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Apr├Ęs le vent des Sables


Malachi's Cove: The storm sequence
Walter Lassally Film-maker
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The storm sequence, yes. There's a storm sequence in that film which... we had a very short schedule and the storm sequence had to be shot while we were in Cornwall, and that turned out to be quite tricky because of the logistics of it all. First of all, a storm is only believable if it happens in cloudy weather. Well, storms in England tend to be in cloudy weather, so that wasn't a big problem. But having a storm within the schedule, that was the problem.

So we picked a certain inlet, the Bossiney Cove, I think it's called, in North Cornwall, and we did get one day of suitable weather, but only just. So it's a bit touch and go, but in the finished film it's not bad. Then that film was not released when it was finished because it was made with Canadian Tax Shelter money and I discovered that films made with Tax Shelter money, they're not always keen to release them at all. The last thing they want is a big profit. That's the last thing they want. So that particular film... I'd forgotten all about it, when three years later, I was walking past the Odeon Kensington one day, who was showing My Fair Lady, or some other movie, and I was just glancing at the pictures outside the cinema. In those days they still had pictures outside the cinema, and suddenly I looked closer and there was my film, only the title was The Seaweed Children. It'd been released as a second feature, without me knowing anything about it.

Born in Germany, cinematographer Walter Lassally (1926-2017) was best known for his Oscar-winning work on 'Zorba the Greek'. He was greatly respected in the film industry for his ability to take the best of his work in one area and apply it to another, from mainstream to international art films to documentary. He was associated with the Free Cinema movement in the 1950s, and the British New Wave in the early 1960s. In 1987 he published his autobiography called 'Itinerant Cameraman'.

Listeners: Peter Bowen

Peter Bowen is a Canadian who came to Europe to study and never got round to heading back home. He did his undergraduate work at Carleton University (in Biology) in Ottawa, and then did graduate work at the University of Western Ontario (in Zoology). After completing his doctorate at Oxford (in the Department of Zoology), followed with a year of postdoc at the University of London, he moved to the University's newly-established Audio-Visual Centre (under the direction of Michael Clarke) where he spent four years in production (of primarily science programs) and began to teach film. In 1974 Bowden became Director of the new Audio-Visual Centre at the University of Warwick, which was then in the process of introducing film studies into the curriculum and where his interest in the academic study of film was promoted and encouraged by scholars such as Victor Perkins, Robin Wood, and Richard Dyer. In 1983, his partner and he moved to Greece, and the following year he began to teach for the University of Maryland (European Division), for which he has taught (and continues to teach) biology and film courses in Crete, Bosnia, and the Middle East.

Tags: Malachi's Cove, My Fair Lady, The Seaweed Children

Duration: 1 minute, 31 seconds

Date story recorded: June 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008