Florida was America's film capital until the Puritanical residents of Jacksonville ran those industry heathens out to California in the 1920s. But Miami knows how to treat those denizens of debauchery, which is why they keep coming back to Miami to film movies. In Celluloid City, we spotlight some of those classics shot right in our own backyards.
Some trilogies are taken very seriously. For example, Lord of the Rings and Star Wars drive earnest fan boys and spectacled nerd girls into fits of fan fiction. Then you have three-peats like X-Men or The Matrix, which might not breed droves of fanatical devotees, but manage to capture a mass audience thanks to the blockbuster factor. But once in a Valar Aulë moon, we come across a movie franchise that begs the question: Who thought that greenlighting seven Police Academy movies was a good idea?
Somewhere in the middle, resting on its little piggy hooves, there's the Porky's trilogy. The original popped up in 1981, followed a year later by Porky's II: The Next Day and Porky's Revenge in 1984. The movies were based on director Bob Clark's memories of his high school years in Florida and all three were shot in Miami.
The Porky's franchise is basically an unselfconscious exploitation of young, plump girls and the teenage boys who will do anything to access their lady parts. And we mean access by any means, including drilling peepholes into the walls of the women's locker room. Of course, there are also some misadventures and a couple of cartoonish villains, such as the titular Porky, a local strip club owner. Think American Pie, only three times as sophomoric, twice as funny, and set in the 1950s.
Here are the boys up to no good with a very young and horny Kim Cattrall:
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Big parts of the Porky's trilogy were shot at Miami Senior High School and the old Miami Beach Senior High School. The Miami High building is still standing and in use, but the Beach High location is now part of the Fienberg-Fisher K-8 Center on 14th Street and Drexel Avenue. For Porky's II, Greynolds Park stood in for the Everglades while a plant nursery on Old Cutler Road was transformed into a cemetery for the graveyard scenes.
Veteran actor Rod Ball, who played Steve in both Porky's and Porky's II: The Next Day, recently told Cultist about a prank pulled on him by the cast and crew while shooting off Old Cutler Road:
"I was in full ghoul makeup and doing repeated takes popping out of a grave. Bob Clark asked me to do one more take. This was about five in the morning," Ball said. "I got back in the coffin and I waited and waited, and waited, and finally realized that it was a practical joke and popped out of the grave to the laughter of the entire gathered cast and crew. I immediately started chasing Bob around as the ghoul until he finally called for a wrap!"