A near-capacity crowd packed Chukchansi Park in August 2011 for the Fresno Grizzlies game where actor Billy Crystal threw out the first pitch. He wasn’t on the mound as himself but as his character of Artie Decker, who is supposed to be the voice of the Fresno Grizzlies in the feature film “Parental Guidance.”
When the movie opened, a lot of people were disappointed that more of the Fresno Grizzlies baseball game was not shown.
I had an opportunity to take a look at the extra features that are included on the new Blu-ray release of “Parental Guidance.” Among the material that didn’t make the final cut is a long deleted scene that shows a lot more of the Fresno park and the fans who were at the game. If you were at the ballpark that night, you should pick up the movie on Blu-ray to see if you are in the deleted scene.
There are always a lot of predictions floating around at Oscar time. Everyone always thinks they have some super insight that will allow they to clearly see which films will be honored and which will be ignored.
… Quvenzhané Wallis will have her named pronounced at least three different ways including Quiznos.
… Seth MacFarlane will say — or do — something so outlandish it will overshadow the rest of his hosting work. It will probably have something to do with a pound of butter, three roses and a young German woman named Helga.
… the tribute to Bond will overlook the suggestive names given to Bond women. Rumors are the name of the main female Bond character in the next 007 movie will be Ima Estelle Zera. Ima E.Z. will be played by Kim Kardashian.
… there will be more Oscar winners who thank their agents than thank God.
Back in the early ‘90s, Billy Crystal was trying to find the right actress to play his wife in the film “Mr. Saturday Night.” The search was taking some time because he not only needed a good actress to play the role but also someone who would look believable both as young and old because the story covered so many years.
One of the actresses who showed up to audition was a then 26-year-old Marisa Tomei.
“I could tell right away that she had the acting skills to do the role but I was just afraid that she was too young for the part,” Billy Crystal tells me during an interview to talk about his upcoming Christmas Day release “Parental Guidance.” “We didn’t cast her. Of course, she goes on to win the Oscar the next year.”
Tomei took home the Best Supporting Actress statue for her work in “My Cousin Vinny.”
Fast forward to last year as Crystal was trying to find the right actress to play his daughter in “Parental Guidance.” A then 47-year-old Tomei shows up for the audition.
“I walked in and asked Billy, ‘Am I told old for the role now?’,” Tomei says. Crystal’s 64 so it would mean if you only go by age, he would have had to be a teen-age father. But, there’s no way Tomei looks like she’s even in her 40s so that really wasn’t a factor and she was cast in the part. It’s a perfect selection because Tomei really looks like she would be the kind of offspring that would happen between a union of Crystal and Bette Midler, who plays his wife in the movie.
The winners of the tickets to the advance screening of “Parental Guidance” have been selected.
They are: Doreen Nagle, bebe, Jennifer Caser, Luis Solis. Shaonmemdez, Zach, Jeff Pierce, Gaynell, Dwight Wilcox, Jeanne, Rose, Gwen, Shell, Pam, Nancy Castano, Barry Falke, Deborah Hamilton, denise, Frances, Ken Chavez, Jackie, Julita, Ryan, Mary Vaux, Erica Perez, Oscar, Janet Klise, Barb, Sandra Terrel, Christine, Joanne, Cisco Mendez, Susan T, Fresno Dan, Haley P, Emily Wedin, Lita, Angie Rosenthal, Joseph Rodriguez, Kris, Wes, Angela Whitney, Dan, Kristi, Kristen Petersen, Carrie, Sergio, Efren, Kim, Alexy, Raymond Gonzalez, Ron, Dixion Bainbridge, Frank, Edith, Dave, Chris, Jason Valasquez, Kristi, Terri, Julio, Monica, Kelly Nicholson, Paul Schlesinger, Wes, Leonor Villamueva, Kristen Wilson, Amanda Delgado, Ernie, Brian L. Baker, Charlie and Robert Lara.
It might not be just the Fresno Grizzlies getting attention in the upcoming Billy Crystal movie, “Parental Guidance.”
Up in the Air Pictures, the company behind the feature film, shot additional footage for the movie at the Fresno Yosemite International Airport. Stock footage shots were collected of commercial airliners landing and departing plus a passenger’s view of the new terminal building.
Crystal was in Fresno in August to shoot scenes at Chukchansi Park. His character, Artie Decker, is suppose to be the voice of the Fresno Grizzlies. The majority of the movie was shot in Atlanta.
“While there is no promise of the footage being used in film, the post production office for the film was highly satisfied with the shoot,” says Chuck Carson, Up in the Air Pictures, in a press release.
Yesterday some rather vague but cool news hit the Twitter world: Our own Rick Bentley Tweeted that “Part of a feature film will shoot in Chukchansi Park including [Saturday's] game against Sacramento. Buy tickets if you want to be a star.”
He followed up with what turned out to be a hint: “Only word on who will be in film to shoot here is that it’s an A-list actor. I’ll let you know more when the name becomes crystal clear.”
Turns out the A-lister filming in Fresno is Billy Crystal, he of When Harry Met Sally, The Princess Bride and City Slickers. The man himself confirmed it today on Twitter:
Rumors that Crystal was the A-lister in question circulated after he was spotted in Fresno last week. Apparently Crystal will play an announcer for our own real-life Fresno Grizzlies in a film titled “Us and Them.” The movie takes place in Fresno and will also film at a house in Northwest Fresno.
Tickets for Saturday’s game are available at the Chukchansi Park Box Office, online, or by calling (559) 320-TIXS. Make sure to wear your Grizzlies gear if you go to the game — you may end up in the film.