Hollywood Report

Micky Dolenz
Info Above: Get a load of that crazy pipe that Micky was smoking last time we pictured him in the recording studio.


Nobody can blame Screen Gems for hiding the Monkees’ first major film behind a strict veil of secrecy. If they were to give all the details away months before the premier they would, obviously, ruin the impact of many of the very unusual incidents which it contains.

But, here in Hollywood everyone agrees that it should be an outstanding movie. It is impossible for anyone to know exactly what a film will be even though they have seen most of the scenes being filmed because, as you probably know, they are not done in the same order as they appear in the finished picture. Only the script reveals exactly what the director is aiming at achieving.

Let’s make one thing quite clear right now—there is a script for the Monkees film! I’ve seen it, but only at a distance and I certainly haven’t read it so I can’t tell you exactly what it contains.

One thing the boys have revealed and that is script changes have been made. As usual, all the Monkees have come up with suggestions and ideas which they think will help particular scenes. For example, as you were told last month, Micky dives off a bridge and the shot of him actually taking off from the bridge and splashing into the water was filmed at Long Beach. But, it was very difficult to shoot the bit of Micky underneath the water with mermaids which followed because the Long Beach water is not clear enough. So, a special crew flew to the Bahamas just to capture three minutes of Micky cavorting on the sea bed at a fabulous location on Paradise Island.

Davy Jones
Info [Above]: Sun-loving Davy takes off his shirt and plays with his dog near the wire fence surrounding their Hollywood film studio.

But, just to prove how contrary she can be, Mother Nature upset things and gave the film crew bad weather for almost the whole week they were there—it’s not just in England, folks!)

In between shooting the boys have been very busy in the studio recording songs for their next single release, “ D. W. Washburn” and a new album.

As usual, they have thought up some really weird and wonderful titles. I think that the Monkees are more original than any other group in the world in this respect, but funnily enough, there is usually a reason for their way-out titles—they’re not just picked out of the sky.

For example, Micky wrote one song recently called “Shorty Blackwell”. It’s an odd title but the explanation is simple. It’s named after his cat, a black kitten which arrived in the post. An odd name for a cat? Well, this is a very odd kitten because it’s never grown any bigger and it’s still a tiny little kitten—hence the name “Shorty”. Two more of Micky’s titles are “French Song” and “There’s A Way”. And Peter’s written one called “Can You Dig It”. I’m sure we will, Peter!

The Monkees don’t only record their own songs though. They are quite happy to—use any good number that comes up and Carol King and Gerry Goffin have written a great number for them called “Porpoise” which they expect to include in the film.

Incidentally, Mike’s “Wichita Train Whistle” is not being released under Warner’s Reprise label now—it’s being put out on May 15th, on the Dot label.

Micky Dolenz
Info [Above]: Well, if you want to take a rest in the recording studio, what better seat to sit upon but the biggest one in the world—the floor…!

Talking about kittens (which I was a few paragraphs ago), Davy also received one from a fan. It’s a Siamese and is now great buddies with his black rabbit called Jonathan.

The cat was sent by a fan through the post. But the boys did ask me particularly to point out that no one in this country should ever think of sending a live animal through the post as it is a terribly cruel thing to do and the poor animal would undoubtedly suffer very badly and die en route. So, to quote. Davy, “Please, please ask them NOT to send anything live to any of us.”

Now the first hectic period of filming is over, the boys occasionally have a chance to relax, particularly when the film crew is shooting a scene which only requires one of them to be there.

Anyone who thinks that Davy is just about to marry Lulu would probably be surprised to hear that his current girlfriend is called Linda Hanes. But it is only fair to both Davy and Lulu to point out that they have always insisted that they were just very good friends and had no intention of dashing up the aisle in the immediate future.

Micky, when he’s not messing about with those crazy machines of his, likes to show movies. He borrows them, of course, from the studio libraries. What sort of films does he show? Well, lots of newly released pictures. For example, last week he saw “A Patch of Blue”, which is about a blind white girl who falls in love with Sidney Poitier—you remember he played the coloured school master in Lulu’s film debut, “To Sir, With Love”.

All the boys are following their own special interests and there are certainly thousands of things to do in California.

Mike is following up his special musical interests by backing a blues band with the odd title “Armadillo” which is the name for a large lizard-like animal with a horny back which inhabits Mexico.

One thing the boys are all very firm about and that is if only they can get their present contracts successfully re-negotiated in time, they want to do a world tour and they are insisting that England must be included, although they, obviously, can’t say how many towns they will be able to perform in.

Let’s hope that negotiations are completed very soon so that the boys are able to visit all of you this summer!

Magazine: Monkees Monthly
Editor: Jackie Richmond
Issue: 17
Publisher: Monkees Monthly
Pages: 30, 39