Monday, October 8, 2012

In Search of FMPU

This photo of a giant sunflower has no other purpose than to distract you, and because it just makes me happy. I had a forest of some 12-plus feet high sunflowers this summer in my garden. The blooms were over a foot wide. At the end of the season, as I was standing with my back to it, one toppled over and smacked me in the head.

They pack a punch. I saw stars. Not Cary Grant or Rita Hayworth, just stars.

I thought I heard it snicker, and softly mumble, “Tag! You’re it!”

Enough stalling, I’m come before you today requesting help. I’d like to put out an all-points bulletin for a documentary that I’ve been wanting to see.

I’m looking for an AMC (remember when that was the old movie buff’s pal before it went to the dark side?) TV documentary about the First Motion Picture Unit of World War II. The FMPU was part of the Army Air Corps and produced many training films and documentaries. Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight” series was produced as part of this unit.

The unit was comprised entirely of technicians, directors, writers and actors from Hollywood’s movie industry. Captain Ronald Reagan was a personnel officer here at one time. James Steward and Clark Gable were briefly connected with the unit.

AMC’s made-for-TV documentary called “Hollywood Commandos” was produced in 1997. I don’t believe it is available for sale, either in VHS or DVD.

If anybody recorded this when it was broadcast (I don’t know if it has been repeated, or shown only once), but I want to track it down. I’m hoping someone has it in his private collection. I’m happy to pay for a copy. Or, swap for something in my collection, if so desired.

Spread the word. Release the hounds.



ari_1965 said...

I once was smacked by a giant sunflower. We could start a support group.

Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Ari, I think this calls for a segment on "60 Minutes" at least. The public needs to be warned about giant sunflowers.

Moira Finnie said...

Hi Jacqueline,

The documentary that you are seeking appears to have been made by Gregory Orr Productions, whose offices are listed as
180 Grand Street 3rd floor
New York, NY 10013
Ph: (212) 334-7676
Fax:(212) 334-9204

They have a website at:

I hope that this gives you a few leads. It sounds pretty interesting. I hope you'll let us all know how you make out in this quest.
Best of luck,


Jacqueline T Lynch said...

Thanks so much, Moira. This is lovely. I'll let you know what happens. I believe Mr. Orr is perhaps related to William Orr, who was one of the men of FMPU. Thanks again.

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