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Pop culture: Anybody see Sam Kinison's 'Three Amigos' footage?

Pop culture: Anybody see Sam Kinison's 'Three Amigos' footage?


“Three Amigos,” a comedy starring Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Martin Short, is 30 years old.

Remember those hilarious scenes from the movie featuring Sam Kinison?

You don’t remember?

That’s because moviegoers never saw them.

Kinison shot several scenes as a hard-to-kill mountain man, according to a 2009 interview with Bill Kinison, Sam’s brother and manager.

“They shoot him and he wouldn’t die,” Bill Kinison told the entertainment site. “They stab him and he won’t die. They drown him in a river, from which Sam caught pneumonia, and he won’t die.”

Sam Kinison’s scenes were allegedly funny, but they were cut from the movie. Bill Kinison told that Chase refused to finish the movie if Sam’s scenes remained in the film.

Bill Kinison elaborated in a book he wrote about his brother. He wrote that Sam had no problem with director John Landis or Short or Martin. “But he hated Chevy Chase. In the short time he was on the set, Sam found Chase arrogant, cold and pompous. So Sam pinned the blame on him. He thought Chase had convinced Landis to cut Sam out of the movie. After all the attention he got for (the Rodney Dangerfield movie) ‘Back to School,’ Sam thought Chase feared he’d steal the spotlight on ‘Three Amigos.’ It didn’t really make sense, a director as strong as John Landis bowing like that to an actor. Sam, being Sam, went with it anyway.”

Sam Kinison’s deleted scenes have not made their way to DVD extras, and the footage is feared to be lost.

In a 2011 Maxim interview, Landis said, “The film was too long, and I was looking for stuff I could lift without damaging the plot. I wish we could find that footage because it was outstanding.”

Sam Kinison, who died in 1992, has connections to Tulsa. The connections will be explored in Sunday’s Tulsa World.

Jimmie Tramel 918 581-8389

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Scene Writer

I cover pop culture and work as a feature writer at the Tulsa World. A former Oklahoma sports writer of the year, I have written books about former OU coach Barry Switzer and former OSU coach Pat Jones. Phone: 918-581-8389

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