Quotes in green are statements by Paul Marco
"Plan 9 From Outer Space" is the second movie of Ed Wood's Cult Trilogy with Paul Marco as the lovable police officer first introduced in "Bride of the Monster". This is the best known and most loved of all the Ed Wood films. This anti-masterpiece has such odd dialogue and ridiculous special effects that it is actually surreal in an endearing, charming way. "Plan 9" Synopsis: Reports of flying saucers and mysterious deaths terrify residents living near a cemetery. In outer space three aliens (dressed in silk skating skirts decorated to look like "space suits") conspire to destroy the Earth with a "solarmanite bomb" before the warlike Earthlings destroy the whole universe with atomic (nuclear) testing. They institute "Plan 9" to resurrect the Earths dead, who the aliens can control. The Alien Ruler (played by John "Bunny" Breckenridge: who inspired the novel/movie "Myra Breckenridge" starring Raquel Welch and Mae West) sends his technical assistants Tanna (played by Joanna Lee) and Eros (played by Dudley Manlove- are you ready for that actors name) back to Earth, so the spaceship returns to the cemetery causing a doomed ghoul to appear at the Trent home. Colonel Kelton attempts to stop the ghoul by emptying a full clip into the monster but these efforts are futile. The lawmen search the cemetery and succeed in entering the saucer after it lands. Inside the saucer Eros tells them "Its because of men like you that all must be destroyed- headstrong, violent and with no use of the mind God gave you".
Jeff Trent (Gregory Walcott) asks "You talk of God?" and Eros
replies "You also think it impossible that we too might think of
God". During a struggle delicate instruments are smashed and flying
sparks cause a fire while the lawmen escape and Tanna rushes to get
the saucer into flight. On the ground everyone watches the spectacular
explosion of the flaming, flying saucer in mid air. The Earth is saved
for the moment and Criswell ends the picture saying "God help us
in the future". Gosh- it seems so deep and spiritual doesnt it?
Maybe Criswell read lots of sci-fi novels or envisioned the headlines
from todays news!
Stage and Screen Actor legend Bela Lugosi was evidently fond of Wood and his faithful repertory company when he agreed to star in Wood's "Tomb of the Vampire". With only a sketch of a script, Ed began filming Bela around Tor Johnsons home in the San Fernando Valley. Tragically after only two minutes of useable film had been shot, Bela Lugosi died. So did "Tomb of the Vampire"- but not that two minutes of footage. It became the basis of "Plan 9". There wasn't enough film on Lugosi to make an entire picture so director Wood called on his wifes chiropractor Tom Mason (who was a foot taller than the late Lugosi) to double for the dead Hungarian star. For much of the picture Mason looms around holding a cape in front of his face to mask the fact that he looked nothing like Lugosi. To get the production finished Wood needed funding and got a group of religious fanatics to finance the film under one condition- that the entire cast be baptised! "Tor Johnson was so fat that they needed a swimming pool so thats how we were all baptised. We couldn't drink or smoke on the set either- it was awful."
The production values of "Plan 9" have become a subject of serious study. An example is the cockpit set: There are no controls or instruments and the cabin door is a shower curtain. "We had to cut some corners like using hubcaps for flying saucers suspended with fishing line and when they burned in mid air we used paper plates- things like that. Almost every scene was a master shot with very few close ups, also Ed would use the same shots over and over again. Sometimes he shot day-for-night and forgot to have it processed. I'd walk in bright sunlight into a graveyard where it should be pitch dark and the gravestones were made of cardboard that would flop in the wind." There's patio furniture in the bedroom, a cop car that mysteriously lost lights and sirens, a square interior for a round saucer and wrinkled "dirt" in the cemetery.
In 1980 when the Medved Brothers named "Plan 9 From Outer Space" the winner in a poll declaring it "The Worst Movie Ever Made" they gave it a NEW LIFE- perhaps immortality. "Plan 9 From Outer Space" won the "Golden Turkey Award" for being the worst picture ever made. "Plan 9" was sold for unlimited play to TV in the early 60's and was shown every three weeks in New York for the next 10 years. "Ed called 'Plan 9' his perfect little gem. He was a real charmer and treated his crew like family...then Paul said Vampira (Maila Nurmi) only did it because she needed the two hundred bucks." Many of the stories surrounding the alternative classic "Plan 9 From Outer Space" were dramatized in Tim Burton's Academy Award winning film "Ed Wood".
I bet you didn't know this..."PLAN 9" COLORIZED VERSION...here's the video box cover. Paul said to add it for avid collectors.