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Ken Russell Robert Powell Mahler

Robert Powell

Powell and Mahler

In 1983 Donald Farmer interviewed Robert Powell on the set of What Waits Below for Fangoria magazine.  Here is the (short) section about Ken Russell (thanks to Donald for permission to reproduce).

Robert Powell in Ken Russell's Mahler Robert Powell in Ken Russell's Mahler Robert Powell in Ken Russell's Mahler

Donald Farmer: I've especially enjoyed your films with Ken Russell like Mahler.

Robert Powell: Mahler is, I think, probably. . .it's one of the three or four films of which I'm most proud.

Were you discouraged that it didn't play more in the United States?

We have a problem distributing British films in America. It's slightly improved in the last two or three years. But a film like that, I didn't really expect to get that much of a showing. Yet about five years after its release I was in a supermarket in Los Angeles and somebody suddenly grabbed my shoulder and said, "You were Mahler!" It's a film of which I'm quite proud.

Russell has such a visual emphasis. Does he take a long time for camera set-ups and do takes over and over again?

 Yes he does.

He's sort of a visual perfectionist.

 Yes, to me which is what cinema is all about. Cinema is about pictures, the dialogue is very much secondary. He's a very wonderful man to work with. He asks for a hundred and one percent, and as long as you're prepared to give it, he's a very happy man. One day we'll work together again. I haven't seen him for a while. He was in Los Angeles and now he's gone back to England."

 

Donald Farmer

 

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