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  #1  
Old 06-25-20, 09:09 PM
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Ernie Martin Ernie Martin is offline
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Movie with lots of Skymasters -- 2 shot down

Wasp Network is out on Netflix with lots of Skymasters, including the 2 shot down by Cuban Migs.

I had been told of the film, but expected an amateurish effort. Instead, it's a first-class, engrossing movie with famous movie stars, including PenÚlope Cruz.

It tells the story in the 1990s of Brothers to the Rescue, the organization that flew numerous Skymasters out of Miami to help rafters escaping Cuba. It was formed to aid those riding these rickety rafts often made of plywood on tire tubes after the death of some, including children, from exposure and dehydration. The airplanes would patrol the Florida Straits dropping water, food and a radio to the rafts, and alerting U.S. Coast Guard to render assistance.

At considerable risk, their mission also included flying into Cuban airspace dropping anti-government leaflets over Havana. On the last of those trips, 2 of the 3 Skymasters were shot down by missiles from Cuban Migs, a scene faithfully recreated in the movie.

As it turned out, at least one of the Brothers to the Rescue pilots was a Cuban spy, part of a network of spies -- the Wasp Network -- informing Cuba not only of these activities but also of the activities of other anti-communist groups mounting isolated armed attacks in Cuba. Eventually the FBI caught them all.

The whole movie and the story line is well done and worth watching*. If not to your liking, just fast forward to the flying scenes.

Ernie Martin

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* I'm biased. I was born in Cuba, came to the U.S. as a minor right after Castro took over, did my undergraduate and graduate studies here (MS Engineering, Caltech) and have lived here for 60 years -- 37 of those in Miami. In fact, my 3 Skymasters over the past 20 years have been based at KTMB, from where the Brothers to the Rescue launched their missions.
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  #2  
Old 06-26-20, 08:20 AM
JAG JAG is offline
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Movie

You had me at "PenÚlope Cruz".

Jeff
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  #3  
Old 06-26-20, 09:28 AM
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Ernie Martin Ernie Martin is offline
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Actually, Jeff, another equally beautiful woman is in the film. Ana de Armas is engaged to Ben Affleck and appears in her birth day suit with unforgettable features.

Ernie
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Old 06-26-20, 10:28 AM
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hharney hharney is offline
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more movie info

http://www.337skymaster.com/messages...ighlight=movie
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Herb R Harney
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Flying the same Skymaster for 43 years
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  #5  
Old 06-26-20, 09:47 PM
GAdams GAdams is offline
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Hey That's me and my airplane

Actually it was. My Skymaster and I were hired to make the trip to Havana from Hollywood FL KHWO along with two others and work on the film. They used my airplane for all the close shots and it was the lead airplane in a lot of the scenes. Mine was the one that escaped and didn't get shot down. N4811X.
We were there for three nights and worked long days. Most of the cafe scenes in the movie were shot right there in the old terminal in Havana. The film crew were great. There were three different languages being spoken at the same time. English, Spanish of course and French. The production company was a French concern. Trying to shoot a scene with the language differences and the background noise of the departing jets was a challenge.
I was the body double to the star Edgar Ramirez for the flying scenes. They say I was the whitest guy on the set yet they picked me to do his flying. I'd post pictures but I've never figured out how to get them small enough to upload.
An interesting thing was the camera ship was Raul Castro's Airforce One, flown by a Two Star General. The same one in the film that approved the shoot down. They say that's the only helicopter on the island they could get flying. Cuba's Airforce is in pretty bad shape.
To All and you too Ernie enjoy the movie. It's amazing that the three of us Skymaster owners could assemble three nearly identical airplanes, which are 50 years old and keep them flying throughout the production. It's a tribute to the airplane's durability and to Ranko and David both fine mechanics and part of our airplane group. The trip to Havana and being in an airplane major film was one of those bucket list things I didn't know I had. A great experience.
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Old 06-27-20, 10:30 AM
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Thanks, George, for the insight.

Ernie
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  #7  
Old 06-29-20, 05:51 PM
MSGP MSGP is offline
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WASP Network

Flying N86071 into Cuba was an interesting and enlightening experience. Thank God for the USA.
Also thanks to Bill Crews for organizing the group to participate in this once in a lifetime experience.
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