Let's Talk - Movies

Interview - Bud S. Smith (Editor - The Exorcist, The Karate Kid, To Live and Die in L.A.)

January 21, 2022 Just Curious Media Episode 14
Let's Talk - Movies
Interview - Bud S. Smith (Editor - The Exorcist, The Karate Kid, To Live and Die in L.A.)
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Show Notes Transcript

Let's Talk - Movies
Episode 14: Interview - Bud S. Smith (Editor - The Exorcist, The Karate Kid, To Live and Die in L.A.)

Jason Connell has two-time Oscar-nominated editor Bud S. Smith (The Exorcist, The Karate Kid, To Live and Die in L.A.) on the show. They discuss working with some legendary directors (William Friedkin, John G. Avildsen, Sam Raimi), as well as producing, directing, and much more.

Original Episode: S01E14

Recorded: 01-21-22 & 12-17-20
Studio: Just Curious Media
https://www.JustCuriousMedia.com/

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Jason Connell:

Welcome to Just curious media. This is let's talk movies. And I'm Jason Connell on the show today, a very special guest I interviewed recently. Bud s. Smith. So I'm talking about this interview to set it up. But I did meet with bud, December 2020. We had a wonderful conversation. And if you don't know the name, but is an editor extraordinaire, two time Oscar nominated editor, he worked on films like The Exorcist, the Karate Kid to live and die in LA Flashdance, and many, many more. He was nominated for the exorcist and Flashdance didn't win. However, he did win a BAFTA Award for Best Editing Flashdance. So the reason I reached out to Bud was this, I was working on to live and die in LA for this particular show, our third episode, and I was doing cast and crew research and came across his name realized he lived or was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. And that was it. I was like, at some point in time, I've got to talk to but so that time came late 2020. And I kind of held the interview until we finished the first 10 episodes of Let's Talk movies. So we did that. And I've released a couple of interviews, the last two weeks Dabney Coleman, John capillus. Now those were much more archived interviews. But this was more recent, but a wonderful conversation. We talked about Bud's career, we really get into live and die in LA, because not only was he an editor, he was second unit director and supervising film editor, and a co producer, I should say, sorry. So he has lots to say about the movie that chase scenes and all these things that make the movie so great. And also beyond working with Friedkin on to live and die in LA and The Exorcist, he worked with freaking unlike five, six other movies, we kind of quickly brushed over those, but they had this relationship that went way back, which is incredible. So if that wasn't enough, another reason I wanted to speak with bud as well as share this interview with everyone else is that he was the editor on the Karate Kid. Come on. I mean, we do a show called Let's Talk Cobra Kai. My initial thought was like, oh, I'll just take that little bit and put it over there and put it on. Let's talk Cobra Kai, everything we talked about the Karate Kid, of course, the great John G. Appleton film, where he was associate producer on that editor. And but I didn't want to do that. The more I got into the interview, I realized that should just be intact. And so we're going to release it here the entire thing. And then we go over just a few other movies that he worked on, including his directing debut. He also worked with Sam Raimi on dark man helped save that movie, he says he was editor and supervising editor on that, but on a bigger note, and a lot more personal level, but shared with me that he had overcome throat cancer a few years ago. And in doing so he lost like half of his tongue and had to replace his jaw. So his voice is different. I mean, I only know it this way. But you know, he tells me it's just harder for him to speak. And then here, it's obviously very hard for him to eat. It's like a soup diet or smoothies. But, you know, when I got on the phone with him, you can definitely hear him and you can understand him, you just have to kind of focus but I was a little nervous at first like, wow, this is a long interview. But you know what, the more we edit it and I went through this, it's great. And I hope that it resonates with everybody out here, everything that he's done for us in the world of film, but just what he overcame on a personal level. So for all you YouTube lifers unfortunately, you're going to have to download the podcast version to hear the interview with Budhist Smith. There was no way to kind of insert it here. But I will tell you this, it is well worth your time. So please enjoy my conversation with bud s Smith. But I was really fascinated like because I haven't grown up in Tulsa as well and moved to Los Angeles. It's amazing. I couldn't believe it. I looked up your name like wait, he's also from Tulsa.

Bud S. Smith:

And I, my parents moved because houseplant five is so

Jason Connell:

Okay, so you're more of a California.

Bud S. Smith:

I hate them.

Jason Connell:

Yeah, you did. You did. So you moved to California when you were five? And yes. From five years old until we started your career. Were you just always fascinated by movie making filmmaking or, like what led you towards it?

Bud S. Smith:

I was kind of a rich man say, I want to be a racecar driver. And so when I was young, I was in Aisle Five, and I was doing that and so I use Java zero water. And Zach Elementary, and I did that with their water for 10 years. Wow. And then I moved to New York. And it was a delicious basin for try. So I've had very strange relationships I'm shy Java has i, okay. No, I had an athlete who I question.

Jason Connell:

Well, I didn't know about the David wallpaper. I actually read a biography of his twice. I enjoyed it so much. He did a bunch of documentaries. Didn't he wind up producing the Olympics in Los Angeles at one point in time? Well, I

Bud S. Smith:

didn't. I was only right. Yeah.

Jason Connell:

Of course. So, and then you jumped into freakin which is obviously a talking point because I've been a huge fan of William frequence. Forever and you worked on several of his movies. I mean, going back to the Exorcist, which you also nominated for an Oscar for film editing?

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, the I was a billy fasion when I was doing Jack Demetri Hey, handsome. She was hired as a young documentarian, and I was in there, David Walter. And we are here after he went off to do his, his vision situation which Aaron Fisher there, and aphasia. And if I, I was doing a film as well, a giant Shinya, and I live five years with him. And I have run as a spaceman at the laboratory. And so we just have gone Sanjay shutter, and a few years later, he called me whenever you work with him on the assets. And they sent me a fine price. range. And I can't do this. Well, he's Yes. All shy away. I was on the acidosis. And I find what I said Los Angeles in his hand. So and we want to say hi to you our final sound there. And we were there for like three months. During the sound. It says away. That showing says I jump ahead as I Oh,

Jason Connell:

but no apologies needed. So did you know in the middle of editing the Exorcist, just how special the film was, or was going to be?

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, really? No. Yeah. Just when you say to her changes. Excellent film, Ray. And that's when I realized this is more than just a pile of film is free.

Jason Connell:

Absolutely. And it still holds up today.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, well, I have

Jason Connell:

I bet you're very close to it. Indeed. And obviously, you guys built a good working relationship to work on that many projects together.

Bud S. Smith:

Oh, it is.

Jason Connell:

absolutely so after the exorcist and sorcerer and the brakes job cruising deal of the century, it leads me to a movie that I'd like to discuss with you, which is to live and die in LA. Yeah. And on that movie, you were credited as second unit director, supervising film editor and CO producer, and I just covered this movie on my let's talk movies podcast. I've always loved this film. And you had a big role in it many roles and so maybe you could just kind of take me behind the scenes a little bit about this production.

Bud S. Smith:

What was wondering who was Billy and he came up with this to live in Jai la I also have ish but and I say both higher shutter speed, and we were probably a year Sure. And we just had a location, which i i was really driver issue is high. And just show I was driving really, every place we were just out location, which was down a river, Viva la. And I will up the wall of the segment size and around here I set so we kind of put that in a movie to use

Jason Connell:

that same gimmick or the same terrain in the movie Greece

Bud S. Smith:

as right after that. Yeah. After I Oh, wait.

Jason Connell:

I think Greece was actually sooner.

Bud S. Smith:

Then zhu li Yeah,

Jason Connell:

no, no, you guys took it to a whole other level. You showed aside in Los Angeles that I didn't know existed. And yeah, that chasing? I've got to say that I've read so much behind the scenes, but I'm just reading you were there. But was it true that that was put off until the end just in case someone got injured?

Bud S. Smith:

Just session? No, no way. That pretty much has to end the highway. Location. Shoot that on a weekend. So we will shoot it Saturday and Sunday and then wrap it away and do something else. So we'll come back and say a very last shot. And that was really as more ideas of what to do. Okay. And that was the chase down in a river bottom. Communism ever Joe was on a video of I'm going as fast as we could. And we're horses why? And out of a river bottom and went down now we may have a highest had. Yes, down to San Pedro. And as your phone downtown. Downtown San Pedro. And you couldn't tell the difference? It was just a good question.

Jason Connell:

Absolutely. I noticed that there's a lot of things that are in Long Beach in that movie.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah. But not a lot. The song. So yeah.

Jason Connell:

So a second unit director, what were you shooting? What was your responsibilities?

Bud S. Smith:

I had a seven year error, which meant I had to go out and shoot whatever I want, that I would shoot for high stages. And you know, I would be shooting along with Billy face and he would be shooting actors. And I have issued a stuntman and a chase car. Because here's the Cheyenne casa que se who has done or has trained. And so this high has outlined the train. And so we had to start doing what the zoo, which was out running this train going over this fast young lady they went and Nash, San Pedro. And it's just as him Yeah, I don't know if it was hell that it was actually about

Jason Connell:

oh, it's great. And earlier, you had mentioned documentaries, and just to kind of catch up on myself, I actually produced and directed like 10 award winning documentaries, I cut my teeth on documentaries, so I have a lot of respect for them. And with documentaries, you find the story and the editing a lot of times most of the time. So I think it made you probably a more astute editor, for sure, obviously, in your credits speak for themselves. And not to put me in your class by any means you worked on some of the greatest movies of all time.

Bud S. Smith:

says when I was younger, I aspired to be a racing driver around three very exciting places. And I wish alone for few years. And that's when I I was hired that filmmaker I had I been in filmmaking but filmmaker. And so I find is I made her living. Nashville. I just shy various sets of film.

Jason Connell:

Yeah, all those scenes from to live and die in LA had to really be exciting for you because you were able to tap into your love for car racing. And it obviously led to one of the greatest car chase scenes in American film history is definitely a crowning achievement for that movie. I've brought it up for years. Because a movie needs like that scene that you can quickly just tell someone about like oh, you got to see till the night out. way, this is a great car chasing, it's more than that the movie is much more than that. And about the movie, it's one of the first times that I can recall that has that big pivotal change late in the movie or you lose your lead actor, and it just continues on. I mean, that's a device that is not very common. And I know that Friedkin had to shoot this crazy all ending, and maybe just talk a little about that about just how dramatic that was to make a movie lose your lead, and also how William freaking had to fight for that, right?

Bud S. Smith:

A different engine over has a studio. And the producers want to enjoy herself alive. So we had to figure out how to do that. So we went off and shot it was true. I love Alaska. And anyway, we shot that on a chaise in LA, and Alaska, and chose was LA and we shot this engine and belly. Hey, so it's clear for producers. And I said, Hey, music

Jason Connell:

is terrible. I No offense. I saw it on YouTube. And I'm like, No, the movie works the way it is. Yeah. What did you think of that kind of pivot in the movie at that point in time to lose chance. And that fashion in that very grotesque fashion

Bud S. Smith:

in a way that's not having says die by having a different engine, but was in life that we want to share. So this shot in the face for the shine, and wheezes and actually, the film went out.

Jason Connell:

I mean, but the film is called to live and die in LA it's very fitting

Bud S. Smith:

that it was

Jason Connell:

and that's a great and then obviously he had some great stars in that movie had a young William Defoe, you had John Turturro. And I liked that he also cast these two relatively unknown so you just weren't caught up in their Mystique as a star. And they later became bigger names. I mean, it William Peterson who went on to have some success, of course, but I love it. He Cassie is relatively unknown. They had been together, acting in Chicago and he found them there and it was really smart. He made some smart decisions along the way. And there was also Valentin de Vargas was in the film and he had a small role and to live and die in LA. He was also great. Do you know where Valentin was born by chance? No, no Tulsa Oklahoma. True story.

Bud S. Smith:

Maybe I should

Jason Connell:

wait a second. I stand corrected. I had it flipped. He was born Albuquerque. He passed away in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Ah yes, exactly. Yeah. So I had that flipped. I remember looking this up when I was researching the film. And I'm like, wait another Tulsa time. But he actually passed away until some but yeah. And there was other great characters in the movie. By the way. There was great performances by Steve James who passed away too soon. Dean Stockwell was fantastic in the movie as well. Yeah, some really, really wonderful actors. But I just think it's a movie that holds up over time. It was so fun to cover on our podcast, and even the music even to get a song by Wing Chun who was huge at the time. Yeah.

Bud S. Smith:

Heard when it's done and decided he was going to film. So he sent him a squid. And it said, why why for this film? And they did and what Bill it was trying to do it it happened very spontaneous. Right? So he bombed how lay and come up and took them over the time to mess in the film. And they spent a month with us. And they wrote this narrative for the film. And I won't really lie certain I lie certain that is ISIS. So

Jason Connell:

the music is wonderful. It helps us the pacing throughout the whole film, but I did read that freak and said whatever you do, don't make a song called to live and die in LA. And of course they made that track to it, right? Yeah, yeah, exactly. He kept it in there. So yeah, it's a great it's so fitting. And I gotta say something else with that movie that you just See, it shows you how to make counterfeit bills. Really, essentially, it's like a lesson on how to do it.

Bud S. Smith:

I shot all right, that was second unit is finishing on nine cents that we laid it in the film and Billy didn't have time to stop and shoot that insert. So I went ahead and shot I knew where he was gonna put stuff in. Well on the pho and so I was just shoot and knew Hey, I know have processed and we had out and Palmdale and warehouse. It was very bizarre to say hi, mate nine, it was shot. So you could do buffet if you wanted to do it on both sides.

Jason Connell:

Right? Well, how did you know how to do it? Did you have these people on set that showed you how to do it,

Bud S. Smith:

I was lucky enough to have done some research and I found shoes. That had been a rashes. We had our payload tested in LA. And he knew about how Joey brought his power foods in. And I wasn't sure where they were. And they had his family machine. And I put it up all of us might shoot an arrow shirt. And then Billy went back and puts a Williams or foe shots in. And I just married her. And

Jason Connell:

now it looks great when you see masters played by William Defoe. And he's cutting the bills. And he's doing all the behind the scenes how to do it all the way up to putting it in a dryer with poker chips, the whole bit. And I even read that some fake bills got into circulation. Was there some truth to that?

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah. It has to do with a prop. Boy, he was the one I had all of the counterfeit money. And I said his his toy bill and went to a liquor store and bought some soon found lots of houses and trashed it all back to us. And we have in a ration for Halloween. Yeah. So we have we have agents on the film. That kind of was Fastenal for Pfizer. Yeah. And he has a second shot them from some in Russia.

Jason Connell:

Did you get a sense of those bills when you actually held it in your hands and felt it? Does it feel like a real Bill Bill doesn't look very passable to you? I've never even seen a counterfeit bill as far as I know. Anyway, let's hash the bills. Yeah, the bills themselves if Did you hold them and feel them? And if you didn't know any better, would you recognize them as phonies? No. Yeah, in the movie, they looked amazing. Of course, I'm seeing a movie, but it's cool to hear up close and personal that they obviously could pass for real money. Which is

Bud S. Smith:

yes, they did. Obviously he did. Yeah,

Jason Connell:

he spent them exactly. They did use them. Not many movies covered this subject matter. And that's what I was always intrigued by. And it's a movie that shows the darker side of law enforcement really live, they'll break a million laws to bust one guy I enjoyed as a film watch or film view or film lover. But the ethical questions they went against any and everything that they should they crossed every line. And the movie also feels like it's kind of a self fulfilling prophecy in the way that chance loses his partner. And then he loses his own life. So then Vukovich is the new guy in charge. And it's just going to keep going to the next guy in a Vukovich probably have a new partner, he'll show him the ropes and then maybe he'll be often it's just kind of continues to happen.

Bud S. Smith:

light goes on. Yeah, it would pass out. But you know, yeah. His outfit his shirt. And then who was Oh, yeah. So life goes on. Yeah,

Jason Connell:

I did like that. I liked the way he stepped out from the nervous guy to being the guy and yeah, now she's his informant. And what it just it stayed with me and that's the beauty of great filmmaking. You can hold it up. 20 3040 years later, it still works. I've told so many people about it that had never seen it. And then they go and watch it. And they're riveted like, I had no idea this movie was out there. And I think because it wasn't as big of a hit, as it probably should have been, in my opinion, but it's a little treasure that definitely holds up because obviously yourself and frickin and the cast and crew and it's just a great film soundtrack the whole bit from head to toe. So congratulations. Thank you for putting that in the film archives for us, if you will. And if you don't mind, I'd love to pivot to this other movie that I cover on a different podcast. It's a podcast called Let's Talk Cobra Kai. That is everything Karate Kid and the new show Cobra Kai related. And of course, that is the Karate Kid. Which your editor and associate producer on that's insane. I cannot believe this. But how did that come about? How did you get a job working with John G. Abelson, rest in peace?

Bud S. Smith:

Alaska was was reproduces. Yeah. Oh, yes. Yeah. And I, we had Isaac right here with him. And it was just a marriage. Amazing heaven. And so he went off and dies. Yeah, he was a survivor with his girlfriend. And then he'll come back. Is this died in a hotel. It was a young guy who I know, just wasn't his way.

Jason Connell:

Right. I read his autobiography several years ago loved it. Then the HBO did a whole special on his story. So I became a huge fan that way, he worked with Elvis and then Frank Sinatra, and he was just this producers producer. And he is like, Ocean's 11. And of course, he had a lot to do with the Karate Kid, which launched a huge franchise. But so you knew him you got to work on this film. But I'm telling you did you know again, maybe not like the exorcist or to live and die in LA. But did you know how special this project was at the time?

Bud S. Smith:

No, I did not. I didn't have a clue. I didn't have a clue. But it was boy shine via head high school. And I've been tested on and a fight that injure me it was a variety issue. He showed her how to do her eyes. And he went and and one of her eyes championship. There. Why life that is?

Jason Connell:

I can imagine. So please tell me I mean, yeah. What was it? What was that journey?

Bud S. Smith:

It says wait a while, right. They'll realize you have to put it out film, as they do realize that that was Shoo, fly, shoo away, push this was

Jason Connell:

right. As your role as an associate producer on the Karate Kid, what were you doing exactly in that role? Besides the editor? We'll get to the editor in a minute, but the associate producer in you? What was your job?

Bud S. Smith:

Well, I had a sample I was to see if I had to elevate myself in production. And so just being a film. So I wanted to be like, Associate Producer something that would elevate me, and yeah, why shop and I was a cinch. And he made me laugh. I was and that was it.

Jason Connell:

Okay. Okay. So the relationship and you got a producer credit. But really, you're an editor on this film. And I'm assuming that you had didn't really find this movie in the edit. Because, I mean, it's a simple story. Yes, bullied kid learns karate wins tournament, but you and I both know, it's much more magical than that. I mean, you had a great team. You had the director, John G. Allison, who did Rocky and it really has some tie ins to Rocky and of course, some themes, if you will. Yes. Bill Conti. Exactly. Yeah. And Ralph Matsuo was coming off some great movies, one of which was the outsiders, which was filmed in our hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma. And he had the chops. He's a great actor, and Miyagi, played by Pat. Marita would go on to be nominated for an Oscar in his incredible role of Mr. Miyagi. So there was a lot of good things at play here. And there was other editors, right, if I'm not mistaken, are you the lead editor? Or

Bud S. Smith:

I say, I had one person was okay, their size, my shift. And I had two or three assistants. Anyway, we had enough people to do the job.

Jason Connell:

But when you're in there editing and finding the solution to the fly and the chopsticks and all these funny little things and moments and Conte score, what was that editing? Like that whole process? Finding them?

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah. John Allison. Sure. So love film. So do you have J. J bases and Shiva best pies shot and you fail for the best pies have ever seen. S was now is John Allison. But every so I was one I have famous US is Robert J. I share five years for him. That was always trying to find this joy and fire patient fit.

Jason Connell:

Speaking of Robert Downey senior he was also in to live and die in LA, which was nice.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, he was. Yeah, he was, uh, because of me. I was. He was the police captain. And

Jason Connell:

he was great in that role. Yeah, it was

Bud S. Smith:

just a silly thing. But

Jason Connell:

okay, pivoting back to the Karate Kid. So you're editing the movie, you have all this abundance of footage courtesy of Abelson and you start to pull out the right takes of each scene. And you start putting it together. And of course, we can't do score. I'm sure it starts to come to life. And there is beautiful moments in this movie. But it had to be exciting to find the story in there. Yeah. What was that? Like? I think that I read that Allison was also an editor. He took an editing credit. So he must have

Bud S. Smith:

said he's kind of an assistant. But he will put shots. And there were so hey, I will call him.

Jason Connell:

Okay, fair enough. Well, I'm not I just saw the credits. But you know, this is why I'm talking to the man that can set the story straight. But so anyway, you're starting to put the story together. And I mean, he already told me he had no idea it would have this sort of life, but for it to become the hit that it did. But obviously it has to be excited to be part of a hit. It's obviously something that's happened in your career more than a few times. But this movie, I mean, it still works today, this many years later, because this movie came out in 85, as did to live and die in LA. And in fact, it spawned several sequels and it's launched this TV show in 2018. That I don't know if you've paid attention but Cobra Kai after going on Netflix in August is was the number one show on Netflix for several months. So it all started with the Karate Kid because the show brings back ruff maggio, William Zabka Martin Cove, and they're continuing the characters on 35 years later and I'm telling you it is really well done well crafted. So not very often do you see a show revisit something and hitting the same notes and Season Three comes out in January. And it has become a crown jewel of Netflix. So you might want to take a look at it.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah.

Jason Connell:

Oh Cobra Kai

Bud S. Smith:

Cobra Kai.

Jason Connell:

They took on the the moniker from the movie of course the Cobra Kai dojo, and it starts to tell that story you you see a different side to Johnny, Johnny Lawrence, played by William Zabka. Get to understand his side more. You see I'm mature Daniel Russo. Obviously, we have no Mr. Miyagi, because Pat Morita passed away, but it's beautifully done, well crafted as a younger generation of Miyagi dough and Cobra Kai students and mixed with the adult versions of the Russo and Lawrence and of course, Martin Cove is amazing. As usual. He was a great villain as I was growing up and it just hated it feared the Cobra Kai dojo. And I mean, it works today, obviously, as I just pointed out because of the shell, but you know what else I noticed from that movie when it came out? It had a huge impact on probably martial arts across the country. In a positive way. It probably made karate dojos open up all over the country.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, well, Ash was supposed to do

Jason Connell:

it. That's exactly right. Yeah.

Bud S. Smith:

Life. I was with Playa La. Hey, I have a relationship and, and that's why

Jason Connell:

I was wanting to meet him. And unfortunately, I didn't, but it's really amazing to hear that you guys had this bond and friendship and that's really special.

Bud S. Smith:

It wasn't a big position. He really wanted a voice. Right? Yeah, actually, he was Oh, he's also come and watch me was that was one of his Jays fish. Yeah.

Jason Connell:

Why everything I read about him he was just a larger than life character and anything he touched turned to gold. It's amazing.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, yeah, everything is there was when I was here I thought, well here's your shirts This is visually a physician and hash and addressing it turns out it all so I remember when we went to Favier we went to Jim for how to favorite in Somerville movie theater. And there was full edge. And when we after that was all over there was clapping. You know, I was out in the lobby waiting for people screaming out there. Just fucking lights. I mean, I thought it was hilarious. So at that point, yeah, he had a hit on his hands. And he proceeded on Mount Sinai, multimillion dollar film. And that was a happy, happy day.

Jason Connell:

I gotta tell you, I was one of those kids. I was 14 when the movie came out. And had I been in that screening, it would have lost my mind. I saw I saw it in Tulsa, Oklahoma, right after it came out. And it was a game changer. For me. It was the right age. It hit me very deeply. And when you're young, and you see that and you're very impressionable, and you see a movie that way that it's about young people dealing with problems and overcoming them and being bullied and rising above the situation. Yeah, it's triumphant. It's something I'll never forget. And the movie has real magic to it.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, right. It there's a lot to it says time?

Jason Connell:

Yes, it did. Yes, it did. And in fact, a wine shop, I read that he was in production on the sequel 10 days after the original movie was released. So yes, he was very aware that he had himself a hit. I hit franchise. And he was exploiting it for sure.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah. But he, he wanted me to stay with him. I was off doing something. It was really a twist. And then, and I had no desire to go on with another head. Right. So that was my problem. Because I own pilot.

Jason Connell:

Well, just to pivot really quickly, not as in depth those the two movies, I really wanted to get in depth. And thank you for your time on those. I just wanted to hit a couple other movies that were big to me. And obviously, it's want to hear just a little bit about but you edited some kind of wonderful, directed by Howard Deutsch and written by John Yes, that was a great film as well coming of age movie, Eric Stoltz. And so what was that experience like?

Bud S. Smith:

Joyce was not worth considering that we're on a set well, acid on the studio lot. But who is shooting? So every day as the day and he was shoot so far when I filmed that people were asleep and 50 cents or something. So that was how I judge who is our how long my favorite actors.

Jason Connell:

So your memory of some kind of wonderful was a ton of film to go through.

Bud S. Smith:

So how wonderful was just film of us. That finished high school? Yeah.

Jason Connell:

Well, I'd had that John Hughes magic about it. I did like it. He wrote it. Obviously he didn't direct it as we've talked about, but it's still enjoyable. It still holds up it really captures that era and the 80s which John Hughes written movies did. And great soundtrack again had a lot of young bands and it obviously it's made for a younger audience this movie was, but I always enjoyed it. But then this led to the next year. It's the only directing credit I saw for you but it was Johnny be good. In 1988 I saw this movie in the theater bud. Jive is yes. Have Anthony Michael Hall Uma Thurman, Robert Downey Jr. What was that like directing this movie?

Bud S. Smith:

As soon as I was down a shear bath on a slope, you know? Way back, way back when. And Julia was just a little boy at that time. And he was one of the films his dad called lb. It was about Jaws, town, and PayPal is a job. You all the jobs on your table, and vice versa. So the other virus is your very first film show if you have a chance. Yeah. Yeah, they say for something of it. Say hello, look. It still holds up.

Jason Connell:

But being a director on this film, did you enjoy that role? Meaning you had always been around these other directors, you had been an editor, associate producer, lots of different things. But this is the first time I'm assuming that you are. You're helming the whole thing. Did you enjoy the job? Was it a fun, enjoyable experience? Or was it just a nightmare?

Bud S. Smith:

It really was because this is I asked this fellow Haitians. And I had worked with a live person before. And that may have have do whatever I want. And show I will locations for about a month. And I chasis is my background is young hedge. I like to say Shire. And that was my base. I shot the main film. And that was all good. I mean, it was all good for me. So I put it all together, I realized that we didn't have a great film, we had an OK film. And we have fun, have fun. And we preview it. And I didn't have a lot of different things I have I just pretty much has the same material. And I had a shoot and a shooting last time within a certain amount of money. And it was okay. I mean I I asked to do it. Yeah,

Jason Connell:

well, I was such a fan of Hall and Downey Jr. And they had teamed up prior and weird science. And then both of them went on to be on Saturday Night Live. And Hall was like the youngest cast member on that show at the time. And I remember wanting to love it. And I remember just liking it, you know, I thought oh, it's enjoyable. I like them. And they're fun. But you're right. It didn't have this day in power. The stakes weren't as high. But it was a lot of these kinds of movies, a fun little comedy in the 80s. And that had to be a lot of fun to do. And then obviously you went on to do sell for more and I just want to mention one more because there's a tie in here but was dark man 1990. The Samory Yeah, were you editor supervising editor. And of course, the lead dark man was Larry Drake, born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. And he spoke but I swear to you at my high school graduation, he did the commencement speech, Mary Drake rest in peace. We lost him too early, unfortunately. But yeah, that movie was kind of a big deal. And Sam Raimi went on to become a very prolific director. Any good takeaways, thoughts on dark man

Bud S. Smith:

says, I wasn't on to film the shot. I was on vacation. I was up in loughrea just doing nothing. And I had this call from my agent, saying that sanctuary wherever you found his film called Jarvan. And so I went back sale, I go back, and I finished a film on Tuesday. And it was just a piece of shit. In my opinion, so I wasn't working. So I help. I'll say is this on? And I did. And I was four months of whatever. And yeah, and the shapes are Favier and leave Favier and wells are really well. Yeah, Julio was really happy with the fact that I did. That was kind of a thing. For me. I went on vacation for I don't know what he's done since then. But nothing to my knowledge.

Jason Connell:

After dark man he did a great film called Army of Darkness, which I really enjoyed. A simple plan came out 98 So army darkness was 92 a simple plan. and is a great movie. They needed Spider Man, Spider Man to Spider Man three than Drag Me To Hell. So he became a pretty big director. And it all probably started or hinged on the success of dark man, which was a hit. And I remember seeing the theater and enjoying it so bad you probably saved the day because at first kind of dark man would have probably tanked at the box office.

Bud S. Smith:

Well, that was my Sam Raimi.

Jason Connell:

That's great. You know, I just realized I have to bring up one last movie. I skip it at the top because we were talking freakin and if I'd be sad if I didn't at least mention it because it is an iconic movie. And that is Flashdance. which came out in 1983. I can't. Flashdance. You won a BAFTA. And you were nominated for an Oscar. So that's two nominations, exorcist and finished dance. So what was that? Like? Were you on set with Flashdance? Or were you just

Bud S. Smith:

very rock climber was with fire and hitting home? I was doing South County and his parents have a meal with me and the USA. And so I was at a hotel wherever. And I eventually who answer and it was just Hi. I have no idea what to say. I didn't know what this author to ask about. And Vijay and I have worked. And so he's trusted raise your what? What I used to do. And so I signed on that I wanted to pitch both the shoot. And I was in New York. There's in New York. And I was when I say this is shit. Yeah, I wish I would have been that I could. Because it was never supposed to be a wonderful dancer. They have a topcoat and I realized that she had been asked and and and anyway, that was a sigh of flesh. It

Jason Connell:

is sure day Yeah, Jennifer bills are coming out roll. It's one scene of course the maniac dance number. So you're the editor. What was that like putting this iconic scene together? Did you know you had magic in the bottle?

Bud S. Smith:

Diving into say, Phil Shifen way I'm gonna shoot it there was done and her loss. And her house that was showed off on a show of her foot laughing her feet and Chaffin and then I answer, show the full body and it has to be helpful for his stunt double. The dance level was really right. And Jennifer, it was only when she shook her head and her hair flat back and forth. That was about all Genesis. And Zastrow was as a whole. So that was flashing?

Jason Connell:

Yeah, we also had that what a feeling song. And the movie, also a huge song. But a lot of music, a lot of dancing, a lot of choreography. But yeah, it worked. And it's held up for this many years later. So good. I can't help but think that you had something huge to do with these movies beyond these great directors and actors and crew. You played a role in these movies success without a doubt.

Bud S. Smith:

Yeah, well, I said so. Shoot, good job. Not to toot my own horn. It says I was brought up during documentaries. And then for less scientific issues and the documentaries. Re education of Washington zoo was filmed. If you have no sweat, no, nothing. Just a bunch of foods Exactly. Was my background.

Jason Connell:

So as far as directors you worked with, I didn't get into cat people but you work with Paul Schrader and of course we talked about Appleton and you are great friends with Friedkin. And so who was the most interesting director you work with or the toughest director to work with?

Bud S. Smith:

Well, I said belly face. He was a most imaginative director, his head said and maybe read and he was in it. town, like the way he shot a lot, especially when you're in Mexico. There's no chaussures town. The lives just shot. And he was just great for probably an hour was with him in documentaries. And we went off and five years later, we hooked up and I had Schleyer run with him.

Jason Connell:

So that was Do you guys still talk today? Oh, yeah,

Bud S. Smith:

I mean, I'll talk to him now who's his true father knows

Jason Connell:

he's still working. He's still working

Bud S. Smith:

with Shell buzz alive. So that's about all I can say.

Jason Connell:

Absolutely. Absolutely. So but how do you spend your days you watch anything interesting on TV now?

Bud S. Smith:

Kind of fish oh, so spirit that I had had ushered in my stroke. And I had operations and I don't know I have I shop there has a cut my tongue in half. And my jaw has all been the place. And I've just been an old filmer.

Jason Connell:

Wow. Well, congrats on beating cancer. When did that all happen?

Bud S. Smith:

Almost four years ago, three years ago for sure. Wow. And when I saw hit me, I had no idea who I was air for. I didn't have a lot. It was a delay phase and it put me in touch with UCLA and UCLA has a best surgeons. And when I got mad at UCLA they told me a pipe and patch me up. So I'm still alive because of that, but that was Billy Friesen got me feel like

Jason Connell:

as a pain or do you not have

Bud S. Smith:

no plan? I just sent chocolate. And I hate it. They don't have control of my jaw. And so I can't shoe because I kind of am Ashok

Jason Connell:

babies. Yeah, super shakes are. Yeah. Okay. You have a great fighting spirit. You sound great. How young are you? If I may ask?

Bud S. Smith:

A 383. Wow. It's awesome.

Jason Connell:

That's awesome.

Bud S. Smith:

1935. So it's been a long time. I've done a lot in my life.

Jason Connell:

You sure haven't. You may not have become a pro racecar driver. But we're all better for the career that you did choose sanity. I want to thank you for everything you've done. And not to mention, you've given me more than an hour of your time. And it was a real pleasure. Really, my pleasure. Thank you man. Take care.

Bud S. Smith:

All right. Bye.

Jason Connell:

So thank you so much for listening and please be sure to subscribe to the let's talk movies podcast as well as the let's talk movies YouTube Live Channel. You can also really help us by giving the show a five star rating on Apple podcast. And for all you listeners that enjoy sharing your thoughts you can leave us a review on Apple podcast, send us a direct message or post a comment on any let's talk movies social media platform. We also highly recommend checking out our other podcast and visiting just curious media.com

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