'Most Famous Movie Never Released' to Be Released

Orson Welles' 'The Other Side of the Wind' is coming
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 29, 2014 11:32 AM CDT
Unfinished Orson Welles Film Now Nearly Finished
This 1942 file photo shows Orson Welles.   (AP File Photo)

When Orson Welles died in 1985, he left behind a film he'd been fighting to finish for 15 years. But The Other Side of the Wind never saw the light of day, and it has since become a bit of an obsession for movie buffs, who "consider it the most famous movie never released," the New York Times reports. Now, after decades of attempts by others to grab rights to the film, LA production company Royal Road Entertainment says it has an agreement to buy those rights—and producers plan to have the film ready for screening by May 6, which would be Welles' 100th birthday. As for the plot? It "(quite fittingly) tells the story of a director attempting to finish a masterpiece while clashing with the Hollywood system," according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Welles ran into problems, including financing struggles (he took on TV roles to help and also gathered investors) and even the Islamic Revolution in Iran, the Republican reports. One of the aforementioned investors was Mehdi Bushehri, the brother-in-law of the Shah of Iran, and when he and Welles fought over spending, Bushehri took control of the 1,083 negative reels. The reels then stayed stashed in a Paris-area warehouse for years (and were lost briefly when the storage company went bankrupt last summer). But Welles did manage to get a 45-minute edited work print to California in 1975. Now Royal Road—which had to negotiate for the rights with Welles' daughter, his longtime companion, and a production company—will assemble the film from the negative reels with the help of Peter Bogdanovich, who stars in it, as well as notes Welles left behind. Click for the full story, or check out more of the best films that never got made. (More Orson Welles stories.)

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