Tony wrote:Of course the rumour has persisted for years that the Deep was actually only a ruse to be with Oja and not raise suspicion with Paula, and that Welles never intended to finish it. And that perhaps this was one of the reasons that Jeanne was annoyed, that and the fact that an inexperienced Susan Alexander type was getting star billing over Moreau. Apparantly when she complained, Welles said "Jeanne, you're not 24 anymore". And needless to say, even though OW wrote a part for her in TOSOTW, JM never acted for Welles again.
Tony: would you please be so kind as to post your source for the above information, which I have seen you mention in other places. I believe you have also stated elsewhere that Moreau was so angry at Welles that she refused to go to Paris and complete her dubbing. I find this all very fascinating, but the only information I have been able to dig up has Moreau stating that Welles never sent her the tickets to Paris to do the dubbing work; also, I have come across some vague statements from Willy Kurant describing "tension" on the set between the two actresses. Frankly, I find it very difficult to believe that an actress of Moreau's standing would do something so unprofessional, even if she was angry at Welles. To imperil a film like that would hurt her standing in the industry, no matter what the reasons. And by the time of the great BBC interview years later, she seems to have cooled down.
I also find it hard to believe that Welles would go to all the trouble of making a picture that he had no intention of releasing, simply to spend time with his girlfriend. I do think that THE DEEP was one of the few times in Welles' life (THE STRANGER is another) that he caved in and deliberately tried to make a "commercial" picture, while hoping to make Oja a star in the bargain. Such attempts rarely work (imagine William S. Burroughs deliberately trying to write a bestseller!), and I think Welles eventually soberly realized he did not have much of a film in his hands with THE DEEP, and abandoned it as not being up to his standards. After all, Welles has been quoted several times saying that no one questions a novelist when he decides that his manuscript is crap, and burns it.
I think that it is safe to assume that the one thing Welles abhorred was the idea of anyone besides himself completing one of his films. My God, all these people: Bogdanovich claiming that Welles asked him to complete TOSOTW after his death, and Oja claiming the same for THE DREAMERS. Welles had DECADES after shooting TOSOTW, DQ, and THE DEEP to edit them into final form. He didn't need these people to finish anything for him. He could have handed Bogdanovich a completed workprint of TOSOTW, and said, after I die, if you and Oja ever get back control of the negative, here is the blueprint, thanks for the memories. He did no such thing. He never completed this stuff because he chose not to. As Pauline Kael said in another context, there ain't no way...