By the way, I seem to recall it was Rick Schmidlin who posted to the old "Touch of Welles" board that after he watched the rough cut of OSOTW he felt it was a big disappointment, and also claimed that Huston privately hoped the film would never be finished. Apparently Schmidlin was also in the David Thomson camp, that feels the film should never be seen.
Here are some posts from the old Welles board (around May 2000) that might be of interest:
A reliable source recently spoke directly with producer Frank Marshall ("The Sixth Sense") and apparently Showtime is about to close a deal that would finally bring Welles' last film, at least to the small screen. Marshall will produce and Peter Bogdanovich and Gary Graver will supervise the edit.
Hurray for Showtime which did such a fabulous job with "The Big Brass Ring."
More later as it develops...
A very dear friend of mine, Tonio Selwart, played a cameo in this film in the role of "The Baron". He will be 104 years old next week and I am trying to get any up to date information I can regarding the status of this film. He would very much like any news regarding it. Could anyone with information, please email me at the above address? Thank you!
Welles was doing nothing but cinematic masturbation, I have seen a lot of the footage. If anyone does anything with this material it will be far away from what was intended.
Cinematic masturbation? I think that's what they first said about Braque and Picasso when they introduced cubism. Why don't you read a few books, moron.
Dear F for Fake?:
I believe in a lively exchange of ideas, but how dare you refer to Welles' 'The Other Side of the Wind' as "cinematic masturbation." In its final edited form, if it's anything like the clips that were shown on the televised 1975 AFI Tribute (wake?) for Welles, TOSOTW could at the very least be a fascinating period piece of an already strangely distant era in Hollywood. Welles' directorial failures were more interesting than most other directors' successes, so I'd reserve judgement until we see what the editors come up with (working, I would hope, from notes that Welles left behind).
Have you ever read the screenplay to TOSOTW?
Also there are no notes.
Also Welles did not direct some parts.
Wouldn't it be hard to find he was out to lunch on his last film?
It's eay to think that ones hero work is all worthwhile, but there is also a reality.
I think we'd be more inclined to take your opinion seriously if you'd bother to identify yourself in your header.
OSOTW seems a lot like those Hemingway stories that he never finished writing. They kinda suck, but I wouldn't classify it as masturbation. He just blew his brains out before he could manage a rewrite or even a first edit. Simlar situation with OSOTW.
And can you be more specific about what's wrong with the film?
There are seriuos reasons why I don't use my name, but trust me that in the more then one screening I saw people there were worried more about Orsons legacy if this project happened. Yes Frank and Peter can make a interesting project, but it will not even live up to the boreing version of It's All True. Touch Of Evisl is questionable but at leaste we have the others to fall back on.
I find it interesting that that sentiment is exaclty what RKO felt about "Ambersons", what Universal felt about "Touch of Evil," what just about every producer felt before thoughtlessly taking the knife to OW's brilliant works. If what you say is true, then TOSOTW will be astounding and still way ahead of its time.
Nope your wrong Fred, this was a dissaster. It is why Lucas, Speilberg and others tried but could not help nor could Jaglom . This film is a myth in all your minds. The day will come when this will be a wake not a re-birth.
My spelling is as sloppy as Welles direction regarding TOSOTW. I just wrote a quick reply. Yes the footage will be intering but I am just scared that this could leave Orson (who I respect) in worse shape then Kubrick had as a final film. High expections and a sudden silence when the lights go up filled with remorse. Do your homework, have you ever read Joe McBides study of TOSOTW in American Film?
No, but I've read McBride's book Orson Welles, the revised edition, and the chapter on TOSOTW is probably the most thorough account of the film's making. Judging by all the crap that whole crew went through over the years trying to put it together, I'd say that even if the film is a collosal bore, it's still worth seeing. You learn a lot more from your mistakes than from your successes. And two hours of Welles screwing up is worth more than a lifetime of Jerry Bruckheimer footage. And who the hell cares what effect it will have on Welles' reputation? I'll wage one of the reasons it never got released was because he really didn't give fat rat's fart about what other people though of his work. He did what he wanted to do. That's why I have a lot of respect for the man. Like Dietrich's line, "He was some kind of a man. What does it matter what you say about people?"
As for Kubrick, Eyes Wide Shut was pretty boring, but no more so than 2001 or Barry Lyndon. I don't think people think any less of Kubrick because of it. If anything, it puts the rest of his work in a different perspective: in the final analysis, he's a sad little hermit of a director, a voyeur wrapped up in his own tiny little meticulously crafted world.
RE: Anyone editing a Welles film:
PLease everybody- let's remember that Welles's opinion about cinema was that "edting is not an aspect of making movies, it's the aspect of making movies". That's why we will never have his "Quixote" or "Deep" or "Wind"; at the very most, we can have "Bogdanovich's Wind" or "Franco's Quixote"; yes, it's all very post-modern, but perhaps Welles would want his work open and not closed; for the post-modern mind, there are no "finished" works. In "Chahiers" In 1966, Welles said that he had only a series of sequences for "Quixote" and that he didnt know how to turn it into a film; maybe he just never solved that particular problem.
Even if TOSOTW is 'cinematic masturbation' as ? says, I'm still looking forward to it eagerly. Orson Welles' fiascos are more fun to watch then most director's good movies!
And it is importent too as it will explain fully Welles state of mind at the time. My only fear is that it will more others state no then his like "It's All True" was done. The short version was done with Dick Wilson for the AFI and was fine. The longer was drabble.
The total of the AFI documentary by Wilson can be seen within the the 'expanded' version.
Yes but the rest of the new version had a war on how to cut and mix it that would have, may have killed Wilson. Ask Jonathan Rosenbaum about the war. Even the producers involved offer disclaimers about how it was done. Nobody was happy with the final result except for the little hype.
One guy on a raft:
almost afraid to ask:
what is it that you object to?
what is your problem with documentary?
what's your point?
what is it that you object to? Distored facts Enquirer Style
: what is your problem with documentary? The same as above, no thought out conclusions
: what's your point? It was not researched well and those importent Welles scholars like McBride,Carringer,Rosenbaum,Naremore were never consulted.
Now I'm confused. The only part of It's All True that I thought seemed a bit overlong was the Four Men On A Raft episode, which was about 45 minutes long, and had the slow pacing of a rough cut (I like to think of it as the embryonic ruins of what might have been a Welles film).
I remember hearing something years before the film was released about a 22 minute version of 'Raft' that was shown at certain festivals. Is this what you guys are referring to? If so, is this version still in existence?
Other then that, I thought the first part of It's All True, which told the story of the film's undoing, was very well done.
Yes that was Richard Wilsons work and he was Welles producer from the radio days to MacBeth. He loved Orson all his life and understood him. In fact he was the line producer on Kane and Ambersons. He went to Rio with Orson. Anybody who knew him would understand how far the longer version drifted away from his and Orson plan. This is a pity.
"?", could you elaborate on how it drifted away from "his an Orson plan" Do you mean that the documentary is nothing like what was planned in 1942 (which is obvious) or do you mean that Krohn and Meisel made significant changes after Richard Wilson's death.
I talked with some UCLA preservationists at the time who were a little upset that Wilson & co. came in with a specific list of obtaining/preserving specific scenes from It's All True and not more of Bonito.
Wilson was gone by the time the longer version was made. None of the producers got along and there was a lot of non academic work done.
I have been observing this board for some time, and I truly believe that this ? person is deranged. As a production member on IT'S ALL TRUE I can tell you that name dropping with insults is ?'s shield of his ignorance. He cannot even keep his opinions straight. I concur with others that most of his past postings are incorrect also. I write this only so his messages are not taken as fact which they are respected as now.
Then please expalins the problems with Jean-Luc Ormieres and Meisel. And how the best exspert on the film Catherine Benamou was shunned by all. Why the UCLA Rio foootage was not used. And why the terrible folly and music didn't come close, how very sloppy it was. And Bill Krohn who championed the project with Richard Wilson was also frustrated and shunned. All because of Ormierers and Meisels power struggle. And What od Konckier, care to comment on that one.You don't know who I am and how close to these people I have been.The work on this film is a tragic and every Welles scholar knows it. So let's call it what it was, a mess of a production from these people that had to do with money and power.It's is had to watch and was was a childish production. COMMENT?
In response to your incoherent message, EVERY production is plagued with conflicts of viewpoints and INTERESTS: meaning MONEY. The power struggle was over what was going into the pockets. There was more alliances made between the battling parade of producers under the contracts, they were playing money games that had NOTHING to do with Welles. Krohn and Konckier were not the only people who got their toes stepped on; they MUST have known what they were getting into: Two nameless producers were/are two loud mouth PARASITES without CLASS. Any comment ? And after all that silliness, there came a PRESENTATION of the heroically PRESERVED footage (for me more important than any petty bitterness you are familiar with) that set most of the record straight about Welles and RKO. I also believe that this "childish -- hard to watch" presentation, warts and all, started a Welles renaissance that continues to this day. What in the release REALLY troubles YOU? What is this "Enquirer" journalism you see? How was Wilson silenced in the film? What conclusions would you want this film to make? COMMENTS, DUM KOPF!?!
Well we know what loud mouths this guys are and that they were not prepaired to do this project. But poor Catherine I feel so sorry for her and all that great Rio footage we may never see.
: And after all that silliness, there came a PRESENTATION of the heroically PRESERVED footage (for me more important than any petty bitterness you are familiar with) that set most of the record straight about Welles and RKO. I also believe that this "childish -- hard to watch" -- presentation, warts and all, started a Welles renaissance
It started with Kane or had you not heard, or maybe the unteen books after McBride or may the BBC Special, but this version that you worked on is boreing.
:What in the release REALLY troubles YOU?
The poor cutting, the lousy music, the really bad folly, loved that sound when they were building the raft ha ha. The unlike Welles editeing. The poor presention trying to make "For Men On A Raft" a Welles film without the intelgance of the master.The sound effects sounded like an Ed Wood movie and so did the editing.
:What is this "Enquirer" journalism you see?
The scandel the so call producers caused by being power hungry children
:How was Wilson silenced in the film?
He was not alive to see this cut and Krohn did not understand what Wilson wanted.
:What conclusions would you want this film to make?
It should have been a documentary- once they got to the raft the produced though they tried to be Welles.BIG MISTAKE