United States

Size: 72 H x 40 W x 3 in

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Originally listed for $24,500

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Art Description

Painting: Acrylic on Wood and Other.

When the American crime thriller "Bullitt" hit the 1968 cinemas, no one could have imagined that it would end up on the list of "The Best 1000 Movies Ever Made". Surely, the lead role played by the super-cool Steve McQueen as police Lt. Frank Bullitt would almost guarantee a box office success. Not this time, as McQueen would have to admit that the film's most memorable 11 minutes would have to be awarded to cinemas' most famous car chase ever.

The logistics of this already complex car chase got itself in as many twists as the movie plot did. Geographically speaking, the paths the chase took could never have unfolded itself in real life. It would have been doubtful if the movie goers - surely on the edge of their seats - would have been cognizant enough to have spotted anomalies like that. On the other hand, the film included many welcome factual accuracies, like police evidence processing to emergency room procedures. If that wasn't good enough, even some of McQueen's clothing caused a boost in popularity - in the same way that "Dirty Harry" would eternalize the Smith & Wesson .44" Magnum.

The complexity of the film's car chase shooting became exceptionally evident from the very start. The director's call for speeds not exceeding 75-80 mph, were very soon surpassed with velocities of 110 mph, no doubt all greatly enjoyed by McQueen (who drove in some high speed scenes) - and the stunt men.

The nearly five weeks of shooting the chase scenes in various parts of San Francisco, followed by some highly imaginative splicing and editing, resulted in some serious discontinuity that movie buffs from all over the world were quick to spot and record, including unrealistic amounts of flying hubcaps, car damage out of sequence and obvious re-use of the same locations. Regardless, these valid points all seemed to have been fondly swept under the carpet by these usually ruthless armchair critics.

What happened to the movie cars? One Dodge Charger and two Mustangs were sold for scrap, one Mustang being bought by a Warner Bros. employee and of which the whereabouts are still rumored, and the other disappeared from view until March 2017, when the VIN numbers of a Mustang wreck in a Mexican junk yard was proven to be the remaining "Bullitt" car.

Legendary "Autosport" British photographer, Jeff Bloxham, who lived near me, and who in pre-internet days - assisted me greatly with photographic reference material, was also an excellent critic every time I showed him a new painting. His main critique was that every one of my racing cars - formulae or rally - were always in pristine, showroom condition, which is what they hardly were at the end of a grueling race.
This image is the very first in which I portrayed a speeding car with somewhat the worse for wear. Although I deliberately avoided a serious mashed-up appearance, the front of the vehicle denotes that it has gone through one of its first of its many contacts with the other vehicle.
To survive the many jumps and heavy landings, the Mustang required modification of its engine, brakes and suspension and it is altogether correct that I have portrayed it in that condition.

I have also chosen to follow a 'film poster' image - the fiery explosion seemingly giving McQueen's car additional flight through the air.

I shall be happy to answer any questions

Keywords: Steve McQueen, Crime Thriller, San Francisco, Bullitt, Ford Mustang, Car Chase, Explosion, Green, Dodge Charger , Car Smash, Murder

Subjects: Car

Styles: Fine Art

Mediums: Acrylic

Materials: Wood, Other

Prints: Car Art Prints, Fine Art Art Prints, Acrylic Art Prints, Wood Art Prints, Other Art Prints

Artist Recognition

Artist featured in a collection Artist featured by Saatchi Art in a collection