60 posts in this topic

It's apparent from Randy's write up on Johann Rush that he must have had a very exciting, at times, highly tumultuous career as a news cameraman.

 

I guess a lot of us had our disagreements with Dobbsy about the movies, at times. I know I did. But that very stubbornness that Fred showed here must have been such a bonus for him during his journalism years when pursuing a story. According to Fred the General Walker that he interviewed in 1981 was the same general upon which the film Seven Days in May was based, a film, by the way, that JFK, in the waning days of his Presidency, wanted to be made.

 

Our Fred or, should I say, Johann Rush lived through those tumultuous years and played a significant part in that history by bringing some of those events to the public through his camera eye. There must have been times when Dobbs was watching the news in the past few years and his newsman's instincts wanted him to be out there trying to get a scoop or, at least, be a part of the action. Not able to do that, he shared anecdotes here.

 

I'm happy that in his retirement years Johann Rush found satisfaction through his love of the movies, and shared that considerable knowledge of his with us on these boards.

 

So long, Dobbsy. You were a character and I'm glad you spent some of your time with us.

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I'd say all signs point to you being correct here, Kid.

 

There's too many "coincidences" between this obituary and what Fred shared of his own personal history to us over the years.

 

(...sorry to hear this)

The age is also about right.

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Someone sent a note to me on my hotmail account and asked me if I had seen this.

 

I had noticed the thread earlier but didn't open it and read its contents until I got the email. And yes, it does sound like "Fred" was Johann Rush. If that's true, at least we know what happened to him and his absence is no longer a mystery. He was one of my most favourite posters...just loved everything he contributed to our message board community. 

 

See my question in the Fred C. Dobbs thread below.

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Johann W. Rush (Sept. 5, 1942 - Dec. 12, 2015)

Johann Rush passed away in Kirtland, New Mexico, on Dec. 12, 2015.

Mr. Rush was a news cameraman and documentary film cameraman with a long and interesting career. After leaving college, Mr. Rush worked as a news cameraman for WSDU-TV in New Orleans, where he filmed a local activist by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald

(Oswald was president of the local branch of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee and was distributing leaflets outside the International Trade Mart in New Orleans on August 16, 1963).

You can view still frames of the news footage filmed by Mr. Rush here:

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/rush.htm

 

This encounter in New Orleans later led to a long interest in the people and events concerning the assassination of President Kennedy by Oswald in November 1963. In particular, Mr. Rush developed a theory (along with author Max Holland) concerning the Zapruder film of the assassination and the number of shots fired by Oswald:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/22/opinion/22holland.html?_r=0

 

[in 1981, Mr. Rush interviewed Maj. Gen. Edwin Walker, who had been targeted for assassination by Oswald in April 1963 - Oswald's shot at Walker missed and Oswald was able to escape undetected.]

 

Mr. Rush also did freelance news camera work for the major TV networks, including being present and filming some major civil rights events in the U.S. South. One example is the September 29-October 1, 1962 enrollment of James Meredith at the University of Mississippi.

Mr. Rush filmed the event for CBS News. In this online article, Mr. Rush shared his role in the event (the article is about Dan Rather and you need to scroll down to the paragraph "Rather's Tall Tales" to read Rather's role in the Meredith event and the differing memory of Mr. Rush about what Rather was up to at the time):

http://www.aim.org/publications/aim_report/1984/07b.html

 

During this same period of the early 1960's, Mr. Rush worked as a documentary film cameraman for the Italian director Luigi Vanzi on the Italian "Mondo" film "America paese di Dio." Benito Frattari was chief cinematographer for the film and Gray Frederickson was executive producer. The English title is "So This Is God's Country":

https://letterboxd.com/film/so-this-is-gods-country/

 

The film is available for viewing on YouTube.

Just type in

"america paese di dio 1967 film completo documentario"

 

[Film footage by Mr. Rush of one of the 1960's Berkeley riots was included in the 1971 film "Jimi Plays Berkeley."]

Mr. Rush also later worked as a news director in Hattiesburg, Missisippi, and lived and worked in San Francisco, California, before retiring to New Mexico.

 

An interesting man with a long and varied career.

 

R.I.P.

 

 

How did you happen to find this, and match it up with Fred C. Dobbs?. I did a little googling myself, but it was unproductive.

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Just want to add a few more things about Mr. Rush

 

It was pointed out to me in a private email that Mr. Rush made the movie

"Journey in Time" featuring his film footage shot in Dallas and San Francisco in the 1960's.

It's an anti-drug use film narrated by Alan Hodd. It came out in 1971.

 

The film is available in three parts on YouTube, but I don't think I can post the YouTube link here.

If you use the phrase "journey in time part 1 of 3" you will find it and can watch it.

Campy, I suppose, and depressing, and makes you realize how little things have changed.

 

Also, don't forget the Italian "Mondo" film "So This Is God's Country" that Mr. Rush did some filming for, working for cinematographer Benito Frattari and director Luigi Vanzi (Gray Frederickson as producer).

 

The entire movie is available on YouTube.

Just use the phrase "america paese di dio (1967) film completo you tube"

 

"America paese di Dio" is the Italian title.

 

In 1986, Mr. Rush, while working as a newsman/cameraman in Hattiesburg, Miss., did some investigative work about Robert Easterling's claim to be involved in the Kennedy assassination.

This is a PDF file and shows a photo of Mr. Rush (with microphone) interviewing Mr. Easterling as well as the news story:

http://jfk.hood.edu/Collection/Weisberg%20Subject%20Index%20Files/M%20Disk/Mack%20Gary%20Cover-up/Item%2030.pdf

 

One more thing, Mr. Rush carried on a long correspondence with author Harold Weisberg and Weisberg has archived all the Rush letters here:
https://archive.org/details/nsia-RushJohann

 

Harold Weisberg has written many books about the Kennedy assassination and the letters from Mr. Rush detail his experiences in New Orleans and after. Many of the letters contain little biographical stories about the life of Mr. Rush.

 

Oh, one more thing, one more thing, Mr. Rush had a theory about the Zapruder film.

You can see a film about this on YouTube that was made by Mr. Rush and by Hattiesburg, Miss., dentist Dr. Michael West (West was also a medical examiner who later faced disgrace for his work in court cases).

Use the phrase "rush west zapruder film study."

 

The voice at the beginning of the video is either Mr. Rush or Dr. West. I don't know?

 

R.I. P. Mr. Rush

 

 

 

 

 

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Sad indeed! Fred was such a presence.on these boards. He could be exasperating in his opinionated steadfastness, even when proven wrong. And his outdated ideas.made one wonder if he really lived through the 60s. But he was a font of interesting information about many things, and his passion for classic era films was quite clear.

 

Fred, you will be missed. RIP old man.

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Sad indeed! Fred was such a presence.on these boards. He could be exasperating in his opinionated steadfastness, even when proven wrong. And his outdated ideas.made one wonder if he really lived through the 60s. But he was a font of interesting information about many things, and his passion for classic era films was quite clear.

 

Fred, you will be missed. RIP old man.

 

Great post, Arturo.  I can hardly add to what you already wrote.  I hope that Fred's passing was peaceful.  I know that I can never again watch the movie "Treasure of the Sierra Madre" without thinking of this poster.

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The age seems to match, I think Fred had posted last year or the year before that he was 72 years old. We disagreed about many things, but we also played trivia together and were cordial. Very saddened to read about this. Since he had stopped posting before December he must have been ill or hospitalized, it's unfortunate that we could not send him well wishes. His posts will be missed, whether we agreed or not. I hope he had friends and family to comfort him. We will all remember and think of you Fred.

 

RIP Johann W. Rush (Fred C Dobbs)

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I'm happy that in his retirement years Johann Rush found satisfaction through his love of the movies, and shared that considerable knowledge of his with us on these boards.

 

Something that crossed my mind. This January would have been ten years for him as a member of the TCM message boards. That would put him back at age 63-ish, and probably newly retired, in New Mexico and watching TCM everyday. During the decade that followed, he accrued over 25,000 posts and almost all of them were informative in some way, shape or form-- either about his own past experiences, or about the films we all watched on TCM.

 

When someone goes on an extended journey, we might wish them a bon voyage. Unfortunately, none of us knew around Thanksgiving he was going on a long journey and wouldn't be back. Even when we began to wonder where he was, he was obviously still around (not having passed until the second week of December). I hope he was resting comfortably at that time and able to catch a last movie or two on TCM.

 

Bon voyage and godspeed...

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I will miss Fred. He and I go back quite aways, starting in the trivia thread. We both joined the message boards around the same time. He and I would often battle (nicely) over who could identify movies from old photos. We pm'd quite a bit over the years, and he was a really funny guy. I enjoyed learning about more technical aspects of film, from his posts. I am sorry that such an important member of these boards will no longer be with us.

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A great job by Mr. Meingast in tracking this down.

 

Yeah, I'LL say!

 

(...in fact he was SO good at this, I'm startin' to wonder if he ALSO knows or at least has immediate access to my latest FICO score?!!!)

 

;)

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I will miss Fred. He and I go back quite aways, starting in the trivia thread. We both joined the message boards around the same time. He and I would often battle (nicely) over who could identify movies from old photos. We pm'd quite a bit over the years, and he was a really funny guy. I enjoyed learning about more technical aspects of film, from his posts. I am sorry that such an important member of these boards will no longer be with us.

 

I remember the two of you with that old photo thread. It was way over my head but I appreciated the back-and-forths. I think Metz took part in some of that, all of you were operating at a high level. (Metz, now where might he be?)

 

Johann W Rush (aka Fred C Dobbs), RIP. You made a fine mark with your life, and right here as well. Bye, friend.

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"Mr Dobbs" was one of my favorite posters on these boards. On a few occasions  we exchanged PM's about certain subjects. I always appreciated his insights into some of the technical issues of filming.  We even had a few differences of opinion on things but our conversation was always respectful and ended well.  I can only hope he got as much pleasure from participating here  as I got from people like him. My condolences to his family and friends .  God bless, Mr Rush. 

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So old FredCDobbs is gone, eh?  Well, I will miss him. In fact, I miss him already. I know I didn't always get along with him; he could be an irascible old codger, but then, so am I at times.

 

It's one thing to argue with someone here, it's another to not be able to argue with them anymore because they've died. I realize now that I enjoyed Fred's presence here, whether we always agreed with each other or not ,more than I knew.

 

I hope he had a peaceful demise, and I hope he had someone he cared about with him. Rest easy, Dobbsy.

 

13_MBDTROF_EC011_H.JPG

 

I tried to use the pic Fred had for his screen name avatar, but this one's pretty close.

 

It will take a while to get used to not seeing him around here anymore.

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A great job by Mr. Meingast in tracking this down.

 

 

Yeah, I'LL say!

 

(...in fact he was SO good at this, I'm startin' to wonder if he ALSO knows or at least has immediate access to my latest FICO score?!!!)

 

Canadians are pretty competent people, don't cha think.

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Is there a reason why nothing shows up on the IMDB site for Johann W. Rush?

 

I also find nothing in Google searches with his name, except references to posts made here at the TCM site or the bit about the Oswald connection. Nothing mentioned as death references or obituaries like what is printed up here.

I did find the obit at some funeral home in New Mexico, but there was no write-up at all there except date of birth and death.

 

Just curious.

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Canadians are pretty competent people, don't cha think.

 

Yeah, well, I suppose....in cases like this maybe, anyway.

 

But then again, when one is pretty much stuck indoors for half the year because of the weather outside, perhaps it would only be natural to have all the time in the world to sit at one's computer and do all the online research required to find out that our old friend FredCDobbs was actually a man named Johann W. Rush, right?!

 

(...although you may NOW be wondering why this here Arizonan seems to be sittin' on HIS butt in front of a computer an awful lot too, huh...well, a man CAN only play so much tennis out in the warm sunshine of Arizona winters, ya know!!!)

 

;)

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Is there a reason why nothing shows up on the IMDB site for Johann W. Rush?

 

I also find nothing in Google searches with his name, except references to posts made here at the TCM site or the bit about the Oswald connection. Nothing mentioned as death references or obituaries like what is printed up here.

 

Just curious.

Google can be a little too selective at times.

 

Try 

 

Johann Rush (by itself)

 

or

 

Johann Rush Obituary

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Yeah, well, I suppose....in cases like this maybe, anyway.

 

But then again, when one is pretty much stuck indoors for half the year because of the weather outside, perhaps it would only be natural to have all the time in the world to sit at one's computer and do all the online research required to find out that our old friend FredCDobbs was actually a man named Johann W. Rush, right?!

 

(...although you may NOW be wondering why this here Arizonan seems to be sittin' on HIS butt in front of a computer an awful lot too, huh...well, a man CAN only play so much tennis out in the warm sunshine of Arizona winters, ya know!!!)

 

;)

I was just in Tucson for the first 2 weeks of January. It rained the first week and the 2nd week it was only nice enough to get out a couple of days. Last year when we came out there it was in the 70's. What's up with that?

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I was just in Tucson for the first 2 weeks of January. It rained the first week and the 2nd week it was only nice enough to get out a couple of days. Last year when we came out there it was in the 70's. What's up with that?

 

El Nino, Helen.

 

For the past few winters here in the SW, high pressure systems, one after another, would form over us and thus keep this part of the country drier and warmer than average. When a winter weather front from the NW would hit it, it moved the front back north and then to the east, and where you might remember last year these fronts dropping their moisture along the NE and with Boston getting record-setting snowfall.

 

During the previous "La Nina" period, and as I'm sure you've know, California experienced extreme drought conditions, and even more so than here in AZ. You see, during late summer, AZ at least gets the monsoons that come up from Mexico and which help replenish the water table and water reserves here. However, CA does not get these monsoons, and thus the necessity for the stricter water rationing measures which came about there.

 

And now with this El Nino, those constant high pressure systems I mentioned earlier are no longer forming over us, and thus the normal winter weather fronts from the NW are no longer being blocked. 

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El Nino, Helen.

 

For the past few winters here in the SW, high pressure systems, one after another, would form over us and thus keep this part of the country drier and warmer than average. When a winter weather front from the NW would hit it, it moved the front back north and then to the east, and where you might remember last year these fronts dropping their moisture along the NE and with Boston getting record-setting snowfall.

 

During the previous "La Nina" period, and as I'm sure you've know, California experienced extreme drought conditions, and even more so than here in AZ. You see, during late summer, AZ at least gets the monsoons that come up from Mexico and which help replenish the water table and water reserves here. However, CA does not get these monsoons, and thus the necessity for the stricter water rationing measures which came about there.

 

And now with this El Nino, those constant high pressure systems I mentioned earlier are no longer forming over us, and thus the normal winter weather fronts from the NW are no longer being blocked. 

Enuf with your expertise about El Nino, Dargo!

 

Especially when time is a-wasting, and the following is way more important.

 

Use your excellent detective skills and tell me what Johann Rush [aka Fred C. Dobbs] has as a connection to these Italian filmmakers, named Luigi Vanzi and Benito Frattari?

 

I mean did TCM's Fred C. Dobbs ever talk about working on the movie "Mondo Cane"?

 

Make like Sherlock Holmes and do some digging please! No needles though, okay?

 

 

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Hi Cave Girl,

 

<< I mean did TCM's Fred C. Dobbs ever talk about working on the movie "Mondo Cane"? >>

 

If I recall correctly, FredCDobbs never worked on the film "Mondo Cane" and so never wrote about working on that movie.

 

FredCDobbs did work on a "'Mondo Cane' type documentary" and described that:

 

Posted 27 July 2006 - 06:41 PM

I was a cameraman on a Techniscope theatrical documentary film back in 1965. It was made for an Italian company. It was one of those in the long series of ?Mondo Cane? type documentary films that were made for the big screen by the Italians in the ?60s. They were very popular in Europe. The greatest ?Mondo? cameraman of them all, Benito Frattari, was our chief cameraman. Gray Frederickson (who later received an Academy Award as a co-producer for Godfather II) was our producer. Luigi Vanzi was our director.

Vanzi had a general rule that we shouldn?t shoot more than about 20% to 30% of our film with a hand-held camera, since the theater audience would begin to get dizzy watching a lot of hand-held scenes on the big theater screen, even in a documentary. We had to use tripods quite often, whenever we could. When I filmed the Watts Riot I was not able to use a tripod, and when I filmed a night time shoot-out between the cops and the rioters, the jumpiness of the camera movement didn?t matter. Also, I used the widest-angled lens we had available, and that kept the obvious camera jiggles to a minimum.

Techniscope was basically half-frame 35 mm film. Usually a standard 35mm frame has 4 perforations on each side of the frame. A claw pulls down a standard frame 4 perfs. But with Techniscope, the cameras were geared up with a cam that pulled down just two perfs at a time, and that made each half-frame image very wide, like Cinemascope, but without the need of an anamorphic lens. What was lost in grain quality was gained in sharpness of the image because of the lack of all the glass required in an anamorphic lens system. I think the Italians made many drama films using this system.

We were told to use Cooke #3 lenses (either 3 or 2, I can?t remember) as much as possible. They were the best in the film business at that time and they produced a very sharp image. I used a portable 35 mm Arriflex converted to Techniscope.

Unfortunately, when the film was narrated and edited in Italy, the film company apparently did a very bad job with the narration and editing, and the film was never shown in the US, although we had many spectacular scenes from all over the country, and many incredible news events on film, such as the full-scale Watts riot of 1965.

That production represented one of the luckiest moments of my life. I saw ?Mondo Cane? on the big screen in a theater in New Orleans in 1963. I was a young TV news cameraman at the time. I made a mental note of the Italian name of the chief cameraman. A few months later, a couple of co-producers walked into my newsroom to ask if we knew of any unusual documentary filming locations around New Orleans. They said they were making a ?Mondo? film. I went to work for them that next weekend. I quit my regular job a few weeks later and traveled around the country with one of their teams for the next six months. We were split up into about four teams to cover the whole country. I traveled mainly with Vanzi, but I also got to work a lot with Frederickson, and I got to meet Frattari when we were in New York.

I think the whole ?Mondo? series started in 1959, with a film titled ?World by Night?, (?Il Mondo de notte?), directed by Vanzi and scripted by Gualtiero Jacopetti. Jacopetti later became a fairly famous director of these types of films, especially ?Africa Addio? in 1966, which I saw in a San Francisco theater. Frederickson later told me that Jacopetti got into some trouble in Italy and even went to jail for a while, allegedly for paying a couple of small African tribes to start a war with each other. Seems that a few Africans were killed during the production of the film.

So, to answer your question. Look for some Italian drama films of the ?60s and later, to see more Techniscope movies.

Fred

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

<< Use your excellent detective skills and tell me what Johann Rush [aka Fred C. Dobbs] has as a connection to these Italian filmmakers, named Luigi Vanzi and Benito Frattari? >>

 

As for Johann Rush, he and two other American cameramen - Morton Heilig (1926-1997) and Baird Bryant (1927-2008) - worked for Benito Frattari doing the filming for director Luigi Vanzi for the Italian "Mondo" documentary film "America paese di Dio." Gray Frederickson was executive producer.

Alternate English names for the film are "So This Is God's Country?" and "America, God's Own Country."

Most movie databases only give credit to Benito Frattari as cinematographer or photographer and ignore the cameramen who worked for him on the film, but not all.

 

FredCDobbs did describe working with Baird Bryant on the "Italian ?Mondo? type documentary":

 

Posted 04 August 2006 - 05:49 PM

In 1965 I worked as a documentary cameraman with the cameraman of "The Cool World". He was Baird Bryant, a non-union cameraman who did some documentary and feature work. He and I worked on an Italian ?Mondo? type documentary. Baird was telling us on the crew about how he had just finished up a feature film in New York. I think I saw the film years ago.

--------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Hope this helps.

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Was Kyle Kersten anonymous?  Before my time on TCM

 

Bogie,

 

Kyle was one of the Fan Programmers that helped celebrate TCM's 15th anniversary in 2009. Because of that, his name (which was part of his moniker-KyleinHollywood) became well known around the message boards.

 

I am sorry to hear that FredCDobbs may have passed away. He was one of the long time posters (along with Kyle, Helen,Mongo, MoiraFinnie, Filmlover, myself and a few others) that gave this community legs..

 

If it's true, Rest in Peace, Fred. We will miss you.

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