Monday, October 8, 2012

Ognir Rrats Show

How cool would it have been to have been an extra in a Beatles film?   If you recall, Ringo had a T.V. special in 1978 called Ognir Rrats.   He was taping in Los Angeles and Kris Spackman and friends were fortunate enough to be chosen to be on the set as extras.   The only thing I don't understand about this story is that they talk about the guy who played Ognir being dressed up as Ringo and the voice of Ringo being dubbed over.   Ummm....everyone knows that Ringo himself played Ognir.   The only thing I can think of is that there was a stand-in on the set made up to look like Ringo? this story is from the March 1978 issue of the Harrison Alliance.

Ringo at a promotional photo shoot around the time of the TV special

On Sunday February 19 (1978) NBC told us he was filming at the famous A&M Studios, of all places!  So rather dubiously some friends and I went down there, peeked through the front gates and there he was in the parking lot, Richard Starkey M.B.E., looking gorgeous and healthy and so Ringo!   Inevitably, after a couple minutes, an A&M security guard approached, but when the expected, “move along please” came out of his mouth as, “would you like to be extras in the Ringo Starr show?,”  al we could do was stare at him in dumbfounded shock!  It’s a very long beautiful story, but from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. that day we got to watch Ringo film, via the monitors which were set up in the room we were in, and live in the parking lot for two scenes, and that included some hilarious mistakes and retakes, and a few minutes of live “I’m the Greatest!” 
As you probably heard, the story’s based on the Price & the Pauper, with Ringo the famous rock star switching places with that common man of the streets, “Ognir Rrats” to see what life on the other side is like.  While we watched, the actor who plays Ognir was made up literally from scratch, including a wig and phony nose to look just like Ringo.  He told us he was chosen for his build and that Ring would be dubbed in a lot of the voice parts.   John Ritter, who’s an absolute doll and a big Beatle fan, plays Ringo’s manager Marty; I think he was as excited to be there as we were!  The scene we were to play in was the typical fan chase rock star for autographs; it had been shot on Saturday night but they weren’t happy with it and wanted to re-do it.  But time and daylight ran out on them and we never did get to do it.  But after spending eight hours “with” Ringo, who cared!?  By the end of the day, I was just so up and happy, I went up to him and said, “Oh Ringo, you’re just terrific!”  He put his arm around me and said, “Thank you darling!  I’ll never get over that one!”
But that wasn’t all.  On Tuesday night, we spotted his car in a Hollywood restaurant parking lot as we were on our way home.  Our first shock was seeing Paul Michael “Starkey” Glaser leave the place, and then we watched from a distance as Ringo came out, and very lovingly kissed Nancy good-bye.  (So much for the break-up stories!  Thought they did leave in separate cars and in opposite directions).

But the BEST was yet to come.  After a hundred phone calls and many shattered nerves, Sunday Feb 26 found at NBC where, after 12 hours  of waiting (including 4 in the rain) 13 of us got in to see him shoot a concert segment for the special!  Talk about moments in a lifetime!  There was Ringo live, singing and playing.  Two new songs:  “Heart on my sleeve” and “Hard Times,” plus “You’re Sixteen” and… “Act Naturally!”  We all just absolutely freaked!  We cheered, clapped and just loved him to pieces!  And he loved it too, which made it all the more memorable.  There were only about 175 people there and he could see everyone from the stage; between takes (they did 2 or 3), he
kidded around with the audience and us especially, because we were all just bubbling with enthusiasm!

No comments:

Post a Comment