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I thought that this promotional short was pretty good. It gives a nice impression of the crew and the filming location. The warm weather and the rough location made it difficult to film. On the other hand it was paradise; almost unaffected nature. It really encourages you to see the movie.
This documentary "The Making of
" short promoted MGM's "The Night of
the Iguana" (1964), Tennessee Williams' story of an unfrocked minister
running amok in Mexico. Director John Huston explains how he and
producer Ray Stark envisioned the film. We see cast and crew settling
down in the beautiful Mexican location. Most noteworthy, this footage
is all in color; the released film was in black and white. Stars
Richard Burton, Ava Gardner, Deborah Kerr, and Sue Lyon appear; Mr.
Burton and Ms. Kerr speak.
Cinematographer Gabriel Figueroa and veteran character actor Cyril Delevanti receive some special attention. Unfortunately, supporting actress Grayson Hall is not heard from; possibly, she had not yet arrived on the scene. Had they known she would be nominated for an Academy Award, Ms. Hall would have been included. We see a lot of Elizabeth Taylor (as Mrs. Burton), who was there to keep an eye on Dick. Nobody mentions what many of the cast and crew remember most from the shoot - it was too damned hot.
***** On the Trail of the Iguana (1964) Ross Lowell ~ John Huston, Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor, Deborah Kerr
But that didn't deter RICHARD BURTON, AVA GARDNER and DEBORAH KERR from
wanting to appear in his film version of the Tennessee Williams play
about a defrocked minister who goes berserk in a Mexican village.
The irony here is that the short is filmed in glorious Technicolor which makes the most of the location photography, while the film itself was made in B&W. Apparently a decision that had to be made because lugging all that Technicolor equipment up a mountainside would have been a torturous experience for cast and crew.
It's amusing to note that DEBORAH KERR seems to be the one least affected by the hardships endured in making the film. She appears as crisp and poised as ever while the narrator informs us that Huston is directing a scene between her and Ava Gardner. Unfortunately, we're never privy to any of Huston's directions--which would have made the short more informative than it actually is.
Elizabeth Taylor is on hand for the scene where Burton is strapped to a hammock and appears to be fussing with his hair as he waits for the scene to be shot. Cast and crew only arrive on the set after a half-hour boat ride to the inaccessible location. Just like Huston, in his quest for perfection to do everything the hard way.
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