Captain Blood~Then & Now

30 Oct

Here are some rough T&N shots from today's visit to Three Arch Bay in Laguna Beach, California. The visit came up by accident so I didn't have my stills and screen grabs as guides. Fortunately, having seen the film 6,973 times, I was able to line up a number of shots from memory! I plan to go back and reshoot as well as add shots. Will keep you all posted!

— Robert


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  1. Anonymous

    November 1, 2008 at 4:32 am

    Robert! If you had a sword, some pirate boots and a hat – I'd swear you were one of Captain Peter Blood's crew! Happy you are one of OUR crew, instead! Just perfect work and from memory, too! A real Treat!

  2. Anonymous

    November 1, 2008 at 6:56 am

    These are fantastic, Robert. I've been to Three Arch Bay and didn't realize until now that that was where the sword fight was filmed. Cool. Tried to find the location with Google Earth and Maps…but not sure which outcropping. Here's a pic of a guess of where the spot is.

  3. Anonymous

    November 1, 2008 at 7:26 am

    This is probably the place. The previous pic was too far north.

  4. Anonymous

    November 2, 2008 at 3:23 am

    That is indeed the spot, Russ. The southside of the outcrop Whale Rock outcrop is where the duel begins (1), and the northside is where it ends (2). Flynn enters the scene by coming over a slope (3) into the cove area. I hope my descriptions are understandable.


  5. Anonymous

    September 15, 2010 at 11:27 pm

    Robert: I can't thank you enough for these photos. I grew up in Laguna Beach. I was a Flynn fan from childhood. I used to try to locate the filming location for CB. Never could find it but back then there was heated arguements that it'd been filmed north of us in Corona del Mar at a spot called Pirates' Cove. I'd ride my bike up there and stare at the beach and rocks trying to picture the scenes in my mind. It never quite jelled for me… Also, back then, Three Arch Bay was and I beleive still is, private access/restricted access only to residents, so I couldn't go in there to see. It is amazing looking at the then and now photos you took, to see the amount of erosion that's worn away rock outcroppings.
    In the 1980's there were some very big storms that took out lots of beach, sand and rock outcroppings up and down the coast.
    Finally, I also lived for some years in Big Pine, CA which is just a few miles north of Lone Pine, where so many westerns and of course, Charge of the Light Brigade, were filmed. Readers may be interested to know that Mt. Whitney, the tallest peak in N. America, shows up in a couple of scenes in that Flynn epic. There is a relatively new, outstanding little Lone Pine Film Museum in town there, with tons of photos, movie memorabilia, etc. from films filmed in the area. The Lone Pine Film Festival is a fun event. The Alabama Hills are filled with lots of memories. Travelling there to the beautiful Eastern Sierras is definately a great 'must do' for serious Flynn fans. I was lucky to live in two places he worked in and stayed in for awhile.
    Keep up the wonderful work, and I truly enjoy this blog.
    Finding this blog and all the photos and reminisces has been a God send for me!

  6. Anonymous

    September 16, 2010 at 12:18 am

    Thank you, Brenda. I'm really gratified you enjoyed the pics. I have been able to correct “location misinformation” in a number film scenes I've researched and journeyed to. It's always a treat.
    Three Arch is still private and it took some secretive work on my part to get down there!
    I'm also familiar with the people at the Lone Pine Museum, and will be back there later this year with the head of the film commission to continue shooting in The Alabama Hills.

  7. Anonymous

    September 16, 2010 at 12:19 am

    Coincidentally, this week marks the 75th anniversary of the filming of that duel on the beach at Three Arch Bay!

  8. Anonymous

    September 16, 2010 at 5:23 am

    I must be getting old….it seems impossible for it to have been that long ago! Wow….
    Glad you are hooked up with the Lone Pine film folks. I hope you can put all this together in a book someday, what a read that would be. Photos then and now of film locations and maybe some of the old Flynn haunts.
    Do you know if he and/or some of the cast stayed in the Hotel Laguna when they filmed there? I always wondered, it housed many celebrities through the years. I've stayed in it…some of the rooms haven't been completely updated and you can still get the 'feel' of the past in there.

  9. Anonymous

    September 16, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Awesome photos, Robert — that's definitely the location all right! Thanks for sharing! :-)

  10. Anonymous

    September 16, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    Oh – Robert…I was just able to find the complete soundtrack for CB. On CD. Got it out of Europe. It wasn't terribly expensive. Its the authentic score, just as you hear it in the entire film, every peice of music there is in it, from start to finish. When I'm having a bad day, I put it on and it can sure carry me over some obstacles…. ;~). I've been playing it all week, I didn't even know it was the 75th anniversary of the filming…!