Valley Interests Behind ‘Pioneertown’ Film Spa
San Fernando Valley financial million dollar resort “Pioneertown,” scheduled early October on a 13,000 acre tract near 29 Palms. Dick Curtis, president of the venture, announced yesterday.
Included in nineteen majority shareholders for the project are Karl and High Farr of Burbank, players in “Sons of the Pioneers,” and Roy Rogers, Republic Pictures western star. Others are Tim Spencer, Bob Nolan, Pat Brady and Lloyd Perryman of the Pioneers’ sextet, Russel Hayden, Tommy Carr, Republic producer, and Frank McDonald, Republic Director.
A third of an original bond issue or 175,000 shares has been sold. Curtis said, with sales to be ended within forty days. Seventy-five percent of the stock was reserved for members of the entertainment world.
Within five years $10,000,000 will be poured into the town and adjacent territory, Curtis said.
Auto and other “newfangled” inventions are to be taboo–on the surface. Western on the outside, but twentieth-century within its compound, a $250,000 lodge and swimming pool are first on the construction list. Thousands of dollars more will ensure a traditional express office, saloon, grocery, blacksmith’s shop and bank–ready for a screen bandit’s holdup.
The town will be for lease to all motion picture industries, according to Curtis, and several already have indicated interest in filming westerns in an airplane-free spot. Companies have lost as much as $10,000 a week through interruptions of curious pilots who “buzz” movie locations. Airplane traffic is nil over “Pioneertown” land, Curtis said.
“We plan to produce our own pictures later, on location at “Pioneertown,” Curtis said. A 160-seat theater for convenience of daily film reviews and the general public will be included in the project.
A biblical play, utilizing the text and music of Handel’s “Messiah” will be produced at a natural amphitheater near “Pioneertown” in the fall of 1947, the performance to be repeated annually.
Plans by San Bernardino county to push a new highway, Curtis said, the road to connect 29 Palms and Big Bear.