Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Heat Is On: Aeropress, home

The extra bits on the Beverly Hills Cop DVD have proven to be very enlightening. Jerry Bruckheimer reminds me a bit of Alex P. Keaton (though not necessarily Michael J. Fox), but a lot of his stories about the making of the movie are fascinating. I love hearing about how much of a convoluted bullshit process it is for a script to actually become a movie, with the rewriting, and the casting of the leads, and the leads wanting a rewrite or a new director, and the new director wanting a rewrite, etc. The amount of bullshit at play there makes me feel a whole lot better about the music industry. David Mamet's book Bambi vs Godzilla is a wealth of information on this baffling squirm-inducing industry stuff, as is Bruce Beresford's offputtingly- yet appropriately-titled and wholly riveting memoir Josh Hartnett Definitely Wants To Do This.

One example from the story of Beverly Hills Cop is that Sylvester Stallone was originally cast as the lead. Stallone did a rewrite, changing the character's name to Axel Cobretti, and adding a lot more fight scenes. The additional fight scenes ramped up the budget past what the studio were willing to go with, and eventually Sly was dropped in favour of Eddie Murphy, and the Cobretti stuff ended up seeing the light of day in Stallone's 1986 film Cobra. It's really hard to imagine anyone other than Eddie Murphy in the role now, especially seeing how much of the dialogue was ad-libbed on set. That's also fun to watch in the extra bits on the DVD: Taggart cracking up during Foley's "supercops" speech.

But the best best bit for me was the bit about Harold Faltermeyer's score, including the iconic Axel F theme (you can hear it on the menu on his website). I'm going to have to dig up some more info about this Faltermeyer character. I know he worked with Giorgio Moroder a fair bit (including the Top Gun soundtrack), and he did the Running Man soundtrack, but there's more out there. He's one of those guys you keep hearing about, and you always go, "He did that too? Woah!" But let's start with The Heat Is On, from the opening credits of Beverly Hills Cop. What a brilliant song. Not much happens in the lyrics other than repeating "the heat is on". It makes you realise, that if you want to write a great pop song, if you have one good line, you don't need much more than that.

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