Monterey celebrates Eastwood thriller's 30th

SAN FRANCISCO — Clint Eastwood’s “Play Misty for Me” is fondly recalled by the Monterey County Film Commission as the definitive Carmel-Big Sur pic and “the best showcase for our matchless locations.”

To show its appreciation — and celebrate Universal’s 30th-anni DVD of the low-budget thriller — the commission launched its “Magical Misty Tour” on Sept. 8. The inaugural event was so successful that organizers are predicting repeat runs.

Among the stops on the two-hour, $25 bus tour: jazz radio station KRML, where Eastwood’s DJ spins vinyl into the wee hours; Monterey’s Sardine Factory Restaurant, where Eastwood mentor Don Siegel tends bar and Eastwood’s character meets Jessica Walter’s schizoid stalker; the wharf restaurant where Walter throws moviedom’s scariest hissy fit; a spectacular cliff-side dwelling on Spindrift Drive, where Eastwood’s girlfriend played by Donna Mills resides and Eastwood punches the knife-wielding Walter through a window to her death on the rocks below.

“I wish I could have been there,” Walter said from her New York apartment. ” ‘Misty’ is one of my favorite films, and that whole area is so glorious. My favorite location? It’s that little house where the Eastwood character lives and I did all my scenes. It was very funky … on this darling little street.”

“Misty” buffs know it as the little house at Bay View Avenue and Martin Street in Carmel-by-the-Sea. Or: the third stop on the tour.

“Magical Misty Tour” — followed by a gala screening of “Misty” with former Carmel Mayor Eastwood in attendance — was the brainstorm of commission member Bill Cassara, who shared his favorite fatal attractions as tour guide.

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