Wednesday, April 24, 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)"
03 July 2007

Russ McDaniel's Tribute to Pancho and Chuck

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Country artist Russ McDaniel knows a thing or two about how to play a guitar, and he also knows a bit about Pancho Barnes and Chuck Yeager. In fact, he's written two tribute songs to these great Americans that appear on his album, "Tribute to World Hero's Friends Places." You can stream them at his website, which you can get to via this link

What's really fun it to click on the link and read the lyrics to the Pancho Barnes tribute, which begins this way: "I'd call her a Matriarch, but she didn't talk that way... She just loved the boys that flew at Edwards Base...A world class lady pilot with speed records of her own...Set back now and just hang on for the legends of Pancho..." (The Legend Of Pancho Barnes (c) 2006 Russ McDaniel and Dave McDaniel)

McDaniel notes on the album that, "Legend of Pancho Barns is about The real Person,who had a Ranch,Bar,hotel,and resturant on the edge of Edwards Air force Base California.She was A friend of Chuck Yeager back when they had started to break the Sound Barrier 1947.She was there when they tested all the first Jet Aircraft.She was quite a Character Ya Gotta Hear This One." We agree!

To purchase the album visit this link

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