ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Inside an unassuming St. Augustine workshop, some movie magic is in the works.
"Oh yeah, it's a fun project," John Lubbehusen said. He is a pipe-smoking boat builder with a parrot called Captain Kidd.
He has Old Florida Boat Company in St. Augustine.
A couple months ago, he got a call from movie star, Andy Garcia
"So Andy called and said 'I'm doing this movie and I need a Cuban boat. Can you build me one?' I said 'yeah, I just need to know what you want.'"
Lubbehusen said Garcia wanted a Cuban skiff for his movie which tell the back story of Hemingway's "The Old Man and the Sea." The movie is called "Hemingway and Fuentes." It stars Andy Garcia, Anthony Hopkins and Annette Benning.
"Andy is playing Gregory Fuentes in the movie, who was Hemingway's boat captain," Lubbehusen noted. "The only things we had to work from were the pictures."
Lubbehusen has pictures of boats from Hemingway's daughter.
"So I developed a model [of the boat], trying to replicate the pictures," he explained.
Then Lubbehusen went to work on the boat which is right now upside down in his workshop.
He's making the oars and boat from wood native to the Caribbean.
"I'm trying to make it all authentic," he said.
He has a couple of buddies who help him, and they work late into the night."
"It's really a rush job. Normally a boat like this takes six months and I'm doing it in less than two."
But it was hard to turn down Andy Garcia.
"Yeah, it's an opportunity! I'll take a break when it's done," Lubbehusen smiled.
For now, his parrot keeps him company as he works around the clock on a boat bound for the big screen.
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First Coast News