If any of you get a chance to pick up on the dean martin celeberty roast for frank sinatra, get it. It’s excellent. Not only an all star cast, but the producer/director, greg garrison is on the commentary track. He had some interesting things to say about welles.
This guy garrison is in the brady bio, he told the same story that is in the brady book. He was a kid and working on around the world in 80 days. Welles had a fit and threw a cane, the cane flew across the stage and hit him. He picked it up and threw it back hitting welles with it. Welles fired him. At 1:00 am there was a knock on his door, it was welles, he said he didn’t know that the cane had hit him, he said he was sorry and asked garrison to come back. Garrison was just a flunky stagehand then, that later became a big shot tv producer, and no doubt helped welles earn money when he returned to america in the 70s.
Garrison claims welles became like a father figure to him, they had a life long friendship, and garrison said he was the executor of welles’ estate.
Garrison also dropped a little tib-bit that he said no one knows. When sinatra was acting in from here to eternity, he was nervous, he had not done any dramatic roles. Welles was vacationing in hawaii at the time and every night when sinatra left the set he would go to welles’ hotel room where welles directed sinatra’s performance for the following day. Garrison said he did not hear this from sinatra, or from welles. Sinatra told dean and dean told garrison.
Also, in the catch-22 commentary track, mike nichols said of welles – “he had no patience.” He also said that when perkins asked him how to play his role, nichols told him to watch how he is when he’s around welles. Perkin’s role was a nervous wreck that fumbled everything.
Another interesting tid-bit, though not welles related. On the sinatra roast, Peter falk appeared as columbo, and was fabulous. Neither dean or frank knew him and didn’t know what he was going to do. Falk had them in stitches, he must have been on for 9 or 12 minutes and never got boring. Garrison said that while falk is on stage thinking, “wow, I’m on stage standing between martin and sinatra, martin and sinatra were fans of colunmbo and were thinking, “wow, I’m on stage with columbo!" before i heard the commentary track, while falk was on, i saw sinatra put his head down and his fingers to his forehead like columbo does when he’s thinking out loud, i knew frank had been watching columbo!
any of you have any first hand quotes? would be cool to have a thread of first hand quotes on welles.
harvey's post about rich little would be cool here, if i can find it i will post it here, and the quote from rick jason