Herk Harvey

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Herk Harvey
Herk Harvey
Worked like:
June 03, 1924
April 03, 1996
Birth Name:
Harold Arnold Harvey
Position in rating:
Some Facts
Often collaborated with John Clifford.
Interviewed in Tom Weaver's "Science Fiction Stars and Horror Heroes" (McFarland & Co., 2006).
Received a lifetime achievement award from a film institute in Kansas in 1989.
The Centron studio, the company he worked for in Lawrence, is now home to the University of Kansas' film department.
Directed over 400 educational, industrial and documentary films made by Centron Productions in Lawrence, Kansas. His real first name was Harold, but he used his nickname "Herk" on all of his work.
Personal Quotes
[in 1990, after being asked if he was happy that Carnival of Souls (1962) was his claim to fame] I have to say yes and no. When you work someplace for 35 years making educational and industrial films, and the one feature that you make is really what you're known for--a film on which you spent a total of maybe five weeks--that to me doesn't seem right. Some of the things I'm much more proud of, we did in the industrial area. We shot hour-long films in two days, musicals with people like Eddie Albert and Ed Ames and so on. Some of those with skits and original music and all that, are really kind of interesting. And I think that many of the other films that we made in the educational and industrial area really had something to say. Yet, as you say, I'm known for "Carnival of Souls".
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[In 1990, about how he first came up with the idea for Carnival of Souls (1962)]l I was on location in California shooting an industrial film for Centron, and decided to travel home by car. Driving back I was passing Salt Lake, and I saw for the first time an abandoned amusement park called Saltair. Well, with the sun setting and with the lake in the background, this was the weirdest-looking place I'd ever seen! I stopped the car and walked about a half or three-quarters of a mile to the place, and it was spooky indeed. And I thought, "Gee, what a tremendous location!"--because it's completely isolated from everything and everybody. I came back and talked to John Clifford, who was a writer at Centron and a co-worker, and told him that I needed a horror script that would revolve around Saltair. So basically in talking we came up with some of the general plot, and he wrote the script in a matter of a couple weeks.
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[about his days at Centron] I took a vacation and shot Carnival of Souls (1962) in two weeks. I've been to festivals and people always ask, "How come you made only one film?", and I say, "Hell, I've made over 400".
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