Orson Welles, Volume 3 (Hardcover)

One-Man Band

By Simon Callow

Viking, 9780670024919, 496pp.

Publication Date: April 5, 2016

List Price: 40.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

- A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice -

The third volume of Simon Callow's acclaimed Orson Welles biography, covering the period of his exile from America (1947-1964), when he produced some of his greatest works, including Touch of Evil

In One-Man Band, the third volume in his epic and all-inclusive four-volume survey of Orson Welles's life and work, the celebrated British actor Simon Callow again probes in comprehensive and penetrating detail into one of the most complex, contradictory artists of the twentieth century, whose glorious triumphs (and occasional spectacular failures) in film, radio, theater, and television introduced a radical and original approach that opened up new directions in the arts.

This volume begins with Welles's self-exile from America, and his realization that he could function only to his own satisfaction as an independent film maker, a one-man band, in fact, which committed him to a perpetual cycle of money raising. By 1964, he had filmed Othello, which took three years to complete; Mr. Arkadin, the most puzzling film in his output; and a masterpiece in another genre, Touch of Evil, which marked his one return to Hollywood, and like all too many of his films was wrested from his grasp and reedited. Along the way he made inroads into the fledgling medium of television and a number of stage plays, of which his 1955 London Moby-Dick is considered by theater historians to be one of the seminal productions of the century. His private life was as spectacularly complex and dramatic as his professional life. The book reveals what it was like to be around Welles, and, with an intricacy and precision rarely attempted before, what it was like to be him, answering the riddle that has long fascinated film scholars and lovers alike: Whatever happened to Orson Welles?


About the Author

Simon Callow made his stage debut in 1973, and came to prominence in a critically acclaimed performance as Mozart in the original stage production of Peter Shaffer's Amadeus at the Royal National Theatre in 1979. He is well known for a series of one-man shows that have toured internationally and featured subjects including Dickens, Oscar Wilde, Shakespeare, Jesus, and Richard Wagner. Among his many film roles is the much-loved character Gareth in the hit film Four Weddings and a Funeral. Callow simultaneously pursued careers as a director in theater and opera and an author of several books, including Being an Actor, Love Where It Falls, and a biography of Charles Laughton.