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Alter Egos - I Am Done Watching This

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Saturday, September 16, 2006

Nicholas Roeg has it all Figured Out

Dead Beat is losing himself in the film world these days. That's okay. Serge Daney, don't you forget him. Now here's someone else who forced himself into my home the other night. "Beat," that's what he called me. "Beat," he said.

"Yeah Roeg," I replied.

"You're a writer, right?"


"You know that the basic unit of fiction is scene?"

"Sure, Nicky boy."

"I make movies."

"I know that. Beat is a Bowie fan after all. The Man Who Fell To Earth."

"Yeah, okay. Now David B. tells me you got a blog site or something."


"Okay, you tell them, that is anyone who reads your sh##, that Nicholas Roeg has it all figured out."

"Go ahead Nick."

"I worked with a man called Joe Ruttenberg, a great American cinematographer, who gave me the best tip in the world - it was amazing, just a simple thing. This was the man who had photographed The Philadelphia Story and Gigi. I told him that I was thinking of taking a photographic course, and he said, "Just stay on the set and watch and be a part of it; anything you want to know, I'll tell you". He was talking one day to Dick Thorpe, the director, and he said, "Cinematography is completely different from photography. You're never going to win the Royal Photographic Society award, and don't try to do that. It's the scene that must be served".

He left then as obtrusively as he arrived.

"It's the scene that must be served," old Dead Beat shouted after him as he scapered across the lawn.

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