Movies made by real-life experts

The recent thread on the film “Destination Moon” (which had Heinlein as the writer and technical advisor, as well as Chesley Bonestell contributing astronomical art) got me wondering about other movies that have ‘experts’ contributing something to the films. Other examples that I can think of might be Richard Avedon as the advisor for the fashion shoot scene in “Funny Face”. The key might be that they don’t usually have anything to do with movies, but I might include something like “Any Given Sunday”, which apparently had cameramen with experience in filming football games, but including that might open up the field more than I would like.

So is there any other movies like this that anyone can think of? Bonus points for movies with more than one ‘expert’ contributing.

It’s very common for movies to have technical advisors in various fields, although they usually aren’t famous like Heinlein.

The film Le Mans starred Steve McQueen, who was an actual race driver and they filmed some of the footage during the actual Le Mans race.

the 1962 film THE LONGEST DAY had many expert advisors who took place in the actual events.

Notably Richard Todd (who died December 3rd 2009), played the part of Major John Howard who held unto a crucial bridge during the landings until relieved. One of the real life soldiers taking part in that effort was Richard Todd.

William “Wild Bill” Wellman was a fighter pilot in the First World War with three kills and five probables who directed “Wings”, the first Academy Award winner for best picture. He also produced/directed “Lafayette Escadrille” thirty years later.
There is a difference between hiring advisors and actually using their suggestions.

Copolla had Dracula expert Leonard Wolf as T.A. on “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”

The original “The Omen” had evangelical Rev. William Stuart McBirnie, and I think Hal Lindsay was asked but turned it down.

Cecil B. DeMille had RCC priest, Protestant pastors, and Rabbis on Heston’s The Ten Commandments- AND THEN SHOWED THE FIRST PASSOVER HAPPENING DURING A HALF-MOON!!!
(Passover is always during a full moon. The ONLY excuse is “Wellll, the Angel of Death obscured it. Yeah, that’s the ticket!”)

How about R. Lee Ermey as the drill instructor in Full Metal Jacket? He was a real drill instructor for the Marine Corp.

Yeah, he actually was only supposed to be technical advisor for the film. The actor who played the door gunner in the helicopter was origninaly cast as the drill instructor.

Stanley Kubrick had seen R. Lee play a drill instructor in The Boys in Company C and told R. Lee he wasn’t vicious enough for the role. R. Lee filmed an audition in which he cussed out a group of Royal Marines for 15 non-stop minutes, all while being pelted with tennis balls.

Kurbrick changed his mind and even let R. Lee write about half his lines, especially the swearing.

Is that on a special-features DVD release, or something, because I would love to see that.

Emery tells the story:

The indie flick “Primer,” about two engineers who accidentally invent a very curious machine, was written and directed by Shane Carruth, a mathematician who spent years as an engineer.

Almost any other director would have loaded the movie with cool-looking mechanical apparatus, flashy special effects, and tons of technobabble. But Carruth makes it seem absolutely convincing as a device that was built by two broke guys in a garage.