At Cannes Film Festival this year, A Fistful of Dollars will be shown in a newly restored edition to close the festival. While the team have taken a long time in restoring the original movie, during this process they managed to find some outtakes that had, before now, never been seen and so decided to restore these also. This is a very unusual case as most of the film, due to the time, could well have been destroyed with age or even dumped.
So, fans of the trilogy, sit back and have a rare look at the Leone's filmmaking process with the original soundtrack to accompany it.
Check it out below:
There are lots of good moments in this video but here are a few of the highlights for me:
00.49 Clint's mistake:
Clint is about to sling his gun for that crucial first time in the movie. Despite being well practiced, having worked on western show Rawhide, he doesn't quite manage to pull his gun. Happens to the best of us...
01:42 Clints badassness:
This is a highlight for me as it shows that Clint could, even back then, spin the gun and put it back in its holster with great ease; no stunt man or stand in, in sight.
02:05 Leone's attention to lighting:
Aware of Sergio Leone's pain staking attention to lighting, this moment is interesting to me as Clint moves from the darkness into the light, having sections, but not all, of his face lit. As we can't hear what is being said it is hard to tell what directions Clint is being given. But it does look as though it was originally intended that he sit in the darkness and fire his gun. In this outtake it looks as though their minds changed and they had Clint move himself, as well as the gun, into the light. Which, in my opinion, makes for greater effect when you see his scars.
Another great example of Leone lighting is the scene where Cheyenne and Harmonica meet for the first time in Once Upon a Time in the West.
03:29 Gian Maria Volante and Clint laughing:
This is a very short clip of Clint and Volante as they are doing a take. They are looking at each other intensely and then suddenly they begin to laugh. I like this because, as the film is a classic, and you always associate these two guys as enemies (even in the second movie when Volante plays another character); it's just cool seeing them laughing together after all these years.
03:41 to 03:59 The making of a master-shot:
The master-shot being a stable of the Leone diet. The camera is on a crane and a track and the shot will move with the characters through three or four pieces of action without cutting. In this case it is the scene after Ramon (Volante) has just murdered a small band of soldiers and must shoot the last one with a rifle as he tries to flee.
Camera starts following the man on the horse, moves left, Volante comes into shot, his troop throws him a rifle, camera rises with Volante as he steps up on a wagon, we can see the man on the horse in the distance as Volante takes aim. He shoots and the man falls. Volante throws back the rifle.
I think this might have been left out as it isn't quick enough, mainly the exchanges with the rifle, the throwing of and catching of it is a little sloppy and slows the shot down. Still though, great to see some mistakes from a film that has been burned into our mind as perfect.
I'd say it'll warm the heart of any budding filmmakers out there.
So, what's your favorite moment of the clip?
What's Your Favorite Sergio Leone Film