i just spent ages typing a detailed post when my pesky computer crashed and i lost it all before i'd pressed the post button! :angry:
Anyway, here i go again! Last night i went to see the Orson Welles: Unfinished Work and Orson Welles and TV: Programme 1 showing at the National Film Theatre (UK).
Before the Unfinished Work programme there was a brief talk by Stefan Droessler director of the Filmmuseum in Munich.
After there was a question and answer session with Stefan and Oja Kodar.
Bearing in mind, the unreliability of human memory, i'll post what i heard on the above and other topics!
In his introduction Stefan said that although the original negative is still missing they have one b&w and one colour workprint which they are currently in the process of restoring. He anticipated the restoration project will be completed in 2005, though was unsure whether it would be a fully assembled version or in documentary form.
The programme started with a restored version of the excellent F for Fake trailer, followed by a Welles-completed trailer for The Deep. Apparently only a b&w work print is currently known to exist, but i thought it looked stunning in b&w! The trailer sets the story up well, and has a heavy, pervasive air of menace throughout... it started with OW's voice introducing it as a trailer talking about the clips, then moving on to address the story... it finished with OW saying something along the lines of, What happens next?.. We'll leave that for the ticket buyers...
Onto the actual clips of The Deep, they were presented in a mixture of mostly colour with some b&w... with varying quality audio, some with camera noise, some places had complete audio dropouts. Some of it had music! kind of a double bass infested jazz workout!
I think i've previously made the foolish mistake of assuming that because The Deep was a deliberately commercial project and that Orson 'apparently' lost interest in and abandoned it that it would probably not rank amongst my favourites of his works... but the clips displayed were quite simply stunning... it felt really edgy, like it would make an amazing thriller, some really powerful scenes...
After the programme Oja addressed the events that led to the projects indefinite postponement.
She said it wasn't due to the death of Laurence Harvey or that OW simply abandoned it... but it was due to the age old problem of financing!! and some other difficulties...
I'm not too clear on the exact story behind the films production/financing but she spoke of Orson surrendering his director's fees in return for film services supplied by Yugoslavia... these services were handled at best poorly and OW was treated pretty shabbily by all involved which led to OW becoming disheartened... and it was becoming such a struggle to complete the picture OW resolved to move on and come back to the project when the situation seemed more favourable...
Hmm the first time i wrote this i'm sure it was much more eloquent!!
Oh and also Stefan indicated there is still hope for the recover of the stolen two reels of The Merchant Of Venice!
onwards and upwards,