The Other Side of the Wind (partially found Orson Welles film; 1969-1976)
|Writer and director Orson Welles.|
The Other Side of the Wind was an unfinished, unreleased film written and directed by Orson Welles that was shot between 1969 and 1976. The film would have starred John Huston, Bob Random, Peter Bogdanovich, Susan Strasberg, and Oja Kodar.
The plot concerns an eccentric Golden Age film director trying to recover from a career slump. He plans to make a new film in the tradition of the "New Hollywood" movement, but is killed in a car crash soon after, and friends and reporters question if his death was a suicide. In going through the footage of a recent birthday party, they discover that he had harbored several big secrets.
As Welles began filming, he first focused on the film-within-a-film. As with many of Welles' unfinished projects, financial problems forced him to stop filming multiple times. Conversation scenes were often shot as much as a year apart due to the fact that Huston hadn't been cast yet. Ultimately, the film was mostly completed, but since one of the financiers of the film was the brother-in-law of the recently-deposed Iranian Shah, Iranian authorities seized the film and stalled it indefinitely. They have since released the film, and the negatives currently reside in a vault in Paris to this day.
Release and Availability
Although two copies of the work print are in existence, and despite numerous announcements by producers and directors (including Bogdanovich himself) that they would complete the film, debate about ownership of the film has delayed progress. The project is largely unedited, and Welles left ten hours of raw footage behind, of which only a few short clips have managed to surface.
On March 14, 2017, Netflix announced that it acquired the worldwide distribution rights to The Other Side of the Wind, and will seek to complete and remaster the film.