Saturday, 15 January 2011

My Hero Orson Welles

Orson Welles is one of my heroes for many reasons... He just seemed like a man you could go to about anything...

"Hey Orson, I'm writing something... help me out... hey Orson, my girlfriend left me.. cheer me up.. hey Orson ...tell me a story that'll make me cry then another one to make me laugh... hey Orson, I'm looking for my voice... help me find it"

Although he had such a strong and powerful presence on screen which even came through on his radio recordings, I sense this mysterious, troublesome vulnerability about him...

He was a man with a classic and romantic mind who wanted to live in the past even through he was 100 years ahead of his time... He was an extremely progressive thinker... directing Shakespeare plays and casting all black actors in the 40's.. He wrote screenplays, radio plays and made films that exposed mediocrity. He was shunned by Hollywood, slated by jealous and conservative critics... but kept on working despite his genius being overlooked during most of his life... his parents died when he was young... he became a wanderer... a boy who loved travelling, magic and painting... He then discovered the theatre, film and radio.

"I want to use the motion picture camera as an instrument of poetry"

I'm currently reading his biography and he talks about being separate from his art. Even in this interview he's adamant about the concept of "rosebud" being what he least liked about his film 'Citizen Kane' yet, as a human being he admits longing for one place to call home.

Art is a mirror of the artist even if the artist (or anyone) tries to smash it.

Anyway, this is a brilliant interview with the man himself... although rather ballooned... Welles is sharp, poetic and honest (even about the things he can't do).

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