A Man Before His Time: Orson Welles

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If you want a happy ending,that depends, of course, on where you stop your story. –Orson Welles

Orson Welles was a man before his time. An innovator. A complicated man with tremendous talents and appetites. He chewed up the stage, the movies, and radio. Whatever your opinion of Mr. Welles, as an artist or a man, he changed all three forever. Director Richard Linklater credits Welles as a forerunner of the Indie film movement. He spent most of his life fighting the studios. He had to scuffle to find backers to continue work on his own projects. Welles would have welcomed the current era of crowdfunding and his own story might have had a different ending.

 Orson Welles 100th birthday is on May 6. Two new books and a documentary will be released in May:

"Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis" by Timothy Egan

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This is the biography of Edward Curtis, a talented photographer.  His obsession was to photograph and document the American Indian before destruction of their ways. Egan writes is a riveting story of how Curtis spent ten years, sacrificed his marriage and family, finances and health to produce a twenty volume work The North American Indian. The photographs at the end of each chapter are a good accompaniment to the text.

This is Not a Film

Art has the last word over government, always. In “This is Not a Film,” which is truly and defiantly extraordinary in its own quiet way, Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi has made an essay with his fellow filmmaker Mojtaba Mirtahmasb on what it means to be under house arrest and under the thumb of the Iranian culture ministry.
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