In Eddie Murphy's remakes of the Nutty Professor movies, the main character had a working molecular biology lab, with real state-of-the-art equipment. But it wasn't the director's job to figure out what the set needed to convince moviegoers of its authenticity -- it was mine.I have had the privilege of serving as a technical advisor on a number of motion picture and television productions, by virtue of my field of expertise (molecular and clinical genetics, which happens to be a hot topic in the news and on film these days), my sideline as a film critic for a national physicians' magazine for ten years, and my location at the University of California, Los Angeles, the natural place for Hollywood filmmakers to turn when they have technical questions. I have found that the filmmakers -- from the directors to the actors to the sound men to the carpenters -- have much...

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