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The Making of a Legend: Gone with the Wind (1988)

Not Rated | | Documentary | TV Movie October 1988
This is a documentary that revisits the making of Gone with the Wind with Archival footage, screen tests, insightful interviews and rare film footage.

Director:

David Hinton

Writer:

David Thomson
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Plummer ... Narrator
L. Jeffrey Selznick L. Jeffrey Selznick ... David O. Selznick (voice)
David O. Selznick ... Self (archive footage)
Irene Mayer Selznick Irene Mayer Selznick ... Self (archive footage)
William A. Wellman ... Self (archive footage) (as William Wellman)
Marcella Rabwin Marcella Rabwin ... Self
Katherine Brown Katherine Brown ... Self (as Kay Brown Barrett)
George Cukor ... Self (archive footage)
Margaret Mitchell ... Self (archive footage)
Jimmy Fidler ... Self (voice)
Silvia Shulman Lardner Silvia Shulman Lardner ... Self
Tallulah Bankhead ... Self (archive footage)
Margaret Tallichet ... Self (archive footage)
Frances Dee ... Self (archive footage)
Mary Ray Mary Ray ... Self (archive footage)
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Storyline

This documentary on the making of GWTW focuses on the driving force behind the legendary film, producer David O. Selznick. He purchased the rights and over several years, tried to have a script developed. Several writers had their hand in the effort and in truth, the script was never properly finalized, something that dogged the film throughout its production. While the decision to cast Clark Gable as Rhett Butler was fairly straightforward, finding the right actress to play Scarlett O'Hara captured national attention with several of Hollywood's top stars vying for the part. The original director, George Cukor, left before the films completion as did his replacement, Victor Fleming. Selznick directed some of the scenes himself and was driven to get the film completed just as he wanted. From the film's initial test screening, the film-going public adored the results. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

making of | atlanta georgia | See All (2) »

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Olivia de Havilland did not take part in this documentary due to her reportedly not wishing to be involved in any of the 50th anniversary celebrations of Gone with the Wind (1939). Although she did appear at The 15th Annual People's Choice Awards (1989) in August of 1989, to accept the award for 'All Time Favorite Motion Picture' on behalf of the film. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Narrator: What is there that matters, after all that she has fought for and lost? After the disillusion, rejection, and humiliation. David Selznick couldn't just leave her there. He had to find an answer, appropriate to his Scarlett, faithful to Margaret Mitchell, and one which reached out to the shattered world of 1939, and beyond, that answer, an ending, appropriate to the gambler, the romantic, and the optimist in him.
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Connections

Features A Tale of Two Cities (1935) See more »

Soundtracks

For He's a Jolly Good Fellow
(uncredited)
Traditional
See more »

User Reviews

 
You couldn't ask for a better "making of" documentary...
22 August 2005 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

Selznick himself would have given his highest rating of approval to this fascinating documentary which traces the birth of the Margaret Mitchell novel through its publication and on to Hollywood, where it became a major chore for David O. Selznick to wittle the 1,000 page novel into a workable screenplay. Selznick's work habits are examined at length and the kind of stress his perfectionist behavior gave everyone around him is understandable. But his persistence paid off and, of course, the end result was all anyone could hope for.

Having read many books on this subject, I can assure you this is a project that is well worth viewing for anyone who has more than a passing interest in the making of the film. There are some interesting and revealing comments by George Cukor, the original director on the film who was fired after a few weeks of filming but still remained on good terms with Selznick after Victor Fleming took over.

Most interesting aspect are a series of tests made by various actors and actresses under consideration for roles--most of whom were highly unsuitable if the tests are to be taken seriously.

Missing among the cast members who speak about the film is Olivia de Havilland, who was probably too heavily involved in personal matters at the time this was being put together and could not find time to make her contribution--which would have been a significant one. Fortunately, she turned up for last year's DVD release of the film in a segment called "Melanie Remembers". But Evelyn Keyes and Ann Rutherford do a nice job of describing some behind-the-scenes events as well as the initial premiere of the film in Keyes' home town of Atlanta. Butterfly McQueen recalls what it was like to play Prissy.

Excellent commentary by Christopher Plummer is a definite plus, and the well written script gives the viewer a complete feeling of what it was like for everyone involved in the making of this great classic. By the time it reaches the film's world premiere reaction, you will be thoroughly involved and entertained by the interesting presentation of facts. As an added bonus, much of the documentary is accompanied by selections from Max Steiner's massive score.

Summing up: A documentary you can't afford to miss.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

October 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Film, der zur Legende wurde: Vom Winde verweht See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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