Tuesday, June 25, 2024

The Emmy™Award-Winning Documentary Film

"Broadcast" version now airing on most public television stations.

"Uncensored" version now on DVD and in film festivals.

Synopsis: A charismatic figure featured in Tom Wolfe's book The Right Stuff, Florence "Pancho" Barnes was one of the most important women in 20th Century aviation. A tough and fearless aviatrix, Pancho was a rival of Amelia Earhart's who made a name for herself as Hollywood's first female stunt pilot. Just before WWII she opened a ranch near Edwards Air Force Base that became a famous -- some would say notorious -- hangout for test pilots and movie stars. Known as the "Happy Bottom Riding Club", it became the epicenter of the aviation world during the early jet age. Chuck Yeager celebrated breaking the sound barrier there in 1947, and Howard Hughes and Jimmy Doolittle caroused in the bar. The Club's destruction by fire in 1953 is seen by many to mark the end of a Golden Era in post-WWII aviation. In the same fashion Pancho herself has become something of a legend, a fascinating yet enigmatic icon whose swagger is often celebrated, but whose story has been largely unknown. Until now.

A documentary film produced and written by Nick Spark and directed by Amanda Pope. Featuring interviews with test pilots Bob Cardenas, Bob Hoover and Chuck Yeager, astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and biographers Barbara Schultz and Lauren Kessler. Narrated by Tom Skerritt with Kathy Bates as the voice of Pancho Barnes.

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Women in Aviation
"Read Nick Spark's article about Pancho
from Women in Aviation magazine (.pdf)"
31 July 2010

Dominguez Hills Sept. 11th

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In celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Dominguez Hills Air Meet, the Dominguez Rancho Adobe Museum is putting together a special series of lectures.  Sept. 11th, 2010 from 11-3 p.m., the topic will be our favorite -- Pancho Barnes!

Join us at Cal State University, Dominguez Hills to hear Barbara Schultz, who wrote the wonderful biography Pancho, talk about Southern California's most amazing aviatrix.  A small exhibit of Pancho Barnes artifacts will accompany her talk.  This is the first time we've presented with Barbara, and it should be a really memorable day full of perspective and fun!

11am – Talk by Barabara Schultz

1pm – Documentary screening and Q&A

There will be light refreshments in between.  This event will be held at Cal State University, Dominguez Hills in the 1910 Cafe located in the Loker Student Union.  See http://dominguezrancho.org/category/events/ for more information.

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The Legend of Pancho Barnes and the Happy Bottom Riding Club ©2008-2010 Nick Spark Productions, LLC.