Director Michael Bay to Blow Up Chrislip in Transformers 3
Few people today remember that Chrislip was once known as the Hollywood of Northern Michigan. From the thirties to the fifties a series of now forgotten movies were filmed here. Some of Chrislip’s cinematic highlights include:
- A Frankenstein Christmas (1938), in which Boris Karloff reprised the role that made him famous. In this gem, the monster hides from angry townspeople by posing as a department store Santa who answers each child’s wish with an affirmative grunt. Critics of the day bemoaned the film’s lack of realism, but, answered Karloff, “the problem a physicist would have with a monster in a sleigh pulled by eight magic reindeers isn’t necessarily the monster.” Speaking of the man in red…
- In Santa Claus vs. Nazis (1943), St. Nick saves democracy by giving Adolph Hitler the choo choo train that he wanted as a child. Hitler reveals his heart at last by turning Auschwitz into a toy factory in which Jewish prisoners make presents that Santa Claus delivers to little Christian boys and girls throughout the world.
- Aarrgh! (1957) was a musical about a teenage Neanderthal boy whose parents want him to date the hairy girl in the next cave. Meanwhile, he’s in love with the daughter of the Homosapien family that just arrived from Africa.
Seeking to recreate our town’s past success, Mayor Howard Presnell instituted a tax credit to lure filmmakers away from non-Hollywood movie locales like Toronto and Vancouver. He’s reportedly willing to toss in a twenty of his own to seal the deal.
“Look, I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve never seen any of these movies,” admitted Presnell. “Nor would I want to. But here in Chrislip, there are lots of derelict buildings that director Michael Bay could blow up in Transformers 3. No one would notice a thing. And we’ve got plenty of unemployed men and women who’d make perfect extras for a zombie movie. Some of them seem to have been rehearsing all of their life.”
The program has resulted in celebrity sightings around town as actors and directors scout potential movie locations. In fact, Sean Penn, considering the title role in the sequel to the 1974 horror classic I Dismember Mama, was spotted eating a pasty at Kate’s Café last week. Things went well until a local couple refused to take the temperamental star’s picture.
“We Chrislipians are known for respecting the privacy of others,” said Kate. “This can be off-putting to someone used to being hounded by paparazzi. Apparently, when a ‘big-time movie star’ says that he doesn’t want his picture taken, you’re not getting a tip until you take the damn picture.”