Tuesday, 6 October 2009

I want one


Only this time I don't think I'll be ordering it from Amazon. Not at £450.

Still, Stanley Kubrick's Napoleon: The Greatest Movie Never Made, published next month by Taschen, looks to be the last word on Kubrick's "unamde masterpiece". And if it's half as good as the company's Stanley Kubrick Archives, which I do have, it will be astonishing.

Here's the blurb from the Taschen website:

"Tucked inside of a carved-out book, all the elements from Stanley Kubrick's archives that readers need to imagine what his unmade film about the emperor might have been like, including a facsimile of the script. This collector's edition is limited to 1,000 numbered copies.

For 40 years, Kubrick fans and film buffs have wondered about the director's mysterious unmade film on Napoleon Bonaparte. Slated for production immediately following the release of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick’s Napoleon was to be at once a character study and a sweeping epic, replete with grandiose battle scenes featuring thousands of extras. To write his original screenplay, Kubrick embarked on two years of intensive research; with the help of dozens of assistants and an Oxford Napoleon specialist, he amassed an unparalleled trove of research and preproduction material, including approximately 15,000 location scouting photographs and 17,000 slides of Napoleonic imagery.

Taschen’s sumptuous, limited-edition tribute to this unmade masterpiece makes Kubrick’s valiant work on Napoleon available to fans for the first time. Herein, readers can peruse a selection of Kubrick’s correspondence, various costume studies, location scouting photographs, research material, script drafts, and more, each category of material in its own book. Kubrick’s final draft is reproduced in facsimile while the other texts are tidily kenneled into one volume where they dare not interfere with the visual material. All of these books are tucked inside of a carved-out reproduction of a Napoleon history book.

The text book features the complete original treatment, essays examining the screenplay in historical and dramatic contexts, an essay by Jean Tulard on Napoleon in cinema, and a transcript of interviews Kubrick conducted with Oxford professor Felix Markham. The culmination of years of research and preparation, this unique publication offers readers a chance to experience the creative process of one of cinema’s greatest talents as well as a fascinating exploration of the enigmatic figure that was Napoleon Bonaparte."

13 comments:

Adam said...

Damn you Taschen!!!!

I want their Apollo book as well. That's only £600.

Mark Salisbury said...

I'm just hoping they bring out a "reasonably priced" edition of both this and the Apollo book, as they did with the Kubrick Archives.

And yes, the Apollo book looks amazing. Although for that price I'd expect some moondust, too.

Lloyd said...

There was a few pages about Kubrick's Napoleon in the Daily Mail's Sunday Edition, with costume's test photos etc. It was a pretty interesting read. Here's all I could find on their website:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-25625/Kubricks-home-movie.html

Mark Salisbury said...

Thanks. Didn't see that but I did scan a similar piece in the Sunday Times.

J.D. said...

Is the KUBRICK ARCHIVES book any good? I've been thinking about getting it but the price is a bit steep.

Steve said...

ZOMG! WANT. too bad £450 is like $900 and i can't justify that. maybe if they made the purchase tax-deductible?

Mark Salisbury said...

@ J.D.

The Kubrick Archives is a fantastic book. I've got one of the first (now deleted) editions, all of which contained a series of frames from Kubrick's own print of 2001. But I've also got a cheaper version of the same book (smaller, no case, no film strip) which I picked up for £25 earlier this year and which is the one I read.

Amazon are selling it for $45:

http://www.amazon.com/Stanley-Kubrick-Archives-Alison-Castle/dp/3836508893/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254836942&sr=8-1


@ Steve

It probably is tax deductible. But it's still too rich for my blood. Incidentally, Taschen are selling it for $700 on their website.

Matt J said...

For those of us who can't afford it read Kubrick's screenplay online;

http://www.donkeyontheedge.com/i/napoleon.pdf

Mark Salisbury said...

@ Matt J

A most useful link. Thanks.

Mark Salisbury said...

@ Adam

Just noticed the Apollo book comes in two different editions, one of which does indeed include a slice of the Moon!

Adam said...

Heh, you beat me to it, I was just about to point that out... I notice though that they don't quote a price for the Moonrock edition, on the basis I suppose that if you have to ask...

Mark Salisbury said...

Well, there's always the lottery...

J.D. said...

Mark, thanks for the tip and the link!