Orson Welles (1915-85), film and stage director, actor, writer and producer, was a uniquely talented artist who nevertheless struggled for much of his life to realize his unique vision. His greatest triumphs came dazzlingly early. In his 20s, he had a seminal influence on radio drama with his company the Mercury Players. Their 1938 radio adaptation of Welles' War of the Worlds caused a nationwide panic when listeners thought aliens really had landed in New Jersey. He was only 25 when, with the help of some very talented collaborators, he co-wrote, directed and starred in Citizen Kane (1941), generally considered one of the greatest films ever made. But when RKO studios released a mangled version of his next film, The Magnificent Ambersons, without his consent, it set the pattern of frustration and creative battles that would mark the rest of his life. Nevertheless he went on to produce several more great films - A Touch of Evil (1958) and his version of Othello notable amongst them - and iconic performances - most famously as Harry Lime in the classic The Third Man (1949).
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Birth to Todd 191531
The fall of the city or Orson eats the Big Apple 193437
Mr Genius comes through 193941
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