Once again, Hadji, I think you have illuminated the truth of a Wellsian matter.
Christian McKay starred in Rosebud at the Edinburgh Festival in 2004, and from that well-received production there developed a train of events which led to further performances and his starring in ME AND ORSON WELLES. An interesting account of that odyssey is contained in a recent (November 26, 2009) article in the Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film ... rview.html
It would be logical and fitting, at this point, with the release of ME AND ORSON WELLES, that the BBC would turn for part of its Christmas programming to various Welles' TV projects, and the original theatrical event which began McKay's rise as a thespian.
Remembering that the third volume of Simon Callow's Orson Welles biography will need a locus, Callow may find, too, particular interest in the BBC project because Welles' full bravura entry into British culture would have taken place in 1954-55, when he was for one last moment at once a star of stage, screen, radio, and for the first time,producer of a television series of his own. In just about a year's time -- already well known for THE THIRD MAN in Alexander Korda's hit movie, and British Radio with The Adventures of Harry Lime and The Black Museum -- Orson Welles returned to the Movies, acting a Latin Scotsman in TROUBLE IN THE GLEN, playing Father Mapple in Huston's MOBY DICK, making CONFIDENTIAL REPORT/MR. ARKADIN, adapted Moby Dick for the stage in Moby Dick Rehearsed, and appeared to the British TV public in six episodes of his own BBC Orson Welles Sketch Book. It should provide Simon Callow with rich material to illustrate Orson Welles' brave and tragic arc, here perhaps at its apogee.
In the Fall of 1954 through the Summer of 1955, the time period of these accomplishments, I had a romance, as related elsewhere, with Rosemary H., a smart, beautiful, blonde model, a bit of a debutante, a graduate of Teatro Conti, who slummed as a phonograph record salesperson, downstairs in the Baker Street Keith Prowse theatrical booking ticket agency. She was crazy about all the Arts and considered Orson Welles the American Messiah. It was she who kept me up on Welles' activities, whenever I managed a weekend or a three-day pass from washing down 40mm Anti-Aircraft Guns in East Anglia. It was she who raved about the Orson Welles Sketchbook, which for BBC Television Production, she considered revolutionary in its sheer simplicity.
I never saw any of the episodes at the time [they being shown during the week when I was off defending (unbeknownst to me, and illegally) the atom bombs buried at Lakenheath Air Base, assuring mutual destruction of Western and Soviet Civilizations.] Thanks to Ray Kelly's gift to us, my son Guy and myself have been watching all six of those episodes this past afternoon, between bouts of Second Day Turkey.
What power Orson Welles had!
Even throughout an hour and half of varied subjects, meant to be seen in segments over several months, Welles rivets our concentration, looking directly into our eyes as he charms, entertains, and educates us.
I can only imagine what Simon Callow and the BBC producers will make of Christian McKay's ROSEBUD, maybe these Sketch Books, and associated materials.
Perhaps, our own estimable Larry French will learn more from McKay on Tuesday evening at the Frisco Premiere of ME AND ORSON WELLES, if the Hollywood PR people will allow them a decent amount of time to complete the interview they began so amiably last week.
Meanwhile, thank you again, Ray Kelly for the gift, and Rosemary H. for your inspiration -- wherever you are.