John Dilks reported in the August
2013 edition of QST on his opportunity of a lifetime when he received a
call from a friend saying that the producers of the film Paranoia needed some really
convincing vintage tube radios as props. John is the author of the monthly "Vintage
Radio" column in the ARRL's flagship publication, and owns a huge collection of
exactly the type of equipment being sought.
Paranoia is a saga starring
Harrison Ford and Liam Hemsworth. Per IMDB, "An entry-level employee at a powerful
corporation finds himself occupying a corner office, but at a dangerous price: he
must spy on his boss's old mentor to secure for him a multi-billion dollar advantage."
John, his son,
friend Nick England worked with the 'prop master' Michael Jortner to select the
requisite radios and then went to the filming location in Philadelphia ('The City
of Brotherly Love Shove' ) to
set up and operate the radios. One preferred feature was a radio with "exposed glowing
tubes" (just for the effect). In lieu of that, the stage technicians settled for
rigging a 100 W light bulb inside to light up the chassis. Radios and peripherals
used were the Hallicrafters SX-23, and SX-42, a National NC-190, a Silver-Marshall
the World Four," a Shure carbon ring microphone, and a Morse code key. John says
they were told not to talk to the stars, but Harrison Ford (a licensed helicopter
pilot, BTW, but not a Ham other than onstage) took it upon himself to spend a few
moments thanking them for their assistance.
Fortunately, even those of you who do not subscribe to the magazine can read
Meets Hallicrafters" article thanks to an online PDF version provided (not sure
how, legally) by OHIOLINK.
Information on the radios from the RadioMuseum.org website:
Hallicrafters Skyrider SX-23
730 "Round the World Four"
Posted September 29, 2013