KEN RUSSELL ON HUW WHELDON

Friday, 20 March 2015

Huw went on liking my films for many years, some more than others, but whatever his personal feelings he always helped polish my rough diamonds till they glittered.  And when I disappointed him with a paste job, he worked even harder to make it shine - shaping and reshaping, cutting and chipping away until it was ready for his spakling commentary. To start with I just used to sit next to him over a moviola simply supplying the facts, but bit by bit he began dragging words, phrases, even sentences out of me which I never thought I possessed,  Talk about drawing teeth, getting blood from a stone and all that. It was painful. All the other directors in the programme had university degrees.  I knew how to navigate and tie a double sheep's bend, and I knew a bit about the arts and that was all. But my education proper began at the age of thirty-two with Huw Wheldon.

from A British Picture, by Ken Russell

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Publication date: May 2017
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