Posted on August 26, 2022 at 10:07 AM by Blog Committee
Hummer Heritage Collection: Smokey and the Bandit
Smokey and the Bandit (Universal Studios, 1977) ignited a passion for many people to join the trucking industry, so choosing this paint scheme for the Hummer Heritage Collection was an obvious choice.
The first movie was released in May of 1977 and starred Burt Reynolds, Sally Field & Jack Gleason. The story follows Burt Reynolds, "Bandit," as he attempts to bootleg hundreds of cases of Coors beer from Texarkana to Atlanta along with his partner, "The Snowman." The action comedy follows their 28 hour journey to make the delivery while evading the police.
The movie features two iconic vehicles: 1977 Pontiac Trans Am and a 1974 Kenworth W900A tractor. "Bandit," (Reynolds), drove the Trans Am to serve as a distraction to police while his teammate drove the Kenworth tractor-trailer with the illegal beer.
The tractor used in the film was a 1974 Kenworth W900A, a model which marked a significant change in how tractors were designed for drivers.
- Kenworth debuted their W900 series in 1961.
- The W900A tractor in the movie was released in 1967.
- Two main differences between the models were a wider hood and larger engines.
- The "W" in the model name is for Edgar Worthington, one of the Kenworth founders.
- These trucks were known for a smoother ride, no doubt helped by the leather padded interiors.
- Unique paint jobs could be ordered and produced by Kenworth.
- In the movie three Kenworth tractors were used. Including a 50th-anniversary edition indicated by a gold emblem.
- The location and fate of these three trucks from the movie are currently unknown.
The adventures of Smokey and the Bandit are well-known, but here are some lesser known facts about the iconic film:
- In total there were three movies in the Smokey and the Bandit series.
- "East Bound and Down" was written by Jerry Reed for the movie. Reed played Cledus "The Snowman" Snow in the movie.
- Coors beer was unavailable east of Oklahoma in the 1970's due to the need for refrigeration to prevent spoilage, which is why they only have 28 hours to reach Atlanta.
- The initial premier of the movie at Radio City Music Hall in New York City was a bust. It took several months after premiering before it to reached widespread success.
- Pontiac Trans Am sales nearly doubled after the film's release.
- Reynolds sold the original Pontiac Trans Am in 2014 for $450,000.
- Sally Field received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance in the movie.
- Sally Field and Burt Reynolds met on set, leading to an off screen romance.
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