‘Citizen Kane’ Mastermind Orson Welles Said to Have Edited Porn

Jun 9, 2015 12:58 PM PST

NEW YORK — Author Josh Karp writes in his new book, “Orson Welles' Last Movie,” that the “Citizen Kane” mastermind took a porn editing job to help rush the completion of his last production, a mainstream movie called “The Other Side of the Wind.”

Welles, known for writing, directing and starring in the 1941 movie “Citizen Kane,” one of the most influential films ever made, jumped over to the blue side in the mid 1970s.

According to Karp, Welles promised to edit the sexually explicit 1975 film “3 a.m.” if the cinematographer and director of mainstream film “The Other Side of the Wind,” who worked on both productions, worked harder to complete it.  

Welles made the deal with cinematographer and director Gary Graver because he was running out of cash to pay his “The Other Side of the Wind” crew.

“3 a.m.” follows California couple Elaine and Mark, who live with Elaine’s sister Kate, played by Georgina Spelvin, widely known for her performance in the X-rated “The Devil in Miss Jones.”

A shower scene develops where Kate is bathing when a fully clothed brunette — known only as “Girl in Shower” in the movie’s credits (played by Judith Hamilton) — enters the shower. She strips down and begins making out with Kate.

Welles’ mainstream film, “The Other Side of the Wind,” was supposed to take place during a single day, and Welles planned to shoot it in eight weeks. It took 12 years and remains unreleased; Welles died in 1985.

In 2014 it was announced that the movie would be completed and screened to coincide with the centenary of Welles's birth in 2015. Postproduction was delayed when some potential distributors asked to see edited footage from the original negative before committing funds to complete the film.

In May, producers launched a crowdfunding campaign with a goal of raising $2 million to help complete “The Other Side of the Wind.”

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