24 November 2013
Me & Orson
Peter Bogdanovich published a bio of Orson Welles in the early '90s. I was married and living in Lake Bluff when the Echo Xray gave me the book for Christmas in 1992 or '93. The bio came with four hours of recorded interviews at numerous locations to include the set of Catch 22 and a NYC taxi where Welles offers the driver a gold doubloon if he'll step on it.
Last year I unsuccessfully looked for the interviews on line since my own tapes have resided in a storage locker somewhere in Northeast Florida for the last seven years. But the internet finally caught up and here they finally are with the first half hour above.
I remember hearing these the first time and being overwhelmed...Not just by the technical insight and gossip...but just hearing Orson fire up another Partagas, hearing ice being swirled in a drink and feeling like I was in the room with him.
Welles, who was from Kenosha, was all over the the north shore of Chicago. Acting as a 13 year old at Ravinia and attending the Todd School for Boys in Woodstock, IL -- I'd drive around listening to these tapes and couldn't stop thinking what a great film they'd inspire. For me, they were so visual -- Maybe they'll be for you as well.