|Kit West was working as camera assistant filming documentaries and shooting commercials for
different televison advertising companies before he got in touch with Les Bowie.
Kit: "There was a call out for a company called 'Anglo-Scottish Pictures'.
They wanted a cameraman to work in there special effects department.
I applied for the job and got the job."
The 'Studio' at Addlestone actually was an old cinema. Les Bowie was doing matte paintings
and models there for feature films.
Soon Les Bowie decided that he needed larger facilities and took over the old studio of Gerry Anderson,
the 'A.P.Films' studio at Ipswich Road on the Slough Trading Estate.
It was an old warehouse but with much dedication and passion 'Bowie Films Ltd' became a glorious 'Effects House'.
Kit learned so much from Les Bowie and for many years he was doing all kind of special effects,
photographic effects, models, etc, etc, under the 'Bowie Films' banner.
Kit:" In those days we did everything ... and he taught us how to do everything."
Kit West talking about his wonderful years with Les Bowie in
|During his time in Spain as SFX Supervisor for different productions Kit still
worked as cinematographer for Les Bowie. When Les calls Kit was there!
Between Kits Almeria productions 'Play Dirty' and 'El Condor' there was the adventure in Malta.
There is little information about the days on Malta available. I could only find e few references and
photos about the Oakmont production 'Mosquito Suqadron', a low budget war movie.
The main film of the Malta days for Bowie actually was the million dollar comic epic 'The Adventures of Gerard'.
Perhaps 'Gerard' made it all possible for 'Oakmont' and they were able to save some not inconsiderable costs
(hotel bills, flight tickets etc). But I don't know the exact production days, so this is just my guess.
Anyway, the model miniature effects of both films were made by exactly the same Bowie crew:
Les Bowie, Kit West, Brian Johnson and Neil Swan.
Bowie tinted and painted the photographic backings (see photo) for the 'Mosquito Squadron' model miniature shots.
Kit on Malta: "We needed a clear background and a clear horizon."
They found the ideal place on the plot of the Malta Film Studios.
Today it is called the Mediterranean Film Studios and is very well known for their 2 great water tanks.
|Filming a model miniature against Bowies backing for 'Mosquito Squadron' on Malta.
Kit: "We built a lot of these models in England and took them to Malta."
This one here is a half Mosquito Bomber. The camera is fixed on the cockpit position and in the movie
it will look as if the Pilot is looking out of the cockpit window.
There is a little goof in the movie. As a Mosquito bomber crashes you can clearly see his shadow
on the photographic backing!
|There was virtually no information available about 'Bowie Films' work for 'Adventures of Gerard'.
No one has the film on its list of credits.
An often overlooked film, long forgotten, that made me curious.
I was able to get some information and photographic material together.
See my 'Adventures of Gerard' Story here: Castle model miniature.
|Kit West and Jack Wallis at the 'Bowie Films Ltd' Studio, 1969, ready to start the adventure trip to Almeria
in southern spain for the 'El Condor' show.
Kit: "Les Bowie always taught me something, he taught me something which I think is really important.
He said, when you go on location Kit, never ever go entirely on your own ... always have somebody you
can talk it over during the evening ..., I always remember that!"
Kits right hand on most of his spanish jobs was his buddy at Bowie Films, Jack Wallis.
|Jack Wallis on location in Almeria for 'Play Dirty' (with Kit, Terry Schubert,...).|
|'Special Thanks' to Kit West and Dennis Lowe for their help!|