I worked at Crawfords from 1970 to 1978, first in the capacity of Bob Pascoe's Secretary at Collins Street, then as Continuity and later as Co-ordinator. Working with Bob was an experience and I don't think either of us got used to each other. We sat diagonally opposite and I managed to build up the corner of my desk with flowers, books etc. so I could slouch down out of sight. He would walk past my desk with it's huge poster of Zeffereli's "Romeo and Juliet" and shake his head and emit a growl similar to "Lurch" from the Adam's family.
Fortunately we were saved from either one getting too upset by my transfer to the film crew... I'm sure he heaved as big a sigh of relief as I did.
For five and a half years I worked on set on Homicide, Matlock, Hands of Cormack Joyce, Division 4 and whatever else came my way. My very first day on set was a Homicide directed by Richard Franklin, written by Luis Bayonas and starring Ken Shorter as an axe murderer. Igor Auzins used to take it in turns with Danny Burstall to DOP / operate while the other one was the focus puller and it was Igor's turn to operate. Richard called for a victim's POV of the axe coming down and after breaking the balsa wood axe, Igor called for the real one, covered his left eye so he wouldn't flinch and Ken Shorter then slammed the axe several times into the turf about 3 inches from Igor's head.
At that point in time I felt vaguely ill and if I remember rightly I walked away.
However the time on crew was fantastic. With only about 8 people on the crew (all boys except for me) it was like having 7 brothers looking after you and we were all extremely close. Igor has remained a good friend over the years which now spans 36 years...wow...how amazing when you say it like that.
Marie Trevor was a good friend and was close at hand when my father died and then years later our paths crossed again on Neighbours when my mum passed away. It seems Marie was destined to be there for me when I needed it.
Switching to Co-ordinating sparked a new part of my life and after leaving Crawfords I have worked up until today as a Co-ordinator, Production Manager and Line Producer.
The best things I took away from Crawfords with me were the friendships I made, the work and life experiences along the way. I don't believe any other place prepared people to work in the film industry long term. What a shame there is no Crawfords now to teach people the right way and give them the film values that sometimes seem lacking these days.
To all those people who crossed my path at Crawfords and in the years since, a sincere thank you - I will never forget you.
6th Feb 2006