Author Topic: 35th Anniversary Screening of Tommy in Beverly Hills -- Ken Russell in Person  (Read 4132 times)

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Offline BoyScoutKevin

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I'm sorry but the questions Ken was about to give an answer to were dumb from start to finish. So it's no surprise that he was in such a "pissed off" mood.

I agree to a certain extent, but then does not that behoove us to come up with our own list of questions, which are not "dumb," and which he has not been asked before, which we can then ask Ken.

Offline Iain Fisher

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I see what you mean but I still have sympathy for the interviewer.

The Devils question was good- the first part to tell the audience about the Huxley connection (which many would not know) and the second to dig deeper.  But he didn't get a chance to develop the questions more.

Offline tornhill

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I'm sorry but the questions Ken was about to give an answer to were dumb from start to finish. So it's no surprise that he was in such a "pissed off" mood.

Offline Iain Fisher

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ken-russell-a-devil-of-an-interview
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2010, 12:12:58 PM »
More on Ken giving disappointing interviews.

Philip Brown interviews Ken Russell at Rue Morgue’s Festival Of Fear:
www.eyeweekly.com/film/interview/article/100206--ken-russell-a-devil-of-an-interview

For example:

"Right… so what was it like working with Oliver Reed during his wild-man days?
He was as good as gold really.

How about off the set? Any humorous memories?
(Dismissive grunt) No. 

All right. What did you base The Devils on and what drew you to the material?
It was so long ago that I can’t remember now.

How did you convince Warner Brothers to finance it at the time?
I told them the story and they gave me the money.

Do you consider it a horror movie?
No.

What do you think it is then?
It’s a true story"

Offline Rosebud

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I have mixed feelings about the Q & A.
Ken's behavior was definitely perplexing.  The screening itself was fantastic.  "Tommy" never looked and sounded so good.  And the entire audience appeared to love the film too.  Just seeing Ken in person was a real treat.  I really wanted to go up to the Enfant Terrible and thank him for making so many great films, but the theater's security kept everyone at arm's length.  After the film ended, Ken received a standing ovation as he was escorted up to the front of the theater for the Q & A.  Physically Ken was very frail, which didn't surprise me too much since I've seen many recent videos of him on-line.  Once he sat down things got weird.  I think the best way to describe the interview, would be like an Abbott and Costello routine.  Basically Ken would coyly dodge every question he was asked by the interviewer.  For example:

Interviewer:  "Did you storyboard the film."
Ken:  "Storyboard?" 
Interviewer:  “You know.  Did you draw out the scenes in advance?"
Ken:  “What did you mean, draw?”
And it went on like that for the entire interview.

And whenever Ken was asked about how it was like working with a particular performer, he claimed he never talked to anyone.  For me Ken's behavior started off very funny, but towards the end I really wanted him to switch gears and answer some questions.  Disappointedly, I never had a chance to ask him BoyScoutKevin's question.  I feel a lot of people sitting around me believed Ken's lack of clarity was due to old age.  I believe he was fully aware of what he was doing.  Ken did get some genuine (though somewhat uncomfortable) laughs from the audience.  For example, when one of the ushers was using hand motions to let the interviewer know that it was time to wrap up the interview, Ken responded by saying something like, "That boy is doing something obscene right in front of us."  I did feel bad for the interviewer, who asked some very relevant questions to no avail.  His frustration was really showing at the end of the Q & A.  Maybe the strangest part of the interview was at the end when the defeated interviewer asked Ken if he wanted to hit him over the head with his cane.  Subsequently Ken playfully began raising his cane, but before it got dangerously high he dropped it.  I'm curious what other people who were there felt.





Offline Iain Fisher

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I got your mail, thanks.

I wasn't there so don't know what went on, and I haven't recevied anything about it (yet) so I am interested to hear your view.

It sounds bad...

Best wishes

Iain

MimsyMolloy

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Mysterious behavior by Ken Russell at the Academy's special event last night.
I was among those in the packed theatre last night -- perplexed by his 'disconnect' from the interviewer.

Before signing up for this blog to see whether others in attendance have expressed their reactions,
I sent an e-mail to our host, Iain Fisher, to ask whether he's received any communiques
from members of Ken Russell's family, entourage or other informed colleagues,
explaining his bizarre demeanor during what had been a highly anticipated discussion, and Q & A.

Before offering my theories on this mystery, I am hopeful for an enlightened explanation.  
If such does not appear soon, I'll post a more thorough description of what unfolded -- for discussion.

Shade Rupe

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Harry Alan Towers was the producer on Moll Flanders but he passed away last year so no Moll Flanders. It should be removed from the IMDB. Ken made a short called Boudica Bites Back with his wife Elize Russell starring and music contributions by David Massengill that I showed at Sundance in January this year. It's the latest film I'm aware of. I'm also there tonight.

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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I'll be there.  I'll definitely try to ask Ken that question (I too am dying to know the answer). 

Thank-you, Rosebud. And when you get back, please give us a report on the screening. I'm sure all of us would be interested.

Offline Rosebud

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I'll be there.  I'll definitely try to ask Ken that question (I too am dying to know the answer). 

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Very nice. Unfortunately I won't be able to make it. The best bit of news (IMHO) is that Ken is still in good enough health to be able to travel. If anybody is able to attend, would they ask a question for me: "Mr. Russell, after 'Trapped Ashes,' will we see another film directed by you, or is 'Trapped Ashes' your last film?" I ask, as I see "Moll Flanders" is still listed as being in production for 2010.

Offline Rosebud

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For those people living in, or visiting The Los Angeles Area.
Ken Russell and Stuart Baird will be the special guests at a 35th Anniversary screening of "Tommy" at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills on Friday, May 21.  





http://www.oscars.org/events-exhibitions/events/2010/tommy.html
« Last Edit: May 05, 2010, 10:48:20 PM by Iain Fisher »