A 1960s River Queen houseboat is making the exciting trip to Puerto Rico to take part in a 20th Century Fox film called "The Deep Blue Good-by," starring Christian Bale.
Currently in its pre-production phase, this film is based on American thriller novelist John D. MacDonald’s first book of his 1964 Travis McGee mystery series. A “salvage consultant,” Travis McGee (played by Bale) gets his cash by recovering lost or stolen property for his clients for a steep fee; he sets out to recover a WWII treasure in the first book. Integral to his character is the custom 52-foot houseboat he lives on, won in a game of poker and thus christened The Busted Flush.
The Holland Sentinel reports that the River Queen houseboat chosen to represent The Busted Flush was crafted in the ‘60s. At 50 feet in length, this boat is relatively unique for the former River Queen company’s ordinary work—Matt Peterson of Tower Marine in Douglas, Mich., explains that the company manufactured over 600 houseboats 10 feet shorter, with only 30 in The Busted Flush’s length category.
Originally made for a buyer in Georgia, this houseboat was shipped back to Douglas a quarter of a century ago and sold to a Chicago-based houseboater. Renovated to support a large electronic sign advertising along the shoreline, Peterson says it was sent back to Douglas after the business model failed and then used for parties and summer living by Saugatuck owners.
When the producers of “The Deep Blue Good-by” found it, this houseboat had ended up in dry dock at Tower Marine in Douglas one last time. Finding it visually pleasing and large enough for what they were looking for (it had previously been altered to reach 60 feet in length), the producers bought it and plan to make good use of it in its role of The Busted Flush. Also starring Rosamund Pike as Lois Atkinson, Nicola Peltz as Cathy Kerr and Peter Dinklage as Meyer, this film's release date is yet to be announced.
Photo credited to The Holland Sentinel.