I'm just wondering if anyone can add to my list of "Lost and Found" Welles film cans? This is what I can detail, so far:
1. "It's All True": Film cans accidentally discovered by a Paramount executive in 1985 in the former RKO vaults. Used as the basis for "It's All True" documentary.
2. "Macbeth": in 1980 the original 107 minute Welles cut with the original Scottish accents was discovered; today, this is the standard dvd version.
3. "Othello": Beatrice Welles's 'restoration' of this 1952 film uses the original elements which had been passed from one company to another as the result of corporate buyouts; finally the material came to rest in a warehouse in Fort Lee, New Jersey, where it quietly rested, waiting for decades to be discovered. These master elements were the master dupe negative, an original edited camera negative, a soundtrack optical negative for music and effects, and a soundtrack optical negative master mix for music, sound effects and dialogue: quite a discovery!
4. "Mr. Arkadin": Peter Bogdanovich discovered a 16mm copy in a film distributor's vault in the early '60s, which has since been named after its owner, Corinth Films; apparently this version is the closest we have to Welles's conception, but as it has several aging flaws, Criterion has edited into it several scenes from other copies of the film, including a 35mm composite fine-grain print discovered in France, for thier new dvd release.
5. "Touch of Evil" : In 1978, a 108 minute version of TOE was discovered. This and the original studio-edited release were edited together to make the 1998 Murch version.
6. "Portrait of Gina": This 1958 TV documentary Welles made for CBS was rejected upon delivery; in the mid-1960's Welles forgot it in his Paris hotel room; it was discovered by accident in a storage area in the mid-1980s.
7. "Don Quixote": This was left by Welles in a Rome lab vault in 1971 and was slated for destruction in 1974; luckily, Mauro Bonanni's wife worked in the lab (Mauro had been an editor on the film) and just by chance saw the letter to Welles's secretary notifying her of the routine destruction of the film, as Welles had not paid the storage charges or communicated with the lab for several years. Subsequently Bonanni made a payment to delay the destruction, but for only 3 months; however, to stop the destruction required the owner of the item to send a letter giving custody to Mauro, and this Welles did when Bonanni finally found him after a 3 month search. To this day, Mauro has been paying for the storage of this version of DQ, even thogh Oja's 1993 project gathered most of the rest of the versions from vaults around the world.
Actually, when you think about it, Welles was unlucky with financing, but he has been very lucky with the "Lost and Found" Dept., as more than we could hope for has miraculously survived; can anyone else think of more Welles "Lost and Found"?