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Thread: Orson Welles

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    Orson Welles

    His first film to be seen by the public was citizen Kane (1941), a commercial failure losing RKO $150,000, but regarded by many as the best film ever made.

    Once ate 18 hotdogs in one sitting at Pink's (a Los Angeles hot dog institution).

    On old time radio, provided the voice for Lamont Cranston, aka THE SHADOW

    'American Broadcasting Company (ABC) wanted him to play Mr. Roarke on "Fantasy Island."

    On 30 October 1938, he directed the Mercury Theatre On the Air in a dramatization of "War of the Worlds", based onH.G. Wells novel. Setting the events in then-contemporary locations (The "landing spot" for the Martian invasion, Grover's Mill, New Jersey, was chosen at random with a New Jersey road map) and dramatizing it in the style of a musical program interrupted by news bulletins, complete with eye-witness accounts, it caused a nationwide panic, with many listeners fully convinced that the Earth was being invaded by Mars. The next day, Welles publicly apologized. While many lawsuits were filed against both Welles and the CBS radio network, all were dismissed. The incident is mentioned in textbook accounts of mass hysteria and the delusions of crowds.

    Despite his reputation as an actor and master film-maker, he maintained his membership in the Magicians' Union, and regularly practiced sleight-of-hand magic in case his career came to an abrupt end.

    A bootleg tape of a short-tempered (and foul-mouthed) Orson Welles arguing with a recording engineer during a voice-over session has been widely distributed.

    Provided voice for some songs of heavy metal band Manowar: Dark Avenger and Defender.

    He became obese in his 40s, weighing over 350 pounds towards the end of his life.


    His average dinner famously consisted of two steaks cooked rare, and a pint of scotch - explaining his obesity as he got older, and his subsequent death.

    In the 1930s he worked at various radio stations in New York City, at different times of the day. He found it difficult to be on time for his live shows because he had to use taxicabs and the heavy New York City traffic meant that he was often late. He soon found a loophole in the law that said you didn't have to be sick to hire an ambulance, so he did just that and had the drivers blast their sirens as he traveled from one station to the next, and that way he was on time.

    Died Oct 10th 1985

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    He is one of the few actors that I can say was really a true actor.

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    One of the greats! Merv Griffin said after he interviewed him Orson left they followed and saw him eat 12 Pinks hotdogs and was dead 1 hour later.

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    A great, outstanding actor, Its wasn't so much what he was eating as to what was eating him that cause him to actually kill himself with food. A big loss to the industry when he died.

    Member since 10/10/07

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    Was he underated during his time?
    Didn't he have trouble finding acting jobs and did he die broke?

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    According to Welles' associates Gary Graver and Oja Kodar,Welles did not wish to be cremated, but his wife Paola and daughter Beatrice had the cremation performed, and his ashes were eventually placed in a dry well at a friend's estate in Ronda Spain. According to some reports, some of his ashes have been scattered in the town's famous "Plaza de Toros", the oldest bullfighting ring in Spain still in use.

    So explain this to me! The guy doesn't want to be cremated and they do it anyway and they throw his ashes into a dry well??

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    According to Welles' associates Gary Graver and Oja Kodar,Welles did not wish to be cremated, but his wife Paola and daughter Beatrice had the cremation performed, and his ashes were eventually placed in a dry well at a friend's estate in Ronda Spain. According to some reports, some of his ashes have been scattered in the town's famous "Plaza de Toros", the oldest bullfighting ring in Spain still in use.

    So explain this to me! The guy doesn't want to be cremated and they do it anyway and they throw his ashes into a dry well??
    Yeah, I read the same thing about John Lennon; maybe here at FAD. He did NOT want to be cremated; but Yoko did it anyway.

    Go figure.

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    Welles voiced original trailers for The Incredible Shrinking Man in 1957, Star Wars in 1977, and Star Trek: The Motion Picture in 1979 .

    He was the voice of Robin Masters, the famous writer and playboy in the TV series Magnum, P.I.....Welles's sudden death forced the character to be largely written out of the series.

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    An immense talent. Once he was at one of those Hollywood restaurants sitting at the bar having a beer. Errol Flynn came up and slapped him on the back......hard....... and invited him outside to get restitution. In the book by Peter Bogdanovich he was asked about this and Orson stated that there is always a certain amount resentment of when one strikes a gusher (after having signed his legendary deal).

    True innovator. He was the first person to actually include the ceiling of a room in a shot. Remember when he got Greg Toland to hack the concrete floor of the stage to get the camera low enough to shoot a worm's eye view?

    How about the opening dolly shot in Kane where they focused on the kid playing in the yard and then pulled back into the room, the shot was brilliant. If you look carefully, you can see the hat on the table still rocking where the stage hands had quickly set up the table after the camera had passed.

    The Third Man is considered to be the last film noir picture of that great era.

    Rosebud was rumoured to be the nickname Hearst had for Marion's va ja ja.

    Get the Bogdanovich book.

    Get the Bogdanovich book.

    Get the Bogdanovich book.
    Last edited by neilmpenny; 12-03-2007 at 05:27 AM.
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    In her book "Childhood Shadows: The Hidden Story of the Black Dahlia Murder," Mary Pacios, author and childhood friend of Elizabeth Short puts forth the theory that Orson Welles was in fact the Black Dahlia killer.
    Though she makes some interesting points and tie-ins with Welles' film "The Lady From Shanghai," it seems a bit far-fetched to me. Interesting reading nonetheless, if for no other reason than it gives a very intimate portrait of Elizabeth Short in younger, better days...



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    Quote Originally Posted by GrinReaper View Post
    Was he underated during his time?
    Didn't he have trouble finding acting jobs and did he die broke?
    No he was not under rated in his time.

    From the book 'Last days of dead celebrities'.

    From Welles's close friend and cameraman Gary Graver:

    "There was always money," said Graver. "He used to show me a stack of credit cards. He had a SAG pension. He had the greatest voice and was always in demand for voice-overs and radio stuff. He performed classic storytelling on Japanese radio and for European countries. He could always make a good living because of his voice. And he was getting five hundred thousand a year plus residuals for doing Gallo Wine commercials. He never stopped working. He was doing good and, more important, he was feeling good".

    He lived with Oja (pronounced Oya) Kordar on Stanley, just north of Sunset, in an elegantly faded three story Tara-like mini-mansion owned by Oja.

    He owned a house in Vegas in which his third wife Paola Mori lived in. She was a Catholic and refused to grant him a divorce.
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilmpenny View Post
    No he was not under rated in his time.

    From the book 'Last days of dead celebrities'.

    From Welles's close friend and cameraman Gary Graver:

    "There was always money," said Graver. "He used to show me a stack of credit cards. He had a SAG pension. He had the greatest voice and was always in demand for voice-overs and radio stuff. He performed classic storytelling on Japanese radio and for European countries. He could always make a good living because of his voice. And he was getting five hundred thousand a year plus residuals for doing Gallo Wine commercials. He never stopped working. He was doing good and, more important, he was feeling good".

    He lived with Oja (pronounced Oya) Kordar on Stanley, just north of Sunset, in an elegantly faded three story Tara-like mini-mansion owned by Oja.

    He owned a house in Vegas in which his third wife Paola Mori lived in. She was a Catholic and refused to grant him a divorce.
    He died in Las Vegas didn't he? I have an old newspaper clip that Say's that. but everywhere on the Internet it Say's Hollywood!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    He died in Las Vegas didn't he? I have an old newspaper clip that Say's that. but everywhere on the Internet it Say's Hollywood!
    From the same book as above:

    Welles and Leaming also left Griffin's theatre on Vine, but instead of going their separate ways, they followed each other to Ma Maison and had a quiet supper. Welles stayed on after Leaming left, and Patrick Terrail (owner of Ma Maison) joined hm at his table.
    "He was happy about everything that night", said Terrail. "He was happy about the Griffin show because he thought it went well. He was happy because he was in the middle of a renegotiation and close to a new contract with Gallo. And that meant a lot of money. Everything was going his way, and he was in a good mood. He was just in good spirits all the way around."
    Welles finished his dinner, went home, and died.
    Early the next morning, his driver Gillette, discovered his boss's body lying in a single bed on the second floor at the house on Stanly. A portable typewriter sat balanced and still on the dead man's stomach. It was determined that Welles had suffered a fatal heart attack while typing a script during the early morning hours of October 10.
    "He always liked to type lying down," said Terrail.

    Significant Welles addresses:

    LA

    136 South Carmelina Drive, Brentwood - Orson and Rita's house

    427 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills - Mercury Rroductions Office

    1451 Cahuenga Blvd - Hollywood Canteen

    1717 North Stanley - Oja's house and where he died.

    8545 Franklin Avenue - Lived here when shooting Kane

    Ireland:

    1 Cavendish Row, Dublin - The Gate theatre where Orson First acted.
    Last edited by neilmpenny; 12-07-2007 at 06:49 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilmpenny View Post
    From the same book as above:

    Welles and Leaming also left Griffin's theatre on Vine, but instead of going their separate ways, they followed each other to Ma Maison and had a quiet supper. Welles stayed on after Leaming left, and Patrick Terrail (owner of Ma Maison) joined hm at his table.
    "He was happy about everything that night", said Terrail. "He was happy about the Griffin show because he thought it went well. He was happy because he was in the middle of a renegotiation and close to a new contract with Gallo. And that meant a lot of money. Everything was going his way, and he was in a good mood. He was just in good spirits all the way around."
    Welles finished his dinner, went home, and died.
    Early the next morning, his driver Gillette, discovered his boss's body lying in a single bed on the second floor at the house on Stanly. A portable typewriter sat balanced and still on the dead man's stomach. It was determined that Welles had suffered a fatal heart attack while typing a script during the early morning hours of October 10.
    "He always liked to type lying down," said Terrail.
    I need to purchase that book, Thanks!! I have to dig out that old newspaper clip now, see why it said Las Vegas??

    Again thanks for the info!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    I need to purchase that book, Thanks!! I have to dig out that old newspaper clip now, see why it said Las Vegas??

    Again thanks for the info!
    My pleasure.

    Last Days Of Dead Celebrities
    By Mitchell Fink
    Miramax Books
    IBSN 1-4013-5198-0
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cy8U...eature=related

    They talk about his last role in Transformers, Kind of sad!

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    He could be a prick though hehehehehe

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V14PfDDwxlE

    On the Parkinson show, Parkinson was one of the best interviewers in England. This is just Orson being Orson, no great insights to his movies but he was a hell of a great talker. Anyway, Parkinson is a master of his craft and this is a good interview.

    Part 1

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZhlwI...eature=related

    Part 2

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4C7Mb...eature=related

    Part 3

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GeGIo...eature=related

    Part 4

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yoLCn...eature=related

    Part 5

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKfxM...eature=related
    Last edited by neilmpenny; 12-05-2007 at 06:08 AM.
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    Orson on Arena. Yes there a lot of parts to this. Orson never liked to talk about his movies, he figured that once it was in the can and edited (by whom ever) it was out there and had a life of it's own. This is a rare occasion where the Arena show does a filmography of his work and intersperses it with clips where Orson adds a little detail and colour. He was in Hollywood during the golden age and he has a few anecdotes to share..

    Part 1
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1Ni0...eature=related
    Part 2
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1AgZ...eature=related
    Part 3
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKt2O...eature=related
    Part 4
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bXZ8...eature=related
    Part 5
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gRPV1...eature=related
    Part 6
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DENEZ...eature=related
    Part 7
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BXPY...eature=related
    Part 8
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4IqA...eature=related
    Part 9
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JblYZ...eature=related
    Part 10
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ya63...eature=related
    Part 11
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_lVU...eature=related
    Part 12
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHB1r...eature=related
    Part 13
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8k2u...eature=related
    Part 14
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hP6s...eature=related
    Part 15
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B506B...eature=related
    Part 16
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFMj_...eature=related
    Last edited by neilmpenny; 12-05-2007 at 06:15 AM.
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by neilmpenny View Post
    My pleasure.

    Last Days Of Dead Celebrities
    By Mitchell Fink
    Miramax Books
    IBSN 1-4013-5198-0
    Great book by the way! Thanks again for the recommendation on it!

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3qg4i22x9M

    A drunk Orson Welles, really sad!!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0pzO4P6ZNI

    Dean Martin & Orson

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aries65 View Post
    Great book by the way! Thanks again for the recommendation on it!
    My pleasure, sharing, isn't it what this is all about in the end?

    Glad you love the book. do enjoy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3qg4i22x9M

    A drunk Orson Welles, really sad!!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0pzO4P6ZNI

    Dean Martin & Orson
    I don't think sad really. He was nobody to be pitied, he had achieved a great deal in his career and he was nowhere near poor or destitute. I think they may have been a little liberal with the hospitality before the gig if anything. His dignity was intact.

    The second is pretty much a carbon copy of the one he did with the laugh-in crew. Always playing on his Mercury theatre past. Will post the Laugh-in one when I find it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilmpenny View Post
    I don't think sad really. He was nobody to be pitied, he had achieved a great deal in his career and he was nowhere near poor or destitute. I think they may have been a little liberal with the hospitality before the gig if anything. His dignity was intact.
    So do you know anything behind that video of him drunk making the commercial?

    I guess its sad to see Orson so drunk and being directed at the same time??

    I just wonder why they even tried to do the commercial in his conditon??

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    I recall reading an article years back (in Playboy, perhaps) with Cybil Shephard. I believe she was good friends with him several years before his death, living in the same mansion with him and some others. She was questioned about Well's sexuality and I believe she revealed in his later life he had some flings with men. This is all so fuzzy, so if someone else out there could shed some light on this, I'd be greatful.

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    Wasn't Wells a master magician?

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    Great thread, thank you all for the fabulous information,i think that Orson is a genious.

    With Dietrich, his former lover back in the late 30s.


    The premiere of Citizen Kane

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    Quote Originally Posted by janel View Post
    Wasn't Wells a master magician?
    Yes, I believe he belonged to the Magic Castle in Hollywood as well!!

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    Thumbs up

    Genius he was.

    Citizen Kane is one of my favorite movies.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    Yes, I believe he belonged to the Magic Castle in Hollywood as well!!
    Yes I heard that too! In one of the last three Arena clips he tells a very funny story how a trick never worked out one night. At Harry Cohen's place for a party.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    So do you know anything behind that video of him drunk making the commercial?

    I guess its sad to see Orson so drunk and being directed at the same time??

    I just wonder why they even tried to do the commercial in his conditon??
    Maybe a couple of things.

    1. They had the space rented and the equipment set up and thought they would give it a go.
    2. Ego, he figured he could walk his way through it in any state of sobriety.
    3. He was doing the ads for Paul Masson and he got a better offer from Gallo (sabotage? would not put that past him)
    4. He got to the set drunk (morning after a huge one the night before)
    5. Hospitality tent as mentioned previously.

    I have never read about the incident but will see what I can dig up.
    Last edited by neilmpenny; 12-07-2007 at 06:50 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rugger57 View Post
    I recall reading an article years back (in Playboy, perhaps) with Cybil Shephard. I believe she was good friends with him several years before his death, living in the same mansion with him and some others. She was questioned about Well's sexuality and I believe she revealed in his later life he had some flings with men. This is all so fuzzy, so if someone else out there could shed some light on this, I'd be greatful.
    The cybil Shephard one may have been a bit dodgy as he shared a house with Oja, Will see what I can find.

    Flings with men? Never heard that one either...... the search continues, there goes my weekend.
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilmpenny View Post
    The cybil Shephard one may have been a bit dodgy as he shared a house with Oja, Will see what I can find.

    Flings with men? Never heard that one either...... the search continues, there goes my weekend.
    Me either! Never heard a thing about Orson being Bi!

    Yes if you find something please post it!!

    Thanks

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    i think that theres a book out there where the author(dont remember his name, could it be Walters??) anyway, in the book he talks about Welles' homosexual relationship with some teachers at his school and other men in his life. Me personally, i dont buy it.

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    Orson Welles/Touch of Evil

    Anyone ever seen this? I hope so being alot of film fans on here.

    I read 3 different versions exsit of the film and still all three don't contain Orson's final vision of this great work.

    But the forth version is supposedly worked from Orson's notes...I have never seen it. anyone out there able to comment on the forth if they have seen it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan7962 View Post
    Anyone ever seen this? I hope so being alot of film fans on here.

    I read 3 different versions exsit of the film and still all three don't contain Orson's final vision of this great work.

    But the forth version is supposedly worked from Orson's notes...I have never seen it. anyone out there able to comment on the forth if they have seen it?
    I have seen the restored version (many times!) and I own it. They call this "the best B-picture ever made." I think Welles took a B-level script and made movie magic with it. Welles, Heston, Janet Leigh, none were ever as good as they were here.

    This was the last gasp of film noir, and it is magnificent.

    A link to the restored director's version (taken from his notes to studio execs) is attached. Anyone who hasn't seen this, treat yourself!

    http://www.amazon.com/Touch-Restored...8382782&sr=8-1
    Attached Images Attached Images



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    I love this film-I think I have seen the restored version. Remember the scene where they keep walking?
    I love how each building they pass,there is a different type of music coming from each building.
    Other director's have tried to do their own version of that scene. One film actually did a terrific version of it and I don't recall which film.

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    thanks for the post,,,,,im adding this movie to my wish list,,,,,havnt seen it,,,,thanks again
    "Living is not measured in how many breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away!"


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    Quote Originally Posted by hoxharding View Post
    I love this film-I think I have seen the restored version. Remember the scene where they keep walking?
    I love how each building they pass,there is a different type of music coming from each building.
    Other director's have tried to do their own version of that scene. One film actually did a terrific version of it and I don't recall which film.
    That's the (opening) scene where most of the major restoration of the film occurred! You know that other directors must just drool over that sequence...



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    Great discussion of the movie in this interview of Charles Heston. Love the fact that he say's 'fuck' in the interview-not sure why, just weird to think of him saying it.

    http://www.tipjar.com/dan/heston.htm

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    I've seen both, and honestly didn't see much of a difference between the two. Below, is a link to the opening credit scene with the jazzy score as you watch a Mexican hood attach a bomb to a big long convertible late at night; after that you see an older guy with a sexy bimbo who appears tipsy come out (from a nightclub ?) and get in the car and then slowly leave the parking lot and head toward the border to return to the States. They pass HESTON & LEIGH who are a newlywed couple heading back to the US side of the border too, but they are on foot. The HESTON character is a Mexican policeman & LEIGH his beautiful American bride. At the border, the blond bimbo (JOI LANSING) tells the guards at the gate that she keeps hearing "a ticking sound in my head" but they just think that it's the ramblings of a drunk. After they cross over the border, the bomb that had been attached to the convertible explodes.




    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nn1VO1HIPk


    JOI LANSING


    LEIGH & HESTON

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  41. #41
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    Joi Lansing and Janet Leigh in the same movie.
    Two beautiful women.

  42. #42
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    Orson and Rita Hayworth were one of the most romantic couples of all time. I will always love the Third Man the best out of all of his films.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vamp View Post
    Orson and Rita Hayworth were one of the most romantic couples of all time. I will always love the Third Man the best out of all of his films.
    I love him in The Long Hot Summer...he was a son of a bitch, but I think he had earned that right by that point in time

  44. #44
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    I wonder what was Orson's take on that 1968 and 1972 "re-creation" of War of the Worlds" that was done by Buffalo's WKBW radio and TV. From what I heard the 1968 WKBW "War of the Worlds" almost caused a panic in Western New York and throughout the east coast, almost as similar as what Orson did. Back in 1968 WKBW had well over 80% of the Buffalo radio audience and was New York state's second most popular radio station after WABC and being such a powerful station, KB had thousands of listeners up and down the eastern seaboard. from what I read about in the past, many people fell for it. When WKBW re-did the broadcast in 1972, few people did.

    There was a documentary about the Buffalo broadcast that was on You Tube awhile back and they never said what Orson's reaction was to it. I would imagine he had known about it.
    Last edited by Cathy J.; 06-09-2008 at 12:52 PM.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cathy J. View Post
    I wonder what was Orson's take on that 1968 and 1972 "re-creation" of War of the Worlds" that was done by Buffalo's WKBW radio and TV. From what I heard the 1968 WKBW "War of the Worlds" almost caused a panic in Western New York and throughout the east coast, almost as similar as what Orson did. Back in 1968 WKBW had well over 80% of the Buffalo radio audience and was New York state's second most popular radio station after WABC and being such a powerful station, KB had thousands of listeners up and down the eastern seaboard. from what I read about in the past, many people fell for it. When WKBW re-did the broadcast in 1972, few people did.

    There was a documentary about the Buffalo broadcast that was on You Tube awhile back and they never said what Orson's reaction was to it. I would imagine he had known about it.
    I think he would have chuckled. Bit lame to do it in the 70's again though as the audience would not be so gullible and a little more savvy. Once bitten, twice shy.
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  46. #46
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    The Whole War of the Wars thing is amazing to me. How could people take it seriously? I suppose the population was much less sophisticated than it is now and the radio technology was still relatively new but still.....

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilmpenny View Post
    I think he would have chuckled. Bit lame to do it in the 70's again though as the audience would not be so gullible and a little more savvy. Once bitten, twice shy.
    Today it would be totally impossible to pull a WOTW but back in the 1960s and 70s when most people could only receive three TV channels and chances are one of them had the bulk of the viewers, I guess it would have been possible to pull a stunt like that.

  48. #48
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    He sure was a good looking son of a gun...has anyone ever seen RKO281 with Liev Shreiber???

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    He was on I Love Lucy too....


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    For some reason I thought Orson only had one child- Rebecca, by his marriage to Rita Hayworth. It turns out he had three daughters.

    The first daughter to whom they gave the terrible name of Christopher (!) is Orson's daughter with his first wife, Virginia. She is now known as Chris Welles Feder and is the creator of the BrainQuest card games you might have seen in bookstores. Also, she appeared at the Staten Island Film Festival in May and gave a talk on one of her father's films.

    Rebecca was born in 1944. I found out that she died in 2004 at the age of 60- on what would have been her mother's 96th birthday! I couldn't find a cause of death- she was survived by her husband, one son, stepchildren and grandchildren.

    Beatrice was born in 1955 with his 3rd wife Paola. It appears that Beatrice is the sole heir of her father. Paola died in a car accident not long after OW's death. (NY Times article)
    I ran across a court document from the Ninth Federal District Court in the matter of Beatrice Welles vs. Turner Entertainment and RKO studio (it's still in business?) regarding royalties for Citizen Kane.
    Last edited by FannyB1923; 07-01-2008 at 01:50 PM.

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