Announcements Archive #1
7 September 2006 to 15 August 2009
(Newest entries on top, oldest entries at bottom.)
Posted 15 August 09
Posted 2 August 09
We’re back from Alberta and we had a great time as usual, meeting with old friends, making new ones, revisiting Brokeback locations, hiking, and riding horseback. We finally found exactly where the Wyoming and Texas highways are, and we even found a new location “up on Brokeback.” Look for new pictures, updates for current sites, new travel suggestions, and more in the coming weeks and months.
Posted 20 May 09
Will you be in Alberta this July?
Some of us will be revisiting Brokeback locations in Alberta between July 21 and 31. If you would like to meet, join us for a hike, or just compare notes, send us an email!
Some of our friends from the forum at BetterMost.net will also be in Alberta at about the same time. To learn more about their plans, check their “Alberta July 24 through August 2,” and “Alberta Pilgrims! Tentative Schedule July ’09,” threads under “BetterMost Social Events.” You will have to register first to see and read these threads.
Posted 30 March 09
Frequent visitors to this website may have noticed a flurry of recent updates. That's because we have been busy preparing a new PDF version of FindingBrokeback.com.
The 4th PDF edition of FindingBrokeback.com is now available in Downloads. This latest version includes all the updates accumulated since the previous edition, including revised directions and additional maps. If you are planning to visit Brokeback locations in 2009, this is the version to take with you!
Posted 29 October 08
Although his epic film was made over 800 miles away, Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain has been widely praised for artfully capturing much of the essence and visual imagery of Wyoming. Eager to see for ourselves, FindingBrokeback.com decided to visit locations in Wyoming which are pertinent to the Brokeback story. The result is “Entering Wyoming,” our newest feature which highlights Wyoming places that are part of the story and film, as well as other locations of interest to Brokeback fans. Look for “Entering Wyoming” in the Site Directory.
Posted 22 August 08
Of the many creative people who labored to make Brokeback Mountain the important film that it is, no one is more highly regarded by her colleagues than writer and producer Diana Ossana. Her role was central to the development of the screenplay, the selection of the cast, and the actual making of the film. After a recent screening at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills, California, Ossana answered lots of questions about the making of the film, many for the first time. We are happy to share a transcription of her important remarks. Look for it under “Transcripts” in Interviews.
Posted 15 August 08
The Lonesome Ranch: although Alma was anxious to get out of there, pronto, Brokeback enthusiasts can't seem to get enough of this isolated place. In July 2007, its owner, Kerry Hart, generously allowed us to take many detailed photographs inside the ranch house. We have today posted some of those photos together with an interactive floor plan; you will find them here (DVD Chapter 9, 00 46 38). Take a close look at what we found taped to the floor!
A visitor to this website, Monika (Buffymon), from Sweden, recently spent four days in Alberta, Canada. She has written a delightful account of her experiences touring various BBM movie locations. You can read about them in her blog at http://buffymonmon.livejournal.com/114483.html.
Posted 20 July 08
During their own Brokeback pilgrimage in August 2007, Judy Kaiser and Gail Roulet were able to meet the owner of the Calgary building that the world knows as “Monroe’s House.” Judy and Gail have graciously agreed to share their stories and photos from this visit. To learn about the Brokeback filming that took place there, look for “Monroe’s House” in Interviews.
Posted 28 June 08
Many visitors to this site have enjoyed the March 2006 interview with Pierre Tremblay, the film’s first assistant director. It is an important resource for those who want to know about the making of the film. Quite naturally, we were anxious to know more, and when we asked, i.e. begged, Tremblay graciously consented to sit for a second, lengthier interview about the making of Brokeback Mountain. Look for “Pierre Tremblay July 2007” in Interviews.
Posted 23 June 08
Of all the Brokeback locations, the filmmakers deemed the Twist Ranch to be the most worthy. More time and money were spent preparing it than on any other structure seen in the film. Production designer Judy Becker, and a team of expert carpenters and set dressers, rose to the challenge. Starting with a virtual ruin, they delivered to Ang Lee an amazing building that was entirely worthy of the climactic scenes that he shot there. You can see the remarkable transformation that took place at the Twist Ranch in a rare set of 2004 photos. Look for “Twist Ranch” in the Pre-Production section of Albums.
Before the team of carpenters and set dressers could prepare the Twist Ranch for the cherished scenes that were to be shot there, careful architectural drawings were made of the structure showing the kitchen, the dining room, the steps, Jack’s room, and, of course, Jack’s closet. Expert craftspeople used these drawings to transform a dilapidated prairie mansion, which had been vacant for almost 25 years, into the captivating, unforgettable Twist Ranch. You won’t find these drawings elsewhere, but thanks to a generous Canadian contributor, we are able to share these important documents with you on FindingBrokeback.com. Look for the “dimensioned” link in “Floor Plan” in DVD Chapter 18, 01 55 55 and 01 59 05, or here and here, and in Downloads (Twist Ranch House Drawings).
Posted 16 June 08
We have today posted photos taken during Day 3 of our horse rides up Moose Mountain. Look for 26 July 2007 under “Horse Rides” in Albums.
Posted 30 May 08
The 51st Annual Rockyford Rodeo will be held on 25-27 July 2008. Anyone planning to be in Alberta around then should check it out; it’s well worth the time, plus there’s a bunch of important BBM locations in Rockyford.
If you want to take a look at what last year’s rodeo was like, see our “Rockyford, AB 2007 Rodeo” photos in Albums.
Posted 20 May 08
We have today posted photos taken during Day 2 of our horse rides up Moose Mountain. Look for 25 July 2007 under “Horse Rides” in Albums.
Posted 8 May 08
In July of 2007, some particularly adventuresome people satisfied their dream of visiting the Brokeback Mountain movie sites in Canyon Creek and up Moose Mountain on horseback. You can find some of their photos, taken on Day 1 of their ride, in our Albums. Look for “Horse Rides.” We will be posting more photos taken on Day 2 and Day 3 of these rides in the coming weeks!
Posted 24 April 08
The beloved Basque! We knew he had some stories to tell about landing the role, his deleted scenes, and his work with Lee, Ledger, and Gyllenhaal. Lauren Gurney tracked him down, not in the Pyrenees Mountains, nor in the Big Horns, but at his Calgary, Alberta, home. Look for her fascinating interview with David Trimble in Interviews.
In July of 2007, more than 30 members of the BetterMost.net forum, representing more than 5 countries, visited BBM movie locations in Alberta, Canada. You can find some of their photos, and others, in our Albums; look for the 2007 photos in Brokeback Found.
Posted 7 April 08
In July of 2007, a group of seven individuals, from the Ultimate Brokeback Forum and BetterMost.net, gathered at the Sawmill Day Use Area in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park to climb the western ridge of Mt. Inflexible, the mountain known to visitors to this website as Jack Ascending. They thought they would be able to reach the peak; a long day perhaps, but definitely doable. After all, Jack was up there herding all those sheep, right? How hard could it be? They soon found out!
To read about their experience, and see the views that Jack saw, look for “Jack Ascending” in Albums.
Posted 2 April 08
The Laundry Apartment in Fort Macleod, Alberta, is high on every Brokeback fan’s list of favorite locations. The building is owned by Cindy and Harley Brown, who together operate an electronics store in the space where the film’s “liquor store” was. Since 2005, hoards of Brokeback tourists have made the pilgrimage to their building, photographed it from every angle imaginable, climbed its steps, and even stolen a kiss or two when no one was looking!
In an interview posted today, Cindy Brown graciously agreed to recall their encounter with the Brokeback filmmakers, and the story of what happened at the Laundry Apartment during the summer of 2004. Look for “Cindy Brown” in Interviews.
Posted 17 February 08
Anytime a Hollywood film is made, money flows freely. Locals get paid to be extras. Motel rooms fill up with cast, crew, and contractors. The bars are packed. Of course, the subsequent tourism implications are enormous. The producers of Brokeback Mountain were all too happy to pay $4 each for firewood logs, $750 for morning donuts, and thousands for a lavish Chinese buffet, anything to keep the film on schedule!
Charming Fort Macleod, Alberta, and its savvy economic development executive Gordon MacIvor, expertly wooed Ang Lee by offering the “perfect” Laundry Apartment, coffee shop, Cassie’s Bar, Fireworks Area, and Courtroom. You can read what Gordon had to say, about the intricate artistic and business relationship between the filmmakers and the town which claims to be home to Brokeback Mountain, in our interview with him. Look for “Gordon MacIvor” in Interviews.
Posted 24 January 08
The Lonesome Ranch and the Divorce Cabin are both prominent Brokeback houses. In a recent interview, Kerry Hart recalled negotiations with the filmmakers, the preparations that were made to the buildings, and the actual filming that took place at both houses in June 2004. Look for “Kerry Hart” in Interviews for this latest addition!
Posted 10 January 08
Finally! The 3rd PDF Edition of FindingBrokeback.com is now available in Downloads! We have put a huge amount of work into making this the best PDF version of this website yet. The 3rd Edition has more pages, more pictures, and more movie locations, including the sites of ten deleted scenes.
With more of everything, we have also added new maps, as well as two indexes that should help in finding things by either location or site name. Of course, this new edition also includes all the corrections and updates that we have accumulated since the previous edition.
In the coming weeks and months we will continue to add pictures, albums, interviews, and videos to FindingBrokeback.com. Please check our Site History for information about these updates as we make them. Infrequent visitors may wish to use our Search link to check for updates by their revision date. (See “Search” in How to Navigate for more information.)
Posted 12 October 07
We have today posted the last of the major text revisions to FindingBrokeback.com based on material we collected during our July trip to Canada. In the coming week, look for new text and pictures for six more BBM movie locations that we have found. In addition, before the end of October, we will be adding a new feature, “Deleted Scenes,” showing scenes and locations that were filmed but not included in the motion picture. Please check our Site History for information about these updates as we make them.
Posted 20 September 07
Since our annoucement of 2 August 07, we have been busy processing the mountain of new material we acquired during our July trip to Canada. In a few days, we will begin posting revised text throughout FindingBrokeback.com, including updated directions, remarks, and in some cases, GPS data. Once these revisions are posted, we will begin adding new location pictures, albums and videos. Please check our Site History for information about these updates as we make them.
Posted 2 August 07
We are back from Canada with a mountain of new material ... thousands of pictures, dozens of videos, and more interviews. And we have found more BBM movie locations! Please be patient with us as we add this new material to FindingBrokeback.com ... it will take us weeks and months to process it all. This new material will be included in the 3rd PDF edition of this website. We hope to have the 3rd edition available before the end of 2007 ... just in time for people planning to visit BBM movie locations in 2008!
Posted 20 July 07
We are off to Canada (again) to re-visit more BBM movie locations! Please see our Site History for a complete list of the additions and changes made to FindingBrokeback.com since our announcement of 19 June 07.
Posted 19 June 07
Several contributors to FindingBrokeback.com have recently spent a few weeks re-visiting BBM movie locations in Alberta, Canada. During the coming weeks, we will be updating our travel directions and adding new pictures and videos. Please check our Site History for information about these updates as we make them. If you are planning on visiting Campsite #2, take a look at the new “Hike to Campsite #2” pictures in our Albums link!
Posted 31 May 07
Among the challenges faced by the filmmakers in transporting “Texas to Alberta” was the Childress Dance Hall Interior. After some searching, Calgary’s Canadian Legion Hall was selected to fill that bill. You can take a look at what the Canadian Legion Hall looked like before the set dressers did their magic by clicking “Legion Hall” in our Albums link. You can also take a glimpse at what the Divorce Cabin looked like before the filmmakers restored it (!) by clicking “Divorce Cabin” in our Video link.
Posted 15 May 07
Assistant Director Michael Hausman was responsible for bringing Brokeback Mountain in “on budget.” One way to do that was to minimize the number of different areas in which the film was shot. Charming Fort Macleod, an Alberta railroad town with a “lost in time” quality to it, readily served as the site of the Laundry Apartment, the Fireworks Scene, the Divorce Court, Cassie’s Bar, and the Bus Station Café.
We are pleased to share a unique collection of pre-production photos made by the filmmakers in April of 2004 as they hunted for Brokeback filming locations in Fort Macleod. Look for “Streets of Fort Macleod” in our Albums link.
Posted 17 April 07
Photographs of Rockyford, AB, taken in the spring of 2004, were used by the filmmakers in planning the “Childress” Rodeo, Dance Hall exterior, and the “Riverton” Post Office scenes. You can find these photos in our Albums link; look for Rockyford, AB / Pre-Production photos.
John Cooper, website designer and former Rockyford resident, created a website devoted solely to Rockyford. His site contains much information about the Village of Rockyford not available anywhere else on the Internet. Thanks to John, we are able to include his website on FindingBrokeback.com; you can visit John’s Rockyford website site here.
Finally, if you are planning on being in Alberta this summer, you might want to make time to attend the Rockyford Lions Club Rodeo. According to John, who was once a rodeo bull rider, it is “well run and well worth seeing.” This year, the rodeo starts with a Friday night beer garden on 27 July; the rodeo events, which include saddle bronc, and bull riding, take place on 28 & 29 July.
Posted 4 April 07
Our “Videos” section makes its debut today with two brief panoramic videos: Campsite #2, located in Spray Valley Provincial Park, south of Canmore, AB, and the site of Jack’s Murder at Conrich, AB, near Calgary. These videos, shot and narrated by Brokeback Truck owner Rob Freeman, allow you to stand where the filmmakers stood and “look around” for yourself. We intend to post other short video clips in the months ahead.
Posted 23 March 07
The Laundry Apartment is an essential element of the Brokeback Story. Unlike Ennis’s other living quarters (the tents, the Lonesome Ranch, the Divorce Cabin, and the Trailer), this was a very public place, subject to the observations of townspeople and the suspicions that came with it. Ennis’s commitment to Alma and his efforts to ward off the conflict that had already begun to destroy him are demonstrated by his attempt to live in this “fishbowl” of a place.
As the filmmakers searched for a Laundry Apartment with the needed features (walk-up unit, parking lot, steps) they happened upon a “perfect” location in Fort Macleod. You can find a set of original scouting photos showing the Laundry Apartment as Ang Lee first saw it in 2004 in our Albums link. Look for the Laundry Apartment Pre Production Photos.
Posted 11 March 07
Posted 8 March 07
The Lonesome Ranch! The filmmakers were asked to find “[A] little house that looks like it sits on the edge of the world. Windy, bitter cold.” After considerable searching, they found their Lonesome Ranch ten miles from the one-light town of Claresholm, AB.
Photos taken in 2004 show the Lonesome Ranch before the set dressers did their magic in preparation for Michelle Williams’ portrayal of Alma (and Alma’s portrayal of Jack)! Look for these pre-production photos in our Albums link.
Posted 23 February 07
Although the tiny town of Dinton, AB does not appear on most maps, it now occupies a place in motion picture history. Locations Manager Darryl Solly was asked to find a “small unadorned church” for the del Mar wedding scene. The unassuming Anglican chapel at Dinton, built by prairie pioneers in 1906, was the perfect spot for Alma and Ennis to say their “I dos.” Look for the pre-production photos of St. Thomas’ Church in our Albums link.
UPDATE: 18 March 07 - The panorama photos in this album have been resized to show more detail. Please revisit this album to see these additional pictures.
Posted 10 February 07
Fort Macleod, AB businessman Harley Brown photographed the transformation of his electronics store and walk-up apartment to the site of the most electrifying kiss ever seen on film. His photos document some of the magic worked by the filmmakers as the Apartment and Steps were prepared for their rightful place in motion picture history! We are indebted to Mr. Brown for allowing us to share his photos with visitors to FindingBrokeback.com. Look for his photos in our Albums link.
Posted 30 January 07
Thanks to our good friends at BetterMost.net, we have secured permission to bring you a revealing interview with Pierre Tremblay, Brokeback Mountain’s First Assistant Director. In it, he describes the way responsibilities were delegated among the filmmakers. Tremblay also shares some fascinating behind-the-scenes details that will be of special interest to FindingBrokeback visitors. Look for Pierre Tremblay in our Interviews link.
Posted 21 January 07
On 9 January, we posted some 50 pre-production location photos of Moose Mountain. Today, we are posting the remaining photos from that shoot. Upon seeing these stark images of the barren mountaintop, Executive Producer Michael Hausman nervously asked “will there be grass up there by summer?” After all, the sheep were supposed to be grazing! Although the summit (where the fire lookout station is located) is nothing but rocks year-round, the Moose Meadows, site of the memorable “I Ain’t Queer” and High Ridge scenes, were green and grassy by the time these scenes were filmed in July ’04. We hope you enjoy these photos. Look for the Moose Mtn. #2 photos in our Albums link.
Posted 9 January 07
In the spring of 2004, a brave soul was sent on a snowmobile to photograph potential Moose Mountain filming locations. The photos he brought back are the ones Ang Lee saw and used to plan parts of the sheep procession, the “I Ain’t Queer,” and the High Ridge scenes. The fact that Lee was able to find in these photos sites which so perfectly convey the solitude, vastness, and harshness audiences experienced “up on Brokeback,” is yet further testament to Lee’s genius. We are happy to share these never before publicly seen photos with you. Look for the Moose Mtn. #1 photos in our Albums link.
Posted 30 December 06
Our maps, which show Brokeback Mountain movie locations grouped into regions and areas, have been lacking in at least one respect: it has not been possible to use them to see exactly where particular sites are located. Until now! We have revised our maps using our accumulated GPS data to plot Brokeback movie locations with “pinpoint” precision. While doing this, we have also found a few errors, which we have corrected. You can find these new maps in our Geographic Locations link. Also, we have added a supplement to our site PDFs which includes these new maps and complete lists of Brokeback movie locations by region. You can find this supplement in our Downloads link.
Posted 27 December 06
On 30 December (Saturday), we will be updating our Geographic Locations link. If you see “404 Not Found” errors, or “broken pictures,” clicking the “Refresh” button on your browser should fix them. We regret any inconvenience this may cause.
Posted 18 December 06
Las Vegan Paul Carson has relentlessly searched the U.S.A. and Canada for Brokeback production memorabilia, racking up over 7,800 miles during the course of three trips. He has also compiled a vast library of Brokeback articles and commentaries. Among Paul’s expansive collection are props used in the making of the film, as well as photos of Brokeback sets. Other photos in his collection document the filmmaking process. During Paul’s last trip, in late October, he took a number of pictures showing the snows which then draped Alberta’s mountains.
You can find pictures of Paul’s memorabilia and other photos in our Albums link; look for “Carson Collection,” and “Paul Carson Travel Photos.” His stunning photo of Upper Kananaskis Lake (“I did once”) is available in our Downloads link; it makes lovely “wallpaper.” We hope you enjoy these photographs and we thank Paul for sharing them with us.
Posted 28 November 06
Brokeback aficionado and photography buff Paul Peterson toured southern Alberta this past summer. He has a great eye for natural beauty and he encountered outstanding weather. Paul’s photos include some familiar settings, as well as some stunning places you may not have not seen before. You can find Paul’s remarkable photos in the Albums link. You can also see Paul’s photos as “motion slide shows,” with music from the BBM motion picture soundtrack, on YouTube:
Finally, for many of us, the story of how Brokeback Mountain was made helps us to understand and appreciate the film all the more. Rob Freeman, who has contributed to this website in so many generous ways, has now shared with us his illuminating interviews with Tom Benz and Alfie Creighton, both of whom had “hands on” roles in making the movie. You can find these fascinating accounts in the Interviews link.
Posted 8 November 06
Most visitors to FindingBrokeback.com enjoy exploring one Brokeback Mountain site at a time. Enterprising “MarkC,” known to all who follow the Cullen French language Forum, is a great photographer who recently spent three weeks in Alberta, meticulously documenting filming locations. He has shared with us nearly 150 photographs that he carefully assembled into a “timeline” that mirrors the scenes in the DVD. You can find his photographs in the Albums link.
Posted 1 November 06
We have today added a new “Search” feature to FindingBrokeback.com. As this website has grown, finding references to particular people and movie locations can be difficult. The Search feature allows visitors to find most anything easily and quickly. For more information, look for Search in How to Navigate.
Posted 30 October 06
We have today posted the 2nd PDF Edition of FindingBrokeback.com. This edition has more pictures and more text than the 1st Edition, and of course, all the corrections that we have accumulated since posting the 1st Edition; also, the 2nd PDF Edition has larger type, and a more consistent look than the 1st Edition. If you are thinking of visiting any of the BBM film locations in ’07, this is THE edition you must have to plan your trip! You can find the 2nd PDF Edition in Downloads.
Posted 15 October 06
We have today added a new “Albums” feature to FindingBrokeback.com. Many people have generously given us their own photos of various BBM movie locations. The photos we have posted today are just a small sample of the many hundreds we will be posting in the coming months! For more information, look for Albums in How to Navigate and in Photo Notes.
Posted 3 October 06
A PDF version of Darryl Solly’s complete two part locations interview has been added to Downloads.
Posted 27 September 06
Visitors to this website can expect to see a number of new things here during October! First, we have begun work on the PDF version of Darryl Solly’s great two part locations interview; we hope to have it available for download in early October. Also, we will be adding a new feature -- Photo Albums. Various people have generously given us pictures of BBM locations, before, during, and after filming; many of these pictures are amazing! We will be adding the first of these photo albums around the middle of October. Finally, we hope to have the 2nd PDF Edition of this website available for download around the end of October. If you are thinking of visiting any of the BBM film locations in ’07, this will be THE edition you must have to plan your trip!
Posted 20 September 06
We were honored when Brokeback Mountain Locations Manager Darryl Solly graciously agreed to be interviewed by us. From his offices in Calgary, AB, Solly spoke with Jim Bond, Rob Freeman, and Steve Gin on 27 July 2006. Part 1 of his interview was posted here on 7 September. Part 2 is posted today.
Posted 7 September 06
Darryl Solly, BrokebackMountain Locations Manager, was recently interviewed by our Jim Bond. Darryl provided Jim with many fascinating details about his work on BBM. You can read Part 1 of this interview by following the Interviews link in the Site Directory.