Behind The Scenes Saturday: The Rocky Horror Picture Show

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Welcome back to Behind The Scenes Saturday! The Rocky Horror Picture Show has left its mark on the world with an all-star cast, music you can jam out to over and over, and one hell of a weird story! When I first watched this film, I didn’t know a single thing about it. Now, I can’t imagine my life without it. Watching it live was also quite an experience (but thats a story for another time)! So, I hope you enjoy this article and enjoy the nostalgia!

(Trivia provided by IMDb.com)

(Pictures provided by google.com)

(SPOILER ALERT!!!)

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  • Patricia Quinn (Magenta) stated that she took the role in the play because she loved the song ‘Science Fiction – Double Feature’. She was upset that she wasn’t going to get to sing the song in the film. She agreed to lip-sync the song for the film. The big red lips at the beginning are hers, but Richard O’Brien (Riff-Raff) was the one who sang the song. 
  • When Barry Bostwick (Brad) slams his fist on the table during the dinner scene, he accidentally slammed his fist on Susan Sarandon’s (Janet) hand. You can definitely see her reaction. She got her revenge by “accidentally” stepping on his foot with her spike heel during the floor show scene. You can also clearly see his reaction when it happens.
  • Dr. Scott (Jonathan Adams) had to crash through the wall for his entrance because the set builders forgot to put an extra door in the lab set.
  • Steve Martin originally auditioned for the role of Brad.
  • Filming took place in Bray, a village in England, from October through December. Barry Bostwick stated that the castle had a leak and he was always wet during filming. There was only one warm room that contained space heaters. Cast members took turns warming up in the room, until it eventually caught on fire.

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  • Susan Sarandon was asked to appear nude during her “Touch-A Touch-A Touch Me” song, but she refused.
  • During midnight showings, patrons really delved into the experience by dressing up and bringing props. The most common used props are:
  1. Rice to be thrown during Ralph and Betty’s wedding.
  2. Water pistols to be squirt by the back row during the rain scene.
  3. Newspaper that the middle and front rows use to shield themselves from the “rain”.
  4. Flashlights, lighters, or glow-sticks for the “There’s A Light” verse in “Over At The Frankenstein Place”.
  5. Rubber gloves to snap as Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Tim Curry) does during his speech.
  6. Noisemakers to celebrate with Frank’s guests, the Transylvanians.
  7. Scott’s brand toilet paper to throw when Brad yells “Great Scott!!”
  8. Confetti to throw at the end of the “Charles Atlas” reprise.
  9. Toast for when Frank proposes a toast at dinner.
  10. Party Hat to put on when Frank puts his on to sing Happy Birthday to Rocky.
  11. Bell for the phrase “When we made it/Did you hear a bell ring?”
  12. Cards for the phrase “Cards for sorrow/Cards for pain”.
  • When Susan Sarandon tried to talk to the studio heads about the set having no heat and no bathrooms, they told her she was complaining too much. She ended up catching pneumonia after filming the pool scene. Richard O’Brien stated she was shaking with fever and she should’ve been under medical supervision but she refused to stop working.
  • The song “I Can Make You A Man” was influenced by Charles Atlas muscle ads from the 1940s and 1950s that contained the slogan “In just seven days, I can make you a man”. The film’s writer, Richard O’Brien also got the phrase “Don’t dream it, be it” from the back of a magazine.
  • When Magenta told Frank that Rocky was “a triumph of your will”, it’s a subtle nod towards the nazi propaganda film Triumph of The Will (1935). Magenta may have also said this because Rocky is created with light blond hair and is very muscular, fulfilling the Nazis’ Aryan “Super Man” stereotype.

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  • Mick Jagger wanted to play Dr. Frank-N-Furter in the film.
  • The signature look for Frank was created by Pierre La Roche, David Bowie’s former personal stylist.
  • The Criminologist (Charles Gray) states that the events of the film took place on a late November evening. When Brad and Janet are driving at night, they’re listening to Richard Nixon’s resignation speech on the radio, which took place on August 8, 1974. This was considered a continuity error, until Richard O’Brien cleared it up by explaining that Brad recorded the speech and listened to it regularly.
  • Vincent Price was offered the role of the Criminologist, but had to turn it down due to scheduling conflicts.
  • According to Richard O’Brien, Riff Raff was actually the one who did most of the work on Rocky. His line, “Everything is in readiness, Master. We merely await your… word” was meant as a stab at Frank-N-Furter.

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  • When Frank is hitting Riff Raff with the whip, Tim Curry is actually hitting the floor next to Richard O’Brien. However, Tim does accidentally hit Richard with the whip once after getting too close to him.
  • The order in which Frank turns on the colored spigots while bringing Rocky to life was not random. Each color was shouted to Tim Curry by someone off-screen. You can see a brief look of confusion on Tim’s face as he scrambled to find the right color.
  • Richard O’Brien was worried Meat Loaf (Eddie) wouldn’t be able to handle “Hot Patootie – Bless My Soul”. O’Brien handed Meat Loaf the music and told him, “It’s ok to flub a few lines. No one in the London cast has ever sung the whole thing correctly anyway”. Meat Loaf looked at the music and replied, “What’s the problem?” Then proceeded to sing the whole thing without skipping a beat.
  • A stunt double was used for the motorcycle scene, except for Meat Loaf’s close ups, which he was pushed in a wheelchair for.
  • During the stage productions, Eddie and Dr. Scott were played by the same actor. Meat Loaf was disappointed to learn he wouldn’t also be playing Dr. Scott for the film. He stated, “I said ‘you’re making a huge mistake’, and I still think they did, even though the actor was fine. The way it was in the play was that Eddie and Dr. Scott really looked alike, so you knew it was his nephew, and I was a really good Dr. Scott”.

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  • Peter Hinwood (Rocky) is slightly embarrassed by being in the film. It was rumored that he would throw people out of his shop for talking about the film, but was later debunked. He merely sees the film as part of the past and rarely talks about it.
  • Richard O’Brien stated that the skeleton in the clock was a real skeleton that belonged to a woman who commissioned the clock. In 2002, the coffin clock was auctioned off and sold for 35,000 pounds.
  • Tim Curry got the inspiration for Frank’s voice from Queen Elizabeth II and his own mother.
  • Patricia Quinn’s hair was sprayed red every single day of shooting, as opposed to dyed.
  • O’Brien confessed that he didn’t like Tim Curry at the time. O’Brien was envious that Curry was attractive and got all the good lines.
  • For the scene where Frank removes the table cloth and reveals Eddie’s corpse, the only actors who knew about the corpse were Tim Curry, Richard O’Brien, and Meat Loaf. The rest of the actors had no idea and their shocked expressions were genuine. 

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