The Pittsburgh Movie

Today's P-G carries this note about Carl Kurlander's documentary project about Pittsburgh"
"Tale [of Two Cities]," which could be completed this summer, has a subplot about Kurlander's journey from Hollywood back to the 'Burgh, where his dermatologist offered him money to make a personal and Pittsburgh film. His contribution was supplemented by others who wanted to see the city's comeback told in the style of "Super Size Me" or "Roger & Me."

Kurlander and cameraman Mark Knobil started filming, appropriately enough, in January 2005 with Steelers tailgaters and have documented such Pittsburgh notables as Joanne Rogers and David Newell from "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood," Franco Harris, Dr. Thomas Starzl, Teresa Heinz Kerry and regular folks cruising the rivers or celebrating the Super Bowl.

The website for the project is at


19 Responses to "The Pittsburgh Movie"

Rustbelter said... 2/24/2006 10:11 PM

Here is a classic Pittsburgh theme.
"You have no idea how such an apprehension weighs on the sufferer's mind, and how difficult- how almost impossible- it is, for him to force himself to utter a word upon the topic that oppresses him." Chapter 19, Tale of Two Cities.

Pittsburgh is an oppressive place.

"In 1907, Pittsburgh was the fifth largest city in the country and had experienced rapid industrial growth and massive immigration. The city was particularly interesting to the researchers because of the perception that industrialization had been so rapid that living and working conditions could not keep pace. Progressive reforms taking place in other American cities were hindered in Pittsburgh by the oppressive power of both the industrialists and the political machine." Meryl Nadel, DSW
Iona College

Some things have changed, but it is still oppressive and not progressive.

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 10:28 PM

"God and man and nature,--whosoever you will,--have draughted a mighty and irregular industrial community at the headwaters of the Ohio; they have splashed, as Kipling puts it, at a ten league canvas with brushes of comet's hair." The Pittsburgh Survey 1909

Then: But the people, rather than the product or the setting, concern us.
Modern Pittsburgh: The region is a product. Pittsburgh is a brand.

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 10:30 PM

CMU is Googlizing Pittsburgh. As Mr. Frick said, see yinz in hell!

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 10:39 PM

Our presentation must frankly lack the mechanical fidelity and inclusiveness of the engineer's negative; but we can endeavor to bring out in relief the organic truth of the situation by giving body and living color, as we see them, to what would otherwise be but the thin white tracings of a town.

Grandpap did some drafting back in the days when Pittsburgh made something, was something. Today it's all changed. They want to talk about engineering today as if we are going to actually build what is in the plan with a brand. Making a movie sounds like a better plan.

Rustbelter said... 2/24/2006 10:53 PM

Post World War to War on Terror Pittsburgh: 30 second history

Some things have changed, but it is still oppressive and not progressive.

This can be expanded on. Pittsburgh progress started to fizzle when the Mellons went into the shadow government business with the Allegheny Conference.

It was downhill from there. Tech became Carnegie Mellon, Westinghouse would replace bus drivers with Pie in the Skybus and the new regional thinking would replace profit driven thinking as we acted our way along the roaring Ronnie 80's, by the way the plants are all now closed guys. Want a wish sandwich? We got new DoD programs at CMU and instead of drunk sailors, it's drunk co-eds causing the problems.

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 10:59 PM

Don't forget the White Paper Richard Florida Creative Class era when we were treated to mind altering ideas in the most cult of personality spell casting Clintonian fashion of the day. Everybody hire a lawyer or get a shrink.

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 11:02 PM

He should call the movie Knaves and Fools or Super Downsize Me.

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 11:11 PM

Don't forget the Pittsburgh Kid. He's in jail because somebody shot his girlfriend on Island Ave. in McKees Rocks at the BP station. He was really inside warming up a hot dog in the microwave oven getting ready for a drug test, according to a buddy down in the bottoms.

Anonymous said... 2/24/2006 11:14 PM

Pittsburgh is proof that evolution is a crock. If natural selection worked Pittsburgh would be a ghost town. Look at city council if you don't believe this.

Amos_thePokerCat said... 2/25/2006 10:53 PM

"Super Downsize Me" Ha, now that is funny.

Hope about "Andrew and Me", "Comeback"(?) in the style of Roger and Me. Ah, PIT, the only city that can look up to Flint, MI.

Progressive? Come on, PIT is one of the most left of center cities given the lack of minorities. Look at all the IB whining.

But it is natural selection. There are those that will never leave. It is alot of entrepreneurs that have left, hence that lack of serious startups.

rustbelter said... 2/26/2006 8:12 AM

Here are some possible Pittsburgh movie titles and why.

1. Honey I shrunk the Burgh. Small minds think alike.
2. The Pittsburgh that saved the fish. Yinz should return the favor. There is also a feast.
3. In (insert your favorite mayors name here) we trust. The burgh doesn't need God, when yinz got a mayor like that.
4. Inferno of the three Andies. Three Andies meet in hell.
5. Planet of the Grapes. Pittsburgh Brews it's own wine. Port of Pittsburgh wine is good stuff.
6. Strip Trek: Looking for imported cheese where yinz never went before. Could also be a comic strip.
7. Frick 'n Frack 'n aght. A history of coke, from Frick to Flaherty.
8. Sleepless in the Northside. Because the Stillers beat the hell out of Seattle.
9. License to steal-Rise of the casino class. Agent 066 builds a new arena for yinz after the state issues a license to steal under Act 47.
10. Act forty seven land

rustbelter said... 2/26/2006 8:26 AM

Act forty seven land
Based on Copland
Scene One: Mayor Bob orders all the police to live dahntahn. After years of confusion, the city finds a new developer for the empty Mellon Bank-Lord & Taylor store. Mayor Bob declares it's a new day in Picksburgh and begins converting a small dahntahn store into a new Mayor Bobs Beef Jerky shop on Forbes. Bill Ben signs an agreement with the city to open up a Big Bens Beef Jerky shop on Fifth Ave. Yinz can rent a car for a hour and a room for an hour, as free parking comes to Act fourty seven land dahntahn.

rustbelter said... 2/26/2006 8:31 AM

My sources at city hall, who can only use the Internet for 3 minutes at a time, 10 times a day report that the city is going to rebuild Fort Pitt and it will be operated by Arab Clowns and be designed to look like the former Syria Mosque in Oakland. Allegheny Countyland Security has signed off on the deal.

rustbelter said... 2/26/2006 8:38 AM

My sources at city hall, who can only use the Internet for 3 minutes at a time, 10 times a day report that Pittsburgh city schools will now have rifle teams sponsored by Pepsi for a new generation. One student said that's great 'n aght. I can't wait to get my new rifle and we're getting new Pepsi machines in on the our school.

rustbelter said... 2/26/2006 9:06 AM

My sources at city hall, who can only use the Internet for 3 minutes at a time, 10 times a day report that a Cyril Wecht aid intimidated witnesses with lawyers, guns and money. A hanging is being planned for next month at the Kaufmans clock dahntahn. My sources also say that Dick Cheney will be in town that day for a Duquesne Club fundraiser, followed by a wild goose chase and duck hunt at the Rolling Rock Club organized by Dick Scaife.

Hamburgler said... 2/26/2006 9:16 AM

Super Downsize Me

Dick Scaife, with a team of crack Trib reporters eats at McDonalds over in East Liberty for a month to see what will happen. The Honzman at KDKA agrees to broadcast live from the East Liberty McDonalds all month. Mayor Bob gets recalled and the city repubilcans dress Joe Weinroth up as Mayor McCheese and he wins in a recall election on a platform of 99 cent city budget items.

hamburgler said... 2/26/2006 9:24 AM

Super Downsize Me

Mayor McCheese and Dan Onorato have a joint city-cahnty meeting and appoint Ronald McDonald to run Port Authority.
McDonald announces that all buses will now use old fast food oil as fuel.
The Port Authority also announces a new McDonalds under the Allegheny River in the new subway to the airport.

hamburgler said... 2/26/2006 9:31 AM

Super Downsize Me

Dick Cheney shoots Mayor McCheese at the Rocking Roll Club in Market Square, Pittsburgh. Cheney orders Jim Roddey to post the bad news on his blog so everybody knows. Dick Scaife is outraged and now weights 250 pounds from eating Quarter Pounders all month. FOX News starts a Pittsburgh 10 p.m news show again and interviews Dick Cheney in Pittsburgh.

rustbelter said... 2/26/2006 10:06 AM

Yinz had Jake and the Fatman for your viewing enjoyment. Now with the magic of television and a bit of rustbelt blogging innovation, we bring yinz Cyril and the Fatman. Cyril Wechts lawyer has been eating at the dahntahn McDonald for six months and has been reportedly harrasing the employees, after finding pickles on his cheesburger. One employee at McDonalds, who wishes not to be identified said Wechts lawyer threatened to spill his Shammrock shake on the floor on St. Patricks day if he found pickles on his cheeseburger again. Wecht is under investigation for violations of the Pittsburgh Patriot Act and ordering French fries and not covering them with Heinz ketchup 'n aght. Wecht is out on bond and could be placed on work release at McDonalds if convicted. We'll keep yinz posted!

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