Chapter

Through a Glass Darkly

GENE D. PHILLIPS

in Some Like It Wilder

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780813125701
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813135403 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813125701.003.0005
Through a Glass Darkly

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Billy Wilder was convinced that Charles Jackson's novel The Lost Weekend would make an engrossing movie. Wilder phoned Paramount executive Buddy De Sylva and requested that the studio purchase the screen rights to the book. De Sylva put down fifty thousand dollars for The Lost Weekend. After the conference, Wilder commented to a journalist that The Lost Weekend was not going to be the ordinary Hollywood fare. It would be the first mainstream film to take alcoholism seriously. The Lost Weekend was to some degree influenced by the years that Wilder spent in Berlin during the heyday of the expressionist movement, which made a significant impact on German cinema. It is also an intense and intricate story of spiritual meltdown, told with invisible dexterity and emotional acuity. In addition, one of Wilder's chores was to collaborate on a documentary about the concentration camps, to be titled Die Todesmühlen (Death Mills).

Keywords: The Lost Weekend; Die Todesmühlen; Billy Wilder; Charles Jackson; Buddy De Sylva; Paramount; alcoholism

Chapter.  7987 words. 

Subjects: Film

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