The Magnificent Ambersons by Orson Welles: A Reconstruction for the Stage

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WHAT IS IT ABOUT?

In 1942, Orson Welles' second feature film, and probable masterpiece, was mutilated by RKO Radio Pictures. 43 minutes were cut, and several scenes were reshot in an attempt to make Welles' dark, Chekhovian adaptation of Booth Tarkington's story of a family and town swallowed up in the Industrial Revolution a happier and more commercial experience. It didn't work. The film was buried by the studio, both in the marketplace and physically - all unused footage from the film was destroyed - and Welles' version is gone forever, one of the great mythologized films of Hollywood. In this show Gemini CollisionWorks attempts to reconstruct, as well as they can from the documents and photos that still exist, a theatrical interpretation of Welles' cinematic take on Tarkington's novel. It's not the movie, but it's as close as you're ever likely to see.

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