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NEWS! the ongoing controversy of LAST TANGO IN PARIS


LornaHansonForbes
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in re: LAST TANGO IN PARIS, 1973

 

Disclaimer, I'd like to say that I think our Moderation staff does a great job and I have enough respect for the community here that I think we can have an intelligent conversation about this: AND IT'S BIG NEWS.

 

click on the link below to a slate news piece that breaks down the situation better than I can. and then please feel free to discuss, would really like to hear what some of you think:

 

http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2016/12/03/last_tango_in_paris_rape_scene_was_coerced_media_reports.html

 

it's an excellent article from slate.com, which writes A LOT OF GREAT PIECES ON CLASSIC FILM. It's discussing the fact that footage has "resurfaced" (with some argument to that term) wherein Bertolucci confirms the account of MARIA SCHNEIDER as it is below:

 

"That scene wasn’t in the original script. The truth is it was Marlon who came up with the idea. … They only told me about it before we had to film the scene and I was so angry. I should have called my agent or had my lawyer come to the set because you can’t force someone to do something that isn't in the script, but at the time, I didn’t know that. Marlon said to me, “Maria, don't worry, it’s just a movie,” but during the scene, even though what Marlon was doing wasn't real, I was crying real tears. I felt humiliated and to be honest, I felt a little raped, both by Marlon and by Bertolucci. After the scene, Marlon didn't console me or apologize. Thankfully, there was just one take."- Maria Schneider

 

back to me: I cannot in good conscience post the link to the video where Bertolucci says what he says on camera because IT'S GROSS and it's interspersed with SCENES FROM THE FILM WHICH ARE SUPER GROSS.

 

EDITED- LHF

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Bertolucci's quotes:

 

 


“But I’ve been, in a way, horrible to Maria, because I didn’t tell her what was going on. Because I wanted her reaction as a girl, not as an actress. I wanted her to react humiliated.”

 

 

 

“To make movies sometimes, to obtain something, I think that you have to be completely free. I didn’t want Maria to act her humiliation, her rage. I wanted Maria to feel, not to act, the rage and humiliation.”

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Another sad example of grown men taking advantage of a young woman.  Both men should have been ashamed and did they really think that Maria, an actress, couldn't act humiliated but had to feel  humiliated?  I have my doubts and I suspect they knew what they were doing and just didn't care.  After all, here is the great actor and great director and she's just an unknown actress, so her trauma didn't matter as long as the scene came off as they wanted.

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I've seen Last Tango only once. I rented it on VHS when I was in college, roughly a quarter of a century ago, so I don't have crystal-clear recall of it. There is, I believe, very early in the film, an "actual" rape scene when the Brando and Schneider characters first meet, but ironically,I don't think that's the scene being discussed. To my dim recollection, the scene where Brando talks about the butter takes place later in the movie.

 

Not being a woman, I probably can't really accurately gauge how such circumstances would make a woman feel. I just watched a TCM promo the other night where Claire Bloom recalled with certain fondness and nostalgia that Charlie Chaplin made her cry for real on the set of Limelight when she was barely older than Schneider, and then turned the cameras on because he didn't trust her ability to cry on command.  So, there's a long tradition of considerably older male directors provoking genuine emotional reactions from their actresses because they didn't trust the actress to have the ability to convincingly simulate those emotions.We're supposed to look at the Bloom/Chaplin story as an example of Chaplin's genius, and we're supposed to look at the example of Bertolucci and Brando manipulating Schneider as something awful. Granted, the aspect of sexual humiliation was absent from the Bloom/Chaplin example.

 

Having said all that Bertolucci seemed to have some recurring fixation on the theme of sexual wakening in barely legal brunettes, be they Schneider, Liv Tyler or Eva Green.

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Actors - men, women and children - have been manipulated by directors a million times in order to produce the performance the director desires.

 

Schneider was an actress - and a legal adult. She could have refused to do the scene.

 

There is no controversy here as far as I'm concerned. If we were talking about actual sex having taken place, rather than pretend, I'd recommend legal retribution. As it is, it's an experience she had while making the movie that she didn't enjoy. Lots of actors have had those.

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...I just watched a TCM promo the other night where Claire Bloom recalled with certain fondness and nostalgia that Charlie Chaplin made her cry for real on the set of Limelight when she was barely older than Schneider, and then turned the cameras on because he didn't trust her ability to cry on command.  So, there's a long tradition of considerably older male directors provoking genuine emotional reactions from their actresses because they didn't trust the actress to have the ability to convincingly simulate those emotions.We're supposed to look at the Bloom/Chaplin story as an example of Chaplin's genius, and we're supposed to look at the example of Bertolucci and Brando manipulating Schneider as something awful. Granted, the aspect of sexual humiliation was absent from the Bloom/Chaplin example.

 

 

Good point here, sewhite. A close analogy(although not an exact one due to the offense Maria suffered was of a physical nature and thus more egregious) between these two movie set incidences could legitimately be drawn here, I'd say. 

 

Now personally as I read through Lorna's posting, I first thought of the 1980 movie THE STUNT MAN, and in which although a dramatization of this sort of thing and not an actual real life incident such as these, portrays Peter O'Toole as an "anything it takes to get the right shot" kind of movie director, and who off-camera purposely emotionally distresses his leading lady(Barbara Hershey) in the movie he's making in order to get his desired effect.

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Good point here, sewhite. A close analogy(although not an exact one due to the offense Maria suffered was of a physical nature and thus more egregious) between these two movie set incidences could legitimately be drawn here, I'd say.

 

Now personally as I read through Lorna's posting, I first thought of the 1980 movie THE STUNT MAN, and in which although a dramatization of this sort of thing and not an actual real life incident such as these, portrays Peter O'Toole as an "anything it takes to get the right shot" kind of movie director, and who off-camera purposely emotionally distresses his leading lady(Barbara Hershey) in the movie he's making in order to get his desired effect.

 

The French director Clouzot, who directed Les diaboliques, had a very bad reputation for physically assaulting his actors to get them to do what he wanted. Artists who worked for him were aware of his reputation and therefore, they were warned in advance. But he got a number of people to work for him more than once. His other Great Masterpiece was the Wages of Fear, starring French actor Yves Montand.

 

1 actress, Brigitte Bardot, was extremely critical of his treatment of her during the making of La vérité in 1960. She claimed that he drugged and publicly humiliated her in order to psychologically get her to the level where her character was in the movie.

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Another sad example of grown men taking advantage of a young woman. Both men should have been ashamed and did they really think that Maria, an actress, couldn't act humiliated but had to feel humiliated? I have my doubts and I suspect they knew what they were doing and just didn't care. After all, here is the great actor and great director and she's just an unknown actress, so her trauma didn't matter as long as the scene came off as they wanted.

Considering the long history of Hollywood and the famous, or should I say infamous casting couch and so many other stories we've heard about movie Moguls like, Darryl F Zanuck, we shouldn't be surprised to hear this sort of thing.

 

But I gotta say, even among Hollywood jerks, Marlon Brando probably was the biggest jerk of all--

 

I doubt that he ever had respect for any woman.

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PrincessOTap said: But I gotta say, even among Hollywood jerks, Marlon Brando probably was the biggest jerk of all--
I doubt that he ever had respect for any woman. 

 

Yeah, he strikes me that way too. I have a hard time accepting his "genius".

 

 

DarkBlue succinctly said: Actors - men, women and children - have been manipulated by directors a million times in order to produce the performance the director desires.

 

Stanley Kubrick and his reported deplorable treatment of Shelly Duvall on the set of THE SHINING immediately comes to mind. 

 

This sort of manipulation was covered in the great 'art vs commercial success of filmmaking' movie THE BAD & THE BEAUTIFUL (52), with Kirk Douglas' & Lana Turner's charactors.

 

Schneider was an actress - and a legal adult. She could have refused to do the scene.

 

Well yes, but fear of losing a job... money, often intimidates people to do things they regret later. How many are labeled "difficult to work with"? Race, sex, culture doesn't matter, this is human nature issue.

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in re: LAST TANGO IN PARIS, 1973

 

Disclaimer, I'd like to say that I think our Moderation staff does a great job and I have enough respect for the community here that I think we can have an intelligent conversation about this: AND IT'S BIG NEWS.

 

click on the link below to a slate news piece that breaks down the situation better than I can. and then please feel free to discuss, would really like to hear what some of you think:

 

http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2016/12/03/last_tango_in_paris_rape_scene_was_coerced_media_reports.html

 

it's an excellent article from slate.com, which writes A LOT OF GREAT PIECES ON CLASSIC FILM. It's discussing the fact that footage has "resurfaced" (with some argument to that term) wherein Bertolucci confirms the account of MARIA SCHNEIDER as it is below:

 

"That scene wasn’t in the original script. The truth is it was Marlon who came up with the idea. … They only told me about it before we had to film the scene and I was so angry. I should have called my agent or had my lawyer come to the set because you can’t force someone to do something that isn't in the script, but at the time, I didn’t know that. Marlon said to me, “Maria, don't worry, it’s just a movie,” but during the scene, even though what Marlon was doing wasn't real, I was crying real tears. I felt humiliated and to be honest, I felt a little raped, both by Marlon and by Bertolucci. After the scene, Marlon didn't console me or apologize. Thankfully, there was just one take."- Maria Schneider

 

back to me: I cannot in good conscience post the link to the video where Bertolucci says what he says on camera because IT'S GROSS and it's interspersed with SCENES FROM THE FILM WHICH ARE SUPER GROSS.

 

EDITED- LHF

cavegirl prased last tango so it figures

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