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THE CINEMATIC OLYMPICS                                 A Reflection by Denzil Howson

              They came from far and near- their ages ranged from 16 to 60.

              They all had one thing in common -a 16mrn movie camera.

              They were part of the vast contingent of cameramen assembled to cover the Melbourne 1956 Olympics.

              1n  1956 portable "back-pack" video-tape cameras and recorders were only a gleam in a technician's eye.

              Apart from the live television coverage from the Channel 2, CbaJmel7 and Channel 9 cameras based in fixed locations at
              the main stadium at the Melbourne cricket ground and perhaps one other location, the only way to cover other events was
              on  16mm film rushed to the labs late in the afternoon, and hurriedly processed and roughly edited in time for the 7 o'clock
              bulletins and late night news-services.

              So it was obvious that with limited outside broadcast facilities, the film contingent was vital to a worthwhile coverage of
              the many events taking place simultaneously at widely divergent locations.

              But where did this army of cameramen originate? The answer is anywhere and everywhere.

                                                "An Olympic Four-Some"
              This is a potted version of the personal stories offour of those tmsung Olympic champions who I knew well.

              Let's begin with Vic Pye.

              Vic  Pye was a  16mm  enthusiast who  shot  thousands  of feet at  the  MCG  and olher locations,  and  continued on  as a
              freelance movie cameraman at Channel Nine, where amongst other assignments he shot several of the Graham Kennedy
              "In Melbourne Tonjght" comedy films.

              And during the 1957 V.F.L.  Football Season, Vic Pye and myself set up a small enterprise filming the VFL Match of the
              Day on each Saturday and supplying the film  and associated "wild" sound track to  the Centw·y Theatrettc in Swanston
              Street each Monday. Vic knew something about footbaU and shot some good material.

              I knew nothing about footbaU (and still don't), so my narration was comprised of vague generalities which [researched*
              from the accmmt of the match in Saturday 11ight's Herald.  * For "researched", read "stole'' !

              The sound track was recorded and running wild on a Pyrox Magitape recorder and was usually hopelessly out of sync with
              the film.

              The Century Theah·ette suffered this bizarre farce for about six weeks, then gracefully withdrew their support.

                                                    A Meticulous Artist
              Wl1en  Vic  Pye moved on, his  place was taken by Ed. (Bob) Lord, who covered many of the Olympic events, and later
             joined Channel Nine as a news cameraman, and filmed several of the Graham Kennedy Comedy Filius.
              Ed Lord was the most meticulous and artistic cameraman I ever knew.

              He later moved to Channel 2, where he became one of their top documentary cameramen and producers.
              From filming "flying" athletes in  1956 at the M.C.G., in  1958, he was filming "fliers" of a different kind, U1e native birds
              of our forests, creating documentaries not only for the A.B. C., but also for a Disney Wild Life Series.

                                              From Luftwaffe To Ultra-Light
              On the subject of versatility one of the most diverse Olympic Games  freelancers who worked at Melbourne's Channel
              Nine was Frank Zepter. Frank was a Geiman.

              In the second world war, Frank flew Messerschmitts, and trained other young Germans to fly them for the Luftwaffe.
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