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Messages - chris

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Once Upon A Time In America / Re: RSI Italian TV Interview Leone 1984
« on: July 10, 2018, 06:02:42 AM »
The nine minutes has been discussed before.

Immediately after the movie was shown at Cannes in 1984, Leone did an interview with Cahiers du Cinema and this interview was featured in their magazine no 359 dated May 1984.

(Regarding the disagreement over the duration of the film according to Sergio Leone)

Leone: It's a complicated story. They gave me carte blanche to do four and a half hours (270 minutes) with the idea that it would be made in two parts, that is to say two films coming out together. But four months after the start of editing, they said to me no, it is not possible, because in the U.S. (that's what they told me, I do not know if it is the truth), a sequel cannot come out less than three months after the first part, for competitive reasons, because operators are not necessarily the same for both parts. If it were possible for both parts to be released simultaneously, it would result in unfair competition from operators who have a single theater.  It therefore seems that some operators cannot handle a double distribution. They demanded that I cut the film.

I did not want to go back to the first concept which was three hours. I cut as much as I could, and I arrived at the 3hours 40min (220 minutes) version which you have seen. But then they wanted me to cut a further hour, especially in the beginning. The only possibility would be to remove the flashback construction, and I did not want that. We'll see. I have retained a very good French lawyer, Leo Matarasso (the lawyer of Orson Welles), because the contract was made in France under the Napoleonic Code. I also have a lawyer in the U.S. to try to stop distribution in a truncated version.

But my first course of action must be against the producer, who is in France.

(Editing started in May 1983 so four months later is September 1983. The Ladd Co said at that time that Leone had been contracted to deliver a movie of 165 minutes.)

Cahiers: Have the 50 minutes of cuts been focused on a specific part?

Leone: On various parts. I cut a scene where Deborah (Elizabeth McGovern) plays the role of Cleopatra; meetings between Eve (Darlanne Fluegel) and De Niro; a love scene with Deborah as a young girl; a passage that I liked very much, at the Station restaurant (it was shot at the Brasserie Julien in Paris); a beautiful scene between De Niro and the driver of the Rolls Royce who is Jewish too, but bourgeois.

I also cut a scene in 1930 where the garbage truck that we see at the end of the film is stopped in front of the house, another where a crane dredges the river, leading us back to 1968. And again a beautiful scene with Louise Fletcher, who played the director of the cemetery - with one cut, we no longer see her in the film. Many of the cuts I was forced to make concern Noodles' relationships with women.

(Two things may be significant in the above.)

1. Leone originally cut the love scene between young Noodles and Deborah where she takes him into the back room of Gelly's and recites her Song of Songs. Sergio later added this back into the movie increasing the duration to 227/229 minutes.

2. Possibly a punctuation error. Having seen the Deborah at the station restaurant scene, many are surprised that Leone like that scene very much.  It's speculation but if the semicolon and comma are transposed it reads:
"...a love scene with Deborah as a young girl, a passage that I liked very much; at the Station restaurant (it was shot at the Brasserie Julien in Paris)..."

(in a separate part of the magazine it talks about the duration of the movie being 220 minutes and the sound being mono rather than the advertised dolby stereo)

Cahiers: The film is advertised in the press book as Dolby stereo, gold, in the room where we saw the movie, which has Dolby equipment, it was in mono.

Leone: Indeed, this was planned for the film but ultimately it has not been mixed in Dolby Stereo, it was unnecessary for an intimate film like this.


Once Upon A Time In America / Re: RSI Italian TV Interview Leone 1984
« on: July 09, 2018, 02:36:41 AM »
Sorry it would have helped if I had posted the link 🤣
My apologies
Here you go👍

Scroll down
Many thanks for the link. First time I've seen this in 720.

General Discussion / Re: shooter and shootee in same frame.....?
« on: April 07, 2018, 07:56:14 AM »
In one interview Clint said that Sergio Leone didn't know about the Hays code, he didn't tell Leone and he seemed to be trying to take partial credit for the success of the dollars movies because of this.

Personally I find some of this absurd.  Leone loved movies and had great knowledge of their history including the Hollywood classics.  I doubt very much whether Clint and Leone had very many long meaningful discussions about film production or censorship.

Clint didn't need to do this. He was a tall good-looking charismatic guy whose involvement with the dollars movies undoubtedly contributed to their success.

Censorship in movies and TV is of course different. To get a movie shown in most theaters, it had to have approval under the Motion Picture Production Code, popularly known as the Hays Code. The code has been amended from time to time but as I understand it the official documents never contained a written instruction that there had to be cut between shooter and shootee. With regard to killing and murder the code just said:

a. The technique of murder must be presented in a way that will not inspire imitation.
b. Brutal killings are not to be presented in detail.
c. Revenge in modern times shall not be justified.

Once a movie had been made, it was submitted to the censors for approval who would view the movie and itemize any parts which they felt broke the code. It was then down to individual negotiations between the makers of the movie and the censors.

With TV it's different. The broadcaster has no control on who is viewing the material so consideration needs to be given to what time of day the item is being shown, whether the the channel is open to the public or private and the broadcaster's own standards.

So sad to hear this news. Too young to die. RIP

Once Upon A Time In America / Re: NEW DIRECTORS CUT
« on: December 24, 2017, 02:10:34 AM »
OK: you all have convinced me to upgrade to the 2014 Extended Director's Cut.  

Question 1:  I haven't seen any BluRay discs on my TV yet; is the BluRay just better quality, and worth it?  Or do BluRay discs typically have more material and extras?  Thanks, I'm pretty inept at this.  Oh yeah, I live in Arizona USA if that matters.

Question 2: Is this 2014 229 minute version the longest/most recent one available?  This article says that a 251 minute version was screened in 2014 in NY  is this on DVD ?

I have most of the versions of the movie - original VHS, DVD, 2011 Blu-ray, more recent Italian & U.S. extended editions. Blu-ray is the best option.

Leone's original version ran to 4 and a half hours (270 minutes). This has never been publicly available.

Ignoring PAL speed up, the running time of the original version, now known as the Theatrical Cut, is 229 minutes.

Approximately 21 minutes of additional scenes are now available and the version known as the Extended Director's Cut runs for 251 minutes.


Photobucket has recently announced that it is withdrawing its support for 3rd party hosting for free accounts. It's being done in stages with the oldest files first and I think they plan to complete the process within the next 12 months. The files can still be accessed by users who log in but regrettably, unless Photobucket has a change of heart, an increasing number of image links on this forum will not work.  >:(  

Off-Topic Discussion / Re: For Love of Art
« on: April 30, 2017, 11:59:23 AM » want visitors to their site to send in poems but I'd probably better not send them the following:

There was a guy from Brooklyn
who was really good lookin'
but his latest conquest was a bit of a lush
with a very hairy bush
and not very good at cookin'.

Many thanks - I've not seen this before.

In the clip Treat also mentions that some exterior scenes were filmed in Canada and interiors in Cinecitta and in the scene where Treat was in a tank of gasoline the hose used was in fact a gasoline hose and it could have been dangerous if Richard Bright had dropped any matches into the tank. 

Off-Topic Discussion / Re: La La Land (2016)
« on: February 27, 2017, 02:40:15 AM »
Moonlight winning is it's only hope...

Great prediction.  Moonlight is one of the few recent movies I've not seen but I'll bump it nearer to the top of my list.


Off-Topic Discussion / Re: La La Land (2016)
« on: February 13, 2017, 07:29:59 AM »
Of course I'm not saying it's perfect and it may be appreciated more in a theater rather than viewing a lo-res .avi screener.  As I posted before:

...For me the beginning was a bit cheesy - probably it was meant to be - and I didn't really like the ending.  If there had been a bit more light and shade and visible bad events, a happier ending and a few more memorable songs, I would have liked it more...

Having said that there's great on-screen chemistry between Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone both of whom worked hard at perfecting their characters.

During the last few months I've seen lots of movies (more than a hundred) and, like GBU OUATITW and OUATIA, La La Land is one of the few movies I'd happily sit through and watch again.

Off-Topic Discussion / Re: La La Land (2016)
« on: February 13, 2017, 01:46:25 AM »
At the British Academy Film Awards last night La La Land won five awards - best film, Emma Stone best actress, Damien Chazelle best director, Justin Hurwitz best original music and Linus Sandgren best cinematography.  Ryan nowhere to be seen.

Nicole Kidman nice dress.  Some of the thank you speeches and jokes overly political which I suppose is not really surprising in view of world events.


Off-Topic Discussion / Re: La La Land (2016)
« on: January 18, 2017, 03:02:29 AM »
Great on-screen chemistry between Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone who've obviously acted together before - Crazy, Stupid, Love and Gangster Squad.

Emma Stone has big expressive eyes and is able to convey her emotions through those without speaking whilst Ryan Gosling seems to be adept at doing anything he puts his mind to.  Apparently he learned to play the piano in three months and although I've been playing piano for years and years, I still can't do some of the things he did in the movie.

For me the beginning was a bit cheesy - probably it was meant to be - and I didn't really like the ending.  Perhaps the movie focuses too much on two individuals.  If other characters had been introduced or developed, there had been a bit more light and shade and visible bad events, a happier ending and a few more memorable songs, I would have liked it more.

Best musical I've seen this year.

Once Upon A Time In America / Re: NEW DIRECTORS CUT
« on: July 06, 2016, 12:42:25 AM »
Just viewed the extended scenes up to the end of Prohibition they really don't add much do they? The Eve stuff is probably the most interesting.

Whilst I'm glad I've seen the additional scenes, the extended version is a bit of a disappointment.

It may be slightly sharper than WB's 2011 Blu-ray, but there's a tint throughout, compression artifacts and a lowering of contrast.  Ignoring notices about the restoration etc, the running time has been increased by 20 mins 38 secs only.

This is less that the 26 minutes promised and a further 20 mins 22 secs needs to be added to bring it closer to Leone's 270 min version. I can only hope that one day a better version which addresses some of the shortcomings will be released.


Once Upon a Time in the West: Shot by Shot is a new book by Sir Christopher Frayling which is due for release on May 23 2017.

According to Amazon:

It has 336 pages and is the definitive book on Sergio Leone's landmark Western, Once Upon A Time In The West (1968).

An in-depth analysis and shot by shot look at this iconic film by the world's leading authority on Sergio Leone, Sir Christopher Frayling, who coined the phrase "Spaghetti Western."

Set photographer Angelo Novi was given complete access on the film and was present every day. This book features his stunning in-depth photography of every aspect of the shoot, including never-before-seen outtakes, off-screen shots and deleted scenes.


Once Upon A Time In America / Re: Blu-ray is on sale
« on: May 03, 2016, 01:15:29 AM »
In the right hand column at Amazon, it reads temporarily out of stock but several of Amazon's market sellers have new and used copies in stock.

A while ago distribution of the discs switched from Warner Bros to 20th Century Fox and the back of the new cases are marked Region A.


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