people that nobody knew. It was a balancing act all the way. Federico Fellini was going to contribute to the lilm but he was also doing lntervista and that was delayed so it didn‘twork out. David Byme agreed and was all set to go in Japan when what I could only describe as the most appalling management bungling messed itup. Nothing to do with David or mysell. It was a tragedy because he had a brilliant idea. Trevor Nunn wasthe only person who said no, I think he tell insecure as a lilm director.’
Having chosen histen best, Boyd madethem aware olthe linancial and temporal restrictions and then gave them the lreedom to do as they wished. ‘The briel was that there were no rules. I also said thatthey should view it as an opportunity to work in a way that they'd nevertried belore without worrying about narrative discipline.‘ The results are variable but it is sale to say that the lilm includes something tor all tastes. Ken Russell has made a very personal tribute to a lriend killed in a car crash, Godard spent $50,000 ol his own money to re-shoot a segment that he tell was inadequate, Derek Jarman has chosen a charming home movie approach and, best olall, Charles (Brideshead) Sturrldge interprets Verdi's La Vergine deli Angeli in a moving monochrome piece about runaway children.
Boyd admits to being surprised by the application and enthusiasm ol all the directors, none more sothat Jullen (Absolute Beginners) Temple. ‘Julien surprised me because he took it phenomenally seriously
and did an enormous amount ol listening and when he chose what he wanted to do he wrote a very detalled script which he was very taithtul to. His final cut was a littletoo long and he cut itwlthoutany gualms.‘
The one temptation that Boyd managed to avoid was the desire to directa segment ol his own but that may yet come to pass. ‘I would love to have done one mysell but as the masterot ceremonies I think itwould have been wrong to have done a little turn mysell. I’d probably have chosen something extremely well known and then played with it. Ilwe do another onel might do one but that depends on how well the lilm does.’
Aria can be seen althe Edinburgh Filmhouse 1—7 Nov. See Cinema Listings tor details.
The closing date is drawing nigh tor a new award scheme lrom the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation— anyone who would like to try torthe award should get weaving.
The award is tor ‘Large Scale Events' and comprises ten research and development grants ol up to £500 each to be awarded to the best, most ambitious and innovative proposals tor a one-oil large scale event. The event should be designed with particular site in mind — an old factory, the top of a hill or a church, for instance — and the event should exploit the potential at the particular site, and ideally involve collaboration between dillerent art lorms, eg jazz and sculpture, dance and literature, visual art and classical music. In the second phase at the award. three ol the ten winning proposals will also receive production grants, on top at the research and development grants.
The proposals should be sent on up to three sides at A4 paper not Iaterthanl DecemberlBB'l. Details are available lrom the Gulbenkian Foundation: lain Reid, Calouste Culbenkian Foundation, 98 Portland Place, London
BENEFIT FOR BENEFIT PART TWO
Hope Augustus is no strangerto benelitgigs. She sang with the Red Wedge Women's Tour and atthe Red Wedge concert during the Edinburgh Festival. This tomight she joins a line-up at music and cabaret performers taking part in a cabaret night the proceeds otwhich will go towards the ‘Lothians Oppose Social Security Cuts‘ campaign.
The cabaret, ‘Benelitlor Benelit Part Two’. lollows on lrom a successlul one held at the end olthe Edinburgh Festival, ‘We could have sold the tickets three orlourtimes over,‘ says organiser Steve Briggs.
Lothians Oppose. . . is the local branch of the campaigning group National Campaign Against Social Security Cuts, which also (rare lora national society) has its headquarters in Edinburgh.
.The group is dedicated to raising awl‘areness about the social security benelits available to people, to inlorming them about cuts to be made in those benelits and to opposing the cuts themselves. ‘Our main locus recently has been to oppose the FowlerReview that is to be implemented in 1988,‘ says Briggs. ‘Already the Government have made some alterations to their original plans because at external pressure and outcry-the state earnings related pensions is now to be cut, notabolished.‘
Briggs loresees the group‘s activity increasing towards April next year, when the Review is dueto take effect, with more awareness and lund-ralsing activities like the imminent one— in which acts (including Bop Sh‘Bam, tloisy Minority, The Comedy Casuals, Tex Fritter Five, Red Music and Alto Cirrus) are all appearing on a non-proﬁt making basis. (SR)
‘Benetit tor Benelit Part Two‘ Transport Rall, Edinburgh. 30 Oct. See Cabaret and Rock Listings.
TV journalist Sheena McDonald has just finished a stint of presenting the headlines. Now in her new column she’ll be providing her views on the stories behind them.
- Bother. It‘s an
\ an ursine
1- (cf Pooh)
‘ ejaculation. Let me explain. As
. ‘ soon as you say you’ve given up, you instantly become vulnerable to the temptation of doing it again — so I never did. Anyway, in my case, it wasn‘t a moral or even a health-conscious decision — I‘m not the pious sort who wouldn’t even have one in the house. Well, in my trade it would be negatively eccentric. But somehow, as the years passed, I simply gave up the habit. Just as chocolate-box-fillers on the production line lose the appetite for actually tasting, never mind gorging one, the wares, so a steady schedule ofproducing the goods left me with no desire to sample them any more. I stopped watching television.
And then a week ago, I moved from the daily news programme to the weekly political forum, Scottish Assembly, and discovered that release from the make-up-and- deliver routine of newscasting had restored the forgotten relish for the small screen. I‘m a born-again addict. And I’m bothered.
Because this is a new and selective addiction — forget entertainment, I‘m hooked on education and information. Never again can I imagine programming the filofax to keep me box-bound throughout an entire authentic, ﬂawlessly-acted classic serial because already I‘ve spotted something sinister: every current series, not matter how distinguished its literary source, has been forced through the Collapse-Of—Middle-Class-Marriage template. It’s clearly a conspiracy, shared by cynical drama-producers, soap-writers and Royal-watcher alike — to convince us that marital failure is not only the norm, it’s the quintessential fairy-tale ofour time. The cult cocktail — marriage on the
rocks. . Don’t worry — there’s still
entertainment, but erase Love and insert Greed - the saddest sublimation of appetite. THRILL to the demise of the yuppie, as blood flows on the Stock Exchange floor!
\ \5\\‘\‘ \\\‘~
SWEAT— as the BP share price teeters on the precipice of unviability! HANG ON to your knickers — the Paris fashions are astronomically thigh-high! The Booker Prize -— forget about buying Brian Moore and Chinua Achebe when you actually be! on the result instead! Oh, bother.
But there are still genuine love stories around to stir the heart, and none more poignant than that told by Julian Pettifer and Saxon Logan in Zimbabwe last Sunday night. The female interest weighted two tons. The lovers were tough men, black and white, moved to near tears by the sight ofa mutilated baby, left to die in agony. The object of their desire — the black rhino. It can only be love that keeps these men patrolling the bush with clapped-out equipment and inadequate funds, in pursuit of their deadly rival — the poacher. And it is warped and ignorant desire — the continuing ridiculous and sub-primitive belief in the aphrodisiac properties of the rhino’s horn — which underlies that desperate battle between love and greed. lfthe goodies don‘t win this one, the last wild herd ofblack rhino in the world will be extinct within two or three years. Bother.
After all, how do you balance that tiny war against the greater global threats of nuclear impasse or financial depression? Or, indeed, against the local domestic woes and dilemmas of homeless, jobless, friendless, hopeless? On the chart of Things To Be Bothered About, does the black rhino even make the top twenty? For some, thankfully, yes— emphatically, yes. For others— well, perhaps the best you can do is keep your own tally ofThings To Be, etc topped up.
And in my case, Charles and Di and Harriet and Guy must shift for themselves. If this rediscovered TV-habit is going to have any use, it has to be an enhanced care for the world’s beasties, be they two- leggedy or four-leggedy. This is Mental Health Week in Scotland. David Alton’s 18-week Abortion Bill is on the agenda. There are 8000 homeless young people in Edinburgh alone. Oh, bother.
The List 30 Oct — 12 Nov 3