Netflix continues to prove they are not messing around when it comes to shelling out big money for big-time exclusive content. Their latest purchase? The streaming service has secured the rights to director Orson Welles' final movie The Other Side of the Wind. The movie was never completed but Netflix is going to pay to complete the movie and have it restored so they can release it globally.
The New York Times is reporting that Netflix has completed a deal that they have been working on for a bit, and they now have secured the global rights for The Other Side of the Wind. The Citizen Kane director's project was being worked on in the 70s but due to financial issues, was never completed. The movie has pretty much shelved when Welles passed away in 1985. Producer and star Frank Marshall has tried to get the movie completed and he is going to be involved with Netflix to complete the movie and get it release. Here is what he had to say about it.
"I can't quite believe it, but after 40 years of trying, I am so very grateful for the passion and perseverance from Netflix that has enabled us to, at long last, finally get into the cutting room to finish Orson's last picture."
This is not the first time someone has attempted to complete The Other Side of the Wind. Frank Marshall, along with Filip Jan Rymsza and Peter Bogdanovich secured the rights to more than 1,000 reels of footage. They had difficulty securing financing, so they decided to start an Indiegogo campaign in an attempt to raise $2 million back in 2014 to get the movie finished. Despite their efforts, they only raised $400,000. So The Other Side of the Wind sat unfinished. But Netflix decided to flex its muscle and put up the cash to make it happen. Here is how The New York Times describes the movie.
"A skewering of avant-garde directors, was conceptualized by Welles as a type of collage. The film is a reconstruction of a party (using various types of footage supposedly shot by guests and the paparazzi) held at the home of Jake Hannaford, a nonconformist film director, just before he dies. Scenes from Hannaford's unfinished comeback film-within-a-film are interspersed."
That sounds nothing if not interesting. The fact that a movie from Orson Welles, one of the most legendary directors in the history of cinema, is finally going to be completed and released on a platform that reaches hundreds of millions of people is a testament to what Netflix can accomplish, even if they haven't been focusing as much on classic cinema these days. Instead, they have been opting to pour money into their original content, which is a strategy that is seemingly paying off. Here is what Ted Sarandos, Netflix's chief content officer had to say about it.
"This is a labor of love and a gift to the legacy of one of history's greatest directors."
The Other Side of the Wind, aside from having a legendary director in Orson Welles and a fascinating journey to completion, boasts an incredible cast. Peter Bogdanovich, who is also consulting on the restoration, stars alongside Oja Kodar, Robert Random, Lilli Palmer, Edmond O'Brien, Cameron Mitchell, Mercedes McCambridge, Susan Strasberg, Norman Foster, Paul Stewart, and Dennis Hopper. There is no word yet on how long it will take to complete the movie, but producer Filip Jan Rymsza said that part of the beauty of working with Netflix is that they can take their time with it, so don't expect to see The Other Side of the Wind show up next month or anything like that. But the movie is finally being released and for lovers of classic cinema, that should no doubt be exciting.