Directed by Genet in 1950, based loosely on his novel The Miracle of the Rose and with the rumored assistance of Jean Cocteau, the film was impounded in France when it was first screened and it became circulated as gay porn for French intellectual homosexuals in the years following. The silent b&w film shows the encounters two men in a French prison have, their dreams and fantasies, and the voyeurism of a sadomasochistic guard who is titillated by their relationship, spies on them and abuses one of them because of jealousy.
How odd/weird/amusing (or alarming, depending on your viewpoint) is it to think that Un chant d’amour (and Vapors and Anger’s films and Jack Smith’s as well) can now be watched on YouTube?
“He’s a very talented director but I’d probably hit him if I met him now.
He was interviewing me for a documentary that was being made about me in New York. I was only 17, it was my first time in the US and I was very nervous.
When they told me this influential new comic wanted to interview me I thought, ‘It’ll be OK, he’ll just ask me stuff like where I got my name Twiggy and what I liked about America.’ But he didn’t.
I remember him smiling and coming out with, “So who’s your favourite philosopher?” I started to panic and my stomach turned over.
I replied that I didn’t know any philosophers and he came back with words to the effect of, “Oh come on, everyone has a favourite philosopher!”
I told him I’d read Great Expectations and David Copperfield at school, which, by the way, I’d just left. The interview then ended abruptly with him saying: “Oh I can’t interview her!”
It was a horrible experience. I can kind of laugh about it now but would never ever do that to anyone, especially someone younger than myself. I’ve never forgotten it.”
— Twiggy on Woody Allen
During the filming of Dark Passage, Lauren Bacall had hurt the feelings of cameraman, Sid Hickox after of a comment made about the way he filmed one of the scenes. So director Delmer Daves decided to show Bacall that she knew less about film making than she was beginning to believe.
“I decided to teach Betty a lesson. We lined up for her last scene in the film- one in which Bogie is suposed to telephone her from a bus depot and she gets the call in her apartment. Since it was an important scene, she was anticipating a big close-up, but I told her we were going to photograph her from the back so that the audience could imagine what was going on in her mind. ‘With my back to the camera?’ she said. Tears came into her eyes, but she was a great sport about it and rehearsed it, even though her voice was trembling and she was fighting to hold back the tears. That broke me up and I relented. ‘For God’s sake, Betty, we’re lit for the front,’ I told her . ‘I just wanted to teach you a lesson because you were so cruel to Sid’ ‘I know I was.’ Tears started to come into her eyes, which was just perfect, and that’s how we shot the scene. A few minutes later Bogie came on the set. He saw her sobbing and followed her to her dressing room. When it was time for him to come on set, he had on his great Bogie face- no emotion. Usually, he was a one-take actor, but this time he kept blowing his lines and apologizing. We finally got the scene after eight takes and Bogie came over and said ‘I’m sorry about letting you down but you know what was bothering me. Betty told me what happened, and the kid can still break me up. But I think you did the right thing. Maybe she was getting a bit too big in the britches.’ “
-Delmer Daves, director of Dark Passage.