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- Run Time: 1 hours, 59 minutes
- Video: Black & White
- Released: November 15, 2016
- Originally Released: 1941
- Label: Turner Home Ent
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Note: Separate commentaries by Roger Ebert and Peter Bogdanovich
- Interviews with Ruth Warrick and Robert Wise
- Opening: World Premiere of Citizen Kane
- Still photography with commentary by Roger Ebert and more
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
- Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo - English, Spanish
- Subtitles - English, French, Spanish
Performers, Cast and Crew:
|Starring||Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Everett Sloane & Agnes Moorehead|
|Performer:||Arthur O'Connell, Walter Sande, Ray Collins, Benny Rubin, Herbert Corthell, Charles Bennett, Ruth Warrick, Georgia Backus, Milton Kibbee, Alan Ladd, Edith Evanson, Paul Stewart, Edmund Cobb, Gus Schilling, Dorothy Comingore, George Coulouris, Fortunio Bonanova, Erskine Sanford, William Alland, Gino Corrado, Harry Shannon & Louise Currie|
|Directed by||Orson Welles|
|Edited by||Robert Wise & Mark Robson|
|Screenwriting by||Orson Welles & Herman J. Mankiewicz|
|Composition by||Bernard Herrmann|
|Produced by||Orson Welles|
|Director of Photography:||Gregg Toland|
Memorable Quotes and Dialog:
- the dying word of Charles Foster Kane (Orson Welles)
"I am, have been, and will always be only one thing--an American."
"It'll probably turn out to be a very simple thing."
- Mr. Rawlston (Philip Van Zandt), referring to Rosebud
"I think it would be fun to run a newspaper!"
- Walter Parks Thatcher (George Coulouris)
"You provide the prose poems, I'll provide the war."
"I did lose a million dollars last year. I expect to lose a million dollars this year. I expect to lose a million dollars next year. You know, Mr. Thatcher, at the rate of a million dollars a year, I'll have to close this place in...sixty years."
- Kane to Thatcher
"I only saw her for one second. She didn't see me at all. But I'll bet a month hasn't gone by since that I haven't thought of that girl."
- Mr. Bernstein (Everett Sloane) to Jerry Thompson (William Alland)
Academy Awards 1941 - Best Original Screenplay: Herman J. Mankiewicz & Orson Welles
Rating: 5/5 -- Welles almost creates a mise en abyme throughout Citizen Kane, inviting but ultimately refuting the tendency to want to reduce everything to one core sentimental genesis. Full Review
...KANE remains a source of fascination and inspiration...
Welles' performance is nothing less than astonishing. He begins as a youth of 21, goes through middle age to his death, and makes every moment believable in voice, walk, and gesture. Even in his love scenes is Welles effective. Full Review
...Packed with cool effects and a surprise ending unsurpassed even by THE SIXTH SENSE...
...[A] masterpiece....[The film] seems more relevant than ever...
Sight and Sound
The realism, the development of the scenes, and the connection that is established so that the public doesn't lose the thread of the narrative is something truly extraordinary that we have not seen before. [Full Review in Spanish] Full Review
It proves Welles' restless, reckless genius -- as exasperating as it is fascinating -- is triumphant in the new medium as it was in the old ones of theater and radio. Full Review
CITIZEN KANE is Orson Welles's greatest achievement--and a landmark of cinema history. The story charts the rise and fall of a newspaper publisher whose wealth and power ultimately isolates him in his castle-like refuge. The film's protagonist, Charles Foster Kane, was based on a composite of Howard Hughes and William Randolph Hearst--so much so that Hearst tried to have the film suppressed. Every aspect of the production marked an advance in film language: the deep focus and deeply shadowed cinematography (from Gregg Toland); the discontinuous narrative, relying heavily on flashbacks and newsreel footage (propelled by a script largely written by Herman L. Mankiewicz); the innovative use of sound and score (sound by Bailey Fesler and James G. Stewart, music composed and conducted by Bernard Herrmann); and the ensemble acting forged in the fires of Welles's Mercury Theatre (featuring the film debuts of, among others, Joseph Cotten, Everett Sloane, and Agnes Moorehead). Every moment of the film, every shot, has been choreographed to perfection. The film is essential viewing, quite possibly the greatest film ever made and, along with THE BIRTH OF A NATION, certainly the most influential.
CITIZEN KANE is quite simply one of the greatest films ever made. Orson Welles is astounding as both actor and director in this sweeping drama, based largely on the life of newspaper tycoon William Randolph Hearst.
Classic | Politics | Rags To Riches | Recommended | Reporters | Big Business | Character Study | Achievers | Theatrical Release | Essential Cinema
- Theatrical release: May 1, 1941, at the RKO Palace in New York City.
- Shooting ran from July 22 to October 23, 1940.
- Estimated budget: more than $1 million. The film lost more than $150,000 upon its initial release. Despite critical success, the film was not shown in many theaters because of threats from the Hearst empire.
- CITIZEN KANE was the directorial debut of the 25-year-old Orson Welles, who had formerly made his name as a radio and theater actor and director. RKO, with great fanfare, had signed him to an exclusive contract, giving him almost total control over his work.
- The title was suggested by studio man George Schaefer, a staunch defender of the film who ended up losing his job because of it. Other possible titles included AMERICAN and JOHN CITIZEN, U.S.A.
- Welles claims that after a speaking engagement, police told him not to return to his hotel room because a 14-year-old girl and some cameramen were waiting there for him in order to blackmail him into not showing CITIZEN KANE.
- At one point Welles considered burning the film himself instead of giving it back the studio, which was caving in to Hearst's complaints that the movie was an attack on him.
- Hearst's name does appear one time in the film, in the screening room scene.
- The film includes brief appearances by Alan Ladd, director of photography Gregg Toland, Welles collaborator Richard Wilson, screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz, and associate producer Richard Barr.
- CITIZEN KANE marked the film debuts of Joseph Cotten, Everett Sloane, Agnes Moorehead, Erskine Sanford, George Coulouris, Paul Stewart, William Alland, Gus Schilling, and Ray Collins. Welles purposely wanted to use unfamiliar faces--mostly from his Mercury Theatre radio team--in order not to distract from the story.
- CITIZEN KANE is number one on the American Film Institute's list of America's 100 Greatest Movies.
- CITIZEN KANE was an original selection to the Library of Congress National Film Registry in 1989.
- Orson Welles received the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award from Charlton Heston in 1975.
- Jean Forward dubbed in the singing for Dorothy Comingore and also made a cameo appearance in the film.
- On the lot, the film was known as RKO 281, which is also the name of a cable film about the relationship between Welles and Hearst, starring James Cromwell (William Randolph Hearst), Roy Scheider (George Schaefer), John Malkovich (Herman L. Mankiewicz), and Liev Schreiber (Orson Welles).
- CITIZEN KANE lost the Best Picture Oscar to HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY, and Welles lost the Best Actor award to Gary Cooper, who won for SERGEANT YORK.
- Although Bernard Herrmann received an Academy Award nomination for his score for CITIZEN KANE, he actually won the award that year for his music for ALL THAT MONEY CAN BUY.
- Matt Groening (THE SIMPSONS) named Mr. Burns partly after CITIZEN KANE; the C in C. Montgomery Burns comes from Charles Foster Kane.
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