Saturday, September 25, 2010

Orson Welles and Laurence Olivier

I have recently finished reading In My Father's Shadow: A Daughter Remembers Orson Welles (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill),  a splendid book by Chris Welles Feder, which was about her  relationship with her titanically talented father, Orson Welles. After a friend brought up the competitive nature of the relations between Welles and Laurence Olivier, I re-read the passages in this memoir relating a magical visit that the author had enjoyed with both men when she was still a young girl. I thought that others might enjoy her observations and have supplemented this with comments about their differing styles from other sources.

I take most memoirs, autobiographies and biographies with a grain of salt, but Ms. Feder has made her mark in the separate world of educational publishing, establishing a separate identity from her father. She continues to foster appreciation of her father's work at various film festivals worldwide, and has a gift for relaying her understanding insights with affection and clear-sighted admiration for him in her own words.


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