkopf: Welcome Home" in the credits?
Look I'm the first to admit that I know next to nothing about the Gulf War. When I got to high school it was too recent to be taught yet and with America still in the throws of post-9/11 military action, people weren't really eager to go over that time that many perceive as a war fought over oil. Somebody let me know if there's a good movie I can watch that will sum it all up for me. But anyways, General Schwarzkopf was a famous Gulf War commander that for some reason became super famous and well-liked. His homecoming became a really big hullabaloo and a symbol of that fact that America had freed Kuwait and won the Gulf War (even though Saddam Hussein was still in power). What's most remarkable about this to me is how famous this guy became, famous enough that everyone at that time would have understood this joke about him in the credits of a major motion picture. I can't think of a single person from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that is this well-known. I guess maybe the guy from American Sniper? But I can't even remember his name.


What were the organizational acronyms introduced by John Sununu at the state dinner?
We couldn't remember these all while recording, but they are hilarious and so I wanted to provide the list here:

  • Society of Petroleum lndustry Leaders - better known as SPIL
  • Society for More Coal Energy, or SMoCE (pronounced 'smoke')
  • Key Atomic Benefits Office Of Mankind - KABOOM
As we also mentioned, someone was listed in the credits just for coming up with that KABOOM acronym, and rightfully so!


Did the wall art in the Blue Note show Mr. Rogers?
When Frank Drebin first arrives at the Blue Note jazz club, we get a long pan of all the hanging arts on the walls, which depict famous failures: the San Francisco Earthquake, the Hindenburg, the Titanic, and then a photo of a man that Justin and Tyler thought was Mr. Rogers. Though they do look a bit similar, the man pictured is actually 1988 Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis, who was handily beaten by President Bush Sr. No president since has had such a good winning margin. In a later shot, photos of the Ford Edsel (famously failed in the 1950's) and the Hubble Telescope (failed until it was repaired) also appear. But hey it looks like we weren't the only ones to see a similarity! A 1988 magazine spread pondered if the two were seperated at birth.



Is Vitamin C's "Graduation (Friends Forever)" still popular?
Under her real name, Colleen Fitzpatrick, Vitamin C sings the very funny song "I guess I'm just screwed" in Naked Gun 2. This led to us speculating about whether or not kids these days still listen to her Graduation song when leaving high school. And actually, they do! While some songs like Fun's "We Are Young," Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again," and Miley Cyrus' "The Climb" have scratched the surface, no one has managed to unseat Vitamin C as the queen of graduations. Multiple media outlets, including this list from Seventeen Magazine, still list her song as the number one graduation anthem ever, and re-recommend it every year as a must-have on the graduation playlists of high school seniors. Friends FOREVER! and while we're on the subject...


Did Seinfeld use Green Day's "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" in their series finale?
Apparently so!


What's with that guy running around with a huge cookbook as the ballroom breaks into chaos?
This gag is a reference to a very famous Twilight Zone episode "To Serve Man," when us idiot humans translate an alien book cover and of course assume the aliens are here to assist us. Just as humans board the alien ship someone figures out that the rest of the book is actually a COOKBOOK about 'serving' man, but it's too late. This was also famously parodied in The Simpsons' Treehouse of Horror with Kang and Kodos, and goddamn it never gets old:




That's all for now, feel free to point out any other mistakes or omissions by emailing us at sequelrights@gmail.com! And don't worry, we'll have even more discussion on which Zucker brother did what on our episode for Naked Gun 33 1/3.
--eliz

PS: A ton of the things mentioned in this post including the Twilight Zone, Vitamin C, and Mr. Rogers, are all available as part of an Amazon Prime Membership. And you can watch along with all three movies on Starz, also available as an Amazon add-on. If you're interested in a free trial please use the banners below, which help us make more Sequel Rights!



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Benji's Playgirl Centerfold https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/benji-playgirl-centerfold Tue, 17 Apr 2018 14:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com 995a434f-bdff-4a45-8bd6-2405046c9f37 It's true--our dear sweet Benji once posed NUDE for Playgirl! Sequel Rights has obtained the scandalous photos! The August 1980 Issue of Playgirl Magazine

On this, the final day of our Benji series, I finally am posting something I kept saying I was gonna do way back during "For The Love of Benji!" Did you know that our dear, sweet, innocent friend Benji once posed NUDE in Playgirl Magazine?! It's always sad when these kinds of photos leak out and tarnish a celebrity's career!

Around the time of Benji's starring role in "Oh, Heavenly Dog!," The film's stars Chevy Chase and Jane Seymour appeared on the August 1980 cover of Playgirl Magazine. But did either of them bare all? No! Instead the cover teases a SPECIAL MYSTERY CELEBRITY CENTERFOLD, which turned out to be Benji! I bet there were a lot of disappointed women out there. Can you image if Playboy ever had done something that misleading?

If you know anything about the squeaky clean family-focused Benji director Joe Camp, you're probably surprised that he allowed this to happen. On the official Benji website, Camp explains his thinking behind the centerfold:

Benji is the only canine actor to ever appear as a centerfold in Playgirl Magazine. When asked if such an appearance isn't a break from his usual family-friendly philosophy, Joe says, "The way we looked at it was that in addition to being ridiculously funny, Benji's centerfold meant one less naked man on the magazine racks... because, you see, the dog playing Benji at that time was actually a girl." Would he do it again? "No."

Since the photo actually shows the female Benjean, she also has the distinction of being one of the only naked females of ever appear in Playgirl. We've included the image below...but beware that some may find it NSFW! :-O If you're not too scandalized you can even find this exact issue on Amazon for just $20...collector's item?



Benji is a Centerfold


--eliz






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For the Love of Benji Blu-Ray Recap https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/for-the-love-of-benji-blu-ray-recap Sun, 15 Apr 2018 10:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com 17d7e792-a84f-401a-b7bc-7c9b17677430 Justin recaps his experience with the extras and commentary on Mill Creek Entertainment's new release of "For the Love of Benji."





Click any image to enlarge.



Earlier this month, Mill Creek Entertainment released a new restoration of "For the Love of Benji" (1977). Although we already covered this movie several weeks ago, I HAD to check out all the awesome special features ad share my findings with you!



Benji (Takes a Dive) at Marineland

This 30-minute television special from 1981 follow Benji's quest to become the first ever scuba-diving dog at Marineland of Florida (which actually still exists). Benji arrives via his very own yacht, named "Sea Woof." (Could this be the doomed yacht that sets off the events of "Benji the Hunted?!?!")

We meet dog/puppet newscaster Lana Afghana talking about how soon Benji will perform the "first-ever nose-to-nose meeting between canine and fish. Just when I'm trying to figure out if this character is supposed to be pretending to be a real talking dog, or if we're supposed to know she is a puppet...they reveal that SHE HAS A MERMAID TAIL?! So she's a half-dog-half-mermaid-puppet-newscaster. Talk about a multi-hyphenate. Throughout the show she'll become increasingly sexually attracted to Benji.

Next, we meet B.W. Puckett, a Southern gentleman dog puppet who apparently is Benji's manager and confidant. I do not like this at all. He touts Benji's mission as "One small splash for dog, but a bellwhopper for dogkind!" Actual Benji barks at the dog puppets, looking very confused. Me too, Benji, me too.

Jesse Davis (singer of "Sunshine Smiles" in "For the Love of Benji") is singing with a backup band of fruit puppets WITH FACES called the Mulberry Squares (named after Joe Camp's production company). There’s a radish with maracas, bunch of bananas playing steel drums, an apple, pear and watermelon in a basket singing, and also a pineapple singing."

Some of the more enchanting lyrics of the song include:

  • “Now I don’t know, I don’t know, can dog survive when he takes a dive?”
  • “Doggy’s had life-long wish, doggy wants to be a fish.”
  • “Doggy’s crazy drunk with rum. To go undersea is dumb.”
  • “Electric Eel he give a spark and Benji glow in dark.”
  • “He’ll surely land in shrimper’s net. Then some restaurant will sell...Benji special on half-shell.”

Throughout this captivating tune the camera keeps cutting back to a sunglasses-clad Benji doing some light beachside reading of: “Scuba Diving Made Easy” by Brian E. Deep, “Scuba Diving Made Easier” by Mel de Mer, and finally “Scuba Diving Made VERY Easy” by Holdyer Breath.

The hijinks of the dog puppets continue as Lana tries to go in for a kiss on Benji, her mermaid tail keep hitting Benji's manager, and her ample puppet bosom and cleavage freaks me out. Then all of a sudden we meet the villain of our story: evil German dog Puppet and self-proclaimed "master sneaky person," Boris. For some inexplicable reason, he wants to stop Benji from scuba diving. Brandishing his monocle, he proclaims "Herr Benji will be kaput!"

Jesse Davis returns to re-break into song when Benji pulls a string that throws poor Jesse into the water, cutting him off mid-song. Thank god. Boris calls Benji “America’s Most Gullible Hero,” and we meet "Jimmy the Beak," yet another puppet who seems to be collecting wagers on whether or not Benji will actually scuba dive. Odds are 8 to 5 yes.

Things start to get crazy as Benji's diving and scuba gear is guarded and hidden by various characters, including a shark security guard. Benji is late for his dive because he’s feeding the dolphins! They’re all trying to jump up out of the water to reach the fish in his mouth. Boris is about to grab Benji’s diving gear when he’s scared by the shark guard. "Ach du lieber!!!” he screams as he falls backwards. He eventually gets his paws on the scuba gear by feeding the shark some roofied fish and then he pushes Benji into the pool!

Boris tries to get some screen time by talking to Lana, but she hits him with her tail, somehow causing him to turn into an innertube, rolling down the stairs and into the pool where the dolphins enjoy volleying him back and forth. Benji chases after him, jumping and riding on a surfboard. Boris eventually ends up skateboarding and it looks SO JANKY AND HILARIOUS.

Benji is really chasing after Boris, then he jumps from a pretty high height and lands in the water. Lana throws a fish into Boris' mouth and a dolphin jumps up to grab the fish, pulling him into the water with him.

Benji finally has the scuba gear and the crowd is going wild! OMGGGG Benji’s diving suit is so cute! He’s gets lowered into the water on a platform and then swims underwater! Jesse Davis is singing another dumb song. But it’s not like “intentionally funny” as the first one was. Benji is swimming all around underwater; he looks pretty confused, but he might also be having fun! It honestly looks super cute, seeing a dog do the doggy paddle underwater. He’s not like SUPER DEEP, but definitely under the surface.

Woah...suddenly Lana appears underwater, Benji swims over to her and FREEZE FRAME! Later on, we see the owner of Marineland put up a plaque to commemorate Benji’s historic dive. It’s funny that they make it look like Benji has to take a boat to and from Marineland. Him and Jesse Davis are leaving on a raft now, as the owner and the weird puppets wave goodbye to him. Benji’s driving the yacht into the sunset!

LOLOLOL Lana the puppet-mermaid-newscaster-lady dog sheds a tear at the end as Benji leaves. A puppet tear. HAHAHAHA.



The Double McGuffin

Damn….There is a whole 1 hour and 40 min movie included as a special feature. I’m impressed that they were able to include this since it opens with the Paramount Pictures logo. I probably won’t watch the whole thing, or much of this right now cause it’s fairly unrelated to Benji, but it’s pretty cool that it’s included in its entirety here because it doesn’t seem to be easily/legally accessible elsewhere. There are DVD copies of the film on sale on Amazon for anywhere from $88-$475.

This movie seems cool though. There’s a narrator explaining what a McGuffin is. Seems like a pretty adult film for Joe Camp to have made. Definitely not on the family side of things. Also...OH SNAP this movie stars George Kennedy!! Who just so happens to play Ed Hocken in the Naked Gun films! This movie looks cool and I kinda want to keep watching, but gonna see what tidbits I can glean from the "For The Love of Benji" Commentary.



For the Love of Benji Commentary

Director Joe Camp and his son Brandon (director of Benji 2018), are in for the commentary. Brandon was a fixture on set when this was filmed; he was just five years old. He even gets a cameo as the kid that comes up and pets Benji while he’s sulking outside the hotel before his mom pulls him away from Benji.

Joe Camp chose Greece because the story demands for the dog to get lost, and he wanted to really emphasis how lost he was. They also looked at Paris and Venice. When they were location scouting they felt the most out-of-place in Greece immediately because the alphabet was so different. He even wrote the script in Greece on the island of Rhodes for three months. Filming took 3 - 4 months. The only part not filmed in Greece was the pening airport scene, shot in the Houston International Airport.

They had distribution in place for "For The Love of Benji" since they had already set everything up for the first film through their own company. The premiered day and date with Star Wars! Crew was a mix of English speakers from the UK and an Irish Gaffer, Greek Crew. Greek production manager was very possessive. She didn’t want the Greek crew mingling with the English/American crew that much and they ultimately had to fire her and restaff some.

Benjean was only 11 months old when they started filming this movie. Joe Camp says that Frank always said this was Benji’s daughter, but he never did check the lineage. All the Benji’s from here on out are female. Benji’s mom’s name was Hazel. Don Reddy had an uncanny sense to know where Benji was going to go. Both Joe and Brandon praise his camerawork.

Now he shares some info about "Benji Off the Leash!" Shot in HD Digital, Joe Camp had to be more domineering on Benji Off The Leash! because the trainers were not both like Frank Inn. One had worked with the original Benji on Petticoat Junction and worked more like Frank, but the other did not.

The grave site antiquity/monument is where they shot the scene with Benji and the bigger dog with the bone. It was right below the Acropolis. They were allowed to shoot there, but at some point something happened and when they revisit the location at night it had to be recreated on a soundstage.

Sometimes the camera would be as close as 8 inches from his eyes to capture Benji’s performance and really show the dog’s perspective. Benji got loose up on the road in front of the Acropolis when she was younger while they were location scouting and scared them all to death.

People would recognize Benji out and about in the US, but not quite as much internationally at this moment. His international fandom developed over time. All the other dog performers were also from Frank Inn’s stable of acting dogs. And my favorite revelation: FRANK INN PLAYED SANTA CLAUS IN SWITZERLAND FOR THE CAMP FAMILY WHILE THEY WERE ON CHRISTMAS BREAK FROM FILMING!!!! BRANDON CAMP SAT ON HIS LAP!

Before the filming is over they record every kind of Bark, Yip, Sniff, whatever from Benji so they can add it in later. Benji escaping the boat was actually shot on a real boat, not a set. Very small space to shoot in. Joe Camp premiered both original Benji movies in Dallas first. He even got to watch Star Wars for the first time from the projectionist booth in one of the theaters that was showing For The Love of Benji.

Joe Camp actually confirms our suspicion that Benji knows what a gun is! Brandon Camp says he had to fight off people saying he had to make Benji 2018 entirely comedic and silly, where the villains were more of a joke. But he said that’s not how his dad did it.





Overall, the blu-ray restoration looks great and this set is a must-own for any Benji fans out there. The Marineland special alone makes it totally worth it.

-- Justin







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Fact Checking Ourselves: Benji the Hunted https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/fact-checking-ourselves-benji-the-hunted Thu, 05 Apr 2018 18:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com 493d5c53-74c8-4ff4-9975-fbb802f8a178 Fact checking things we said in our episode on "Benji the Hunted." When you're recording live sometimes things just pop into your head, and you don't want to disrupt the flow of the show by looking it up online. Or we say weird stuff that never gets explained. So in the interest of truth, justice, and the American Way, we're going to do these blog posts and fact-check ourselves.


Episode 33 - Benji The Hunted



Charlie Rich presented John Denver with a Country Music Award, ripped up the envelope, declared country music dead, and ran off stage?

HALF-TRUE - ok, so my dad exaggerated a little, but there was a really bizzare incident at the 1975 CMA's. Charlie Rich give an awkward speech making everyone uncomfortable before pulling out a lighter and BURNING the envelope while announcing John Denveras the winner. At the time, a lot of people (including my dad, I guess) interpreted this as some kind of insult to John Denver with Rich protesting crossover between country & pop. Rich was actually blacklisted from future CMA ceremonies. Charlie Rich's son maintains that his dad and John Denver were actually friends, and that he meant no offense, blaming his dad's strange behavior on a mixture of painkillers and booze. Judge for yourself in this video!


No animals were killed or harmed during the making of this film?

TRUE - Despite some really strange trivia on IMDB, the American Humane Society monitored the animal action on set and certified that no animals were harmed. Benji the Hunted is the first Benji movie to show that in the credits--not because the others weren't safe--just because they were made before the certification program became widespread. Not only is that IMDB trivia totally false, there was actually only one bear used in filming, and his name was Bart. Get it together, IMDB!



Was there a famous viral video of a kid being picked up by a bird?

TRUE - Ok Justin, you were right! In 2012, long before "fake news" was even a thing, some animation students duped the American public (but not Tyler & Eliz!) with a video showing an eagle picking up a baby.



Was Benji's trainer Frank Inn also the trainer "A Dog's Purpose?"

FALSE - Famed Benji trainer Frank Inn passed away in 2002, long before the "A Dog's Purpose" went into production. A video leaked from the set appeared to show a dog being pushed into water against his will. The video caused a big viral scandal and pretty much tanked the film when it hit the box office. Yet later the Humane Society announced there had been no misconduct. The Benji connection here is that Mark Forbes, the trainer involved in the controversy was also the head trainer for the Benji (2018) Netflix reboot. Sequel Rights would like to apologize on behalf of Tyler for besmirching Frank Inn's good name.

Did Siskel and Ebert get into a big fight over Benji the Hunted?

TRUE - Yes! This is consistently mentioned as only of their top spats in the history of "At the Movies." See their review below. Man I LOVED watching that show when I was a kid! (What a nerd.)


That's all the facts for now! --eliz




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Interview with Kostas Christides, Benji (2018) Composer https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/interview-with-kostas-christides-benji-2018-composer Thu, 22 Mar 2018 20:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com e046227f-6f5e-4ddf-ad0d-2a44cc677f26 All about our interview with film score composer Kostas Christides of Benji (2018), now on Netflix.

This week we have been so pleased to finally share our interview with Benji (2018) composer Kostas Christides! Justin and I spoke with him last week and he kindly answered all of our questions about his background and career, followed by an in-depth discussion of his process working on Benji. He talks all about his friendship with director Brandon Camp, his favorite moments in the film, recording the score in Yugoslavia, and what it was like to finally meet Benji in person!


We also discovered some fun Sequel Rights connections (we've been around long enough to have those!): Kostas attended the University of Southern California's Screen Scoring Program. USC of course being my alma mater. There, Kostas met Christopher Young and later began working with him. Young is the composer of films such as Spider-Man 3, Hellraiser, The Grudge, and... SPECIES! One of our first ever Sequel Rights series! (Click here for those episodes)


We're so thankful to Kostas for joining us on Sequel Rights. You can hear the interview in the YouTube video above, but we hope you'll also listen to the full podcast episode (below) and subscribe!




Next week we'll be back to our regularly scheduled programming with an episode on For the Love of Benji (1977). And speaking of music...we might have a little surprise for you next week as well! ;-)




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Where to Watch Every Benji Film https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/where-to-watch-every-benji-film Tue, 20 Mar 2018 17:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com 789aa820-1bce-4def-93a8-379064a30444 Find out where you can stream and buy every Benji film and watch along with Sequel Rights.

We're loving our journey into the Benji series and hope you are too! Below are links to where you can buy and stream all the Benji films and even some of the specials. Watch along as you listen to Sequel Rights!

Current as of 3/20/18

Benji Films

Benji (1974)


For the Love of Benji (1977)


Benji the Hunted (1987)


Benji - Off the Leash! (2004)


Benji (2018)



Benji Television

The Phenomenon of Benji (1978)

Benji's Very Own Christmas Story (1978)

Benji at Work (1980)

Benji at Marineland (1981)

Benji, Zax, and the Alien Prince (1983)




--Eliz


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Child Star Check-In - Benji's Allen Fiuzat https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/child-star-check-in-benji-s-allen-fiuzat Mon, 19 Mar 2018 16:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com fe71dbf4-4593-4bae-a21e-237e84610232 What ever happened to Allen Fiuzat, the child actor who portrayed Paul in Benji & For the Love of Benji? If you're a regular Sequel Rights listener, you know that I (Eliz) love to give the "Child Star Check-In" report! I desperately want to know where these people ended up and thanks to my ridiculously expensive multiple journalism degrees, I'm pretty decent at tracking them down. Here on our blog I will share everything I've found while working on Child Star Check-Ins, to prove I'm not just making this stuff up!


Allen Fiuzat - Paul in Benji (1974) and For the Love of Benji (1977).


Fiuzat was the lovable but vocabulary-lacking big brother Paul in the first two Benji films. Hear us talk more about him in our podcast episode on the film. According to IMDB, Allen Fiuzat was born April 25, 1964 in Bell County, Texas. He did not continue acting after the Benji films. In the trivia section, it says he is the Co-owner of F. Scott's Restaurant and Jazz Bar in Nashville, Tennessee as of 2003.

On his LinkedIn I find out that Allen Fiuzat attend Rice University starting in 1982 and majored in English. At some point he married Michelle Coyne, and I believe they are still married today although she has never changed her name, probably because it would mess up her licenses as a professional counselor. In May 2012 they purchased a house for $590,000.

After working as the General Manager, Allen and his business partner Ben Robichaux purchased F. Scott's Restaurant in September 1996. They hired a new chef who redid the menu, and they redecorated to gain local acclaim among restaurant critics. In Feb 2004, a short news piece announced that Fiuzat and Robichaux sold had sold the restaurant.

From 2005-8, he went back to school at Aquinas University, doing post-baccalaureate work in teacher education and professional development in a specific subject. In 2010 he started working as a Teaching Assistant at Williamson County Schools, where he continues to work today. In 2014 he was named one of the employees of the year!

In 2017, Allen's mother Nancy Brugger Fiuzat passed away peacefully. According to the obituary, it seems that Allen & Michelle do not have any children.

Allen and Michelle are charitable, giving somewhere between $500 - $999 to St. Luke's Community House, an organization that helps low income families, seniors and individuals in West Nashville achieve their potential and prevent problems that threaten the stability of families and community, in at least 2005 and 2016

Here's what he looks like now:









Until next time, that's it for the Eliz Child Star Check-In! --Eliz

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Adrift in the Un-Open Water https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/adrift-in-the-un-open-water Thu, 15 Mar 2018 10:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com f555d1a7-6f4f-4f78-b87f-52e71e67e622 How is this new movie not part of the Open Water franchise?! New trailer starring Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin.

"Adrift," a new film starring Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin as a couple lost at sea just dropped a trailer and I have one very important question--how is this NOT part of the Open Water franchise? I mean, I get they would have had to change the name, since Open Water 2 was already called "Adrift," but still...


Click here for our Open Water episodes!

Apparently this new film, directed by Baltasar Kormákur, is based on the incredible true story of a couple in 1983 that got stuck in the middle of the Pacific during one of the worst hurricanes in human history. Sounds like the perfect premise for an Open Water film! ...although this one is actually based on the book written by Tami Oldham Ashcraft, the woman who survived this incident. (Her male counterpart didn't co-author the book, so....spoilers? Or maybe he just doesn't like writing.)

Another fun fact is that Miles Teller was originally set to star instead of Sam Claflin--the guy who literally played a sea warrior with a trident in the Hunger Games series. IMO things have turned out for the best.

Anyway, I'm sad this isn't part of the Open Water franchise so that we could do a fun bonus episode, but I'll probably end up watching it anyway! I really enjoy these two actors and the film looks super scary. And hey, it can't be any worse than Open Water 2: Adrift, amirite? #NOTDANSBOAT
--Eliz


By the way...Sam Claflin's films "Me Before You" and "Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt. 2" are currently streaming for free with Amazon Prime membership. Click here to try an Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial.

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Benji on Blu-Ray https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/benji-on-blu-ray Wed, 14 Mar 2018 17:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com a0e9522d-72ed-491d-b8c9-37900e19e9de Details and thoughts on Mill Creek Entertainment's Blu-Ray and restoration of the original Benji film.
As you heard us discuss in our Benji episode, we watched the film on the Blu-Ray release from Mill Creek Entertainment, which just came out in February. The box set includes a Blu-Ray, DVD and digital copy. The all-new 35mm film restoration and transfer is gorgeous. Un-restored clips on the bonus features really emphasize how good of a job they did with this.

An audio commentary from director Joe Camp and his son, Brandon Camp (director of the upcoming Netflix reboot) provides charming insight into working with Benji and how he accomplished some of the mind-blowing stunts. Justin discussed some of these in our episode.

Other bonus features include two television specials and the original theatrical trailer--which in true 70's fashion, goes on for ten minutes, lists EVERY member of the cast, and includes a dozen viewer interviews. They just don't make em like they used to.

The first special included is "The Phenomenon of Benji," an amazingly cheesy 70's variety special featuring "I Feel Love" singer Charlie Rich (who I just figured out was white). Archival footage and photos take you through Benji's life, starting with his adoption as a puppy by Frank Inn, animal trainer for film and television. Benji (aka Higgins) got his start on Petticoat Junction, a rural sitcom that ran from 1963 - 1970. We also get to see a clip of Benji accepting the Golden Globe for Best Original Song. A music video with Jesse Davis singing a medley of love songs shows Frank Inn traveling all over the world with Benji. It ends with what I'm sure was the summer's hottest jam-- both Benji theme songs together in a reeeeemix!

Finally, "Benji at Work," valiantly hosted by child actor Adam Rich, is a behind-the-scenes look at the filming of "Oh, Heavenly Dog!" (the movie which starred Benji but isn't actually part of his timeline). Benji's "friends" from the film Jane Seymour, Chevy Chase, and even Omar Sharif, wax poetic about Benji and his acting skills. We get to see swimming lessons with Benji and Tiffany as they prepare for the television special "Benji at Marineland," (which I pray is on a future Mill Creek release), and then lots of footage showing Frank Inn's process of teaching Benji to perform new scenes.

Benji (1974) and a number of the sequels are currently available on Netflix in preparation for the release of the reboot this Friday, but for those that want to make sure they always have access to the cuteness, this Blu-Ray release is well-worth the purchase, especially for all the 70's television hilarity.

--Eliz


By the way... Petticoat Junction and Charlie Rich's Greatest Hits album are both free to stream with Amazon Prime Membership. Click here to try an Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial.

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Sequel Rights Blog Begins https://sequelrights.fireside.fm/articles/sequel-rights-blog-begins Tue, 13 Mar 2018 09:00:00 -0700 sequelrights@gmail.com 9b10cd56-a525-40df-9b02-f73204621ac6 It's our very first blog post! Welcome to our first-ever blog post! We hope that this blog can serve as a way to bring you even more information than what we say on the podcast. This is really the catch-all place for everything Sequel Rights--from time to time we may just write about general film thoughts or even personal updates!

We often get asked by friends, family, and our followers: "how can I help Sequel Rights?" Well here's what you can do to give us a hand.

  • Subscribe - Make sure to subscribe to Sequel Rights on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, PocketCasts or anywhere else you listen to podcasts. Maybe even more than one of those! Higher subscriber counts and downloads help our podcast get seen.
  • Rate and Review - On any podcast app or website, but especially Apple, leave us a star rating and a quick review. The more ratings and reviews we have, the more podcast services will push us out as a suggestion for their users.
  • Follow us on Social - Don't forget to like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, and follow us on Twitter... all are @sequelrights.
  • Word of Mouth (or Post) - Nothing beats good ol' word of mouth. Recommending us directly to your friends is the best way for us to get new listeners! Talk to your friends about us or share a post from your Facebook asking them to give us a try!
  • Shop til you Drop - Wanna buy some stuff? Use the Amazon ads on our pages.

Thanks for all the support we've already received! --Eliz

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