Peter makes the excellent point, that Marc Forster "whether intentionally or not, was trying to wedge himself into the Welles mythos, wrapping himself in a KANE poster so to speak."
It appears to be quite intentional to me, but what's really funny is how Forester mis-quotes Welles. He was apparently thinking about Welles comments in FILMING THE TRIAL, where he said, "I would love to have a mass audience... Your looking at a man whose been searching for a mass audience all his life."
Obviously, if Welles had ever directed a Bond movie he would have gotten the mass audience he was searching for, but Forster somehow transposes that thought into Welles's "regretting that he never made a commercial movie." The distinction to be noted here is that Welles never regretted making a commercial movie, but regretted never having had a commercial success, which are two very different things. Of course, Welles was always looking for projects he felt would be popular and successful, especially in the late sixties, when he started to work on THE DEEP, but even if he consciously wanted to make a project with a more overtly commercial appeal, it seems his artistic sensibilities simply wouldn't allow that to happen.
Now, presumably every filmmaker wants his work to be seen and be successful, so we can assume Welles would have loved it if THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS and KANE had been huge hits. But if AMBERSONS and KANE had made huge profits, would that have also made them "commercial" movies?
Welles thinking along these lines was brought out in Juan Cobos recent article about the making of DON QUIXOTE. Welles was apparently very concerned about bringing out a film that would be a hit before he felt confident enough to consider releasing DON QUIXOTE, because he felt his little QUIXOTE film would please absolutely no one, and therefore it would almost certainly damage his prospects for raising money towards any future directing projects - which by that time were already at a very low level. However, during this time Welles was offered several very "commercial" assignments, like POPEYE, that Robert Altman made, but of course he refused all those kind of movies, even if he desperately needed the money.
ORSON WELLES MADE MARC FORSTER DO IT!