Wellesnet Exclusive: Signed copies of Chris Welles Feder’s “The Movie Director”
I'm happy to report that Chris Welles Feder, Orson Welles eldest daughter, has agreed to offer readers of Wellesnet a limited number of signed copies of her beautifully written book of poems about her father, "The Movie Director."
The book was privately published in a limited edition in 2002, which is probably why most Welles fans may have never heard of it, and since the book was offered only in a limited edition, Wellesnet will only be able to offer between 6 to 12 copies at the cost of $15.00 each plus shipping. Ms. Welles will personally sign and enscribe each copy with the following message:
"This book, inspired by my father, Orson Welles, is for all who admire the true artists among us and the masterworks they create."
--Chris Welles Feder
Because the number of copies we can offer is so limited, please e-mail me if you have an interest in obtaining a copy.
Meanwhile, here is another selection from the book, which describes a fictional meeting between Mr. Welles and a Mr. Big producer. Of course, Welles' only Kafka film was The Trial, but the following poem reminds one that Welles was quite an expirimental filmmaker in the early sixties, not only inspiring the New Wave directors with his Mr. Arkadin, but also creating films in their spirit with works like The Trial and his London staging of Eugene Ionesco's Rhinoceros with Sir Laurence Olivier.
Rattling My Tin Cup
The producer is depressingly young and lean. I imagine him playing vigorous golf with Bob and Bing. And winning. Across the expanse of his mahogany desk, I watch him polishing his sunglasses. Well, is it yes or no? Jesus, he makes me feel rumpled, overweight, old.
Now, about this picture you wanna make, he begins, I was wondering: does the hero hafta wake up a cockroach? I mean, couldnt he change into something less disgusting? Whaddaya call those butterflies that fly down to Mexico? Monarchs, I breathe, trying hard not to hate him. You got it! He grins at me through perfect teeth. We could work in some local color, know what I mean,
like a bullfight or Mexican bimbos dancing on tabletops..." But Kafka set the story in Prague! I blurt out. A jewel of a city! If its local color you want.... Sweetheart, forget Kafka and think box office, whatll play in Biloxi. He pounds his desk, triumphant. I got it! Small Town Invaded by Giant Cockroaches. Thatll really pack em in. Hey, we might even win
an Oscar for special effects. Whaddaya say? I'm sorry. Sweat is trickling down my spine. Im just not the man for the picture you have in mind. Im sorry, too, he shrugs, but Im a businessman, see, not a genius like you, and I cant spend millions on a movie about some bozo who turns into a cockroach. Jeesuz!
Cockroaches are dirty, unhealthy! They gimme the creeps! And who even knows what Metamorphosis means? Wed hafta hand out dictionaries in the lobby. I do have a following, I sigh, small though it is. There was a time when Hollywood made offbeat films... Times have changed. He rises, my exit cue. Well, its been a real privilege. He pumps my hand. Hey, kids in college are studying your old movies, Youre a living legend! What more do you want? Not to live in the past, I think, as I walk out, dead.