Orson Welles

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Scharphedin2
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Orson Welles

#1 Post by Scharphedin2 » Fri Mar 30, 2007 5:59 pm

Orson Welles (1915-1985)

Image

Today I believe that man cannot escape his destiny to create
whatever it is we make—jazz, a wooden spoon, or graffiti on
the wall. All of these are expressions of man's creativity, proof
that man has not yet been destroyed by technology. But are
we making things for the people of our epoch or repeating what
has been done before? And finally, is the question itself important?
We must ask ourselves that. The most important thing is always
to doubt the importance of the question.



Filmography

The Hearts of Age (short, 1934) Kino (Avant-Garde Anthology, R1) / Image (Unseen Cinema 7-Disc Collection, R1)

Too Much Johnson (short, 1938)

Citizen Kane (1941) Warner Brothers

The Magnificent Ambersons (1942) Editions Montparnasse (R2 FR)

The Stranger (1946) Roan Group (R1) - out-of-print double feature with Cause for Alarm / MGM (R1)

The Lady From Shanghai (1947) Sony/Columbia

Macbeth (1948) Wild Side (R2 FR) / Network (R2 UK

Othello (1952) Network (R2 UK) / Image (R1)

Moby Dick Rehearsed (TV, 1955)

Mr. Arkadin (1955) Criterion

The Orson Welles Sketchbook (TV Series, 1955)

Around the World with Orson Welles (TV Series, 1955) Image (R1)

Orson Welles and People (TV Series, 1956)

Portrait of Gina (TV, 1958)

Touch of Evil (1958) Universal

The Fountain of Youth (TV, 1958)

The Trial (1962) Milestone (R1) / Studio Canal (R2 FR)

In the Land of Don Quixote (TV Series, 1964)

Chimes at Midnight (1965) Studio Canal

Vienna (1968)

The Immortal Story (1968) RHV (R2 IT)

The Merchant of Venice (TV, 1969)

The Deep (1970)

The Golden Honeymoon (1970)

London (1971)

The Other Side of the Wind (1972)

F for Fake (1974) Criterion / Masters of Cinema

The Orson Welles Show (TV, 1979)

Filming 'The Trial' (1981)

The Spirit of Charles Lindbergh (1984)

Orson Welles' Magic Show (TV, 1985)

Don Quixote de Orson Welles (1992) Gaumont (R2 FR) / VellaVision (R2 ES)

It's All True (1993) Paramount (R1)

Moby Dick (1999)


Forum Discussions

Chimes at Midnight

Chimes at Midnight (Orson Welles, 1965)

F for Fake (Criterion)

F for Fake (MoC)

The Complete Mr. Arkadin

Citizen Kane

The Lady from Shanghai

The Orson Welles Collection (Passport)

Orson Welles Macbeth French 3 Disc Set

The Magnificent Ambersons

Orson Welles' The Stranger

Othello

The Other Side of the Wind

Welles' Touch of Evil: The Two Versions

The Other Side of the Wind?

Warner and Welles

Whither Ambersons?


Web Resources

From the Beginning: Notes on Orson Welles' Most Personal Late Film - Peter Tonguette (Senses of Cinema, 2003)

Orson Welles: An Incomplete Education - Jaime N. Christley (Senses of Cinema, 2003)

Out of the Shadows: Touch of Evil - Fred Camper (Chicago Reader, 1998)

Wellesnet

Video Resources

1974 Interview with Michael Parkinson: Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5

Chartres Cathedral Monologue (F for Fake)


Books

The Citizen Kane Book: Raising Kane - Pauline Kael, The Shooting Script - Herman J. Mankiewicz and Orson Welles (Atlantic/Little, Brown, 1971)

Citizen Welles - Frank Brady (Hodder & Stoughton, 1989)

The Magnificent Ambersons: A Reconstruction - Robert L. Carringer (University of California Press, 1993)

Orson Welles - Joseph McBride (Da Capo, 2nd. Ed, 2001)

Orson Welles: Volume 1: The Road to Xanadu - Simon Callow (Viking, 1996)

Orson Welles: Volume 2: Hello Americans - Simon Callow (Viking, 2006))

Orson Welles: Interviews - Mark W. Estrin, editor (University Press of Mississippi, 2002)

This is Orson Welles - Orson Welles and Peter Bogdanovich / Jonathan Rosenbaum, editor (Harper Collins, 1998)
__________________________________________________________________________________________

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Oedipax
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Don Quijote de Orson Welles

#2 Post by Oedipax » Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:57 pm

I looked around and from what I could tell, there isn't a thread yet on this new footage of Orson Welles' Don Quixote which was shown recently on cable access by Jonathan Rosenbaum. You can view it here along with Rosenbaum's introduction, and he's written a little more about it here.

What a remarkable clip. It feels like it could've easily become one of those famous scenes that everyone knows (even if they haven't seen the film) and are referenced endlessly. Beyond that, there's just something undeniably moving about it, in light of Welles' life and as a larger metaphor for... lots of things.

It strikes me that Welles was a lot closer to Godard than most people realize, meaning he was more than someone who, like Hitchcock, mastered the 'language' of cinema after Griffith and Eisenstein invented it - he also belongs partly to the generation that came next, the ones who rewrote the rules or simply threw them away completely. But maybe I'm saying that simply because this clip fits perfectly with JLG's Histoire(s) du Cinema, a precursor to the shot seen there with the screen twisting in on itself.

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Dylan
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#3 Post by Dylan » Tue Oct 23, 2007 12:49 am

That is a great clip, I hadn't seen anything from this film before beyond a few odd shots from documentaries, and it (at least what exists) looks very interesting. Does anybody have any comments on the various edits going around that attempt to construct Welles' raw footage into a coherent feature?

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Awesome Welles
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#4 Post by Awesome Welles » Thu Oct 25, 2007 12:30 pm

Welles fans should check out Wellesnet for information about Jonathan Rosenbaum's interview on Welles to be aired Friday 26th October on CAN TV19 at 10:00 a.m. more details on the website. The interview covers Mr. Arkadin, Don Quixote, Chimes at Midnight and F for Fake.

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ando
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#5 Post by ando » Thu Oct 25, 2007 7:17 pm

Also check out Conversations With Orson Welles, Mark W. Estrin, editor. Of particular interest to me are the discussions concerning the influence and adaptions of Shakespeare on film (and on world culture, in general). Wish I'd seen his Voodoo Macbeth when it played in Harlem, NYC back in 1936. Apparently, Welles had a few witch doctors, who were in the cast, throw a spell on a critic who panned it. They found the guy dead a few days after the premier. Stories like this, naturally, abound in Welles' re-telling, but there's also a very good deal of serious discussion (though death is pretty serious) about cinema throughout the 15 interviews included.

ando

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domino harvey
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#6 Post by domino harvey » Tue Jun 03, 2008 4:06 pm

I found the Brady bio of Welles for a dollar at a used book store, I naturally picked it up but is it a worthwhile read?

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Highway 61
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#7 Post by Highway 61 » Tue Jun 03, 2008 7:52 pm

According to Rosenbaum, it focuses almost entirely on Welles's work, avoiding the gossip of most Welles bios. Apparently Brady's research is impeccable on Welles's radio work and Citizen Kane, but after that he has a tough time keeping the facts of Welles's rocky career straight.

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lubitsch
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#9 Post by lubitsch » Tue Aug 12, 2008 4:32 pm

Highway 61 wrote:According to Rosenbaum, it focuses almost entirely on Welles's work, avoiding the gossip of most Welles bios. Apparently Brady's research is impeccable on Welles's radio work and Citizen Kane, but after that he has a tough time keeping the facts of Welles's rocky career straight.
I can highly recommend Simon Callow absolutely masterful biography (two volumes are already available). a great job of thorough biography on the one hand and thoughtful, entertaining analysis of the films.

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reaky
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#10 Post by reaky » Sun Sep 28, 2008 1:16 pm

A bit belated, I know, but BBC 4 are showing a couple of archive interviews tonight with Orson Welles and Alfred Hitchcock. I imagine they'll be available afterwards on the BBC iPlayer.

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Person
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Re: Orson Welles

#11 Post by Person » Thu Nov 13, 2008 2:55 pm

Welles' short film, The Magic Show is on You Tube. From the German Arte channel with burned-in yellow German subs:

Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4

Great stuff! :D

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Napier
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Re: Orson Welles

#12 Post by Napier » Tue Dec 02, 2008 11:12 am

The Magnificent Amberson's is showing on TCM tonight at 10:00 PM in the U.S.Just a heads up.I can't wait because I have never seen it.

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tojoed
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Re: Orson Welles

#13 Post by tojoed » Tue Dec 02, 2008 2:30 pm

Napier wrote:The Magnificent Amberson's is showing on TCM tonight at 10:00 PM in the U.S.Just a heads up.I can't wait because I have never seen it.

You're in for a rare treat. Let us know here what you think of it, it would be nice to hear.

karmajuice
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Re: Orson Welles

#14 Post by karmajuice » Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:54 pm

Don't they have several of his films playing back to back? I've already seen the ones showing, but I recorded Macbeth from a while back and intend to watch that tonight. So I'll be watching in spirit.

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Napier
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Re: Orson Welles

#15 Post by Napier » Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:15 pm

karmajuice wrote:Don't they have several of his films playing back to back? I've already seen the ones showing, but I recorded Macbeth from a while back and intend to watch that tonight. So I'll be watching in spirit.
They are showing Kane, (seen a hundred times),Ambersons, and Journey into fear.Getcha dvr's ready.

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fiddlesticks
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Re: Orson Welles

#16 Post by fiddlesticks » Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:34 pm

Napier wrote:
karmajuice wrote:Don't they have several of his films playing back to back? I've already seen the ones showing, but I recorded Macbeth from a while back and intend to watch that tonight. So I'll be watching in spirit.
They are showing Kane, (seen a hundred times),Ambersons, and Journey into fear.Getcha dvr's ready.
...followed by Touch of Evil.

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HerrSchreck
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Re: Orson Welles

#17 Post by HerrSchreck » Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:47 pm

Getcha dvdr's ready especially if they show it in the academy ratio... though I (buffs fingernails) have the o.o.p. VHS of (slow satisfied exhale, holds nails up to the light) the Schmidlin resto, which is open matte.

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Zazou dans le Metro
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Re: Orson Welles

#18 Post by Zazou dans le Metro » Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:13 pm

HerrSchreck wrote:Getcha dvdr's ready especially if they show it in the academy ratio... though I (buffs fingernails) have the o.o.p. VHS of (slow satisfied exhale, holds nails up to the light) the Schmidlin resto, which is open matte.
In Europe we get everything 4:3 on TCM stretched to 16:9 so everyone ends up looking like Jimmy Rushing. Do you guys over there not get the same treatment then?

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tojoed
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Re: Orson Welles

#19 Post by tojoed » Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:27 pm

For those in the UK, "Touch of Evil" is on Sky Classics on Saturday. It'll be interesting to see in which ratio they show it.

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Person
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Re: Orson Welles

#20 Post by Person » Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:36 pm

tojoed wrote:For those in the UK, "Touch of Evil" is on Sky Classics on Saturday. It'll be interesting to see in which ratio they show it.
Since 1999, all British TV presentations of TOE that I have seen have been the 1998 restoration in 1.78:1 .

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Zazou dans le Metro
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Re: Orson Welles

#21 Post by Zazou dans le Metro » Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:44 pm

Forgot to mention that they showed Greed in 16:9 a couple of days back. What is in these people's minds..... Do they think that Mr Average Punter is gonnae have a shit-fit and channel hop when they see a silent movie in ...the horror! the horror! anything less than widescreen?

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HerrSchreck
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Re: Orson Welles

#22 Post by HerrSchreck » Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:51 pm

they showed Greed in 16:9 a couple of days back
That was NOT a watermelon hitting the fucking sidewalk. Somebody close my kitchen window and burn my bedding and take whatever's left that's of value and give it to the poor.

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Tommaso
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Re: Orson Welles

#23 Post by Tommaso » Tue Jan 06, 2009 8:59 am

Yesterday I finally watched "Don Quijote", the Franco version of course. And though I expect to enflame quite a few people here, I can't help saying that for the most part this was a striking cinematic experience, both for what it was and for what it was not.

First about what it isn't: an Orson Welles film. That is stating the obvious, but I have the feeling that it is basically people's expectation that this should be anywhere near something that Welles himself would have created from the materials which led to the dismissal this film has encountered. The shortcomings of the film as a film are far too obvious: the post-dubbing, the overlong sequences in the city, the missing movie theatre sequence (the latter not being Franco's fault, as this sequence was not available to him at the time), the occasionally weird editing (remember that moment when Sancho peaks thru some iron bars in the city, and the next shot we see is Quijote in his wooden cage, clearly filmed at a quite different time and place?). Obviously all this doesn't fit together in any usual sense.

Now why did I actually like this film nevertheless? First of all I can't help thinking that despite these shortcomings, Franco tried to create at least some kind of narrative from the often unrelated materials, some sort of almost surrealist 'variation' on an 'imaginary', lost film, and as such it's much more Franco's film than Welles' (although it was marketed otherwise), and at least occasionally, it worked surprisingly well for me. Secondly, and much more importantly, I was completely blown away by what Welles had actually shot. Reiguera must easily be the most believable and fascinating Quijote on film: I could go on endlessly about the wonderful facial expressions and close-ups Welles created. Also, I was amazed about the almost Eisensteinian visual approach in general: think of the people working the fields or, right at the beginning, the way the face of the girl on the motorbike is filmed. These are iconic images, some of the strongest Welles ever created, and I guess they will remain with me for a long time. Thirdly, the overall concept that Welles obviously had in making Quijote and Pansa encounter the modern world and being lost in it struck me as a very humane and wonderful comment on the modern condition of people.

Watching this material made me constantly wonder and imagine how Welles himself would have edited it and what a great film we are actually missing, perhaps one of his very best. I wasn't even overly annoyed by the new dubbing, perhaps precisely because it was so out-of-synch. I found myself in a frame of mind where I thought I am actually watching a silent film or silent footage (which, after all, most of the materials are, and the state they're in made the illusion of watching something from the 20s even more easy) and considered the dialogue as if it was spoken by a benshi. And just like a benshi would add his own ideas about what is going on on screen and creating his own words for the characters, I found it legitimate that Franco invented his own words for the characters in Welles' footage.

Again: this is not a Welles film, not even an approximation, but rather a dream about what Welles' film could have been like. But I'm actually thankful that this version exists, as it enables us to see a torso of one of the greatest films never made. In a way, the situation is similar to Cooke's completion of Mahler's tenth symphony: much is conjecture, and certainly different from what Mahler himself would have done, but I'd rather listen to that version than not being able to listen to the wonderful ideas of Mahler at all. Thus, I would call Franco's attempt, as one reviewer did, "a noble effort". Nothing more, nothing less.

I'm certainly looking forward to a possible different presentation of Welles' material in the future (I hope all of it will be included in the long-announced "Unknown Welles" set from Filmmuseum, should that one ever see the light of day), best of all completely silent apart from the few parts that Welles himself experimentally dubbed. But for the moment, I would advise anyone interested in Welles to check out this version, especially as it's now easily available in R1-world. If the dialogue gets on your nerve, turn the audio off. But really, the materials themselves are so wonderful that they deserve to be seen in whatever form.

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Re: Orson Welles

#24 Post by bearcuborg » Wed Jul 22, 2009 11:58 am


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Ovader
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Re: Orson Welles

#25 Post by Ovader » Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:25 pm

Orson Welles season on BBC Four will be showing five films, a BBC series from the 1950s, the 1982 Arena documentary and a new programme about his later career in Europe presented by his biographer Simon Callow.

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