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Article Title: Showtime Online: Behind The Scenes
Writer: unknown
Publish Date: May 29, 1996 on http://www.showtimeonline.com/
Copyright: Copyright © 1996 Showtime Networks Inc. All rights reserved.

Lights, Camera, Gossip!

Welcome to Showtime Networks' behind-the-scenes look at its original movie and series production. We've got the gossip, the stories behind the stories and everything you'd want to know about the new movies and series that Showtime puts into production every week of the year. (Excerpts include P:TL only)


STARS: Helen Shaver, Derek de Lint, Robbi Chong, Martin Cummins, Patrick Fitzgerald
WRITER: Various
THE STORY: A highly-sophisticated and well-equipped group of paranormal investigators, part of an ancient order called the Legacy, battle the forces of evil around the world.

"Poltergeist" star Derek de Lint returned to set in Vancouver after a quick trip to Pasadena to conduct interviews at the Television Critics Association tour. "I can't seem to win with the weather," joked de Lint. "We had snow in Vancouver and I was looking forward to getting some California sun. I didn't. Pasadena was cold and raining." Maybe de Lint, who made his film debut in Paul Verhoeven's "Soldier of Orange," will fare better when he goes home to Amsterdam during the show's brief winter break.

Veteran actor David Ogden Stiers guest stars on the episode "The Twelfth Cave," playing a villain. However, as villains normally do, he charmed the entire cast and crew during the shooting. Stiers strode onto the waterfront set, uncomplaining despite below-freezing temperatures, and suggested that the video crew covering the shoot that day interview him with Vancouver harbor as a backdrop. "Show them that," he proclaimed, "and everyone will want to come up here as a guest star!" Stiers is assured a place in television history thanks to his six-year run as Major Charles Emerson Winchester on the legendary M*A*S*H series. His other credits include the films DRIVE HE SAID and OH, GOD! and he is the voice of Cogsworth in the animated hit BEAUTY AND THE BEAST.

SUBJECT: LUNCHING WITH POLTERGEISTS Lunch break on a film set is usually a rushed affair -- getting the meal, eating it and hurrying back to the set. But things were different recently on the set of "Poltergeist." Producer Richard Lewis had a TV projection unit and video playback set up in the studio so that the cast and crew could see the show's just completed trailer. Nearly 100 people stood around the darkened studio to admire the results of their work as clips from scenes shot flashed by to the insistent beat of a driving soundtrack. When the four minutes ended, everyone agreed that the show's excitement is perfectly captured. They also thanked Lewis for taking the time and trouble to bring the tape to them. "I spend most of my time working in the wardrobe truck," said the set costumer, "It's really great to actually see something!"

Meanwhile, the "Poltergeist" crew has acquired an unofficial mascot. Jackson, actor Martin Cummins' dog, regularly accompanies the young star to the set. One after another, he cajoles crew members into throwing things for him to chase. Teamsters, makeup artists and assistant directors have been spotted throwing balls, sticks, bits of Styrofoam and rubber, but even Jackson's best friends gave up when he hauled over a three foot length of lumber and dropped it hopefully in front of them. Dejected, Jackson hauled it away. "Maybe he's going to build something with it," quipped director Stuart Gillard as Jackson vanished behind the trailers.